Isaiah 47

Cyrus, God's Instrument

45  Thus says the Lord to phis anointed, to Cyrus,

qwhose right hand I have grasped,

to subdue nations before him

and rto loose the belts of kings,

to open doors before him

that gates may not be closed:

I will go before you

and slevel the exalted places,1

tI will break in pieces the doors of bronze

and cut through the bars of iron,

uI will give you the treasures of darkness

and the hoards in secret places,

that you may know that it is I, the Lord,

the God of Israel, vwho call you by your name.

For the sake of my servant Jacob,

and Israel my chosen,

vI call you by your name,

wI name you, though you do not know me.

xI am the Lord, and there is no other,

besides me there is no God;

yI equip you, though you do not know me,

zthat people may know, from the rising of the sun

and from the west, that there is none besides me;

I am the Lord, and there is no other.

I form light and create darkness;

I make well-being and acreate calamity;

I am the Lord, who does all these things.

bShower, O heavens, from above,

and clet the clouds rain down righteousness;

let the earth open, that salvation and righteousness may bear fruit;

let the earth cause them both to sprout;

I the Lord have created it.

dWoe to him who strives with him who formed him,

a pot among earthen pots!

eDoes the clay say to him who forms it, What are you making?

or Your work has no handles?

10  Woe to him who says to a father, What are you begetting?

or to a woman, With what are you in labor?

11  Thus says fthe Lord,

the Holy One of Israel, and the one who formed him:

gAsk me of things to come;

will you command me hconcerning my children and ithe work of my hands?2

12  jI made the earth

and created man on it;

it was my hands kthat stretched out the heavens,

and lI commanded all their host.

13  mI have stirred him up in righteousness,

nand I will make all his ways level;

ohe shall build my city

pand set my exiles free,

not for price or reward,

says the Lord of hosts.

The Lord, the Only Savior

14  Thus says the Lord:

qThe wealth of Egypt and the merchandise of Cush,

and the Sabeans, men of stature,

shall come over to you rand be yours;

they shall follow you;

they shall come over in chains and bow down to you.

They will plead with you, saying:

Surely God is in you, and there is no other,

no god besides him.

15  sTruly, you are a God who hides himself,

O God of Israel, the Savior.

16  tAll of them are put to shame and confounded;

the makers of idols go in confusion together.

17  But Israel is saved by the Lord

with everlasting salvation;

uyou shall not be put to shame or confounded

to all eternity.

18  vFor thus says the Lord,

who created the heavens

(he is God!),

who formed the earth and made it

(he established it;

he wdid not create it empty,

xhe formed it to be inhabited!):

I am the Lord, and there is no other.

19  yI did not speak in secret,

in a land of darkness;

I did not say to the offspring of Jacob,

zSeek me in vain.3

I the Lord speak athe truth;

I declare what is right.

20  bAssemble yourselves and come;

draw near together,

you survivors of the nations!

cThey have no knowledge

who dcarry about their wooden idols,

eand keep on praying to a god

that cannot save.

21  fDeclare and present your case;

let them take counsel together!

Who told this long ago?

Who declared it of old?

Was it not I, the Lord?

And there is no other god besides me,

a righteous God gand a Savior;

there is none besides me.

22  Turn to me and be saved,

hall the ends of the earth!

For I am God, and there is no other.

23  iBy myself I have sworn;

from my mouth has gone out in jrighteousness

a word that shall not return:

kTo me every knee shall bow,

every tongue shall swear allegiance.4

24  lOnly in the Lord, it shall be said of me,

are righteousness and mstrength;

to him shall come and be ashamed

nall who were incensed against him.

25  In the Lord all the offspring of Israel

shall be justified and shall glory.

The Idols of Babylon and the One True God

46  oBel bows down; Nebo stoops;

their idols are on beasts and livestock;

these things you carry are borne

as burdens on weary beasts.

They stoop; they bow down together;

they cannot save the burden,

but pthemselves go into captivity.

Listen to me, O house of Jacob,

all the remnant of the house of Israel,

qwho have been borne by me from before your birth,

carried from the womb;

reven to your old age I am he,

and to gray hairs I will carry you.

I have made, and I will bear;

I will carry and will save.

sTo whom will you liken me and make me equal,

and compare me, that we may be alike?

tThose who lavish gold from the purse,

and weigh out silver in the scales,

hire a goldsmith, and he makes it into a god;

uthen they fall down and worship!

vThey lift it to their shoulders, they carry it,

they set it in its place, and it stands there;

wit cannot move from its place.

If one cries to it, it does not answer

or save him from his trouble.

