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Isaiah 27-28 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

Israel’s Redemption

27 On that day the Lord with his cruel and great and strong sword will punish Leviathan the fleeing serpent, Leviathan the twisting serpent, and he will kill the dragon that is in the sea.

On that day:
A pleasant vineyard, sing about it!
    I, the Lord, am its keeper;
    every moment I water it.
I guard it night and day
    so that no one can harm it;
    I have no wrath.
If it gives me thorns and briers,
    I will march to battle against it.
    I will burn it up.
Or else let it cling to me for protection,
    let it make peace with me,
    let it make peace with me.

In days to come[a] Jacob shall take root,
    Israel shall blossom and put forth shoots,
    and fill the whole world with fruit.

Has he struck them down as he struck down those who struck them?
    Or have they been killed as their killers were killed?
By expulsion,[b] by exile you struggled against them;
    with his fierce blast he removed them in the day of the east wind.
Therefore by this the guilt of Jacob will be expiated,
    and this will be the full fruit of the removal of his sin:
when he makes all the stones of the altars
    like chalkstones crushed to pieces,
    no sacred poles[c] or incense altars will remain standing.
10 For the fortified city is solitary,
    a habitation deserted and forsaken, like the wilderness;
the calves graze there,
    there they lie down, and strip its branches.
11 When its boughs are dry, they are broken;
    women come and make a fire of them.
For this is a people without understanding;
    therefore he that made them will not have compassion on them,
    he that formed them will show them no favor.

12 On that day the Lord will thresh from the channel of the Euphrates to the Wadi of Egypt, and you will be gathered one by one, O people of Israel. 13 And on that day a great trumpet will be blown, and those who were lost in the land of Assyria and those who were driven out to the land of Egypt will come and worship the Lord on the holy mountain at Jerusalem.

Judgment on Corrupt Rulers, Priests, and Prophets

28 Ah, the proud garland of the drunkards of Ephraim,
    and the fading flower of its glorious beauty,
    which is on the head of those bloated with rich food, of those overcome with wine!
See, the Lord has one who is mighty and strong;
    like a storm of hail, a destroying tempest,
like a storm of mighty, overflowing waters;
    with his hand he will hurl them down to the earth.
Trampled under foot will be
    the proud garland of the drunkards of Ephraim.
And the fading flower of its glorious beauty,
    which is on the head of those bloated with rich food,
will be like a first-ripe fig before the summer;
    whoever sees it, eats it up
    as soon as it comes to hand.

In that day the Lord of hosts will be a garland of glory,
    and a diadem of beauty, to the remnant of his people;
and a spirit of justice to the one who sits in judgment,
    and strength to those who turn back the battle at the gate.

These also reel with wine
    and stagger with strong drink;
the priest and the prophet reel with strong drink,
    they are confused with wine,
    they stagger with strong drink;
they err in vision,
    they stumble in giving judgment.
All tables are covered with filthy vomit;
    no place is clean.

“Whom will he teach knowledge,
    and to whom will he explain the message?
Those who are weaned from milk,
    those taken from the breast?
10 For it is precept upon precept, precept upon precept,
    line upon line, line upon line,
    here a little, there a little.”[d]

11 Truly, with stammering lip
    and with alien tongue
he will speak to this people,
12     to whom he has said,
“This is rest;
    give rest to the weary;
and this is repose”;
    yet they would not hear.
13 Therefore the word of the Lord will be to them,
    “Precept upon precept, precept upon precept,
    line upon line, line upon line,
    here a little, there a little;”[e]
in order that they may go, and fall backward,
    and be broken, and snared, and taken.

14 Therefore hear the word of the Lord, you scoffers
    who rule this people in Jerusalem.
15 Because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death,
    and with Sheol we have an agreement;
when the overwhelming scourge passes through
    it will not come to us;
for we have made lies our refuge,
    and in falsehood we have taken shelter”;
16 therefore thus says the Lord God,
See, I am laying in Zion a foundation stone,
    a tested stone,
a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation:
    “One who trusts will not panic.”
17 And I will make justice the line,
    and righteousness the plummet;
hail will sweep away the refuge of lies,
    and waters will overwhelm the shelter.
18 Then your covenant with death will be annulled,
    and your agreement with Sheol will not stand;
when the overwhelming scourge passes through
    you will be beaten down by it.
19 As often as it passes through, it will take you;
    for morning by morning it will pass through,
    by day and by night;
and it will be sheer terror to understand the message.
20 For the bed is too short to stretch oneself on it,
    and the covering too narrow to wrap oneself in it.
21 For the Lord will rise up as on Mount Perazim,
    he will rage as in the valley of Gibeon
to do his deed—strange is his deed!—
    and to work his work—alien is his work!
22 Now therefore do not scoff,
    or your bonds will be made stronger;
for I have heard a decree of destruction
    from the Lord God of hosts upon the whole land.

23 Listen, and hear my voice;
    Pay attention, and hear my speech.
24 Do those who plow for sowing plow continually?
    Do they continually open and harrow their ground?
25 When they have leveled its surface,
    do they not scatter dill, sow cummin,
and plant wheat in rows
    and barley in its proper place,
    and spelt as the border?
26 For they are well instructed;
    their God teaches them.

27 Dill is not threshed with a threshing sledge,
    nor is a cart wheel rolled over cummin;
but dill is beaten out with a stick,
    and cummin with a rod.
28 Grain is crushed for bread,
    but one does not thresh it forever;
one drives the cart wheel and horses over it,
    but does not pulverize it.
29 This also comes from the Lord of hosts;
    he is wonderful in counsel,
    and excellent in wisdom.

Footnotes:

  1. Isaiah 27:6 Heb Those to come
  2. Isaiah 27:8 Meaning of Heb uncertain
  3. Isaiah 27:9 Heb Asherim
  4. Isaiah 28:10 Meaning of Heb of this verse uncertain
  5. Isaiah 28:13 Meaning of Heb of this verse uncertain
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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