48 People of Israel, you come from Jacob’s family and the tribe[a] of Judah. You claim to worship me, the Lord God of Israel, but you are lying. 2 You call Jerusalem your home and say you depend on me, the Lord All-Powerful, the God of Israel.
3 Long ago I announced what was going to be, then without warning, I made it happen. 4 I knew you were stubborn and hardheaded. 5 And I told you these things, so that when they happened you would not say, “The idols we worship did this.”
6 You heard what I said, and you have seen it happen. Now admit that it’s true! I will show you secrets you have never known. 7 Today I am doing something new, something you cannot say you have heard before. 8 You have never been willing to listen to what I say; from the moment of your birth, I knew you would rebel.
The Lord Warns Israel
9 I, the Lord, am true to myself; I will be praised for not punishing and destroying you. 10 I tested you in hard times just as silver is refined in a heated furnace.[b] 11 I did this because of who I am. I refuse to be dishonored[c] or share my praise with any other god.
12 Israel, my chosen people, listen to me. I alone am the Lord, the first and the last. 13 With my own hand I created the earth and stretched out the sky. They obey my every command.
The Lord Speaks to the Nations
14 Gather around me, all of you! Listen to what I say. Did any of your idols predict this would happen? Did they say that my friend[d] would do what I want done to Babylonia?[e] 15 I was the one who chose him. I have brought him this far, and he will be successful. 16 Come closer and listen! I have never kept secret the things I have said, and I was here before time began.
It Is Best To Obey the Lord
By the power of his Spirit the Lord God has sent me 17 with this message: People of Israel, I am the holy Lord God, the one who rescues you. For your own good, I teach you, and I lead you along the right path. 18 How I wish that you had obeyed my commands! Your success and good fortune would then have overflowed like a flooding river. 19 Your nation would be blessed with more people than there are grains of sand along the seashore. And I would never have let your country be destroyed.
20 Now leave Babylon! Celebrate as you go. Be happy and shout for everyone to hear, “The Lord has rescued his servant Israel! 21 He led us through the desert and made water flow from a rock to satisfy our thirst. 22 But the Lord has promised that none who are evil will live in peace.”
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