Isaiah 7-11 Common English Bible (CEB)
Reassurance to King Ahaz
7 In the days of Ahaz (Jotham’s son and grandson of Judah’s King Uzziah), Aram’s King Rezin and Israel’s King Pekah (Remaliah’s son) came up to attack Jerusalem, but they couldn’t overpower it.
2 When the house of David was told that Aram had become allies with Ephraim, their hearts and the hearts of their people shook as the trees of a forest shake when there is a wind. 3 But the Lord said to Isaiah, “Go out to meet Ahaz, you and your son Shear-jashub,[a] at the end of the channel of the Upper Pool, by the road to the field where laundry is washed, 4 and say to him, ‘Be careful and stay calm. Don’t fear, and don’t lose heart over these two pieces of smoking torches, over the burning anger of Rezin, Aram, and Remaliah’s son. 5 Aram has planned evil against you with Ephraim and Remaliah’s son, saying, 6 “Let’s march up against Judah, tear it apart, capture it for ourselves, and install Tabeel’s son as its king.” 7 But the Lord God says: It won’t happen; it won’t take place. 8 The chief of Aram is Damascus; the chief of Damascus is Rezin (in sixty-five more years Ephraim will be shattered as a nation); 9 the chief of Ephraim is Samaria; and the chief of Samaria is the son of Remaliah. If you don’t believe this, you can’t be trusted.’”
The sign of Immanuel
10 Again the Lord spoke to Ahaz: 11 “Ask a sign from the Lord your God. Make it as deep as the grave[b] or as high as heaven.”
12 But Ahaz said, “I won’t ask; I won’t test the Lord.”
13 Then Isaiah said, “Listen, house of David! Isn’t it enough for you to be tiresome for people that you are also tiresome before my God? 14 Therefore, the Lord will give you a sign. The young woman is pregnant and is about to give birth to a son, and she will name him Immanuel.[c] 15 He will eat butter and honey, and learn to reject evil and choose good. 16 Before the boy learns to reject evil and choose good, the land of the two kings you dread will be abandoned. 17 The Lord will bring upon you, upon your people, and upon your families days unlike any that have come since the day Ephraim broke away from Judah—the king of Assyria.”
The devastated land
18 On that day, the Lord will whistle for the flies from the remotest streams of Egypt and for the bees that are in the land of Assyria. 19 They will come and settle in the steep ravines, in the cracks of the cliffs, in all the thornbushes, and in all the watering holes.
20 On that day, the Lord will shave with a razor hired from beyond the Euphrates—with the king of Assyria—the head and the pubic hair, and will cut off the beard as well.
21 On that day, one will raise a young cow and two sheep 22 and will eat butter because of the abundance of milk, for all who remain in the land will eat butter and honey.
23 On that day, there will be thorns and thistles in every place where a thousand vines worth a thousand silver shekels once grew. 24 Only those with bows and arrows will go there, because the entire land will become thorns and thistles. 25 As for the hills that were once farmed with hoes, you won’t go there for fear of the thorns and thistles. They will become places where cattle are turned loose and sheep wander.
8 The Lord said to me, “Take a large tablet, and write on it in ordinary letters,[d] For Maher-shalal-hash-baz.[e] 2 Summon trusted people, Uriah the priest and Zechariah, Jeberechiah’s son, to witness it.”
3 I then had sex with the prophetess, and she became pregnant and gave birth to a son. Then the Lord said to me, “Name him Maher-shalal-hash-baz. 4 Before the boy knows how to say ‘my father’ and ‘my mother,’ the wealth of Damascus and the spoil of Samaria will be carried away before the king of Assyria.”
5 The Lord spoke again to me: 6 Since this people has rejected the waters of Shiloah that flow gently, and instead rejoices over[f] Rezin and Remaliah’s son— 7 therefore, look, the Lord is raising up against them the powerful floodwaters of the Euphrates, the king of Assyria and all his glory. It will rise up over all its channels, overflowing all its banks, 8 and sweep into Judah, flooding, overflowing, and reaching up to the neck. But God is with us;[g] the span of his wings will cover the width of the land.
