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17 Wake up! Wake up!
Get up, O Jerusalem!
You drank from the cup the Lord passed to you,
which was full of his anger.[a]
You drained dry
the goblet full of intoxicating wine.[b]
18 There was no one to lead her
among all the children she bore;
there was no one to take her by the hand
among all the children she raised.
19 These double disasters confronted you.
But who feels sorry for you?
Destruction and devastation,
famine and sword.
But who consoles you?[c]
20 Your children faint;
they lie at the head of every street
like an antelope in a snare.
They are left in a stupor by the Lord’s anger,
by the battle cry of your God.[d]
21 So listen to this, oppressed one,
who is drunk, but not from wine.
22 This is what your Sovereign[e] Lord, even your God who judges[f] his people says:
“Look, I have removed from your hand
the cup of intoxicating wine,[g]
the goblet full of my anger.[h]
You will no longer have to drink it.
23 I will put it into the hand of your tormentors[i]
who said to you, ‘Lie down, so we can walk over you.’
You made your back like the ground,
and like the street for those who walked over you.”

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  1. Isaiah 51:17 tn Heb “[you] who have drunk from the hand of the Lord the cup of his anger.”
  2. Isaiah 51:17 tn Heb “the goblet, the cup [that causes] staggering, you drank, you drained.”
  3. Isaiah 51:19 tc The Hebrew text has אֲנַחֲמֵךְ (ʾanakhamekh), a first person form, but the Qumran scroll 1QIsaa reads correctly יְנַחֲמֵךְ (yenakhamekh), a third person form.
  4. Isaiah 51:20 tn Heb “those who are full of the anger of the Lord, the shout [or “rebuke”] of your God.”
  5. Isaiah 51:22 tn Or “Lord,” from אֲדוֹן (ʾadon).
  6. Isaiah 51:22 tn Many translations say “pleads the cause of his people” (KJV, NRSV, ESV) or similarly (NASB, NIV). The verb רִיב (riv, “to contend, dispute, conduct a law suit”) normally conveys that notion with the cognate direct object רִיב (riv, “cause, dispute, legal case”), but that is lacking here. Instead “his people” are the direct object, an unusual construction. The verb רִיב typically uses a preposition to indicate whether the action is done for or against someone. The syntax here may reflect Isa 3:13 where God is said to judge his people. There רִיב occurs without a direct object, but “his people” are supplied by parallelism in the second half of the line. The immediate context here is about the reversal of judgment, so referring to God as the one who judges his people but now takes his cup of judgement away would fit well.
  7. Isaiah 51:22 tn Heb “the cup of [= that causes] staggering” (so ASV, NAB, NRSV); NASB “the cup of reeling.”
  8. Isaiah 51:22 tn Heb “the goblet of the cup of my anger.”
  9. Isaiah 51:23 tn That is, to make them drink it.