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Isaiah 22-24 New Living Translation (NLT)

A Message about Jerusalem

22 This message came to me concerning Jerusalem—the Valley of Vision[a]:

What is happening?
    Why is everyone running to the rooftops?
The whole city is in a terrible uproar.
    What do I see in this reveling city?
Bodies are lying everywhere,
    killed not in battle but by famine and disease.
All your leaders have fled.
    They surrendered without resistance.
The people tried to slip away,
    but they were captured, too.
That’s why I said, “Leave me alone to weep;
    do not try to comfort me.
Let me cry for my people
    as I watch them being destroyed.”

Oh, what a day of crushing defeat!
    What a day of confusion and terror
brought by the Lord, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies,
    upon the Valley of Vision!
The walls of Jerusalem have been broken,
    and cries of death echo from the mountainsides.
Elamites are the archers,
    with their chariots and charioteers.
    The men of Kir hold up the shields.
Chariots fill your beautiful valleys,
    and charioteers storm your gates.
Judah’s defenses have been stripped away.
    You run to the armory[b] for your weapons.
You inspect the breaks in the walls of Jerusalem.[c]
    You store up water in the lower pool.
10 You survey the houses and tear some down
    for stone to strengthen the walls.
11 Between the city walls, you build a reservoir
    for water from the old pool.
But you never ask for help from the One who did all this.
    You never considered the One who planned this long ago.

12 At that time the Lord, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies,
    called you to weep and mourn.
He told you to shave your heads in sorrow for your sins
    and to wear clothes of burlap to show your remorse.
13 But instead, you dance and play;
    you slaughter cattle and kill sheep.
    You feast on meat and drink wine.
You say, “Let’s feast and drink,
    for tomorrow we die!”

14 The Lord of Heaven’s Armies has revealed this to me: “Till the day you die, you will never be forgiven for this sin.” That is the judgment of the Lord, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.

A Message for Shebna

15 This is what the Lord, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, said to me: “Confront Shebna, the palace administrator, and give him this message:

16 “Who do you think you are,
    and what are you doing here,
building a beautiful tomb for yourself—
    a monument high up in the rock?
17 For the Lord is about to hurl you away, mighty man.
    He is going to grab you,
18 crumple you into a ball,
    and toss you away into a distant, barren land.
There you will die,
    and your glorious chariots will be broken and useless.
    You are a disgrace to your master!

19 “Yes, I will drive you out of office,” says the Lord. “I will pull you down from your high position. 20 And then I will call my servant Eliakim son of Hilkiah to replace you. 21 I will dress him in your royal robes and will give him your title and your authority. And he will be a father to the people of Jerusalem and Judah. 22 I will give him the key to the house of David—the highest position in the royal court. When he opens doors, no one will be able to close them; when he closes doors, no one will be able to open them. 23 He will bring honor to his family name, for I will drive him firmly in place like a nail in the wall. 24 They will give him great responsibility, and he will bring honor to even the lowliest members of his family.[d]

25 But the Lord of Heaven’s Armies also says: “The time will come when I will pull out the nail that seemed so firm. It will come out and fall to the ground. Everything it supports will fall with it. I, the Lord, have spoken!”

A Message about Tyre

23 This message came to me concerning Tyre:

Wail, you trading ships of Tarshish,
    for the harbor and houses of Tyre are gone!
The rumors you heard in Cyprus[e]
    are all true.
Mourn in silence, you people of the coast
    and you merchants of Sidon.
Your traders crossed the sea,[f]
    sailing over deep waters.
They brought you grain from Egypt[g]
    and harvests from along the Nile.
You were the marketplace of the world.

But now you are put to shame, city of Sidon,
    for Tyre, the fortress of the sea, says,[h]
“Now I am childless;
    I have no sons or daughters.”
When Egypt hears the news about Tyre,
    there will be great sorrow.
Send word now to Tarshish!
    Wail, you people who live in distant lands!
Is this silent ruin all that is left of your once joyous city?
    What a long history was yours!
    Think of all the colonists you sent to distant places.

