Bible: Isaiah 7-11

Ahaz Receives a Sign

7:1 During 1  the reign of Ahaz son of Jotham, son of Uzziah, king of Judah, King Rezin of Syria and King Pekah son of Remaliah of Israel marched up to Jerusalem 2  to do battle, but they were unable to prevail against it. 3 

7:2 It was reported to the family 4  of David, “Syria has allied with 5  Ephraim.” They and their people were emotionally shaken, just as the trees of the forest shake before the wind. 6  7:3 So the Lord told Isaiah, “Go out with your son Shear-jashub 7  and meet Ahaz at the end of the conduit of the upper pool which is located on the road to the field where they wash and dry cloth. 8  7:4 Tell him, ‘Make sure you stay calm! 9  Don’t be afraid! Don’t be intimidated 10  by these two stubs of smoking logs, 11  or by the raging anger of Rezin, Syria, and the son of Remaliah. 7:5 Syria has plotted with Ephraim and the son of Remaliah to bring about your demise. 12  7:6 They say, “Let’s attack Judah, terrorize it, and conquer it. 13  Then we’ll set up the son of Tabeel as its king.” 14  7:7 For this reason the sovereign master, 15  the Lord, says:

“It will not take place;

it will not happen.

7:8 For Syria’s leader is Damascus,

and the leader of Damascus is Rezin.

Within sixty-five years Ephraim will no longer exist as a nation. 16 

7:9 Ephraim’s leader is Samaria,

and Samaria’s leader is the son of Remaliah.

If your faith does not remain firm,

then you will not remain secure.” 17 

7:10 The Lord again spoke to Ahaz: 7:11 Ask for a confirming sign from the Lord your God. You can even ask for something miraculous.” 18  7:12 But Ahaz responded, “I don’t want to ask; I don’t want to put the Lord to a test.” 19  7:13 So Isaiah replied, 20 Pay attention, 21  family 22  of David. 23  Do you consider it too insignificant to try the patience of men? Is that why you are also trying the patience of my God? 7:14 For this reason the sovereign master himself will give you a confirming sign. 24  Look, this 25  young woman 26  is about to conceive 27  and will give birth to a son. You, young woman, will name him 28  Immanuel. 29  7:15 He will eat sour milk 30  and honey, which will help him know how 31  to reject evil and choose what is right. 7:16 Here is why this will be so: 32  Before the child knows how to reject evil and choose what is right, the land 33  whose two kings you fear will be desolate. 34  7:17 The Lord will bring on you, your people, and your father’s family a time 35  unlike any since Ephraim departed from Judah – the king of Assyria! 36 

7:18 At that time 37  the Lord will whistle for flies from the distant streams of Egypt and for bees from the land of Assyria. 38  7:19 All of them will come and make their home 39  in the ravines between the cliffs, and in the crevices of the cliffs, in all the thorn bushes, and in all the watering holes. 40  7:20 At that time 41  the sovereign master will use a razor hired from the banks of the Euphrates River, 42  the king of Assyria, to shave the head and the pubic hair; 43  it will also shave off the beard. 7:21 At that time 44  a man will keep alive a young cow from the herd and a couple of goats. 7:22 From the abundance of milk they produce, 45  he will have sour milk for his meals. Indeed, everyone left in the heart of the land will eat sour milk and honey. 7:23 At that time 46  every place where there had been a thousand vines worth a thousand shekels will be overrun 47  with thorns and briers. 7:24 With bow and arrow 48  men will hunt 49  there, for the whole land will be covered 50  with thorns and briers. 7:25 They will stay away from all the hills that were cultivated, for fear of the thorns and briers. 51  Cattle will graze there and sheep will trample on them. 52 

A Sign-Child is Born

8:1 The Lord told me, “Take a large tablet 53  and inscribe these words 54  on it with an ordinary stylus: 55  ‘Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz.’ 56  8:2 Then I will summon 57  as my reliable witnesses Uriah the priest and Zechariah son of Jeberekiah.” 8:3 I then had sexual relations with the prophetess; she conceived and gave birth to a son. The Lord told me, “Name him Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz, 8:4 for before the child knows how to cry out, ‘My fatheror ‘My mother,’ the wealth of Damascus and the plunder of Samaria 58  will be carried off by the king of Assyria.” 59 

8:5 The Lord spoke to me again: 8:6 These people 60  have rejected the gently flowing waters of Shiloah 61  and melt in fear over Rezin and the son of Remaliah. 62  8:7 So look, the sovereign master 63  is bringing up against them the turbulent and mighty waters of the Euphrates River 64 the king of Assyria and all his majestic power. It will reach flood stage and overflow its banks. 65  8:8 It will spill into Judah, flooding and engulfing, as it reaches to the necks of its victims. He will spread his wings out over your entire land, 66  O Immanuel.” 67 

8:9 You will be broken, 68  O nations;

you will be shattered! 69 

Pay attention, all you distant lands of the earth!

