Isaiah 32

Do Not Go Down to Egypt

30  Ah, nstubborn children, declares the Lord,

owho carry out a plan, but not mine,

and who make pan alliance,1 but not of my Spirit,

that they may add sin to sin;

qwho set out to go down to Egypt,

without asking for my direction,

to take refuge in the protection of Pharaoh

and to seek shelter in the shadow of Egypt!

rTherefore shall the protection of Pharaoh turn to your shame,

and the shelter in the shadow of Egypt to your humiliation.

For though his officials are at sZoan

and this envoys reach uHanes,

everyone comes to shame

through va people that cannot profit them,

that brings neither help nor profit,

but shame and disgrace.

An woracle on xthe beasts of ythe Negeb.

Through a land of trouble and anguish,

from where come the lioness and the lion,

the adder and the zflying fiery serpent,

they carry their riches on the backs of donkeys,

and their treasures on the humps of camels,

to a people that cannot profit them.

Egypt's ahelp is worthless and empty;

therefore I have called her

bRahab who sits still.

A Rebellious People

And now, go, cwrite it before them on a tablet

and inscribe it in a book,

that it may be for the time to come

as a witness forever.2

dFor they are a rebellious people,

lying children,

children unwilling to hear

the instruction of the Lord;

10  ewho say to fthe seers, Do not see,

and to the prophets, Do not prophesy to us what is right;

speak to us gsmooth things,

prophesy illusions,

11  leave the way, turn aside from the path,

let us hear no more about the Holy One of Israel.

12  Therefore thus says the Holy One of Israel,

Because you despise this word

and trust in hoppression and perverseness

and rely on them,

13  therefore this iniquity shall be to you

ilike a breach in a high wall, bulging out and about to collapse,

whose breaking comes suddenly, in an instant;

14  and its breaking is jlike that of a potter's vessel

that is smashed so ruthlessly

that among its fragments not a shard is found

with which to take fire from the hearth,

or to dip up water out of the cistern.

15  For thus said the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel,

In kreturning3 and lrest you shall be saved;

in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.

But you were unwilling, 16 and you said,

No! We will flee upon mhorses;

therefore you shall flee away;

and, We will ride upon swift steeds;

therefore your pursuers shall be swift.

17  nA thousand shall flee at the threat of one;

at the threat of five you shall flee,

till you are left

like a flagstaff on the top of a mountain,

like a signal on a hill.

The Lord Will Be Gracious

18  Therefore the Lord owaits to be gracious to you,

and therefore he pexalts himself to show mercy to you.

For the Lord is a God of justice;

qblessed are all those who wait for him.

19 For a people shall dwell rin Zion, in Jerusalem; you shall weep no more. He will surely be gracious to you at the sound of your cry. As soon as he hears it, he answers you. 20 And though the Lord give you the sbread of adversity and the swater of affliction, tyet your Teacher will not hide himself anymore, but your eyes shall see your Teacher. 21 uAnd your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, This is vthe way, walk in it, when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left. 22 Then you will defile your carved idols overlaid with silver and your gold-plated metal images. wYou will scatter them as unclean things. You will say to them, Be gone!

23 xAnd he will give yrain for the seed with which you sow the ground, and bread, the produce of the ground, which will be rich and plenteous. zIn that day your livestock will graze in large pastures, 24 and athe oxen and the donkeys that work the ground will eat seasoned fodder, which has been winnowed with shovel and fork. 25 And bon every lofty mountain and every high hill there will be brooks running with water, in the day of the great slaughter, cwhen the towers fall. 26 dMoreover, the light of the moon will be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun will be sevenfold, as the light of seven days, in the day when ethe Lord binds up fthe brokenness of his people, and heals the wounds inflicted by his blow.

27  Behold, the name of the Lord comes from afar,

burning with his anger, and in thick rising smoke;4

his lips are full of fury,

and his tongue is like a devouring fire;

28  ghis breath is hlike an overflowing stream

that reaches up to the neck;

to sift the nations with the sieve of destruction,

and to place on the jaws of the peoples ia bridle that leads astray.

