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Isaiah 40

40
XL
1Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God:
2Speak ye things pleasing to the heart of Jerusalem, and declare unto her,
That her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity hath been expiated;
That she hath received at the hand of Jehovah
Double for all her sins.
3A voice crieth in the wilderness,
Prepare ye the way of Jehovah,
Make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
4Every valley shall be exalted,
And every mountain and bill shall be made low,
And the crooked shall become Straight;
And the rough places a smooth plain:
5And the glory of Jehovah shall be revealed,
And all flesh shall See together
That the mouth of Jehovah hath spoken it.
6A voice saith, Proclaim!
And he said, What shall I proclaim?
All flesh is grass,
And all his goodliness like the flower of the field:
7The grass withereth, the flower fadeth,
When the spirit of Jehovah bloweth upon it:
Surely the people is grass.
8The grass withereth, the flower fadeth;
But the word of God shall stand for ever.
9Get thee up upon a high mountain, O Zion, that bringest good tidings:
Lift up thy voice with strength, O Jerusalem, that bringest good tidings;
Lift it up; be not afraid:
Say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God!
10Behold, the Lord. Jehovah shall come with might,
And his arm shall rule for him:
Behold, his reward is with him;
And the recompense of his word is before him.
11He shall feed his flock, like a shepherd;
In his arm shall he gather up the lambs,
And in his bosom carry them;
The nursing ewes shall he gently lead.
12Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand,
And hath meted out the heavens with a span;
And hath comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure,
And hath weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance?
13Who hath searched out the Spirit of Jehovah,
Or being his counsellor hath taught him?
14With whom took he counsel, that he should instruct him;
And teach him in the path of judgment;
And teach him knowledge,
And shew to him the way of understanding?
15Behold, the nations are as a drop from the bucket;
And as the small dust on a balance shall they be accounted:
Behold, the isles are as an atom which flitteth away.
16And Lebanon is not sufficient to supply fire,
Nor the beasts thereof sufficient for a burnt-offering.
17All the nations are before him, as though they were nought;
They are accounted by Him as less than nought and vanity.
18To whom then will ye liken God?
Or what likeness will ye compare unto him?
19The workman casteth an image,
And the goldsmith overlayeth it with gold;
And forgeth for it chains of silver.
20He that is too poor to make a costly oblation chooseth him a piece of wood that will not rot;
He seeketh unto him a skilful workman,
To erect an image which shall not be moved.
21Have ye not known? have ye not heard?
Hath it not been told you from the beginning?
Have ye not understood it from the foundations of the earth?
22He it is who sitteth upon the circle of the earth,
And the inhabitants thereof are as locusts:
Who stretcheth out the heavens, like a canopy;
And spreadeth them out, as a tent to dwell in:
23Who reduceth princes to nothing;
Who maketh the rulers of the earth as vanity.
24Yea, they shall not scarcely be planted; yea, they shall not scarcely be sown;
Yea, their trunk shall not scarcely take root in the earth;
And yet should He but blow upon them, they wither;
And the whirlwind taketh them away as stubble.
25To whom then will ye liken me?
And to whom shall I be equalled? saith the Holy One.
26Lift up your eyes on high,
And behold who hath created these things;
Who bringeth out their hosts by number,
Who calleth them all by name:
Through multitude of strength, and might of power,
Not one of them is missing.
27Why sayest thou, O Jacob,
And speakest, O Israel:
My way is hidden from Jehovah,
And my cause passeth unregarded by my God?
28Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard,
That the everlasting God, Jehovah, the Creator of the ends of the earth,
Fainteth not, neither is weary?
There is no searching out of his understanding.
29He giveth power to the faint,
And to them that have no might he increaseth strength.
30Even the youths shall faint and be weary,
And the young men shall utterly fall;
31But they that wait upon Jehovah shall gather new strength;
They shall mount up with wings as eagles;
They shall run, and not be weary,
They shall walk, and not faint.