Get ready for battle, and you will be shattered!

Get ready for battle, and you will be shattered! 70 

8:10 Devise your strategy, but it will be thwarted!

Issue your orders, but they will not be executed! 71 

For God is with us! 72 

The Lord Encourages Isaiah

8:11 Indeed this is what the Lord told me. He took hold of me firmly and warned me not to act like these people: 73 

8:12Do not say, ‘Conspiracy,’ every time these people say the word. 74 

Don’t be afraid of what scares them; don’t be terrified.

8:13 You must recognize the authority of the Lord who commands armies. 75 

He is the one you must respect;

he is the one you must fear. 76 

8:14 He will become a sanctuary, 77 

but a stone that makes a person trip,

and a rock that makes one stumble

to the two houses of Israel. 78 

He will become 79  a trap and a snare

to the residents of Jerusalem. 80 

8:15 Many will stumble over the stone and the rock, 81 

and will fall and be seriously injured,

and will be ensnared and captured.”

8:16 Tie up the scroll as legal evidence, 82 

seal the official record of God’s instructions and give it to my followers. 83 

8:17 I will wait patiently for the Lord,

who has rejected the family of Jacob; 84 

I will wait for him.

8:18 Look, I and the sons whom the Lord has given me 85  are reminders and object lessons 86  in Israel, sent from the Lord who commands armies, who lives on Mount Zion.

8:19

Darkness Turns to Light as an Ideal King Arrives

87 

They will say to you, “Seek oracles at the pits used to conjure up underworld spirits, from the magicians who chirp and mutter incantations. 88  Should people not seek oracles from their gods, by asking the dead about the destiny of the living? 89  8:20 Then you must recall the Lord’s instructions and the prophetic testimony of what would happen. 90  Certainly they say such things because their minds are spiritually darkened. 91  8:21 They will pass through the land 92  destitute and starving. Their hunger will make them angry, 93  and they will curse their king and their God 94  as they look upward. 8:22 When one looks out over the land, he sees 95  distress and darkness, gloom 96  and anxiety, darkness and people forced from the land. 97  9:1 98  The gloom will be dispelled for those who were anxious. 99 

In earlier times he 100  humiliated

the land of Zebulun,

and the land of Naphtali; 101 

but now he brings honor 102 

to the way of the sea,

the region beyond the Jordan,

and Galilee of the nations. 103 

9:2 The people walking in darkness

see a bright light; 104 

light shines

on those who live in a land of deep darkness. 105 

9:3 You 106  have enlarged the nation;

you give them great joy. 107 

They rejoice in your presence

as harvesters rejoice;

as warriors celebrate 108  when they divide up the plunder.

9:4 For their oppressive yoke

and the club that strikes their shoulders,

the cudgel the oppressor uses on them, 109 

you have shattered, as in the day of Midian’s defeat. 110 

9:5 Indeed every boot that marches and shakes the earth 111 

and every garment dragged through blood

is used as fuel for the fire.

9:6 For a child has been 112  born to us,

a son has been given to us.

He shoulders responsibility

and is called: 113 

Extraordinary Strategist, 114 

Mighty God, 115 

Everlasting Father, 116 

Prince of Peace. 117 

9:7 His dominion will be vast 118 

and he will bring immeasurable prosperity. 119 

He will rule on David’s throne

and over David’s kingdom, 120 

establishing it 121  and strengthening it

by promoting justice and fairness, 122 

from this time forward and forevermore.

The Lord’s intense devotion to his people 123  will accomplish this.

9:8

God’s Judgment Intensifies

124 

The sovereign master 125  decreed judgment 126  on Jacob,

and it fell on Israel. 127 

9:9 All the people were aware 128  of it,

the people of Ephraim and those living in Samaria. 129 

Yet with pride and an arrogant attitude, they said, 130 

9:10The bricks have fallen,

but we will rebuild with chiseled stone;

the sycamore fig trees have been cut down,

but we will replace them with cedars.” 131 

9:11 Then the Lord provoked 132  their adversaries to attack them, 133 

he stirred up 134  their enemies

9:12 Syria from the east,

and the Philistines from the west,

they gobbled up Israelite territory. 135 

Despite all this, his anger does not subside,

and his hand is ready to strike again. 136 

9:13 The people did not return to the one who struck them,

they did not seek reconciliation 137  with the Lord who commands armies.

