54:1 “Shout for joy, O barren one who has not given birth!
Give a joyful shout and cry out, you who have not been in labor!
For the children of the desolate one are more numerous
than the children of the married woman,” says the Lord.
54:2 Make your tent larger,
stretch your tent curtains farther out! 1
Spare no effort,
lengthen your ropes,
and pound your stakes deep. 2
54:3 For you will spread out to the right and to the left;
your children will conquer 3 nations
and will resettle desolate cities.
54:4 Don’t be afraid, for you will not be put to shame!
Don’t be intimidated, 4 for you will not be humiliated!
You will forget about the shame you experienced in your youth;
you will no longer remember the disgrace of your abandonment. 5
54:5 For your husband is the one who made you –
the Lord who commands armies is his name.
He is called “God of the entire earth.”
54:6 “Indeed, the Lord will call you back
like a wife who has been abandoned and suffers from depression, 8
like a young wife when she has been rejected,” says your God.
but with great compassion I will gather you.
but with lasting devotion I will have compassion on you,”
says your protector, 12 the Lord.
when I vowed that the waters of Noah’s flood 14 would never again cover the earth.
In the same way I have vowed that I will not be angry at you or shout at you.
54:10 Even if the mountains are removed
and the hills displaced,
my devotion will not be removed from you,
nor will my covenant of friendship 15 be displaced,”
says the Lord, the one who has compassion on you.
Look, I am about to set your stones in antimony
and I lay your foundation with lapis-lazuli.
your gates out of beryl, 18
54:13 All your children will be followers of the Lord,
and your children will enjoy great prosperity. 21
You will not experience oppression; 23
indeed, you will not be afraid.
You will not be terrified, 24
for nothing frightening 25 will come near you.
Whoever tries to challenge you will be defeated. 27
54:16 Look, I create the craftsman,
who fans the coals into a fire
and forges a weapon. 28
I create the destroyer so he might devastate.
54:17 No weapon forged to be used against you will succeed;
you will refute everyone who tries to accuse you. 29
This is what the Lord will do for his servants –
I will vindicate them,” 30
says the Lord.
You who have no money, come!
Buy and eat!
Come! Buy wine and milk
without money and without cost! 32
Enjoy fine food! 38
55:3 Pay attention and come to me!
Listen, so you can live! 39
Then I will make an unconditional covenantal promise to 40 you,
just like the reliable covenantal promises I made to David. 41
a ruler and commander of nations.”
nations 44 that did not previously know you will run to you,
because of the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel, 45
for he bestows honor on you.
call to him while he is nearby!
and sinful people their plans. 48
and to their God, for he will freely forgive them. 51
and my plans 60 superior to your plans.
and do not return,
but instead water the earth
and make it produce and yield crops,
and provide seed for the planter and food for those who must eat.
55:11 In the same way, the promise that I make
does not return to me, having accomplished nothing. 62
No, it is realized as I desire
and is fulfilled as I intend.” 63
55:12 Indeed you will go out with joy;
you will be led along in peace;
the mountains and hills will give a joyful shout before you,
and all the trees in the field will clap their hands.
55:13 Evergreens will grow in place of thorn bushes,
firs will grow in place of nettles;
they will be a monument to the Lord, 64
a permanent reminder that will remain. 65
56:1 This is what the Lord says,
“Promote 66 justice! Do what is right!
For I am ready to deliver you;
I am ready to vindicate you openly. 67
the people who commit themselves to obedience, 69
who observe the Sabbath and do not defile it,
who refrain from doing anything that is wrong. 70
‘The Lord will certainly 72 exclude me from his people.’
The eunuch should not say,
‘Look, I am like a dried-up tree.’”
56:4 For this is what the Lord says:
“For the eunuchs who observe my Sabbaths
and choose what pleases me
and are faithful to 73 my covenant,
that will be better than sons and daughters.
I will set up a permanent monument 75 for them that will remain.
who love the name of the Lord and want to be his servants –
all who observe the Sabbath and do not defile it,
and who are faithful to 77 my covenant –
56:7 I will bring them to my holy mountain;
I will make them happy in the temple where people pray to me. 78
Their burnt offerings and sacrifices will be accepted on my altar,
for my temple will be known as a temple where all nations may pray.” 79
56:8 The sovereign Lord says this,
the one who gathers the dispersed of Israel:
“I will still gather them up.” 80
56:9 All you wild animals in the fields, come and devour,
all you wild animals in the forest!
they are unaware. 82
All of them are like mute dogs,
unable to bark.