Isaiah 40

40
Comfort for God’s People
1“Comfort, comfort my people,”
says your God.
2“Speak tenderly to Jerusalem.
Tell her that her sad days are gone
and her sins are pardoned.
Yes, the Lord has punished her twice over
for all her sins.”
3Listen! It’s the voice of someone shouting,
“Clear the way through the wilderness
for the Lord!
Make a straight highway through the wasteland
for our God!
4Fill in the valleys,
and level the mountains and hills.
Straighten the curves,
and smooth out the rough places.
5Then the glory of the Lord will be revealed,
and all people will see it together.
The Lord has spoken!”#40:3-5 Greek version reads He is a voice shouting in the wilderness, / “Prepare the way for the Lord’s coming! / Clear a road for our God! / Fill in the valleys, / and level the mountains and hills. / And then the glory of the Lord will be revealed, / and all people will see the salvation sent from God. / The Lord has spoken!” Compare Matt 3:3; Mark 1:3; Luke 3:4-6.
6A voice said, “Shout!”
I asked, “What should I shout?”
“Shout that people are like the grass.
Their beauty fades as quickly
as the flowers in a field.
7The grass withers and the flowers fade
beneath the breath of the Lord.
And so it is with people.
8The grass withers and the flowers fade,
but the word of our God stands forever.”
9O Zion, messenger of good news,
shout from the mountaintops!
Shout it louder, O Jerusalem.#40:9 Or O messenger of good news, shout to Zion from the mountaintops! Shout it louder to Jerusalem.
Shout, and do not be afraid.
Tell the towns of Judah,
“Your God is coming!”
10Yes, the Sovereign Lord is coming in power.
He will rule with a powerful arm.
See, he brings his reward with him as he comes.
11He will feed his flock like a shepherd.
He will carry the lambs in his arms,
holding them close to his heart.
He will gently lead the mother sheep with their young.
The Lord Has No Equal
12Who else has held the oceans in his hand?
Who has measured off the heavens with his fingers?
Who else knows the weight of the earth
or has weighed the mountains and hills on a scale?
13Who is able to advise the Spirit of the Lord?#40:13 Greek version reads Who can know the Lord’s thoughts? Compare Rom 11:34; 1 Cor 2:16.
Who knows enough to give him advice or teach him?
14Has the Lord ever needed anyone’s advice?
Does he need instruction about what is good?
Did someone teach him what is right
or show him the path of justice?
15No, for all the nations of the world
are but a drop in the bucket.
They are nothing more
than dust on the scales.
He picks up the whole earth
as though it were a grain of sand.
16All the wood in Lebanon’s forests
and all Lebanon’s animals would not be enough
to make a burnt offering worthy of our God.
17The nations of the world are worth nothing to him.
In his eyes they count for less than nothing—
mere emptiness and froth.
18To whom can you compare God?
What image can you find to resemble him?
19Can he be compared to an idol formed in a mold,
overlaid with gold, and decorated with silver chains?
20Or if people are too poor for that,
they might at least choose wood that won’t decay
and a skilled craftsman
to carve an image that won’t fall down!
21Haven’t you heard? Don’t you understand?
Are you deaf to the words of God—
the words he gave before the world began?
Are you so ignorant?
22God sits above the circle of the earth.
The people below seem like grasshoppers to him!
He spreads out the heavens like a curtain
and makes his tent from them.
23He judges the great people of the world
and brings them all to nothing.
24They hardly get started, barely taking root,
when he blows on them and they wither.
The wind carries them off like chaff.
25“To whom will you compare me?
Who is my equal?” asks the Holy One.
26Look up into the heavens.
Who created all the stars?
He brings them out like an army, one after another,
calling each by its name.
Because of his great power and incomparable strength,
not a single one is missing.
27O Jacob, how can you say the Lord does not see your troubles?
O Israel, how can you say God ignores your rights?
28Have you never heard?
Have you never understood?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of all the earth.
He never grows weak or weary.
No one can measure the depths of his understanding.
29He gives power to the weak
and strength to the powerless.
30Even youths will become weak and tired,
and young men will fall in exhaustion.
31But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength.
They will soar high on wings like eagles.
They will run and not grow weary.
They will walk and not faint.