Who has brought this disaster on Tyre,
    that great creator of kingdoms?
Her traders were all princes,
    her merchants were nobles.
The Lord of Heaven’s Armies has done it
    to destroy your pride
    and bring low all earth’s nobility.
10 Come, people of Tarshish,
    sweep over the land like the flooding Nile,
    for Tyre is defenseless.[i]
11 The Lord held out his hand over the sea
    and shook the kingdoms of the earth.
He has spoken out against Phoenicia,[j]
    ordering that her fortresses be destroyed.
12 He says, “Never again will you rejoice,
    O daughter of Sidon, for you have been crushed.
Even if you flee to Cyprus,
    you will find no rest.”

13 Look at the land of Babylonia[k]
    the people of that land are gone!
The Assyrians have handed Babylon over
    to the wild animals of the desert.
They have built siege ramps against its walls,
    torn down its palaces,
    and turned it to a heap of rubble.

14 Wail, you ships of Tarshish,
    for your harbor is destroyed!

15 For seventy years, the length of a king’s life, Tyre will be forgotten. But then the city will come back to life as in the song about the prostitute:

16 Take a harp and walk the streets,
    you forgotten harlot.
Make sweet melody and sing your songs
    so you will be remembered again.

17 Yes, after seventy years the Lord will revive Tyre. But she will be no different than she was before. She will again be a prostitute to all kingdoms around the world. 18 But in the end her profits will be given to the Lord. Her wealth will not be hoarded but will provide good food and fine clothing for the Lord’s priests.

Destruction of the Earth

24 Look! The Lord is about to destroy the earth
    and make it a vast wasteland.
He devastates the surface of the earth
    and scatters the people.
Priests and laypeople,
    servants and masters,
    maids and mistresses,
    buyers and sellers,
    lenders and borrowers,
    bankers and debtors—none will be spared.
The earth will be completely emptied and looted.
    The Lord has spoken!

The earth mourns and dries up,
    and the land wastes away and withers.
    Even the greatest people on earth waste away.
The earth suffers for the sins of its people,
    for they have twisted God’s instructions,
violated his laws,
    and broken his everlasting covenant.
Therefore, a curse consumes the earth.
    Its people must pay the price for their sin.
They are destroyed by fire,
    and only a few are left alive.
The grapevines waste away,
    and there is no new wine.
    All the merrymakers sigh and mourn.
The cheerful sound of tambourines is stilled;
    the happy cries of celebration are heard no more.
    The melodious chords of the harp are silent.
Gone are the joys of wine and song;
    alcoholic drink turns bitter in the mouth.
10 The city writhes in chaos;
    every home is locked to keep out intruders.
11 Mobs gather in the streets, crying out for wine.
    Joy has turned to gloom.
    Gladness has been banished from the land.
12 The city is left in ruins,
    its gates battered down.
13 Throughout the earth the story is the same—
    only a remnant is left,
like the stray olives left on the tree
    or the few grapes left on the vine after harvest.

14 But all who are left shout and sing for joy.
    Those in the west praise the Lord’s majesty.
15 In eastern lands, give glory to the Lord.
    In the lands beyond the sea, praise the name of the Lord, the God of Israel.
16 We hear songs of praise from the ends of the earth,
    songs that give glory to the Righteous One!

But my heart is heavy with grief.
    Weep for me, for I wither away.
Deceit still prevails,
    and treachery is everywhere.
17 Terror and traps and snares will be your lot,
    you people of the earth.
18 Those who flee in terror will fall into a trap,
    and those who escape the trap will be caught in a snare.

Destruction falls like rain from the heavens;
    the foundations of the earth shake.
19 The earth has broken up.
    It has utterly collapsed;
    it is violently shaken.
20 The earth staggers like a drunk.
    It trembles like a tent in a storm.
It falls and will not rise again,
    for the guilt of its rebellion is very heavy.

21 In that day the Lord will punish the gods in the heavens
    and the proud rulers of the nations on earth.
22 They will be rounded up and put in prison.
    They will be shut up in prison
    and will finally be punished.
23 Then the glory of the moon will wane,
    and the brightness of the sun will fade,
for the Lord of Heaven’s Armies will rule on Mount Zion.
    He will rule in great glory in Jerusalem,
    in the sight of all the leaders of his people.