Remember this and stand firm,

recall it to mind, xyou transgressors,

remember the former things of old;

for I am God, and there is no other;

I am God, and there is none like me,

10  ydeclaring the end from the beginning

and from ancient times things not yet done,

saying, zMy counsel shall stand,

and I will accomplish all my purpose,

11  acalling a bird of prey from the east,

the man of my counsel from a far country.

bI have spoken, and I will bring it to pass;

I have purposed, and I will do it.

12  Listen to me, you stubborn of heart,

you who are far from righteousness:

13  cI bring near my righteousness; it is not far off,

and my salvation will not delay;

dI will put salvation in Zion,

for Israel my glory.

The Humiliation of Babylon

47  eCome down and sit in the dust,

O virgin fdaughter of Babylon;

gsit on the ground without a throne,

O daughter of hthe Chaldeans!

iFor you shall no more be called

tender and delicate.

Take the millstones and jgrind flour,

kput off your veil,

strip off your robe, uncover your legs,

pass through the rivers.

Your nakedness shall be uncovered,

and your disgrace shall be seen.

I will take vengeance,

and I will spare no one.

lOur Redeemerthe Lord of hosts is his name

is the Holy One of Israel.

mSit in silence, and go into darkness,

O daughter of hthe Chaldeans;

for you shall no more be called

nthe mistress of kingdoms.

oI was angry with my people;

I profaned my heritage;

I gave them into your hand;

pyou showed them no mercy;

on the aged you made your yoke exceedingly heavy.

You said, I shall be qmistress forever,

so that you did not lay these things to heart

or remember their end.

Now therefore hear this, qyou lover of pleasures,

rwho sit securely,

who say in your heart,

sI am, and there is no one besides me;

tI shall not sit as a widow

or know the loss of children:

uThese two things shall come to you

in a moment, vin one day;

the loss of children and widowhood

shall come upon you in full measure,

win spite of your many sorceries

and the great power of your enchantments.

10  You felt secure in your wickedness;

you said, No one sees me;

your wisdom and your knowledge led you astray,

and you said in your heart,

xI am, and there is no one besides me.

11  But evil shall come upon you,

which you will not know how to charm away;

disaster shall fall upon you,

for which you will not be able to atone;

yand ruin shall come upon you suddenly,

of which you know nothing.

12  zStand fast in your enchantments

and your many sorceries,

with which you have labored from your youth;

perhaps you may be able to succeed;

perhaps you may inspire terror.

13  You are wearied with your many counsels;

let them stand forth and save you,

athose who divide the heavens,

who gaze at the stars,

who at the new moons make known

what shall come upon you.

14  Behold, bthey are like stubble;

cthe fire consumes them;

they cannot deliver themselves

from the power of the flame.

No coal for warming oneself is this,

no fire to sit before!

15  Such to you are those with whom you have labored,

who have done business with you from your youth;

they wander about, each in his own direction;

there is no one to save you.

Israel Refined for God's Glory

48  Hear this, O house of Jacob,

dwho are called by the name of Israel,

and ewho came from the waters of Judah,

fwho swear by the name of the Lord

and confess the God of Israel,

but not in truth or right.

For they call themselves after the holy city,

gand stay themselves on the God of Israel;

the Lord of hosts is his name.

The former things hI declared of old;

they went out from my mouth, and I announced them;

then suddenly I did them, and they came to pass.

Because I know that iyou are obstinate,

and your neck is an iron sinew

and your forehead brass,

hI declared them to you from of old,

before they came to pass I announced them to you,

lest you should say, jMy idol did them,

my carved image and my metal image commanded them.

You have heard; now see all this;

and will you not declare it?

From this time forth kI announce to you new things,

hidden things that you have not known.

They are created now, not long ago;

before today you have never heard of them,

lest you should say, Behold, I knew them.

You have never heard, you have never known,

from of old your ear has not been opened.

For I knew that you would surely deal treacherously,

and that lfrom before birth you were called a rebel.

mFor my name's sake I defer my anger;

for the sake of my praise I restrain it for you,

that I may not cut you off.

10  Behold, I have refined you, nbut not as silver;

oI have tried1 you in the furnace of affliction.

11  pFor my own sake, for my own sake, I do it,

for how should my name2 be profaned?

qMy glory I will not give to another.

The Lord's Call to Israel

12  Listen to me, O Jacob,

and Israel, whom I called!

I am he; rI am the first,

and I am the last.

13  My hand slaid the foundation of the earth,

and my right hand sspread out the heavens;

twhen I call to them,

they stand forth together.

14  Assemble, all of you, and listen!

uWho among them has declared these things?

The Lord loves him;

vhe shall perform his purpose on Babylon,

and his arm shall be against wthe Chaldeans.

15  xI, even I, have spoken and called him;

I have brought him, and he will prosper in his way.

16  yDraw near to me, hear this:

from the beginning I have not spoken in secret,

from the time it came to be I have been there.

