Song of the Vineyard

I will sing about the one I love,
a song about my loved one’s vineyard:(A)
The one I love had a vineyard
on a very fertile hill.
He broke up the soil, cleared it of stones,
and planted it with the finest vines.(B)
He built a tower in the middle of it
and even dug out a winepress there.
He expected(C) it to yield good grapes,
but it yielded worthless grapes.(D)

So now, residents of Jerusalem
and men of Judah,
please judge between Me
and My vineyard.
What more could I have done for My vineyard
than I did?(E)
Why, when I expected a yield of good grapes,
did it yield worthless grapes?
Now I will tell you
what I am about to do to My vineyard:
I will remove its hedge,(F)
and it will be consumed;
I will tear down its wall,(G)
and it will be trampled.
I will make it a wasteland.(H)
It will not be pruned or weeded;
thorns and briers will grow up.(I)
I will also give orders to the clouds
that rain should not fall on it.
For the vineyard of the Lord of Hosts
is the house of Israel,(J)
and the men[a] of Judah,
the plant He delighted in.
He looked for justice
but saw injustice,
for righteousness,
but heard cries of wretchedness.

Judah’s Sins Denounced

Woe to those who add house to house(K)
and join field to field
until there is no more room
and you alone are left in the land.

I heard the Lord of Hosts say:

Indeed, many houses(L) will become desolate,
grand and lovely ones without inhabitants.
10 For a ten-acre[b] vineyard will yield
only six gallons,[c]
and 10 bushels[d] of seed will yield
only one bushel.[e]

11 Woe to those who rise early in the morning
in pursuit of beer,(M)
who linger into the evening,
inflamed by wine.
12 At their feasts they have lyre, harp,
tambourine, flute, and wine.
They do not perceive the Lord’s actions,(N)
and they do not see the work of His hands.(O)

13 Therefore My people will go into exile
because they lack knowledge;(P)
her[f] dignitaries are starving,
and her[g] masses are parched with thirst.
14 Therefore Sheol enlarges its throat
and opens wide its enormous jaws,(Q)
and down go Zion’s dignitaries, her masses,
her crowds, and those who carouse in her!
15 Humanity is brought low, man is humbled,
and haughty eyes are humbled.(R)
16 But the Lord of Hosts is exalted by His justice,(S)
and the holy God(T) is distinguished by righteousness.(U)
17 Lambs will graze
as if in[h] their own pastures,(V)
and strangers[i] will eat
among the ruins of the rich.

18 Woe to those who drag wickedness
with cords of deceit(W)
and pull sin along with cart ropes,
19 to those who say:
“Let Him hurry up and do His work quickly
so that we can see it!
Let the plan(X) of the Holy One of Israel(Y) take place
so that we can know it!”
20 Woe to those who call evil good
and good evil,(Z)
who substitute darkness for light
and light for darkness,
who substitute bitter for sweet
and sweet for bitter.
21 Woe to those who are wise in their own opinion
and clever in their own sight.[j](AA)
22 Woe to those who are heroes at drinking wine,
who are fearless at mixing beer,(AB)
23 who acquit the guilty for a bribe(AC)
and deprive the innocent of justice.

24 Therefore, as a tongue of fire consumes straw
and as dry grass shrivels in the flame,
so their roots will become like something rotten
and their blossoms will blow away like dust,
for they have rejected(AD)
the instruction of the Lord of Hosts,
and they have despised
the word of the Holy One of Israel.(AE)
25 Therefore the Lord’s anger burns(AF) against His people.
He raised His hand against them and struck them;
the mountains quaked,(AG)
and their corpses were like garbage in the streets.
In all this, His anger is not removed,
and His hand is still raised to strike.(AH)

26 He raises a signal flag for the distant nations(AI)
and whistles(AJ) for them from the ends of the earth.
Look—how quickly and swiftly they come!
27 None of them grows weary or stumbles;(AK)
no one slumbers or sleeps.
No belt is loose
and no sandal strap broken.
28 Their arrows are sharpened,
and all their bows strung.
Their horses’ hooves are like flint;
their chariot wheels are like a whirlwind.
29 Their roaring is like a lion’s;(AL)
they roar like young lions;(AM)
they growl and seize their prey
and carry it off,
and no one can rescue it.
30 On that day they will roar over it,
like the roaring of the sea.
When one looks at the land,
there will be darkness and distress;
light will be obscured by clouds.[k]

Footnotes

  1. Isaiah 5:7 Lit man
  2. Isaiah 5:10 Lit ten-yoke
  3. Isaiah 5:10 Lit one bath
  4. Isaiah 5:10 Lit one homer
  5. Isaiah 5:10 Lit [one] ephah
  6. Isaiah 5:13 Lit its
  7. Isaiah 5:13 Lit its
  8. Isaiah 5:17 Syr reads graze in
  9. Isaiah 5:17 LXX reads sheep
  10. Isaiah 5:21 Lit clever before their face
  11. Isaiah 5:30 Lit its clouds