Footnotes:

  1. 22:1 Hebrew concerning the Valley of Vision.
  2. 22:8 Hebrew to the House of the Forest; see 1 Kgs 7:2-5.
  3. 22:9 Hebrew the city of David.
  4. 22:24 Hebrew They will hang on him all the glory of his father’s house: its offspring and offshoots, all its lesser vessels, from the bowls to all the jars.
  5. 23:1 Hebrew Kittim; also in 23:12.
  6. 23:2 As in Dead Sea Scrolls and Greek version; Masoretic Text reads Those who have gone over the sea have filled you.
  7. 23:3 Hebrew from Shihor, a branch of the Nile River.
  8. 23:4 Or for the god of the sea says; Hebrew reads for the sea, the fortress of the sea, says.
  9. 23:10 The meaning of the Hebrew in this verse is uncertain.
  10. 23:11 Hebrew Canaan.
  11. 23:13 Or Chaldea.
New Living Translation (NLT)

Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.


Galatians 2:17-3:9 New Living Translation (NLT)

17 But suppose we seek to be made right with God through faith in Christ and then we are found guilty because we have abandoned the law. Would that mean Christ has led us into sin? Absolutely not! 18 Rather, I am a sinner if I rebuild the old system of law I already tore down. 19 For when I tried to keep the law, it condemned me. So I died to the law—I stopped trying to meet all its requirements—so that I might live for God. 20 My old self has been crucified with Christ.[a] It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I do not treat the grace of God as meaningless. For if keeping the law could make us right with God, then there was no need for Christ to die.

The Law and Faith in Christ

Oh, foolish Galatians! Who has cast an evil spell on you? For the meaning of Jesus Christ’s death was made as clear to you as if you had seen a picture of his death on the cross. Let me ask you this one question: Did you receive the Holy Spirit by obeying the law of Moses? Of course not! You received the Spirit because you believed the message you heard about Christ. How foolish can you be? After starting your new lives in the Spirit, why are you now trying to become perfect by your own human effort? Have you experienced[b] so much for nothing? Surely it was not in vain, was it?

I ask you again, does God give you the Holy Spirit and work miracles among you because you obey the law? Of course not! It is because you believe the message you heard about Christ.

In the same way, “Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith.”[c] The real children of Abraham, then, are those who put their faith in God.

What’s more, the Scriptures looked forward to this time when God would make the Gentiles right in his sight because of their faith. God proclaimed this good news to Abraham long ago when he said, “All nations will be blessed through you.”[d] So all who put their faith in Christ share the same blessing Abraham received because of his faith.

Footnotes:

  1. 2:20 Some English translations put this sentence in verse 19.
  2. 3:4 Or Have you suffered.
  3. 3:6 Gen 15:6.
  4. 3:8 Gen 12:3; 18:18; 22:18.
New Living Translation (NLT)

Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.


Psalm 60 New Living Translation (NLT)

Psalm 60

For the choir director: A psalm[a] of David useful for teaching, regarding the time David fought Aram-naharaim and Aram-zobah, and Joab returned and killed 12,000 Edomites in the Valley of Salt. To be sung to the tune “Lily of the Testimony.”

You have rejected us, O God, and broken our defenses.
    You have been angry with us; now restore us to your favor.
You have shaken our land and split it open.
    Seal the cracks, for the land trembles.
You have been very hard on us,
    making us drink wine that sent us reeling.
But you have raised a banner for those who fear you—
    a rallying point in the face of attack. Interlude

Now rescue your beloved people.
    Answer and save us by your power.
God has promised this by his holiness[b]:
“I will divide up Shechem with joy.
    I will measure out the valley of Succoth.
Gilead is mine,
    and Manasseh, too.
Ephraim, my helmet, will produce my warriors,
    and Judah, my scepter, will produce my kings.
But Moab, my washbasin, will become my servant,
    and I will wipe my feet on Edom
    and shout in triumph over Philistia.”

Who will bring me into the fortified city?
    Who will bring me victory over Edom?
10 Have you rejected us, O God?
    Will you no longer march with our armies?
11 Oh, please help us against our enemies,
    for all human help is useless.
12 With God’s help we will do mighty things,
    for he will trample down our foes.

Footnotes:

  1. 60:Title Hebrew miktam. This may be a literary or musical term.
  2. 60:6 Or in his sanctuary.
New Living Translation (NLT)

Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.


Proverbs 23:15-16 New Living Translation (NLT)

15 My child,[a] if your heart is wise,
    my own heart will rejoice!
16 Everything in me will celebrate
    when you speak what is right.

Footnotes:

  1. 23:15 Hebrew My son; also in 23:19.
New Living Translation (NLT)

Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.


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