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Isaiah 7:1-14 Living Bible (TLB)

During the reign of Ahaz (the son of Jotham and grandson of Uzziah), Jerusalem was attacked by King Rezin of Syria and King Pekah of Israel (the son of Remaliah). But it was not taken; the city stood. However, when the news came to the royal court, “Syria is allied with Israel against us!” the hearts of the king and his people trembled with fear as the trees of a forest shake in a storm.

Then the Lord said to Isaiah, “Go out to meet King Ahaz, you and Shear-jashub, your son. You will find him at the end of the aqueduct that leads from Gihon Spring to the upper reservoir, near the road that leads down to the bleaching field. Tell him to quit worrying. Tell him he needn’t be frightened by the fierce anger of those two has-beens, Rezin and Pekah. Yes, the kings of Syria and Israel are coming against you.

“They say, ‘We will invade Judah and throw her people into panic. Then we’ll fight our way into Jerusalem and install the son of Tabeel as their king.’

“But the Lord God says: This plan will not succeed, for Damascus will remain the capital of Syria alone, and King Rezin’s kingdom will not increase its boundaries. And within sixty-five years Ephraim, too, will be crushed and broken.[a] Samaria is the capital of Ephraim alone, and King Pekah’s power will not increase. You don’t believe me? If you want me to protect you, you must learn to believe what I say.”

10 Not long after this, the Lord sent this further message to King Ahaz:

11 “Ask me for a sign, Ahaz, to prove that I will indeed crush your enemies as I have said. Ask anything you like, in heaven or on earth.”[b]

12 But the king refused. “No,” he said, “I’ll not bother the Lord with anything like that.”

13 Then Isaiah said: O House of David, you aren’t satisfied to exhaust my patience; you exhaust the Lord’s as well! 14 All right then, the Lord himself will choose the sign—a child shall be born to a virgin![c] And she shall call him Immanuel (meaning, “God is with us”).

Footnotes:

  1. Isaiah 7:8 Ephraim, too, will be crushed and broken. Samaria, the capital of “Ephraim,” fell to the Assyrian armies in 722 b.c., thirteen years after this oracle—ending the Northern Kingdom.
  2. Isaiah 7:11 Ask anything you like, in heaven or on earth, literally, “Let it be deep as Sheol or high as heaven.”
  3. Isaiah 7:14 a child shall be born to a virgin. The controversial Hebrew word used here sometimes means “virgin” and sometimes “young woman.” Its immediate use here refers to Isaiah’s young wife and her newborn son (8:1-4). This, of course, was not a virgin birth. God’s sign was that before this child was old enough to talk (v. 4), the two invading kings would be destroyed. However, the Gospel of Matthew (1:23) tells us that there was a further fulfillment of this prophecy, in that a virgin (Mary) conceived and bore a son, Immanuel, the Christ. We have therefore properly used this higher meaning, “virgin,” in v. 14, as otherwise the Matthew account loses its significance.
Living Bible (TLB)

The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

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