9:14 So the Lord cut off Israel’s head and tail,

both the shoots and stalk 138  in one day.

9:15 The leaders and the highly respected people 139  are the head,

the prophets who teach lies are the tail.

9:16 The leaders of this nation were misleading people,

and the people being led were destroyed. 140 

9:17 So the sovereign master was not pleased 141  with their young men,

he took no pity 142  on their orphans and widows;

for the whole nation was godless 143  and did wicked things, 144 

every mouth was speaking disgraceful words. 145 

Despite all this, his anger does not subside,

and his hand is ready to strike again. 146 

9:18 For 147  evil burned like a fire, 148 

it consumed thorns and briers;

it burned up the thickets of the forest,

and they went up in smoke. 149 

9:19 Because of the anger of the Lord who commands armies, the land was scorched, 150 

and the people became fuel for the fire. 151 

People had no compassion on one another. 152 

9:20 They devoured 153  on the right, but were still hungry,

they ate on the left, but were not satisfied.

People even ate 154  the flesh of their own arm! 155 

9:21 Manasseh fought against 156  Ephraim,

and Ephraim against Manasseh;

together they fought against Judah.

Despite all this, his anger does not subside,

and his hand is ready to strike again. 157 

10:1 Those who enact unjust policies are as good as dead, 158 

those who are always instituting unfair regulations, 159 

10:2 to keep the poor from getting fair treatment,

and to deprive 160  the oppressed among my people of justice,

so they can steal what widows own,

and loot what belongs to orphans. 161 

10:3 What will you do on judgment day, 162 

when destruction arrives from a distant place?

To whom will you run for help?

Where will you leave your wealth?

10:4 You will have no place to go, except to kneel with the prisoners,

or to fall among those who have been killed. 163 

Despite all this, his anger does not subside,

and his hand is ready to strike again. 164 

The Lord Turns on Arrogant Assyria

10:5 Assyria, the club I use to vent my anger, is as good as dead, 165 

a cudgel with which I angrily punish. 166 

10:6 I sent him 167  against a godless 168  nation,

I ordered him to attack the people with whom I was angry, 169 

to take plunder and to carry away loot,

to trample them down 170  like dirt in the streets.

10:7 But he does not agree with this,

his mind does not reason this way, 171 

for his goal is to destroy,

and to eliminate many nations. 172 

10:8 Indeed, 173  he says:

“Are not my officials all kings?

10:9 Is not Calneh like Carchemish?

Hamath like Arpad?

Samaria like Damascus? 174 

10:10 I overpowered kingdoms ruled by idols, 175 

whose carved images were more impressive than Jerusalem’s 176  or Samaria’s.

10:11 As I have done to Samaria and its idols,

so I will do to Jerusalem and its idols.” 177 

10:12 But when 178  the sovereign master 179  finishes judging 180  Mount Zion and Jerusalem, then I 181  will punish the king of Assyria for what he has proudly planned and for the arrogant attitude he displays. 182  10:13 For he says:

“By my strong hand I have accomplished this,

by my strategy that I devised.

I invaded the territory of nations, 183 

and looted their storehouses.

Like a mighty conqueror, 184  I brought down rulers. 185 

10:14 My hand discovered the wealth of the nations, as if it were in a nest,

as one gathers up abandoned eggs,

I gathered up the whole earth.

There was no wing flapping,

or open mouth chirping.” 186 

10:15 Does an ax exalt itself over the one who wields it,

or a saw magnify itself over the one who cuts with it? 187 

As if a scepter should brandish the one who raises it,

or a staff should lift up what is not made of wood!

10:16 For this reason 188  the sovereign master, the Lord who commands armies, will make his healthy ones emaciated. 189  His majestic glory will go up in smoke. 190 

10:17 The light of Israel 191  will become a fire,

their Holy One 192  will become a flame;

it will burn and consume the Assyrian king’s 193  briers

and his thorns in one day.

