Isaiah 35; Isaiah 40:1–5

The Ransomed Shall Return

35  tThe wilderness and the dry land shall be glad;

uthe desert shall rejoice and blossom like the crocus;

it shall blossom abundantly

and rejoice with joy and singing.

vThe glory of Lebanon shall be given to it,

the majesty of wCarmel and xSharon.

yThey shall see the glory of the Lord,

the majesty of our God.

zStrengthen the weak hands,

and make firm the feeble knees.

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.

bThen the eyes of the blind shall be opened,

and the ears of the deaf unstopped;

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;

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.

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.1

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.


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.