Judgment on the Nations
34 Draw near, vO nations, to hear,
and give attention, O peoples!
Let the earth hear, and all that fills it;
the world, and all that comes from it.
2 For the Lord is enraged against all the nations,
and furious against all their host;
3 Their slain shall be cast out,
and xthe stench of their corpses shall rise;
ythe mountains shall flow with their blood.
4 zAll the host of heaven shall rot away,
and the skies roll up like a scroll.
All their host shall fall,
as leaves fall from the vine,
like leaves falling from the fig tree.
5 For my sword has drunk its fill in the heavens;
behold, it descends for judgment upon aEdom,
upon the people bI have devoted to destruction.
6 The Lord has a sword; it is sated with blood;
it is gorged with fat,
with the blood of lambs and goats,
with the fat of the kidneys of rams.
cFor the Lord has a sacrifice in Bozrah,
a great slaughter in the land of Edom.
Their land shall drink its fill of blood,
and their soil shall be gorged with fat.
8 gFor the Lord has a day of vengeance,
a year of recompense for the cause of Zion.
and her soil into sulfur;
her land shall become burning pitch.
10 Night and day iit shall not be quenched;
jits smoke shall go up forever.
kFrom generation to generation it shall lie waste;
none shall pass through it forever and ever.
the owl and the raven shall dwell in it.
and the plumb line of emptiness.
12 Its nobles—there is no one there to call it a kingdom,
and all its princes shall be nothing.
13 oThorns shall grow over its strongholds,
nettles and thistles in its fortresses.
It shall be the haunt of pjackals,
an abode for ostriches.5
14 qAnd wild animals shall meet with hyenas;
the wild goat shall cry to his fellow;
indeed, there the night bird6 settles
and finds for herself a resting place.
15 There the owl nests and lays
and hatches and gathers her young in her shadow;
indeed, there rthe hawks are gathered,
each one with her mate.
16 Seek and read from the book of the Lord:
Not one of these shall be missing;
none shall be without her mate.
For the mouth of the Lord has commanded,
and his Spirit has gathered them.
17 sHe has cast the lot for them;
his hand has portioned it out to them with the line;
they shall possess it forever;
from generation to generation they shall dwell in it.
The Ransomed Shall Return
35 tThe wilderness and the dry land shall be glad;
uthe desert shall rejoice and blossom like the crocus;
2 it shall blossom abundantly
and rejoice with joy and singing.
vThe glory of Lebanon shall be given to it,
yThey shall see the glory of the Lord,
the majesty of our God.
3 zStrengthen the weak hands,
and make firm the feeble knees.
4 Say to those who have an anxious heart,
“Be strong; fear not!
aBehold, your God
will come with vengeance,
with the recompense of God.
He will come and save you.”
5 bThen the eyes of the blind shall be opened,
and the ears of the deaf unstopped;
6 bthen shall the lame man leap like a deer,
and the tongue of the mute sing for joy.
cFor waters break forth in the wilderness,
and streams in the desert;
7 dthe burning sand shall become a pool,
and the thirsty ground springs of water;
in the haunt of ejackals, where they lie down,
the grass shall become reeds and rushes.
8 fAnd a highway shall be there,
and it shall be called the Way of Holiness;
gthe unclean shall not pass over it.
It shall belong to those who walk on the way;
even if they are fools, they shall not go astray.7
9 No lion shall be there,
nor shall any ravenous beast come up on it;
they shall not be found there,
but the redeemed shall walk there.
10 hAnd the ransomed of the Lord shall return
and come to Zion with singing;
ieverlasting joy shall be upon their heads;
they shall obtain gladness and joy,
and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.
Sennacherib Invades Judah
36 jIn the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah, kSennacherib king of Assyria came up against all the fortified cities of Judah and took them. 2 lAnd the king of Assyria sent the Rabshakeh8 from mLachish to King Hezekiah at Jerusalem, with a great army. And he stood nby the conduit of the upper pool on the highway to the Washer’s Field. 3 And there came out to him oEliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was over the household, and oShebna the secretary, and Joah the son of Asaph, the recorder.
