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Isaiah 1

1
1The vision concerning Judah and Jerusalem that Isaiah son of Amoz saw during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah.
A rebellious nation
2Hear me, you heavens! Listen, earth!
For the Lord has spoken:
‘I reared children and brought them up,
but they have rebelled against me.
3The ox knows its master,
the donkey its owner’s manger,
but Israel does not know,
my people do not understand.’
4Woe to the sinful nation,
a people whose guilt is great,
a brood of evildoers,
children given to corruption!
They have forsaken the Lord;
they have spurned the Holy One of Israel
and turned their backs on him.
5Why should you be beaten anymore?
Why do you persist in rebellion?
Your whole head is injured,
your whole heart afflicted.
6From the sole of your foot to the top of your head
there is no soundness –
only wounds and bruises
and open sores,
not cleansed or bandaged
or soothed with oil.
7Your country is desolate,
your cities burned with fire;
your fields are being stripped by foreigners
right before you,
laid waste as when overthrown by strangers.
8Daughter Zion is left
like a shelter in a vineyard,
like a hut in a cucumber field,
like a city under siege.
9Unless the Lord Almighty
had left us some survivors,
we would have become like Sodom,
we would have been like Gomorrah.
10Hear the word of the Lord,
you rulers of Sodom;
listen to the instruction of our God,
you people of Gomorrah!
11‘The multitude of your sacrifices –
what are they to me?’
says the Lord.
‘I have more than enough of burnt offerings,
of rams and the fat of fattened animals;
I have no pleasure
in the blood of bulls and lambs and goats.
12When you come to appear before me,
who has asked this of you,
this trampling of my courts?
13Stop bringing meaningless offerings!
Your incense is detestable to me.
New Moons, Sabbaths and convocations –
I cannot bear your worthless assemblies.
14Your New Moon feasts and your appointed festivals
I hate with all my being.
They have become a burden to me;
I am weary of bearing them.
15When you spread out your hands in prayer,
I hide my eyes from you;
even when you offer many prayers,
I am not listening.
Your hands are full of blood!
16Wash and make yourselves clean.
Take your evil deeds out of my sight;
stop doing wrong.
17Learn to do right; seek justice.
Defend the oppressed.#1:17 Or justice. / Correct the oppressor
Take up the cause of the fatherless;
plead the case of the widow.
18‘Come now, let us settle the matter,’
says the Lord.
‘Though your sins are like scarlet,
they shall be as white as snow;
though they are red as crimson,
they shall be like wool.
19If you are willing and obedient,
you will eat the good things of the land;
20but if you resist and rebel,
you will be devoured by the sword.’
For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.
21See how the faithful city
has become a prostitute!
She once was full of justice;
righteousness used to dwell in her –
but now murderers!
22Your silver has become dross,
your choice wine is diluted with water.
23Your rulers are rebels,
partners with thieves;
they all love bribes
and chase after gifts.
They do not defend the cause of the fatherless;
the widow’s case does not come before them.
24Therefore the Lord, the Lord Almighty,
the Mighty One of Israel, declares:
‘Ah! I will vent my wrath on my foes
and avenge myself on my enemies.
25I will turn my hand against you;#1:25 That is, against Jerusalem
I will thoroughly purge away your dross
and remove all your impurities.
26I will restore your leaders as in days of old,
your rulers as at the beginning.
Afterwards you will be called
the City of Righteousness,
the Faithful City.’
27Zion will be delivered with justice,
her penitent ones with righteousness.
28But rebels and sinners will both be broken,
and those who forsake the Lord will perish.
29‘You will be ashamed because of the sacred oaks
in which you have delighted;
you will be disgraced because of the gardens
that you have chosen.
30You will be like an oak with fading leaves,
like a garden without water.
31The mighty man will become tinder
and his work a spark;
both will burn together,
with no-one to quench the fire.’

