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Foolish Trust in Egypt

30 “Oh, you stubborn children,” declares the Lord,
“who carry out plans—
    but they are not mine,
and who make alliances—
    but not by my Spirit,
        piling sin upon sin.
They set out to go down to Egypt,
    without asking my advice;
taking refuge in Pharaoh’s protection,
    and seeking shelter in Egypt’s shadow.
But Pharaoh’s protection will become your shame,
    and sheltering in Egypt’s shadow your longing.[a]
And it will turn out that[b] his officials are at Zoan,
    and his envoys will reach Hanes.
There is only loathsome destruction[c]
    through a people that cannot benefit them,
who bring neither help nor profit,
    but only shame and disgrace.”

The Animals of the Negev

An oracle about the animals of the Negev:[d]

“Through a land of trouble, dryness,[e] and distress,
    of lionesses and roaring lions,
        where there is no water,[f]
a land of vipers and darting snakes,
    he carries[g] their riches on donkeys’ backs,
and their treasures on the humps of camels,
    to a nation that cannot benefit them,
to Egypt, which gives help that is worthless and useless.
    Therefore I call her,
        ‘Rahab,[h] who just sits still.’”

The Illusions of False Prophecy

“Go now, and write it down[i] on a tablet in their presence,
    inscribing it in a book,
so that for times to come
    it may be an everlasting witness.
For they are a rebellious people,
    deceitful children,
children unwilling to hear
    the Lord’s instruction.
10 They say to the seers,
    ‘Don’t see visions,’
and to the prophets,
    ‘Don’t give us visions of what is right!
        Instead, tell us welcome things, prophesy illusions,
11 get out of the way,
    turn aside from the path,
        and stop confronting us with the Holy One of Israel.”[j]

Rejecting God’s Message

12 Therefore, this is what the Holy One of Israel says:

“Because you reject this message,
    and put your trust in oppression and enjoy it,[k]
        and since you rely on it,
13 therefore, for you this sin will become
    like a breach in a high wall that is about to collapse,
        bulging out,
    and whose crash comes suddenly—in an instant.
14 Its breaking will be like when potters’ vessels are broken,
    shattered so ruthlessly[l]
that among its fragments not even a broken sliver will be found
    for taking fire from a hearth
        or scooping water out of a cistern.”

15 For this is what the Lord[m] God,[n] the Holy One of Israel, says:

“In repentance and rest you will be saved;
    in staying calm and trusting will be your strength.
        But you refused.
16 Instead, you said,
    ‘No! We’ll escape on horses!’
        Therefore, you’ll flee away.
And you said,
    ‘We’ll ride off on swift steeds!’
        Therefore your pursuers will be swift.
17 A thousand will flee at the threat of one;
    and run away, pursued by[o] five,
until you are left
    like a flagpole on a mountaintop,[p]
        like a banner on a hill.”

Restoration is Promised to Israel

18 “Nevertheless, the Lord will wait
    so he can be gracious to you;
        and thus he will rise up to show you mercy.
For the Lord is a God of justice.
    How blessed are all those who wait for him.”

19 Indeed, you people who live in Zion and in Jerusalem,[q] you[r] will weep no more. How gracious the Lord[s] will be to you at the sound of your cry! As soon as he hears it, he will answer you. 20 And although the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water[t] of affliction, your teachers won’t hide themselves[u] anymore, but your own eyes will see your teachers. 21 And whether you turn to the right or turn to the left, your ears will hear a message behind you: “This is the way, walk in it.” 22 Then you will defile your carved idols that are overlaid with silver and your images plated with gold. You’ll throw them away like disgusting objects[v] and say to them, “Away with you!”

23 He will also provide rain for your seed that you sow in the ground, and the food that comes from the ground will be[w] rich and abundant. At that time,[x] your cattle will graze in broad meadows, 24 and oxen and donkeys that work the ground will eat seasoned[y] fodder that workers will winnow with shovels and forks. 25 And on every lofty mountain and every high hill there will be brooks and canals[z] running with water on the day of the great slaughter, when the towers fall.

26 Moreover, the light of the moon will be like the light of the sun, and the sun’s light will be seven times brighter, like the light of seven full days,[aa] when the Lord binds up the bruises of his people and heals the wounds inflicted by his blow.

