New American Bible (Revised Edition)
Judgment and Deliverance of Jerusalem
1 Ah! Ariel, Ariel,[a]
city where David encamped!
Let year follow year,
and feast follow feast,(A)
2 But I will bring distress upon Ariel,
and there will be mourning and moaning.
You shall be to me like Ariel:(B)
3 I will encamp like David against you;
I will circle you with outposts
and set up siege works against you.(C)
4 You shall speak from beneath the earth,
and from the dust below, your words shall come.
Your voice shall be that of a ghost from the earth,
and your words shall whisper from the dust.(D)
5 The horde of your arrogant shall be like fine dust,
a horde of tyrants like flying chaff.(E)
Then suddenly, in an instant,
6 you shall be visited by the Lord of hosts,
With thunder, earthquake, and great noise,
whirlwind, storm, and the flame of consuming fire.(F)
7 [b]Then like a dream,
a vision of the night,
Shall be the horde of all the nations
who make war against Ariel:
All the outposts, the siege works against it,
all who distress it.
8 As when a hungry man dreams he is eating
and awakens with an empty stomach,
Or when a thirsty man dreams he is drinking
and awakens faint, his throat parched,
So shall the horde of all the nations be,
who make war against Mount Zion.
Blindness and Perversity
9 [c]Stupefy yourselves and stay stupid;
blind yourselves and stay blind!
You who are drunk, but not from wine,
who stagger, but not from strong drink!(G)
10 For the Lord has poured out on you
a spirit of deep sleep.
He has shut your eyes (the prophets)
and covered your heads (the seers).[d](H)
11 For you the vision of all this has become like the words of a sealed scroll. When it is handed to one who can read, with the request, “Read this,” the reply is, “I cannot, because it is sealed.” 12 When the scroll is handed to one who cannot read, with the request, “Read this,” the reply is, “I cannot read.”
13 The Lord said:
Since this people draws near with words only
and honors me with their lips alone,
though their hearts are far from me,
And fear of me has become
mere precept of human teaching,(I)
14 Therefore I will again deal with this people
in surprising and wondrous fashion:
The wisdom of the wise shall perish,
the prudence of the prudent shall vanish.(J)
15 Ah! You who would hide a plan
too deep for the Lord!
Who work in the dark, saying,
“Who sees us, who knows us?”(K)
16 Your perversity is as though the potter
were taken to be the clay:
As though what is made should say of its maker,
“He did not make me!”
Or the vessel should say of the potter,
“He does not understand.”(L)
17 Surely, in a very little while,
Lebanon shall be changed into an orchard,
and the orchard be considered a forest!(M)
18 On that day the deaf shall hear
the words of a scroll;
And out of gloom and darkness,
the eyes of the blind shall see.(N)
19 The lowly shall again find joy in the Lord,
the poorest rejoice in the Holy One of Israel.(O)
20 For the tyrant shall be no more,
the scoffer shall cease to be;
All who are ready for evil shall be cut off,(P)
21 those who condemn with a mere word,
Who ensnare the defender at the gate,
and leave the just with an empty claim.(Q)
22 Therefore thus says the Lord,
the God of the house of Jacob,
who redeemed Abraham:[f]
No longer shall Jacob be ashamed,
no longer shall his face grow pale.(R)
23 For when his children see
the work of my hands in his midst,
They shall sanctify my name;
they shall sanctify the Holy One of Jacob,
be in awe of the God of Israel.(S)
24 Those who err in spirit shall acquire understanding,
those who find fault shall receive instruction.
- 29:1–2 Ariel: a poetic name for Jerusalem. It has been variously interpreted to mean “lion of God,” “altar hearth of God” (Ez 43:15–16), “city of God,” or “foundation of God.” In v. 2 the term refers to “altar hearth,” i.e., a place of burning for its people (cf. 30:33; 31:9). God will attack Jerusalem, as David did long ago.
- 29:7–8 Just when the attackers think their capture of Jerusalem is certain, the Lord will snatch victory from their hands and save the city. The sudden shift from the Lord’s attack on the city to its deliverance by him is surprising and unexplained; it may reflect the account related in 37:36.
- 29:9–16 Despite their show of piety, Judah’s leaders refused to accept the prophet’s words of assurance. They rejected prophetic advice (cf. 30:10–11), did not consult the prophetic oracle in forming their political plans (30:1–2; 31:1), and tried to hide their plans even from God’s prophet (v. 15), who, they thought, simply did not understand military and political reality.
