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Isaiah 7-9 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

Isaiah Reassures King Ahaz

In the days of Ahaz son of Jotham son of Uzziah, king of Judah, King Rezin of Aram and King Pekah son of Remaliah of Israel went up to attack Jerusalem, but could not mount an attack against it. When the house of David heard that Aram had allied itself with Ephraim, the heart of Ahaz[a] and the heart of his people shook as the trees of the forest shake before the wind.

Then the Lord said to Isaiah, Go out to meet Ahaz, you and your son Shear-jashub,[b] at the end of the conduit of the upper pool on the highway to the Fuller’s Field, and say to him, Take heed, be quiet, do not fear, and do not let your heart be faint because of these two smoldering stumps of firebrands, because of the fierce anger of Rezin and Aram and the son of Remaliah. Because Aram—with Ephraim and the son of Remaliah—has plotted evil against you, saying, Let us go up against Judah and cut off Jerusalem[c] and conquer it for ourselves and make the son of Tabeel king in it; therefore thus says the Lord God:

It shall not stand,
    and it shall not come to pass.
For the head of Aram is Damascus,
    and the head of Damascus is Rezin.

(Within sixty-five years Ephraim will be shattered, no longer a people.)

The head of Ephraim is Samaria,
    and the head of Samaria is the son of Remaliah.
If you do not stand firm in faith,
    you shall not stand at all.

Isaiah Gives Ahaz the Sign of Immanuel

10 Again the Lord spoke to Ahaz, saying, 11 Ask a sign of the Lord your God; let it be deep as Sheol or high as heaven. 12 But Ahaz said, I will not ask, and I will not put the Lord to the test. 13 Then Isaiah[d] said: “Hear then, O house of David! Is it too little for you to weary mortals, that you weary my God also? 14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Look, the young woman[e] is with child and shall bear a son, and shall name him Immanuel.[f] 15 He shall eat curds and honey by the time he knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good. 16 For before the child knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good, the land before whose two kings you are in dread will be deserted. 17 The Lord will bring on you and on your people and on your ancestral house such days as have not come since the day that Ephraim departed from Judah—the king of Assyria.”

18 On that day the Lord will whistle for the fly that is at the sources of the streams of Egypt, and for the bee that is in the land of Assyria. 19 And they will all come and settle in the steep ravines, and in the clefts of the rocks, and on all the thornbushes, and on all the pastures.

20 On that day the Lord will shave with a razor hired beyond the River—with the king of Assyria—the head and the hair of the feet, and it will take off the beard as well.

21 On that day one will keep alive a young cow and two sheep, 22 and will eat curds because of the abundance of milk that they give; for everyone that is left in the land shall eat curds and honey.

23 On that day every place where there used to be a thousand vines, worth a thousand shekels of silver, will become briers and thorns. 24 With bow and arrows one will go there, for all the land will be briers and thorns; 25 and as for all the hills that used to be hoed with a hoe, you will not go there for fear of briers and thorns; but they will become a place where cattle are let loose and where sheep tread.

Isaiah’s Son a Sign of the Assyrian Invasion

Then the Lord said to me, Take a large tablet and write on it in common characters, “Belonging to Maher-shalal-hash-baz,”[g] and have it attested[h] for me by reliable witnesses, the priest Uriah and Zechariah son of Jeberechiah. And I went to the prophetess, and she conceived and bore a son. Then the Lord said to me, Name him Maher-shalal-hash-baz; for before the child knows how to call “My father” or “My mother,” the wealth of Damascus and the spoil of Samaria will be carried away by the king of Assyria.

The Lord spoke to me again: Because this people has refused the waters of Shiloah that flow gently, and melt in fear before[i] Rezin and the son of Remaliah; therefore, the Lord is bringing up against it the mighty flood waters of the River, the king of Assyria and all his glory; it will rise above all its channels and overflow all its banks; it will sweep on into Judah as a flood, and, pouring over, it will reach up to the neck; and its outspread wings will fill the breadth of your land, O Immanuel.

Band together, you peoples, and be dismayed;
    listen, all you far countries;
gird yourselves and be dismayed;
    gird yourselves and be dismayed!
10 Take counsel together, but it shall be brought to naught;
    speak a word, but it will not stand,
    for God is with us.[j]

11 For the Lord spoke thus to me while his hand was strong upon me, and warned me not to walk in the way of this people, saying: 12 Do not call conspiracy all that this people calls conspiracy, and do not fear what it fears, or be in dread. 13 But the Lord of hosts, him you shall regard as holy; let him be your fear, and let him be your dread. 14 He will become a sanctuary, a stone one strikes against; for both houses of Israel he will become a rock one stumbles over—a trap and a snare for the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 15 And many among them shall stumble; they shall fall and be broken; they shall be snared and taken.