27 See, the name of the Lord comes from far away,
    burning with his anger, and in thick rising smoke;
his lips are full of fury,
    and his tongue is like a devouring fire.
28 His breath is like an overflowing torrent,
    and it rises right up to the neck,
to shake[ab] the nations in the sieve of destruction,
    and to place in the jaws of the peoples a bit that leads them astray.

29 You will have songs as on nights when people celebrate a holy festival,[ac] and gladness of heart, as when they set out with flutes to go to the Lord’s mountain, to the Rock of Israel.

God’s Judgment on Assyria

30 And the Lord will make heard—yes, he will make heard[ad]—his majestic voice, and make his arm[ae] seen descending in raging anger and in a flame of consuming fire, with a cloudburst, thunderstorm and hailstones. 31 Indeed, the Assyrians will be shattered at the Lord’s voice, when he strikes them with his scepter. 32 And every stroke of his punishing rod[af] that the Lord brings down on them will be to the sound of tambourines and harps, as he fights against her[ag] in battle with a brandished arm.

33 For the Fire Pit[ah] has long been prepared; truly it is for the king; it will indeed be made ready.[ai] And[aj] its pyre will be deep and wide, with abundant fire and wood. Like a stream of burning sulfur, the breath of the Lord will set it ablaze.


  1. Isaiah 30:3 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX read disgrace
  2. Isaiah 30:4 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX read For even though
  3. Isaiah 30:5 So 1QIsaa; MT reads Everyone comes to shame
  4. Isaiah 30:6 I.e. southern region of Israel; cf. Josh 10:40
  5. Isaiah 30:6 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX lack dryness; cf. Isa 41:18
  6. Isaiah 30:6 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX read from whence come
  7. Isaiah 30:6 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX read they carry
  8. Isaiah 30:7 The Heb. word Rahab means The One who Storms; i.e. Egypt; cf. Isa 51:9; Ps 87:4
  9. Isaiah 30:8 So 1QIsaa MT; 4QIsac LXX read write down
  10. Isaiah 30:11 Lit. bring to an end the Holy One from before us.
  11. Isaiah 30:12 Apparent meaning 1QIsaa; MT reads and are perverse
  12. Isaiah 30:14 Lit. broken—they do not take pity; so 1QIsaa; MT reads broken—he does not take pity
  13. Isaiah 30:15 So 1QIsaa
  14. Isaiah 30:15 So 1QIsaa corrector
  15. Isaiah 30:17 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX read away at the threat of
  16. Isaiah 30:17 So 1QIsaa LXX; MT reads the mountaintop
  17. Isaiah 30:19 So 1QIsaa; cf. LXX; MT reads at Jerusalem
  18. Isaiah 30:19 So 1QIsaa (pl.); MT (sing.)
  19. Isaiah 30:19 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX read he
  20. Isaiah 30:20 So 1QIsaa; MT lacks the correct Heb. construct
  21. Isaiah 30:20 So 1QIsaa; MT reads himself
  22. Isaiah 30:22 Lit. like menstrual rags
  23. Isaiah 30:23 So 1QIsaa LXX; MT reads and it will be
  24. Isaiah 30:23 Lit. On that day
  25. Isaiah 30:24 Lit. salted
  26. Isaiah 30:25 So 1QIsaa; MT reads streams
  27. Isaiah 30:26 So 1QIsaa MT; LXX lacks like the light of seven full days
  28. Isaiah 30:28 So 1QIsaa; MT reads to sift; LXX reads to confuse
  29. Isaiah 30:29 So 1QIsaa; MT reads one celebrates a holy festival
  30. Isaiah 30:30 So 1QIsaa; MT LXX read heard only once
  31. Isaiah 30:30 I.e. the Messiah
  32. Isaiah 30:32 So MTmss; 1QIsaa reads the rod of his foundation; MT reads the rod of foundation
  33. Isaiah 30:32 So 1QIsaa MT; MTqere, mss read against them
  34. Isaiah 30:33 Lit. the Topheth; i.e. a fire pit near Jerusalem where the Canaanite deity Molech was worshipped
  35. Isaiah 30:33 So 1QIsaa; MT reads it is made ready for the king; cf. LXX
  36. Isaiah 30:33 So 1QIsaa; MT lacks And