The Song of the Vineyard

I will sing for the one I love
    a song about his vineyard:(A)
My loved one had a vineyard
    on a fertile hillside.
He dug it up and cleared it of stones
    and planted it with the choicest vines.(B)
He built a watchtower(C) in it
    and cut out a winepress(D) as well.
Then he looked for a crop of good grapes,
    but it yielded only bad fruit.(E)

“Now you dwellers in Jerusalem and people of Judah,
    judge between me and my vineyard.(F)
What more could have been done for my vineyard
    than I have done for it?(G)
When I looked for good grapes,
    why did it yield only bad?(H)
Now I will tell you
    what I am going to do to my vineyard:
I will take away its hedge,
    and it will be destroyed;(I)
I will break down its wall,(J)
    and it will be trampled.(K)
I will make it a wasteland,(L)
    neither pruned nor cultivated,
    and briers and thorns(M) will grow there.
I will command the clouds
    not to rain(N) on it.”

The vineyard(O) of the Lord Almighty
    is the nation of Israel,
and the people of Judah
    are the vines he delighted in.
And he looked for justice,(P) but saw bloodshed;
    for righteousness,(Q) but heard cries of distress.(R)

Woes and Judgments

Woe(S) to you who add house to house
    and join field to field(T)
till no space is left
    and you live alone in the land.

The Lord Almighty(U) has declared in my hearing:(V)

“Surely the great houses will become desolate,(W)
    the fine mansions left without occupants.
10 A ten-acre vineyard will produce only a bath[a] of wine;
    a homer[b] of seed will yield only an ephah[c] of grain.”(X)

11 Woe(Y) to those who rise early in the morning
    to run after their drinks,
who stay up late at night
    till they are inflamed with wine.(Z)
12 They have harps and lyres at their banquets,
    pipes(AA) and timbrels(AB) and wine,
but they have no regard(AC) for the deeds of the Lord,
    no respect for the work of his hands.(AD)
13 Therefore my people will go into exile(AE)
    for lack of understanding;(AF)
those of high rank(AG) will die of hunger
    and the common people will be parched with thirst.(AH)
14 Therefore Death(AI) expands its jaws,
    opening wide its mouth;(AJ)
into it will descend their nobles and masses
    with all their brawlers and revelers.(AK)
15 So people will be brought low(AL)
    and everyone humbled,(AM)
    the eyes of the arrogant(AN) humbled.
16 But the Lord Almighty will be exalted(AO) by his justice,(AP)
    and the holy God will be proved holy(AQ) by his righteous acts.
17 Then sheep will graze as in their own pasture;(AR)
    lambs will feed[d] among the ruins of the rich.

18 Woe(AS) to those who draw sin along with cords(AT) of deceit,
    and wickedness(AU) as with cart ropes,
19 to those who say, “Let God hurry;
    let him hasten(AV) his work
    so we may see it.
The plan of the Holy One(AW) of Israel—
    let it approach, let it come into view,
    so we may know it.”(AX)

20 Woe(AY) to those who call evil good(AZ)
    and good evil,(BA)
who put darkness for light
    and light for darkness,(BB)
who put bitter for sweet
    and sweet for bitter.(BC)

21 Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes(BD)
    and clever in their own sight.

22 Woe to those who are heroes at drinking wine(BE)
    and champions at mixing drinks,(BF)
23 who acquit the guilty for a bribe,(BG)
    but deny justice(BH) to the innocent.(BI)
24 Therefore, as tongues of fire(BJ) lick up straw(BK)
    and as dry grass sinks down in the flames,
so their roots will decay(BL)
    and their flowers blow away like dust;(BM)
for they have rejected the law of the Lord Almighty
    and spurned the word(BN) of the Holy One(BO) of Israel.
25 Therefore the Lord’s anger(BP) burns against his people;
    his hand is raised and he strikes them down.
The mountains shake,(BQ)
    and the dead bodies(BR) are like refuse(BS) in the streets.(BT)

Yet for all this, his anger is not turned away,(BU)
    his hand is still upraised.(BV)

26 He lifts up a banner(BW) for the distant nations,
    he whistles(BX) for those at the ends of the earth.(BY)
Here they come,
    swiftly and speedily!
27 Not one of them grows tired(BZ) or stumbles,
    not one slumbers or sleeps;
not a belt(CA) is loosened at the waist,(CB)
    not a sandal strap is broken.(CC)
28 Their arrows are sharp,(CD)
    all their bows(CE) are strung;
their horses’ hooves(CF) seem like flint,
    their chariot wheels like a whirlwind.(CG)
29 Their roar is like that of the lion,(CH)
    they roar like young lions;
they growl as they seize(CI) their prey
    and carry it off with no one to rescue.(CJ)
30 In that day(CK) they will roar over it
    like the roaring of the sea.(CL)
And if one looks at the land,
    there is only darkness(CM) and distress;(CN)
    even the sun will be darkened(CO) by clouds.

Footnotes

  1. Isaiah 5:10 That is, about 6 gallons or about 22 liters
  2. Isaiah 5:10 That is, probably about 360 pounds or about 160 kilograms
  3. Isaiah 5:10 That is, probably about 36 pounds or about 16 kilograms
  4. Isaiah 5:17 Septuagint; Hebrew / strangers will eat

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