4 And the Rabshakeh said to them, “Say to Hezekiah, ‘Thus says the pgreat king, the king of Assyria: On what do you rest this trust of yours? 5 Do you think that mere words are strategy and power for war? In whom do you now trust, that you have rebelled against me? 6 qBehold, you are trusting in Egypt, that broken reed of a staff, which will pierce the hand of any man who leans on it. Such is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who trust in him. 7 But if you say to me, “We trust in the Lord our God,” is it not he rwhose high places and altars Hezekiah has removed, saying to Judah and to Jerusalem, “You shall worship before this altar”? 8 Come now, make a wager with my master the king of Assyria: I will give you two thousand horses, if you are able on your part to set riders on them. 9 How then can you repulse sa single captain among the least of my master’s servants, when tyou trust in Egypt for chariots and for horsemen? 10 Moreover, is it without the Lord that I have come up against this land to destroy it? uThe Lord said to me, “Go up against this land and destroy it.”’”
11 Then Eliakim, Shebna, and Joah said to the Rabshakeh, “Please speak to your servants vin Aramaic, for we understand it. Do not speak to us in the language of Judah within the hearing of the people who are on the wall.” 12 But the Rabshakeh said, “Has my master sent me to speak these words to your master and to you, and not to the men sitting on the wall, who are doomed with you to eat their own dung and drink their own urine?”
13 Then the Rabshakeh stood and called out in a loud voice in the language of Judah: “Hear the words of the great king, the king of Assyria! 14 Thus says the king: w‘Do not let Hezekiah deceive you, for he will not be able to deliver you. 15 Do not let Hezekiah make you trust in the Lord by saying, “The Lord will surely deliver us. This city will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria.” 16 Do not listen to Hezekiah. For thus says the king of Assyria: Make your peace with me9 and come out to me. Then each one of you will eat of his own vine, and each one of his own fig tree, and each one of you will drink the water of his own cistern, 17 until xI come and take you away to a land like your own land, a land of grain and wine, a land of bread and vineyards. 18 Beware lest Hezekiah mislead you by saying, “The Lord will deliver us.” Has any of the gods of the nations delivered his land out of the hand of the king of Assyria? 19 yWhere are the gods of zHamath and zArpad? Where are the gods of Sepharvaim? aHave they delivered Samaria out of my hand? 20 bWho among all the gods of these lands have delivered their lands out of my hand, that the Lord should deliver Jerusalem out of my hand?’”
21 But they were silent and answered him not a word, for the king’s command was, “Do not answer him.” 22 cThen Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was over the household, and Shebna the secretary, and Joah the son of Asaph, the recorder, came to Hezekiah with their clothes torn, and told him the words of the Rabshakeh.
2 For I want you to know yhow great a wstruggle I have for you and for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face, 2 that ztheir hearts may be encouraged, being aknit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of bGod’s mystery, which is Christ, 3 cin whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4 I say this in order dthat no one may delude you with plausible arguments. 5 For ethough I am absent in body, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your fgood order and gthe firmness of your faith in Christ.
Alive in Christ
8 See to it that no one takes you captive by nphilosophy and oempty deceit, according to phuman tradition, according to the qelemental spirits1 of the world, and not according to Christ. 9 For rin him the whole fullness of deity dwells sbodily, 10 and tyou have been filled in him, who is uthe head of all rule and authority. 11 In him also vyou were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by wputting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, 12 xhaving been buried with him in baptism, in which yyou were also raised with him through faith in zthe powerful working of God, zwho raised him from the dead. 13 aAnd you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God bmade alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, 14 by ccanceling dthe record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. 15 wHe disarmed the rulers and authorities2 and eput them to open shame, by ftriumphing over them in him.3
Let No One Disqualify You
16 Therefore let no one gpass judgment on you hin questions of food and drink, or with regard to ia festival or ja new moon or a Sabbath. 17 kThese are a shadow of the things to come, but lthe substance belongs to Christ. 18 Let no one mdisqualify you, ninsisting on asceticism and worship of angels, ogoing on in detail about visions,4 ppuffed up without reason by qhis sensuous mind, 19 and rnot sholding fast to the Head, from whom the whole body, nourished and knit together through its joints and ligaments, grows with a growth that is from God.
20 If with Christ tyou died to the uelemental spirits of the world, vwhy, as if you were still alive in the world, do you submit to regulations— 21 w“Do not handle, Do not taste, Do not touch” 22 (xreferring to things that all perish as they are used)—according to yhuman precepts and teachings? 23 These have indeed an appearance of wisdom in zpromoting self-made religion and asceticism and severity to the body, but they are aof no value in stopping the indulgence of the flesh.