10:18 The splendor of his forest and his orchard

will be completely destroyed, 194 

as when a sick man’s life ebbs away. 195 

10:19 There will be so few trees left in his forest,

a child will be able to count them. 196 

10:20 At that time 197  those left in Israel, those who remain of the family 198  of Jacob, will no longer rely on a foreign leader that abuses them. 199  Instead they will truly 200  rely on the Lord, the Holy One of Israel. 201  10:21 A remnant will come back, a remnant of Jacob, to the mighty God. 202  10:22 For though your people, Israel, are as numerous as 203  the sand on the seashore, only a remnant will come back. 204  Destruction has been decreed; 205  just punishment 206  is about to engulf you. 207  10:23 The sovereign master, the Lord who commands armies, is certainly ready to carry out the decreed destruction throughout the land. 208 

10:24 So 209  here is what the sovereign master, the Lord who commands armies, says: “My people who live in Zion, do not be afraid of Assyria, even though they beat you with a club and lift their cudgel against you as Egypt did. 210  10:25 For very soon my fury 211  will subside, and my anger will be directed toward their destruction.” 10:26 The Lord who commands armies is about to beat them 212  with a whip, similar to the way he struck down Midian at the rock of Oreb. 213  He will use his staff against the sea, lifting it up as he did in Egypt. 214 

10:27 At that time 215 

the Lord will remove their burden from your shoulders, 216 

and their yoke from your neck;

the yoke will be taken off because your neck will be too large. 217 

10:28 218 

They 219  attacked 220  Aiath,

moved through Migron,

depositing their supplies at Micmash.

10:29 They went through the pass,

spent the night at Geba.

Ramah trembled,

Gibeah of Saul ran away.

10:30 Shout out, daughter of Gallim!

Pay attention, Laishah!

Answer her, Anathoth! 221 

10:31 Madmenah flees,

the residents of Gebim have hidden.

10:32 This very day, standing in Nob,

they shake their fist at Daughter Zion’s mountain 222 

at the hill of Jerusalem.

10:33 Look, the sovereign master, the Lord who commands armies,

is ready to cut off the branches with terrifying power. 223 

The tallest trees 224  will be cut down,

the loftiest ones will be brought low.

10:34 The thickets of the forest will be chopped down with an ax,

and mighty Lebanon will fall. 225 

An Ideal King Establishes a Kingdom of Peace

11:1 A shoot will grow out of Jesse’s 226  root stock,

a bud will sprout 227  from his roots.

11:2 The Lord’s spirit will rest on him 228 

a spirit that gives extraordinary wisdom, 229 

a spirit that provides the ability to execute plans, 230 

a spirit that produces absolute loyalty to the Lord. 231 

11:3 He will take delight in obeying the Lord. 232 

He will not judge by mere appearances, 233 

or make decisions on the basis of hearsay. 234 

11:4 He will treat the poor fairly, 235 

and make right decisions 236  for the downtrodden of the earth. 237 

He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth, 238 

and order the wicked to be executed. 239 

11:5 Justice will be like a belt around his waist,

integrity will be like a belt around his hips. 240 

11:6 A wolf will reside 241  with a lamb,

and a leopard will lie down with a young goat;

an ox and a young lion will graze together, 242 

as a small child leads them along.

11:7 A cow and a bear will graze together,

their young will lie down together. 243 

A lion, like an ox, will eat straw.

11:8 A baby 244  will play

over the hole of a snake; 245 

over the nest 246  of a serpent

an infant 247  will put his hand. 248 

11:9 They will no longer injure or destroy

on my entire royal mountain. 249 

For there will be universal submission to the Lord’s sovereignty,

just as the waters completely cover the sea. 250 

Israel is Reclaimed and Reunited

11:10 At that time 251  a root from Jesse 252  will stand like a signal flag for the nations. Nations will look to him for guidance, 253  and his residence will be majestic. 11:11 At that time 254  the sovereign master 255  will again lift his hand 256  to reclaim 257  the remnant of his people 258  from Assyria, Egypt, Pathros, 259  Cush, 260  Elam, Shinar, 261  Hamath, and the seacoasts. 262 

11:12 He will lift a signal flag for the nations;

he will gather Israel’s dispersed people 263 

and assemble Judah’s scattered people

from the four corners of the earth.

11:13 Ephraim’s jealousy will end, 264 

and Judah’s hostility 265  will be eliminated.

Ephraim will no longer be jealous of Judah,

and Judah will no longer be hostile toward Ephraim.

11:14 They will swoop down 266  on the Philistine hills to the west; 267 

together they will loot the people of the east.

They will take over Edom and Moab, 268 

and the Ammonites will be their subjects.

11:15 The Lord will divide 269  the gulf 270  of the Egyptian Sea; 271 

he will wave his hand over the Euphrates River 272  and send a strong wind, 273 

he will turn it into seven dried-up streams, 274 

and enable them to walk across in their sandals.

11:16 There will be a highway leading out of Assyria

for the remnant of his people, 275 

just as there was for Israel,

when 276  they went up from the land of Egypt.

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