9 Unite[h] yourselves, peoples, and be shattered!
11 The Lord spoke to me, taking hold of me and warning me not to walk in the way of this people: 12 Don’t call conspiracy all that this people calls conspiracy. Don’t fear what they fear, and don’t be terrified. 13 It is the Lord of heavenly forces whom you should hold sacred, whom you should fear, and whom you should hold in awe.
14 God will become a sanctuary—
16 Bind up the testimony; seal up the teaching among my disciples. 17 I will wait for the Lord, who has hidden his face from the house of Jacob, and I will hope in God. 18 Look! I and the children the Lord gave me are signs and wonders in Israel from the Lord of heavenly forces, who lives on Mount Zion.
19 If they say to you: “Consult the ghosts and the spirits that chirp and mutter. (Shouldn’t a people consult its gods?) Consult the dead on behalf of the living 20 for instruction and for testimony”—they will surely say such things, but they will never see the dawn.[j]
21 They will pass through the land,[k] dejected and hungry, and when they are hungry, they will be enraged and will curse their king and God. They will turn toward heaven 22 and look to the earth, but they will see only distress and darkness, random movement, and the anguish and doom of banishment.[l]
A great light
9 [m] Nonetheless, those who were in distress won’t be exhausted. At an earlier time, God cursed the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but later he glorified the way of the sea, the far side of the Jordan, and the Galilee of the nations.[n]
2 [o] The people walking in darkness have seen a great light.
The zeal of the Lord of heavenly forces will do this.
God’s hand still stretched out
8 The Lord sent a word against Jacob;
13 But the people didn’t turn to the one who struck them.
18 Wickedness burned like fire,
10 Doom to those who pronounce wicked decrees,
Assyria as God’s punishing weapon
5 Doom to Assyria, rod of my anger,
12 But when the Lord has finished all this work on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem, he will punish[r] the Assyrian king’s arrogant actions and the boasting of his haughty eyes.
13 He said, “By my own strength I have achieved it,
15 Will the ax glorify itself over the one who chops with it?
A few will return
20 On that day, what’s left of Israel and the survivors of the house of Jacob will no longer depend on the one who beat them. Instead, they will faithfully depend on the Lord, the holy one of Israel. 21 A few will return, what’s left of Jacob, to the mighty God. 22 Although your people, Israel, were like the sand of the sea, only a few survivors will return. The end is announced, overflowing with justice. 23 Yes, destruction has been announced; the Lord God of heavenly forces will carry it out against the entire land.
24 Therefore, the Lord God of heavenly forces says: My people who live in Zion, don’t fear Assyria, which strikes you with the rod and raises its staff against you as Egypt did. 25 In a very short time my fury will end, and my anger at the world will be finished.[t]
26 Therefore, the Lord of heavenly forces will crack a whip against Assyria,
The exalted laid low
He has gone up from Samaria,
A shoot from Jesse’s stump
11 A shoot will grow up from the stump of Jesse;
A signal to the peoples
10 On that day, the root of Jesse will stand as a signal to the peoples. The nations will seek him out, and his dwelling will be glorious.
11 On that day, the Lord will extend his hand a second time to reclaim the survivors of God’s people who are left from Assyria and from Egypt, from Pathros, Cush, Elam, Shinar, Hamath, and from the coastlands[z] of the sea.
12 God will raise a signal for the nations and gather the outcast men of Israel.
15 The Lord will split the tongue of the Egyptian sea. God will wave a hand over the Euphrates with a powerful[aa] wind and break it into seven streams so that it can be crossed in sandals. 16 Then there will be a highway from Assyria for the survivors of God’s people who are left from Assyria, just as there was for Israel on the day they went up from the land of Egypt.