And now zthe Lord God has sent me, and his Spirit.

17  Thus says the Lord,

your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel:

I am the Lord your God,

who teaches you to profit,

who leads you in the way you should go.

18  aOh that you had paid attention to my commandments!

bThen your peace would have been like a river,

and your righteousness like the waves of the sea;

19  cyour offspring would have been like the sand,

and your descendants like its grains;

their name would never be cut off

or destroyed from before me.

20  dGo out from Babylon, flee from eChaldea,

declare this fwith a shout of joy, proclaim it,

send it out to the end of the earth;

say, gThe Lord has redeemed his servant Jacob!

21  hThey did not thirst when he led them through the deserts;

ihe made water flow for them from the rock;

he split the rock and the water gushed out.

22  jThere is no peace, says the Lord, for the wicked.

The Servant of the Lord

49  Listen to me, kO coastlands,

and give attention, you peoples lfrom afar.

mThe Lord called me from the womb,

from the body of my mother he named my name.

nHe made my mouth like a sharp sword;

oin the shadow of his hand he hid me;

he made me a polished arrow;

in his quiver he hid me away.

And he said to me, You are my servant,

Israel, pin whom I will be glorified.1

qBut I said, I have labored in vain;

I have spent my strength for nothing and vanity;

yet surely my right is with the Lord,

and my recompense with my God.

rAnd now the Lord says,

he mwho formed me from the womb to be his servant,

to bring Jacob back to him;

and that Israel might be gathered to him

for sI am honored in the eyes of the Lord,

and my God has become my strength

he says:

It is too light a thing that you should be my servant

to raise up the tribes of Jacob

and to bring back the preserved of Israel;

tI will make you uas a light for the nations,

that vmy salvation may reach to the end of the earth.

Thus says the Lord,

wthe Redeemer of Israel and his Holy One,

xto one deeply despised, abhorred by the nation,

the servant of rulers:

yKings shall see and arise;

princes, and they shall prostrate themselves;

because of the Lord, who is faithful,

the Holy One of Israel, who has chosen you.

The Restoration of Israel

Thus says the Lord:

zIn a atime of favor I have answered you;

in a day of salvation I have helped you;

I will keep you band give you

as a covenant to the people,

to establish the land,

cto apportion the desolate heritages,

dsaying to the prisoners, Come out,

to those who are in darkness, Appear.

eThey shall feed along the ways;

on all bare heights shall be their pasture;

10  fthey shall not hunger or thirst,

neither scorching wind nor sun shall strike them,

for he who has pity on them gwill lead them,

and by springs of water will guide them.

11  hAnd I will make all my mountains a road,

and my highways shall be raised up.

12  iBehold, these shall come from afar,

and behold, jthese from the north and from the west,2

and these from the land of Syene.3

13  kSing for joy, O heavens, and exult, O earth;

break forth, O mountains, into singing!

For the Lord lhas comforted his people

and will have compassion on his afflicted.

14  But Zion said, mThe Lord has forsaken me;

my Lord has forgotten me.

15  nCan a woman forget her nursing child,

that she should have no compassion on the son of her womb?

Even these may forget,

yet I will not forget you.

16  Behold, oI have engraved you on the palms of my hands;

your walls are continually before me.

17  Your builders make haste;4

pyour destroyers and those who laid you waste go out from you.

18  qLift up your eyes around and see;

they all gather, they come to you.

rAs I live, declares the Lord,

syou shall put them all on as an ornament;

you shall bind them on as a bride does.

19  Surely your waste and your desolate places

and your devastated land

tsurely now you will be too narrow for your inhabitants,

and those who swallowed you up will be far away.

20  uThe children of your bereavement

will yet say in your ears:

tThe place is too narrow for me;

make room for me to dwell in.

21  Then you will say in your heart:

Who has borne me these?

uI was bereaved and barren,

exiled and put away,

but who has brought up these?

Behold, I was left alone;

from where have these come?

22  Thus says the Lord God:

Behold, I will lift up my hand to the nations,

vand raise my signal to the peoples;

wand they shall bring your sons in their arms,5

and your daughters shall be carried on their shoulders.

23  xKings shall be your foster fathers,

and their queens your nursing mothers.

yWith their faces to the ground they shall bow down to you,

and zlick the dust of your feet.

Then you will know that I am the Lord;

athose who wait for me bshall not be put to shame.

24  Can the prey be taken from the mighty,

or the captives of a tyrant6 be rescued?

25  For thus says the Lord:

cEven the captives of the mighty shall be taken,

and the prey of the tyrant be rescued,

for I will contend with those who contend with you,

and I will save your children.

26  dI will make your oppressors eat their own flesh,

and they shall be drunk ewith their own blood as with wine.

Then all flesh shall know

that fI am the Lord your Savior,

and your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob.