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Isaiah 57

57
LVII
1The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart;
And godly men are taken away, none considering
That out of the way of evil the righteous is taken away.
2He shall go in peace;
They shall rest on their beds,
Everyone that walketh in the straight path before him.
3But draw ye near hither, O sons of the sorceress!
The seed of the adulterer and the harlot.
4Of whom do ye make your sport?
At whom do ye widen the mouth, and put out the tongue?
Are ye not children of apostasy, a seed of falsehood,
5Who burn with the lust of idols under every green tree;
Who slay the children in the valleys, under the clefts of the rocks?
6Among the smooth stones of the valley is thy portion;
They, they are thy lot;
Even to them hast thou poured a drink-offering,
Thou hast offered a meat-offering.
Can I be comforted by these things?
7Upon a high and lofty mountain hast thou set thy bed:
Even thither hast thou gone up to offer sacrifice.
8Behind the door also, and the door-post, hast thou set up thy memorial,
For thou hast uncovered thyself to another than me;
Thou hast gone up; thou hast enlarged thy bed;
And thou hast obtained for thee an agreement from them:
Thou hast loved their bed,
The place which thou hast chosen.
9And thou wentest to the king with ointment,
And didst multiply thy perfumes;
And didst send thy messengers far off,
And didst debase thyself even unto Hades.
10In the length of thy journeys thou didst weary thyself;
Yet thou saidst not, It is hopeless:
Thou didst find the life of thy hand;
Therefore, thou hast not been dispirited.
11And of whom hast thou been fearful or afraid, that thou shouldest deal falsely, and not remember me,
Nor lay it to thine heart?
Have I not been silent, and that for a long time?
Is that it, therefore, that thou fearedst me not?
12I will declare thy righteousness, and thy works;
But they shall not profit thee.
13When thou criest, let thine associates deliver thee:
But the wind shall carry them all away; a breath of air shall take them off.
But he that trusteth in me shall possess the land,
And shall inherit my holy mountain.
14And it shall be said: Cast ye up, cast ye up, prepare the way;
Remove the stumbling-block from the way of my people.
15For thus saith the high and lofty One,
Who inhabiteth eternity, and whose name is Holy:
I dwell in the high and holy place,
With him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit;
To revive the spirit of the humble,
And to revive the heart of the contrite.
16For I will not always contend,
Neither will I be angry for ever:
For the spirit would languish away from before me,
And the souls which I have made.
17For the iniquity of his avarice was I angry, and smote him;
I hid me, and I was angry:
But he went on frowardly in the way of his heart.
18I have seen his ways, and I will heal him; I will also be his guide; and I will restore comforts unto him,
And to his mourners.
19I create the fruit of the lips:
Peace, peace, to him that is afar off,
And to him that is near, saith Jehovah; and I will heal him.
20But the wicked are like the troubled sea,
Which cannot rest;
And whose waters cast up filth and mire.
21There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked.

Isaiah 57

57
God's Faithful People Suffer
1God's faithful people
are dragged off and killed,
and no one even cares.
Evil sweeps them away,
2but in death they find peace
for obeying God.#57.1,2 Evil … God: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
The Lord Condemns Idolatry
3You people are unfaithful!
You go to fortunetellers,
and you worship idols.
Now pay close attention!
4Who are you making fun of?
Who are you sneering at?
Look how your sins
have made fools of you.
5All you think about is sex
under those green trees
where idols are worshiped.
You sacrifice your children
on altars built in valleys
under rocky slopes.
6You have chosen to worship
idols made of stone;#57.6 You have … stone: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
you have given them offerings
of wine and grain.
Should I be pleased?
7You have spread out your beds
on the tops of high mountains,
where you sacrifice to idols.
8Even in your homes
you have placed pagan symbols
all around your huge beds.
Yes, you have rejected me,
sold yourselves to your lovers,
and gone to bed with them.#57.8 them: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text of verse 8.
9You smear on olive oil
and all kinds of perfume
to worship the god Molech.#57.9 the god Molech: Or “the king.” In Hebrew “Molech” and “king” sound alike.
You even seek advice
from spirits of the dead.
10Though you tired yourself out
by running after idols,
you refused to stop.
Your desires were so strong
that they kept you going.
11Did you forget about me
and become unfaithful
because you were more afraid
of someone else?
Have I been silent so long#57.11 so long: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
that you no longer fear me?
12You think you're so good,
but I'll point out the truth.
13Ask your idols to save you
when you are in trouble.
Be careful though—
it takes only a faint breath
to blow them over.
But if you come to me
for protection,
this land and my holy mountain
will always belong to you.
The Lord Helps the Helpless
14The Lord says,
“Clear the road!
Get it ready for my people.”
15 # 3 Macc 2.2; 2.15. Our holy God lives forever
in the highest heavens,
and this is what he says:
Though I live high above
in the holy place,
I am here to help those
who are humble
and depend only on me.
16My people, I won't stay angry
and keep on accusing you.
After all, I am your Creator.
I don't want you to give up
in complete despair.
17Your greed made me furious.
That's why I punished you
and refused to be found,
while you kept returning
to your old sinful ways.
18I know what you are like!
But I will heal you, lead you,
and give you comfort,
until those who are mourning
19 # Eph 2.17. start singing my praises.#57.18,19 until … praises: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
No matter where you are,
I, the Lord, will heal you#57.19 heal you: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
and give you peace.
20The wicked are a restless sea
tossing up mud.
21 # Is 48.22. But I, the Lord, have promised
that none who are evil
will live in peace.