Isaiah 28-30 Darby’s Translation

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Condemnation of Ephraim

28 1  Woe to the crown of pride of the drunkards of Ephraim, and to the fading flower of his glorious adornment, which is on the head of the fat valley of them that are overcome with wine. 2  Behold, the Lord hath a mighty and strong one, as a storm of hail [and] a destroying tempest; as a storm of mighty waters overflowing, shall he cast down to the earth with might. 3  The crown of pride of the drunkards of Ephraim shall be trodden under feet; 4  and the fading flower of his glorious adornment which is on the head of the fat valley shall be like an early fig before the summer: as soon as he that seeth it perceiveth it, scarcely is it in his hand, he swalloweth it down. 5  In that day will Jehovah of hosts be for a crown of glory, and for a diadem of beauty, unto the remnant of his people; 6  and for a spirit of judgment to him that sitteth in judgment, and for strength to them that turn the battle to the gate. 7  But these also have erred through wine, and through strong drink are they gone astray. The priest and the prophet have erred through strong drink; they are overpowered by wine, they are gone astray through strong drink; they have erred in vision, they have stumbled [in] judgment. 8  For all tables are full of filthy vomit, so that there is no [more] place.

9  Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand the report? Them that are weaned from the milk, withdrawn from the breasts? 10  For [it is] precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, there a little. ... 11  For with stammering lips and a strange tongue will he speak to this people; 12  to whom he said, This is the rest: cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing. But they would not hear. 13  And the word of Jehovah was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little, there a little: that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.

The Warning to Jerusalem

14  Therefore hear the word of Jehovah, ye scornful men, that rule this people which is in Jerusalem. 15  For ye have said, We have made a covenant with death, and with Sheol have we made an agreement; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us; for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves. 16  Therefore thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Behold, I lay for foundation in Zion a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner-stone, a sure foundation: he that trusteth shall not make haste. 17  And I will appoint judgment for a line, and righteousness for a plummet; and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the hiding-place. 18  And your covenant with death shall be annulled, and your agreement with Sheol shall not stand; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, ye shall be trodden down by it. 19  As it passeth through it shall take you; for morning by morning shall it pass through, by day and by night; and it shall be terror only to understand the report. 20  For the bed is too short to stretch oneself on, and the covering too narrow when he would wrap himself in it. 21  For Jehovah will rise up as on mount Perazim, he will be moved with anger as in the valley of Gibeon; that he may do his work, his strange work, and perform his act, his unwonted act. 22  Now therefore be ye not scorners, lest your bonds be made strong; for I have heard from the Lord Jehovah of hosts a consumption, and [one] determined, upon the whole land.

23  Give ear, and hear my voice; hearken, and hear my speech. 24  Doth the ploughman plough all day to sow? Is he [all day] opening and breaking the clods of his land? 25  Doth he not, when he hath levelled the face thereof, cast abroad dill, and scatter cummin, and set the wheat in rows, and the barley in an appointed place, and the rye in its border? 26  His God doth instruct him in [his] judgment, he doth teach him. 27  For the dill is not threshed with a threshing instrument, neither is a cart-wheel turned about upon the cummin; but dill is beaten out with a staff, and cummin with a rod. 28  Bread [corn] is crushed, because he will not ever be threshing it; and if he drove the wheels of his cart and his horses [over it], he would not crush it. 29  This also cometh forth from Jehovah of hosts; he is wonderful in counsel, great in wisdom.