29 You shall have a song as in the night when a holy feast is kept, and gladness of heart, jas when one sets out to the sound of the flute to go to kthe mountain of the Lord, to lthe Rock of Israel. 30 And the Lord mwill cause his majestic voice to be heard and the descending blow of his arm to be seen, in furious anger nand a flame of devouring fire, with a cloudburst oand storm and hailstones. 31 The Assyrians will be terror-stricken at the voice of the Lord, pwhen he strikes with his rod. 32 And every stroke of the appointed staff that the Lord lays on them qwill be to the sound of tambourines and lyres. rBattling with brandished arm, he will fight with them. 33 For sa burning place5 has long been prepared; indeed, for the king it is made ready, tits pyre made deep and wide, with fire and wood in abundance; uthe breath of the Lord, like a stream of sulfur, kindles it.

Woe to Those Who Go Down to Egypt

31  Woe1 to vthose who go down to Egypt for help

and rely on horses,

who wtrust in chariots because they are many

and in horsemen because they are very strong,

but xdo not look to the Holy One of Israel

or consult the Lord!

And yyet he is wise and brings disaster;

zhe does not call back his words,

but awill arise against the house of the evildoers

and against the helpers of bthose who work iniquity.

The Egyptians are man, and not God,

and their horses care flesh, and not spirit.

When the Lord stretches out his hand,

the helper will stumble, and he who is helped will fall,

and they will all perish together.

For thus the Lord said to me,

dAs a lion or a young lion growls over his prey,

and when a band of shepherds is called out against him

he is not terrified by their shouting

or daunted at their noise,

eso the Lord of hosts will come down

to fight2 on Mount Zion and on its hill.

fLike birds hovering, so the Lord of hosts

will protect Jerusalem;

he will protect and deliver it;

he will spare and rescue it.

gTurn to him from whom people3 have hdeeply revolted, O children of Israel. For in that day ieveryone shall cast away his idols of silver and his idols of gold, which your hands have sinfully made for you.

jAnd the Assyrian shall fall by a sword, not of man;

and a sword, not of man, shall devour him;

and he shall flee from the sword,

and his young men shall be kput to forced labor.

lHis rock shall pass away in terror,

and his officers desert the standard in panic,

declares the Lord, whose mfire is in Zion,

and whose nfurnace is in Jerusalem.

A King Will Reign in Righteousness

32  Behold, oa king will reign in righteousness,

and princes will rule in justice.

pEach will be like a hiding place from the wind,

a shelter from the storm,

qlike streams of water in a dry place,

like the shade of a great rock in a weary land.

rThen the eyes of those who see will not be closed,

and the ears of those who hear will give attention.

The heart of the hasty will understand and know,

sand the tongue of the stammerers will hasten to speak distinctly.

tThe fool will no more be called noble,

nor the scoundrel said to be honorable.

For uthe fool speaks folly,

and his heart is busy with iniquity,

to practice ungodliness,

to utter error concerning the Lord,

vto leave the craving of the hungry unsatisfied,

and to deprive the thirsty of drink.

As for the scoundrelwhis devices are evil;

he plans wicked schemes

to ruin the poor with lying words,

even when the plea of the needy is right.

But he who is noble plans noble things,

and on noble things he stands.

Complacent Women Warned of Disaster

xRise up, you women ywho are at ease, hear my voice;

you complacent daughters, give ear to my speech.

10  In little more than a year

you will shudder, you complacent women;

for the grape harvest fails,

the fruit harvest will not come.

11  Tremble, you women ywho are at ease,

shudder, you complacent ones;

zstrip, and make yourselves bare,

aand tie sackcloth around your waist.

12  bBeat your breasts for the pleasant fields,

for the fruitful vine,

13  cfor the soil of my people

growing up in thorns and briers,

dyes, for all the joyous houses

in the exultant city.

14  For the palace is forsaken,

the populous city deserted;

the hill and the watchtower

will become dens forever,

ea joy of wild donkeys,

a pasture of flocks;

15  until fthe Spirit is poured upon us from on high,

and gthe wilderness becomes a fruitful field,

and the fruitful field is deemed a forest.

16  Then justice will dwell in the wilderness,

and righteousness abide in the fruitful field.