- 29:10 Prophets…seers: interpretive glosses.
- 29:17–24 The prophet presents the positive aspects of God’s plan in terms of a series of reversals: an end to pride, ignorance, and injustice. Cf. 32:3–5.
- 29:22 Who redeemed Abraham: perhaps by revealing himself and delivering Abraham from idolatrous worship; cf. Gn 12:1–3; 17:1; Jos 24:2–3.
New International Version
Woe to David’s City
29 Woe(A) to you, Ariel, Ariel,(B)
the city(C) where David settled!
Add year to year
and let your cycle of festivals(D) go on.
2 Yet I will besiege Ariel;(E)
she will mourn and lament,(F)
she will be to me like an altar hearth.[a](G)
3 I will encamp against you on all sides;
I will encircle(H) you with towers
and set up my siege works(I) against you.
4 Brought low, you will speak from the ground;
your speech will mumble(J) out of the dust.(K)
Your voice will come ghostlike(L) from the earth;
out of the dust your speech will whisper.(M)
5 But your many enemies will become like fine dust,(N)
the ruthless(O) hordes like blown chaff.(P)
Suddenly,(Q) in an instant,
6 the Lord Almighty will come(R)
with thunder(S) and earthquake(T) and great noise,
with windstorm and tempest(U) and flames of a devouring fire.(V)
7 Then the hordes of all the nations(W) that fight against Ariel,(X)
that attack her and her fortress and besiege her,
will be as it is with a dream,(Y)
with a vision in the night—
8 as when a hungry person dreams of eating,
but awakens(Z) hungry still;
as when a thirsty person dreams of drinking,
but awakens faint and thirsty still.(AA)
So will it be with the hordes of all the nations
that fight against Mount Zion.(AB)
9 Be stunned and amazed,(AC)
blind yourselves and be sightless;(AD)
be drunk,(AE) but not from wine,(AF)
stagger,(AG) but not from beer.
10 The Lord has brought over you a deep sleep:(AH)
He has sealed your eyes(AI) (the prophets);(AJ)
he has covered your heads (the seers).(AK)
11 For you this whole vision(AL) is nothing but words sealed(AM) in a scroll. And if you give the scroll to someone who can read, and say, “Read this, please,” they will answer, “I can’t; it is sealed.” 12 Or if you give the scroll to someone who cannot read, and say, “Read this, please,” they will answer, “I don’t know how to read.”
13 The Lord says:
“These people(AN) come near to me with their mouth
and honor me with their lips,(AO)
but their hearts are far from me.(AP)
Their worship of me
is based on merely human rules they have been taught.[b](AQ)
14 Therefore once more I will astound these people
with wonder upon wonder;(AR)
the wisdom of the wise(AS) will perish,
the intelligence of the intelligent will vanish.(AT)”
15 Woe to those who go to great depths
to hide(AU) their plans from the Lord,
who do their work in darkness and think,
“Who sees us?(AV) Who will know?”(AW)
16 You turn things upside down,
as if the potter were thought to be like the clay!(AX)
Shall what is formed say to the one who formed(AY) it,
“You did not make me”?
Can the pot say to the potter,(AZ)
“You know nothing”?(BA)
17 In a very short time,(BB) will not Lebanon(BC) be turned into a fertile field(BD)
and the fertile field seem like a forest?(BE)
18 In that day(BF) the deaf(BG) will hear the words of the scroll,
and out of gloom and darkness(BH)
the eyes of the blind will see.(BI)
19 Once more the humble(BJ) will rejoice in the Lord;
the needy(BK) will rejoice in the Holy One(BL) of Israel.
20 The ruthless(BM) will vanish,(BN)
the mockers(BO) will disappear,
and all who have an eye for evil(BP) will be cut down—
21 those who with a word make someone out to be guilty,
who ensnare the defender in court(BQ)
and with false testimony(BR) deprive the innocent of justice.(BS)
“No longer will Jacob be ashamed;(BV)
no longer will their faces grow pale.(BW)
23 When they see among them their children,(BX)
the work of my hands,(BY)
they will keep my name holy;(BZ)
they will acknowledge the holiness of the Holy One(CA) of Jacob,
and will stand in awe of the God of Israel.
24 Those who are wayward(CB) in spirit will gain understanding;(CC)
those who complain will accept instruction.”(CD)