Isaiah 39–40; Mark 10:1–31

Envoys from Babylon

39 sAt that time Merodach-baladan the son of Baladan, king of Babylon, tsent envoys with letters and a present to Hezekiah, for he heard that he had been sick and had recovered. And Hezekiah welcomed them gladly. And he showed them his treasure house, uthe silver, the gold, the spices, the precious oil, his whole armory, all that was found in his storehouses. vThere was nothing in his house or in all his realm that Hezekiah did not show them. Then Isaiah the prophet came to King Hezekiah, and said to him, What did these men say? And from where did they come to you? Hezekiah said, They have come to me from a far country, from Babylon. He said, What have they seen in your house? Hezekiah answered, They have seen all that is in my house. There is nothing in my storehouses that I did not show them.

Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, Hear the word of the Lord of hosts: wBehold, the days are coming, when all that is in your house, and that which your fathers have stored up till this day, shall be carried to Babylon. Nothing shall be left, says the Lord. xAnd some of your own sons, who will come from you, whom you will father, shall be taken away, and they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon. Then Hezekiah said to Isaiah, The word of the Lord that you have spoken is good. For he thought, yThere will be peace and security in my days.

Comfort for God's People

40  zComfort, comfort my people, says your God.

aSpeak tenderly to Jerusalem,

and cry to her

that bher warfare1 is ended,

that her iniquity is pardoned,

that she has received from the Lord's hand

double for all her sins.

cA voice cries:2

dIn the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord;

emake straight in the desert a highway for our God.

fEvery valley shall be lifted up,

and every mountain and hill be made low;

the uneven ground shall become level,

and the rough places a plain.

gAnd the glory of the Lord shall be revealed,

and all flesh shall see it together,

hfor the mouth of the Lord has spoken.

The Word of God Stands Forever

A voice says, Cry!

And I said,3 What shall I cry?

iAll flesh is grass,

and all its beauty4 is like the flower of the field.

The grass withers, the flower fades

when the breath of the Lord blows on it;

surely the people are grass.

jThe grass withers, the flower fades,

but the word of our God will stand forever.

The Greatness of God

Go on up to a high mountain,

O Zion, kherald of good news;5

lift up your voice with strength,

O Jerusalem, herald of good news;6

lift it up, fear not;

say to the cities of Judah,

Behold your God!

10  lBehold, the Lord God comes with might,

and his arm rules for him;

mbehold, his reward is with him,

and his recompense before him.

11  nHe will tend his flock like a shepherd;

ohe will gather the lambs in his arms;

phe will carry them in his bosom,

and gently lead those that are with young.

12  qWho has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand

and marked off the heavens with a span,

enclosed the dust of the earth in a measure

and weighed the mountains in scales

and the hills in a balance?

13  rWho has measured7 the Spirit of the Lord,

or what man shows him his counsel?

14  Whom did he consult,

and who made him understand?

sWho taught him the path of justice,

and taught him knowledge,

and showed him the way of understanding?

15  Behold, the nations are like a drop from a bucket,

and are accounted tas the dust on the scales;

behold, he takes up uthe coastlands like fine dust.

16  Lebanon would not suffice for fuel,

nor are vits beasts enough for a burnt offering.

17  wAll the nations are as nothing before him,

they are accounted by him as less than nothing and emptiness.

18  xTo whom then will you liken God,

yor what likeness compare with him?

19  yAn idol! A craftsman casts it,

and a goldsmith overlays it with gold

and casts for it silver chains.

20  zHe who is too impoverished for an offering

chooses wood8 that will not rot;

he seeks out a skillful craftsman

to set up an idol that will not move.

21  aDo you not know? Do you not hear?

Has it not been told you from the beginning?

Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth?

22  It is he who sits above the circle of the earth,

and its inhabitants are blike grasshoppers;

cwho stretches out the heavens like a curtain,

and spreads them like a tent to dwell in;

23  dwho brings princes to nothing,

and makes the rulers of the earth as emptiness.

24  Scarcely are they planted, scarcely sown,

scarcely has their stem taken root in the earth,

when he blows on them, and they wither,

eand the tempest carries them off like stubble.

25  fTo whom then will you compare me,

that I should be like him? says the Holy One.

26  Lift up your eyes on high and see:

who created these?

gHe who brings out their host by number,

calling them all by name;

by the greatness of his might

and because he is strong in power,

not one is missing.

27  Why do you say, O Jacob,

and speak, O Israel,

hMy way is hidden from the Lord,

iand my right is disregarded by my God?

28  Have you not known? Have you not heard?

The Lord is jthe everlasting God,

the Creator of the ends of the earth.

He does not faint or grow weary;

khis understanding is unsearchable.

29  He gives power to the faint,

and to him who has no might he increases strength.

30  Even youths shall faint and be weary,

and young men shall fall exhausted;

31  but lthey who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;

they shall mount up with wings mlike eagles;

they shall run and not be weary;

they shall walk and not faint.


Teaching About Divorce

10 zAnd he left there and went ato the region of Judea and beyond the Jordan, and crowds gathered to him again. And again, as was his custom, he taught them.

And Pharisees came up and in order bto test him asked, cIs it lawful for a man to divorce his wife? He answered them, What did Moses command you? They said, dMoses allowed a man to write a certificate of divorce and to send her away. And Jesus said to them, Because of your ehardness of heart he wrote you this commandment. But ffrom the beginning of creation, God made them gmale and female. hTherefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife,1 and ithe two shall become one flesh. So they are no longer two but one flesh. jWhat therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.

10 And in the house the disciples asked him again about this matter. 11 And he said to them, kWhoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her, 12 and lif she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.

Let the Children Come to Me

13 mAnd they were bringing children to him that he might touch them, and the disciples nrebuked them. 14 But when Jesus saw it, he was indignant and said to them, oLet the children come to me; pdo not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. 15 qTruly, I say to you, whoever does not rreceive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it. 16 And she took them in his arms and blessed them, tlaying his hands on them.

The Rich Young Man

17 uAnd as he was setting out on his journey, a man ran up and vknelt before him and asked him, Good Teacher, what must I do to winherit eternal life? 18 And Jesus said to him, Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. 19 You know the commandments: xDo not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother. 20 And he said to him, Teacher, yall these I have kept from my youth. 21 And Jesus, zlooking at him, aloved him, and said to him, You lack one thing: go, bsell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have ctreasure in heaven; and come, follow me. 22 dDisheartened by the saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.

23 And Jesus elooked around and said to his disciples, fHow difficult it will be for those who have wealth to enter gthe kingdom of God! 24 And the disciples hwere amazed at his words. But Jesus said to them again, iChildren, jhow difficult it is2 to enter gthe kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter gthe kingdom of God. 26 And they were exceedingly astonished, and said to him,3 Then who can be saved? 27 Jesus klooked at them and said, lWith man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God. 28 Peter began to say to him, See, mwe have left everything and followed you. 29 Jesus said, Truly, I say to you, nthere is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and ofor the gospel, 30 who will not receive a hundredfold pnow in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, qwith persecutions, and in rthe age to come eternal life. 31 But smany who are first will be last, and the last first.