Disciples of Isaiah

16 Bind up the testimony, seal the teaching among my disciples. 17 I will wait for the Lord, who is hiding his face from the house of Jacob, and I will hope in him. 18 See, I and the children whom the Lord has given me are signs and portents in Israel from the Lord of hosts, who dwells on Mount Zion. 19 Now if people say to you, “Consult the ghosts and the familiar spirits that chirp and mutter; should not a people consult their gods, the dead on behalf of the living, 20 for teaching and for instruction?” surely, those who speak like this will have no dawn! 21 They will pass through the land,[k] greatly distressed and hungry; when they are hungry, they will be enraged and will curse[l] their king and their gods. They will turn their faces upward, 22 or they will look to the earth, but will see only distress and darkness, the gloom of anguish; and they will be thrust into thick darkness.[m]

The Righteous Reign of the Coming King

[n] But there will be no gloom for those who were in anguish. In the former time he brought into contempt the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the latter time he will make glorious the way of the sea, the land beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the nations.

[o] The people who walked in darkness
    have seen a great light;
those who lived in a land of deep darkness—
    on them light has shined.
You have multiplied the nation,
    you have increased its joy;
they rejoice before you
    as with joy at the harvest,
    as people exult when dividing plunder.
For the yoke of their burden,
    and the bar across their shoulders,
    the rod of their oppressor,
    you have broken as on the day of Midian.
For all the boots of the tramping warriors
    and all the garments rolled in blood
    shall be burned as fuel for the fire.
For a child has been born for us,
    a son given to us;
authority rests upon his shoulders;
    and he is named
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
His authority shall grow continually,
    and there shall be endless peace
for the throne of David and his kingdom.
    He will establish and uphold it
with justice and with righteousness
    from this time onward and forevermore.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.

Judgment on Arrogance and Oppression

The Lord sent a word against Jacob,
    and it fell on Israel;
and all the people knew it—
    Ephraim and the inhabitants of Samaria—
    but in pride and arrogance of heart they said:
10 “The bricks have fallen,
    but we will build with dressed stones;
the sycamores have been cut down,
    but we will put cedars in their place.”
11 So the Lord raised adversaries[p] against them,
    and stirred up their enemies,
12 the Arameans on the east and the Philistines on the west,
    and they devoured Israel with open mouth.
For all this his anger has not turned away;
    his hand is stretched out still.

13 The people did not turn to him who struck them,
    or seek the Lord of hosts.
14 So the Lord cut off from Israel head and tail,
    palm branch and reed in one day—
15 elders and dignitaries are the head,
    and prophets who teach lies are the tail;
16 for those who led this people led them astray,
    and those who were led by them were left in confusion.
17 That is why the Lord did not have pity on[q] their young people,
    or compassion on their orphans and widows;
for everyone was godless and an evildoer,
    and every mouth spoke folly.
For all this his anger has not turned away;
    his hand is stretched out still.

18 For wickedness burned like a fire,
    consuming briers and thorns;
it kindled the thickets of the forest,
    and they swirled upward in a column of smoke.
19 Through the wrath of the Lord of hosts
    the land was burned,
and the people became like fuel for the fire;
    no one spared another.
20 They gorged on the right, but still were hungry,
    and they devoured on the left, but were not satisfied;
they devoured the flesh of their own kindred;[r]
21 Manasseh devoured Ephraim, and Ephraim Manasseh,
    and together they were against Judah.
For all this his anger has not turned away;
    his hand is stretched out still.

Footnotes:

  1. Isaiah 7:2 Heb his heart
  2. Isaiah 7:3 That is A remnant shall return
  3. Isaiah 7:6 Heb cut it off
  4. Isaiah 7:13 Heb he
  5. Isaiah 7:14 Gk the virgin
  6. Isaiah 7:14 That is God is with us
  7. Isaiah 8:1 That is The spoil speeds, the prey hastens
  8. Isaiah 8:2 Q Ms Gk Syr: MT and I caused to be attested
  9. Isaiah 8:6 Cn: Meaning of Heb uncertain
  10. Isaiah 8:10 Heb immanu el
  11. Isaiah 8:21 Heb it
  12. Isaiah 8:21 Or curse by
  13. Isaiah 8:22 Meaning of Heb uncertain
  14. Isaiah 9:1 Ch 8.23 in Heb
  15. Isaiah 9:2 Ch 9.1 in Heb
  16. Isaiah 9:11 Cn: Heb the adversaries of Rezin
  17. Isaiah 9:17 Q Ms: MT rejoice over
  18. Isaiah 9:20 Or arm
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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