Ariel and Her Enemies

29 1  Woe to Ariel, to Ariel, the city of David's encampment! Add ye year to year; let the feasts come round. 2  But I will distress Ariel, and there shall be sorrow and sadness; and it shall be unto me as an Ariel. 3  And I will camp against thee round about, and will lay siege against thee with watch-posts, and I will raise forts against thee. 4  And thou shalt be brought low, thou shalt speak out of the ground, and thy speech shall come low out of the dust, and thy voice shall be as of one that hath a familiar spirit, out of the ground, and thy speech shall whisper out of the dust. 5  And the multitude of thine enemies shall be like small dust, and the multitude of the terrible ones as chaff that passeth away; and it shall be in an instant, suddenly. 6  Thou shalt be visited by Jehovah of hosts with thunder and with earthquake and great noise, with whirlwind and tempest, and the flame of devouring fire. 7  And the multitude of all the nations that war against Ariel, even all that war against her and her fortifications, and that distress her, shall be as a dream of a night vision. 8  It shall even be as when the hungry dreameth, and, behold, he eateth; and he awaketh, and his soul is empty; or as when the thirsty dreameth, and, behold, he drinketh; and he awaketh, and, behold, he is faint, and his soul craveth: so shall the multitude of all the nations be that war against mount Zion.

The Blindness and Hypocrisy of Israel

9  Be astounded and astonished, blind yourselves and be blind! They are drunken, but not with wine; they stagger, but not with strong drink. 10  For Jehovah hath poured out upon you a spirit of deep sleep, and hath closed your eyes; the prophets and your chiefs, the seers, hath he covered. 11  And the whole vision is become unto you as the words of a book that is sealed, which they give to one that can read, saying, Read this, I pray thee; and he saith, I cannot, for it is sealed. 12  And they give the book to him that cannot read, saying, Read this, I pray thee; and he saith, I cannot read. 13  And the Lord saith, Forasmuch as this people draw near with their mouth, and honour me with their lips, but their heart is removed far from me, and their fear of me is a commandment taught of men; 14  therefore, behold, I will proceed to do marvellously with this people, to do marvellously, even with wonder, and the wisdom of their wise [men] shall perish, and the understanding of their intelligent ones shall be hid. 15  Woe unto them that hide deep, far from Jehovah, their counsel! And their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us? 16  [Oh] your perverseness!—Shall the potter be esteemed as the clay, so that the work should say of him that made it, He made me not; or the thing formed say of him that formed it, He hath no understanding?

The Redemption of Israel

17  Is it not yet a very little while, and Lebanon shall be turned into a fruitful field, and the fruitful field shall be esteemed as a forest? 18  And in that day shall the deaf hear the words of the book, and, out of obscurity and out of darkness, the eyes of the blind shall see; 19  and the meek shall increase their joy in Jehovah, and the needy among men shall rejoice in the Holy One of Israel. 20  For the terrible one shall come to nought, and the scorner shall be no more, and all that watch for iniquity shall be cut off, 21  that make a man an offender for a word, and lay a snare for him that reproveth in the gate, and pervert [the judgment of] the righteous by futility. 22  Therefore thus saith Jehovah who redeemed Abraham, concerning the house of Jacob: Jacob shall not now be ashamed, neither shall his face now be pale; 23  for when he seeth his children, the work of my hands, in the midst of him, they shall hallow my name, and hallow the Holy One of Jacob, and shall fear the God of Israel. 24  And they that are of erring spirit shall know understanding, and the disobedient shall learn doctrine.

The Futility of Reliance on Egypt

30 1  Woe to the rebellious children, saith Jehovah, who take counsel, but not of me, and who make leagues, but not by my Spirit, that they may heap sin upon sin; 2  who walk to go down into Egypt, and have not asked of my mouth,—to take refuge under the protection of Pharaoh, and trust in the shadow of Egypt! 3  For to you the protection of Pharaoh shall be a shame, and the trust in the shadow of Egypt a confusion. 4  For his princes were at Zoan, and his ambassadors came to Hanes. 5  They were all ashamed of a people [that] did not profit them, nor were a help or profit, but a shame, and also a reproach. 6  —The burden of the beasts of the south: Through a land of trouble and anguish, whence come the lioness and lion, the viper and fiery flying serpent, they carry their riches upon the shoulders of asses, and their treasures upon the bunches of camels, to the people that shall not profit [them]. 7  For Egypt shall help in vain, and to no purpose; therefore have I named her, Arrogance, that doeth nothing.