Isaiah 1

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1 # 2 K 15.1-7; 2 Ch 26.1-23; 2 K 15.32-38; 2 Ch 27.1-9; 2 K 16.1-20; 2 Ch 28.1-27; 2 K 18.1—20.21; 2 Ch 29.1—32.33. I am Isaiah, the son of Amoz.
And this is the message#1.1 message: Or “vision.” that I was given about Judah and Jerusalem when Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah were the kings of Judah:#1.1 kings of Judah: Uzziah (783–742 b.c.); Jotham (742–735 b.c.; Ahaz (735–715 b.c.); Hezekiah (715–687 b.c.).
A Guilty Nation
2The Lord has said,
“Listen, heaven and earth!
The children I raised
have turned against me.
3Oxen and donkeys know
who owns and feeds them,
but my people won't ever learn.”
4Israel, you are a sinful nation
loaded down with guilt.
You are wicked and corrupt
and have turned from the Lord,
the holy God of Israel.
5Why be punished more?
Why not give up your sin?
Your head is badly bruised,
and you are weak all over.
6From your head to your toes
there isn't a healthy spot.
Bruises, cuts, and open sores
go without care
or oil to ease the pain.
A Country in Ruins
7Your country lies in ruins;
your towns are in ashes.
Foreigners and strangers
take and destroy your land
while you watch.
8Enemies surround Jerusalem,
alone like a hut
in a vineyard#1.8 a hut in a vineyard: When it was almost time for grapes to ripen, farmers would put up a temporary shelter or hut in the field or vineyard and stay there to keep thieves and wild animals away.
or in a cucumber field.
9 # Gn 19.24; Ro 9.29. Zion would have disappeared
like Sodom and Gomorrah,#1.9 Sodom and Gomorrah: Two ancient cities of Palestine that God destroyed because the people were so wicked (see Genesis 19.1-29).
if the Lord All-Powerful
had not let a few
of its people survive.
Justice, Not Sacrifices
10You are no better
than the leaders and people
of Sodom and Gomorrah!
So listen to the Lord God:
11 # Am 5.21,22. “Your sacrifices
mean nothing to me.
I am sick of your offerings
of rams and choice cattle;
I don't like the blood
of bulls or lambs or goats.
12“Who asked you to bring all this
when you come to worship me?
Stay out of my temple!
13Your sacrifices are worthless,
and your incense disgusting.
I can't stand the evil you do
on your New Moon Festivals
or on your Sabbaths
and other times of worship.
14I hate your New Moon Festivals
and all others as well.
They are a heavy burden
I am tired of carrying.
15“No matter how much you pray,
I won't listen.
You are too violent.
16Wash yourselves clean!
I hate your filthy deeds.
Stop doing wrong
17and learn to live right.
See that justice is done.
Defend widows and orphans
and help the oppressed.”#1.17 and help the oppressed: Or “and punish cruel people.”
An Invitation from the Lord
18I, the Lord, invite you
to come and talk it over.
Your sins are scarlet red,
but they will be whiter
than snow or wool.
19If you willingly obey me,
the best crops in the land
will be yours.
20But if you turn against me,
your enemies will kill you.
I, the Lord, have spoken.
The Lord Condemns Jerusalem
21Jerusalem, you are like
an unfaithful wife.
Once your judges were honest
and your people lived right;
now you are a city
full of murderers.
22Your silver is fake,
and your wine
is watered down.
23Your leaders have rejected me
to become friends of crooks;
your rulers are looking
for gifts and bribes.
Widows and orphans
never get a fair trial.
24I am the Lord All-Powerful,
the mighty ruler of Israel,
and I make you a promise:
You are now my enemy,
and I will show my anger
by taking revenge on you.
25I will punish you terribly
and burn away everything
that makes you unfit
to worship me.
26Jerusalem, I will choose
judges and advisors
like those you had before.
Your new name will be
“Justice and Faithfulness.”
The Lord Will Save Jerusalem
27Jerusalem, you will be saved
by showing justice;#1.27 by showing justice: Or “by my saving power.”
Zion's people who turn to me
will be saved
by doing right.
28But those rebellious sinners
who turn against me, the Lord,
will all disappear.
29You will be made ashamed
of those groves of trees
where you worshiped idols.
30You will be like a grove of trees
dying in a drought.
31Your strongest leaders
will be like dry wood
set on fire by their idols.#1.31 Your … idols: Or “Your wealth will be like dry wood, set on fire by its owners.”
No one will be able to help,
as they all go up in flames.