17  hAnd the effect of righteousness will be peace,

and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust1 forever.

18  My people will abide in a peaceful habitation,

in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.

19  iAnd it will hail when the forest falls down,

jand the city will be utterly laid low.

20  kHappy are you who sow beside all waters,

who let the feet of the ox and the donkey range free.

O Lord, Be Gracious to Us

33  lAh, you destroyer,

who yourself have not been destroyed,

you traitor,

whom none has betrayed!

When you have ceased to destroy,

you will be destroyed;

and when you have finished betraying,

they will betray you.

O Lord, be gracious to us; mwe wait for you.

Be our arm every morning,

our salvation in the time of trouble.

nAt the tumultuous noise peoples flee;

when you lift yourself up, nations are scattered,

and your spoil is gathered as the caterpillar gathers;

oas locusts leap, it is leapt upon.

pThe Lord is exalted, for he dwells on high;

he will fill Zion with justice and righteousness,

qand he will be the stability of your times,

abundance of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge;

the fear of the Lord is Zion's1 treasure.

Behold, their heroes cry in the streets;

rthe envoys of peace weep bitterly.

sThe highways lie waste;

the traveler ceases.

tCovenants are broken;

cities2 are despised;

there is no regard for man.

uThe land mourns and languishes;

Lebanon is confounded and withers away;

Sharon is like a desert,

and Bashan and Carmel shake off their leaves.

10  vNow I will arise, says the Lord,

now I will lift myself up;

now I will be exalted.

11  wYou conceive chaff; you give birth to stubble;

your breath is xa fire that will consume you.

12  And the peoples will be as if burned to lime,

xlike thorns cut down, that are burned in the fire.

13  Hear, you who are far off, what I have done;

and you who are near, acknowledge my might.

14  The sinners in Zion are afraid;

trembling has seized the godless:

yWho among us can dwell zwith the consuming fire?

Who among us can dwell with everlasting burnings?

15  aHe who walks righteously and speaks uprightly,

who despises the gain of oppressions,

who shakes his hands, lest they hold a bribe,

who stops his ears from hearing of bloodshed

band shuts his eyes from looking on evil,

16  he will dwell on the heights;

his place of defense will be the fortresses of rocks;

chis bread will be given him; his water will be sure.

17  dYour eyes will behold the king in his beauty;

ethey will see a land that stretches afar.

18  fYour heart will muse on the terror:

Where is he who counted, where is ghe who weighed the tribute?

Where is hhe who counted the towers?

19  iYou will see no more the insolent people,

the people jof an obscure speech that you cannot comprehend,

stammering in a tongue that you cannot understand.

20  Behold Zion, the city of our appointed feasts!

kYour eyes will see Jerusalem,

an untroubled habitation, an limmovable tent,

whose stakes will never be plucked up,

nor will any of its cords be broken.

21  But there the Lord in majesty will be for us

a place of mbroad rivers and streams,

nwhere no galley with oars can go,

nor majestic ship can pass.

22  For the Lord is our ojudge; the Lord is our plawgiver;

the Lord is our qking; he will save us.

23  Your cords hang loose;

they cannot hold the mast firm in its place

or keep the sail spread out.

rThen prey and spoil in abundance will be divided;

even sthe lame will take the prey.

24  And no inhabitant will say, tI am sick;

uthe people who dwell there will be forgiven their iniquity.

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.

For the Lord is enraged against all the nations,

and furious against all their host;

he has wdevoted them to destruction,1 has given them over for slaughter.

Their slain shall be cast out,

and xthe stench of their corpses shall rise;

ythe mountains shall flow with their blood.

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.

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.

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.

dWild oxen shall efall with them,

and fyoung steers with fthe mighty bulls.

Their land shall drink its fill of blood,

and their soil shall be gorged with fat.

gFor the Lord has a day of vengeance,

a year of recompense for the cause of Zion.

hAnd the streams of Edom2 shall be turned into pitch,

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.

11  lBut the hawk and the porcupine3 shall possess it,

the owl and the raven shall dwell in it.

mHe shall stretch the line of nconfusion4 over it,

and the plumb line of emptiness.

12  Its noblesthere 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.