Isaiah 11–13; Mark 4:1–20

The Righteous Reign of the Branch

11  There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of lJesse,

and a branch from his roots shall bear fruit.

And mthe Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him,

the Spirit of wisdom and understanding,

the Spirit of counsel and might,

the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.

And his delight shall be in the fear of the Lord.

nHe shall not judge by owhat his eyes see,

or decide disputes by owhat his ears hear,

but pwith righteousness he shall judge the poor,

and decide with equity for the meek of the earth;

and he shall qstrike the earth with the rod of his mouth,

and rwith the breath of his lips she shall kill the wicked.

Righteousness shall be the belt of his waist,

and tfaithfulness the belt of his loins.

uThe wolf shall dwell with the lamb,

and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat,

and the calf and the lion and the fattened calf together;

and a little child shall lead them.

The cow and the bear shall graze;

their young shall lie down together;

and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.

The nursing child shall play over the hole of the cobra,

and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder's den.

uThey shall not hurt or destroy

in all vmy holy mountain;

wfor the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord

as the waters cover the sea.

10 In that day xthe root of yJesse, who shall stand as za signal for the peoplesof him shall the nations inquire, and his resting place shall be glorious.

11 aIn that day the Lord will extend his hand yet a second time to recover the remnant that remains of his people, bfrom Assyria, bfrom Egypt, from cPathros, from dCush,1 from eElam, from fShinar, from gHamath, and from hthe coastlands of the sea.

12  He will raise za signal for the nations

and will assemble ithe banished of Israel,

and gather the dispersed of Judah

from the four corners of the earth.

13  jThe jealousy of Ephraim shall depart,

and those who harass Judah shall be cut off;

Ephraim shall not be jealous of Judah,

and Judah shall not harass Ephraim.

14  kBut they shall swoop down on the shoulder of the Philistines in the west,

and together they shall plunder lthe people of the east.

They shall put out their hand magainst nEdom and oMoab,

and pthe Ammonites shall obey them.

15  And the Lord will utterly destroy2

qthe tongue of the Sea of Egypt,

and will wave his hand over rthe River3

with his scorching breath,4

and strike it into seven channels,

and he will lead people across in sandals.

16  And there will be sa highway from Assyria

for the remnant that remains of his people,

tas there was for Israel

when they came up from the land of Egypt.

The Lord Is My Strength and My Song

12  You5 will say uin that day:

I will give thanks to you, O Lord,

for though you were angry with me,

vyour anger turned away,

that you might comfort me.

Behold, God is my salvation;

I will trust, and will not be afraid;

for wthe Lord God6 is my strength and my song,

and he has become my salvation.

xWith joy you7 will draw water from the wells of salvation. yAnd you will say in that day:

zGive thanks to the Lord,

call upon his name,

amake known his deeds among the peoples,

proclaim bthat his name is exalted.

cSing praises to the Lord, for he has done gloriously;

let this be made known8 in all the earth.

Shout, and sing for joy, O inhabitant of Zion,

for great din your9 midst is ethe Holy One of Israel.

The Judgment of Babylon

13 The oracle concerning fBabylon which gIsaiah the son of Amoz saw.

On a bare hill hraise a signal;

cry aloud to them;

wave the hand for ithem to enter

the gates of the nobles.

I myself have commanded my consecrated ones,

and have summoned my mighty men to execute my anger,

my proudly exulting ones.10

The sound jof a tumult is on the mountains

as of a great multitude!

The sound of an uproar of kingdoms,

of nations gathering together!

kThe Lord of hosts is mustering

a host for battle.

lThey come from a distant land,

from the end of the heavens,

the Lord and the weapons of his indignation,

to destroy the whole land.11

mWail, for nthe day of the Lord is near;

as destruction from the Almighty12 it will come!

Therefore all hands will be feeble,

and every human heart owill melt.

They will be dismayed:

ppangs and agony will seize them;

qthey will be in anguish like a woman in labor.

They will look aghast at one another;

their faces will be aflame.

Behold, nthe day of the Lord comes,

cruel, with wrath and fierce anger,

to make the land a desolation

and rto destroy its sinners from it.

10  sFor the stars of the heavens and their constellations

will not give their light;

tthe sun will be dark at its rising,

and the moon will not shed its light.

11  I will punish uthe world for its evil,

and the wicked for their iniquity;

I will vput an end to the pomp of the arrogant,

wand lay low the pompous pride of the ruthless.

12  I will make xpeople more rare than fine gold,

and mankind than the ygold of Ophir.

13  Therefore zI will make the heavens tremble,

and the earth will be shaken out of its place,

at the wrath of the Lord of hosts

in the day of his fierce anger.

14  And like a hunted gazelle,

or like sheep with none to gather them,

aeach will turn to his own people,

and each will flee to his own land.

15  Whoever is found will be thrust through,

and whoever is caught will fall by the sword.

16  bTheir infants will be dashed in pieces

before their eyes;

their houses will be plundered

and their wives ravished.

17  Behold, cI am stirring up the Medes against them,

who have no regard for silver

and do not delight in gold.

18  dTheir bows will slaughter13 the young men;

they will have no mercy on the fruit of the womb;

their eyes will not pity children.

19  And Babylon, ethe glory of kingdoms,

the splendor and pomp of the Chaldeans,

will be flike Sodom and Gomorrah

when God overthrew them.

20  gIt will never be inhabited

or lived in for all generations;

no hArab will pitch his tent there;

no ishepherds will make their flocks lie down there.

21  But jwild animals will lie down there,

and their houses will be full of howling creatures;

there kostriches14 will dwell,

and there wild goats will dance.

22  Hyenas15 will cry in its towers,

and ljackals in mthe pleasant palaces;

its time is close at hand

and its days will not be prolonged.


The Parable of the Sower

Again vhe began to teach beside the sea. And a very large crowd gathered about him, wso that he got into a boat and sat in it on the sea, and the whole crowd was beside the sea on the land. And xhe was teaching them many things in parables, and in his teaching he said to them: Listen! yBehold, a sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured it. Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did not have much soil, and immediately it sprang up, since it had no depth of soil. And zwhen the sun rose, it was scorched, and since it had no root, ait withered away. Other seed fell among bthorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain. And other seeds fell into good soil and produced grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirtyfold and sixtyfold and ca hundredfold. And he said, dHe who has ears to hear, let him hear.

The Purpose of the Parables

10 And ewhen he was alone, those around him with the twelve asked him about the parables. 11 And he said to them, fTo you has been given gthe secret of the kingdom of God, but for hthose outside everything is in parables, 12 iso that

they jmay indeed see but not perceive,

and may indeed hear but not understand,

lest they kshould turn and be forgiven.

13 lAnd he said to them, Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all the parables? 14 mThe sower sows nthe word. 15 And these are the ones along the path, where the word is sown: when they hear, Satan immediately comes and takes away the word that is sown in them. 16 And these are the ones sown on rocky ground: the ones who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it owith joy. 17 And they have no root in themselves, but pendure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately qthey fall away.1 18 And others are the ones sown among thorns. They are those who hear the word, 19 but rthe cares of sthe world and tthe deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. 20 But those that were sown on the good soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it and ubear fruit, vthirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.