8  Now go, write it before them on a tablet, and record it in a book, that it may be for the time to come, as a witness for ever, 9  that this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of Jehovah; 10  who say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things; speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits; 11  get you out of the way, turn aside out of the path, cause the Holy One of Israel to cease from before us! 12  Therefore thus saith the Holy One of Israel: Because ye reject this word, and confide in oppression and wilfulness, and depend thereon, 13  therefore this iniquity shall be to you as a breach ready to fall, swelling out in a towering wall, whose breaking shall come suddenly in an instant. 14  And he shall break it as the breaking of a potter's vessel, that is broken in pieces unsparingly; and in the pieces of it there shall not be found a sherd to take fire from the hearth, or to scoop water out of the cistern. 15  For thus saith the Lord Jehovah, the Holy One of Israel: In returning and rest shall ye be saved, in quietness and confidence shall be your strength; but ye would not. 16  And ye said, No, but we will flee upon horses,—therefore shall ye flee; and, We will ride upon the swift,—therefore shall they that pursue you be swift. 17  One thousand [shall flee] at the rebuke of one; at the rebuke of five shall ye flee: till ye be left as a beacon upon the top of a mountain, and as a banner on a hill.

The Promise of God's Grace to Israel

18  And therefore will Jehovah wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will he lift himself up, that he may have mercy upon you; for Jehovah is a God of judgment: blessed are all they that wait for him. 19  For the people shall dwell in Zion, at Jerusalem. Thou shalt weep no more; he will be very gracious unto thee at the voice of thy cry; as he heareth it, he will answer thee. 20  And the Lord will give you the bread of adversity, and the water of oppression; yet thy teachers shall not be hidden any more, but thine eyes shall see thy teachers. 21  And when ye turn to the right hand or when ye turn to the left, thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it. 22  And ye shall defile the silver covering of your graven images, and the gold overlaying of your molten images; thou shalt cast them away as a menstruous cloth: Out! shalt thou say unto it. 23  And he will give the rain of thy seed with which thou shalt sow the ground; and bread, the produce of the ground, and it shall be fat and rich. In that day shall thy cattle feed in large pastures; 24  and the oxen and the asses that till the ground shall eat salted provender, which hath been winnowed with the shovel and with the fan. 25  And there shall be upon every high mountain and upon every hill that is lifted up, brooks [and] water-courses, in the day of the great slaughter, when the towers fall. 26  And the light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun shall be sevenfold, as the light of seven days, in the day that Jehovah bindeth up the breach of his people, and healeth the wound of their stroke.

The LORD's Judgment on Assyria

27  Behold, the name of Jehovah cometh from far, burning [with] his anger—a grievous conflagration; his lips are full of indignation, and his tongue as a consuming fire; 28  and his breath as an overflowing torrent, which reacheth even to the neck, to sift the nations with the sieve of destruction, and [to put] a bridle into the jaws of the peoples, that causeth them to go astray. 29  Ye shall have a song, as in the night when a feast is sanctified; and joy of heart, as of one who goeth with a pipe to come unto the mountain of Jehovah, to the Rock of Israel. 30  And Jehovah will cause the majesty of his voice to be heard, and will shew the lighting down of his arm with indignation of anger, and a flame of consuming fire, with waterflood and storm and hailstones. 31  For through the voice of Jehovah shall the Assyrian be broken down: he will smite [him] with the rod. 32  And wherever shall pass the appointed staff, which Jehovah shall lay upon him, it shall be with tambours and harps; and with tumultuous battles will he fight with it. 33  For Topheth is prepared of old; for the king also it is prepared: he hath made it deep and large; its pile is fire and much wood; the breath of Jehovah, like a stream of brimstone, doth kindle it.

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