New International Version - UK
8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?’
And I said, ‘Here am I. Send me!’
9 He said, ‘Go and tell this people:
‘“Be ever hearing, but never understanding;
be ever seeing, but never perceiving.”
10 Make the heart of this people calloused;
make their ears dull
and close their eyes.[a]
Otherwise they might see with their eyes,
hear with their ears,
understand with their hearts,
and turn and be healed.’
11 Then I said, ‘For how long, Lord?’
And he answered:
‘Until the cities lie ruined
and without inhabitant,
until the houses are left deserted
and the fields ruined and ravaged,
12 until the Lord has sent everyone far away
and the land is utterly forsaken.
13 And though a tenth remains in the land,
it will again be laid waste.
But as the terebinth and oak
leave stumps when they are cut down,
so the holy seed will be the stump in the land.’
The sign of Immanuel
7 When Ahaz son of Jotham, the son of Uzziah, was king of Judah, King Rezin of Aram and Pekah son of Remaliah king of Israel marched up to fight against Jerusalem, but they could not overpower it.
2 Now the house of David was told, ‘Aram has allied itself with[b] Ephraim’; so the hearts of Ahaz and his people were shaken, as the trees of the forest are shaken by the wind.
3 Then the Lord said to Isaiah, ‘Go out, you and your son Shear-Jashub,[c] to meet Ahaz at the end of the aqueduct of the Upper Pool, on the road to the Launderer’s Field. 4 Say to him, “Be careful, keep calm and don’t be afraid. Do not lose heart because of these two smouldering stubs of firewood – because of the fierce anger of Rezin and Aram and of the son of Remaliah. 5 Aram, Ephraim and Remaliah’s son have plotted your ruin, saying, 6 ‘Let us invade Judah; let us tear it apart and divide it among ourselves, and make the son of Tabeel king over it.’ 7 Yet this is what the Sovereign Lord says:
‘“It will not take place,
it will not happen,
8 for the head of Aram is Damascus,
and the head of Damascus is only Rezin.
Within sixty-five years
Ephraim will be too shattered to be a people.
9 The head of Ephraim is Samaria,
and the head of Samaria is only Remaliah’s son.
If you do not stand firm in your faith,
you will not stand at all.”’
10 Again the Lord spoke to Ahaz, 11 ‘Ask the Lord your God for a sign, whether in the deepest depths or in the highest heights.’
12 But Ahaz said, ‘I will not ask; I will not put the Lord to the test.’
13 Then Isaiah said, ‘Hear now, you house of David! Is it not enough to try the patience of humans? Will you try the patience of my God also? 14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you[d] a sign: the virgin[e] will conceive and give birth to a son, and[f] will call him Immanuel.[g] 15 He will be eating curds and honey when he knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right, 16 for before the boy knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right, the land of the two kings you dread will be laid waste. 17 The Lord will bring on you and on your people and on the house of your father a time unlike any since Ephraim broke away from Judah – he will bring the king of Assyria.’
Assyria, the Lord’s instrument
18 In that day the Lord will whistle for flies from the Nile delta in Egypt and for bees from the land of Assyria. 19 They will all come and settle in the steep ravines and in the crevices in the rocks, on all the thorn-bushes and at all the water holes. 20 In that day the Lord will use a razor hired from beyond the River Euphrates – the king of Assyria – to shave your heads and private parts, and to cut off your beards also. 21 In that day, a person will keep alive a young cow and two goats. 22 And because of the abundance of the milk they give, there will be curds to eat. All who remain in the land will eat curds and honey. 23 In that day, in every place where there were a thousand vines worth a thousand silver shekels,[h] there will be only briers and thorns. 24 Hunters will go there with bow and arrow, for the land will be covered with briers and thorns. 25 As for all the hills once cultivated by the hoe, you will no longer go there for fear of the briers and thorns; they will become places where cattle are turned loose and where sheep run.
Isaiah and his children as signs
8 The Lord said to me, ‘Take a large scroll and write on it with an ordinary pen: Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz.’[i] 2 So I called in Uriah the priest and Zechariah son of Jeberekiah as reliable witnesses for me. 3 Then I made love to the prophetess, and she conceived and gave birth to a son. And the Lord said to me, ‘Name him Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz. 4 For before the boy knows how to say “My father” or “My mother”, the wealth of Damascus and the plunder of Samaria will be carried off by the king of Assyria.’
5 The Lord spoke to me again:
6 ‘Because this people has rejected
the gently flowing waters of Shiloah
and rejoices over Rezin
and the son of Remaliah,
7 therefore the Lord is about to bring against them
the mighty floodwaters of the Euphrates –
the king of Assyria with all his pomp.
It will overflow all its channels,
run over all its banks
8 and sweep on into Judah, swirling over it,
passing through it and reaching up to the neck.
Its outspread wings will cover the breadth of your land,
9 Raise the war cry,[k] you nations, and be shattered!
Listen, all you distant lands.
Prepare for battle, and be shattered!
Prepare for battle, and be shattered!
10 Devise your strategy, but it will be thwarted;
propose your plan, but it will not stand,
for God is with us.[l]
- Isaiah 6:10 Hebrew; Septuagint ‘“You will be ever hearing, but never understanding; / you will be ever seeing, but never perceiving.” / 10 This people’s heart has become calloused; / they hardly hear with their ears, / and they have closed their eyes
- Isaiah 7:2 Or has set up camp in
- Isaiah 7:3 Shear-Jashub means a remnant will return.
- Isaiah 7:14 The Hebrew is plural.
- Isaiah 7:14 Or young woman
- Isaiah 7:14 Masoretic Text; Dead Sea Scrolls son, and he or son, and they
- Isaiah 7:14 Immanuel means God with us.
- Isaiah 7:23 That is, about 12 kilograms
- Isaiah 8:1 Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz means quick to the plunder, swift to the spoil; also in verse 3.
- Isaiah 8:8 Immanuel means God with us.
- Isaiah 8:9 Or Do your worst
- Isaiah 8:10 Hebrew Immanuel