They pant, 83 lie down,
and love to snooze.
56:11 The dogs have big appetites;
they are never full. 84
They are shepherds who have no understanding;
they all go their own way,
each one looking for monetary gain. 85
‘Come on, I’ll get some wine!
Let’s guzzle some beer!
Tomorrow will be just like today!
We’ll have everything we want!’ 87
but no one cares. 89
Honest people disappear, 90
57:2 Those who live uprightly enter a place of peace;
they rest on their beds. 97
57:3 But approach, you sons of omen readers,
you offspring of adulteresses and prostitutes! 98
57:4 At whom are you laughing?
At whom are you opening your mouth
and sticking out your tongue?
You are the children of rebels,
the offspring of liars, 99
who slaughter children near the streams under the rocky overhangs. 101
57:6 Among the smooth stones of the stream are the idols you love;
they, they are the object of your devotion. 102
You pour out liquid offerings to them,
you make an offering.
Because of these things I will seek vengeance. 103
57:7 On every high, elevated hill you prepare your bed;
you go up there to offer sacrifices.
and invite them into bed with you. 107
You purchase favors from them, 108
you love their bed,
along with many perfumes. 113
You send your messengers to a distant place;
you go all the way to Sheol. 114
but you do not say, ‘I give up.’ 116
You get renewed energy, 117
so you don’t collapse. 118
57:11 Whom are you worried about?
Whom do you fear, that you would act so deceitfully
and not remember me
or think about me? 119
Because I have been silent for so long, 120
you are not afraid of me. 121
but they will not help you.
The wind blows them all away, 124
a breeze carries them away. 125
But the one who looks to me for help 126 will inherit the land
and will have access to 127 my holy mountain.”
“Build it! Build it! Clear a way!
Remove all the obstacles out of the way of my people!”
57:15 For this is what the high and exalted one says,
the one who rules 129 forever, whose name is holy:
“I dwell in an exalted and holy place,
but also with the discouraged and humiliated, 130
in order to cheer up the humiliated
and to encourage the discouraged. 131
or perpetually angry,
for then man’s spirit would grow faint before me, 133
the life-giving breath I created.
57:17 I was angry because of their sinful greed;
I attacked them and angrily rejected them, 134
yet they remained disobedient and stubborn. 135
but I will heal them and give them rest,
and I will once again console those who mourn. 137
Complete prosperity 139 is available both to those who are far away and those who are nearby,”
says the Lord, “and I will heal them.
57:20 But the wicked are like a surging sea
that is unable to be quiet;
its waves toss up mud and sand.
57:21 There will be no prosperity,” says my God, “for the wicked.”
58:1 “Shout loudly! Don’t be quiet!
Yell as loud as a trumpet!
Confront my people with their rebellious deeds; 140
confront Jacob’s family with their sin! 141
58:2 They seek me day after day;
they want to know my requirements, 142
like a nation that does what is right
and does not reject the law of their God.
They ask me for just decrees;
they want to be near God.
Why don’t you pay attention when we humble ourselves?’
Look, at the same time you fast, you satisfy your selfish desires, 144
you oppress your workers. 145
and fistfights. 147
Do not fast as you do today,
trying to make your voice heard in heaven.
Do I want a day when people merely humble themselves, 149
bowing their heads like a reed
and stretching out 150 on sackcloth and ashes?
Is this really what you call a fast,
a day that is pleasing to the Lord?
I want you 152 to remove the sinful chains,
to tear away the ropes of the burdensome yoke,
to set free the oppressed, 153
and to break every burdensome yoke.
and to provide shelter for homeless, oppressed people. 155
When you see someone naked, clothe him!
Don’t turn your back on your own flesh and blood! 156
your restoration will quickly arrive; 158
your godly behavior 159 will go before you,
and the Lord’s splendor will be your rear guard. 160
58:9 Then you will call out, and the Lord will respond;
you will cry out, and he will reply, ‘Here I am.’
You must 161 remove the burdensome yoke from among you
and stop pointing fingers and speaking sinfully.
and feed the oppressed. 163
Then your light will dispel the darkness, 164
and your darkness will be transformed into noonday. 165
58:11 The Lord will continually lead you;
he will feed you even in parched regions. 166
He will give you renewed strength, 167
and you will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring that continually produces water.
you will reestablish the ancient foundations.
You will be called, ‘The one who repairs broken walls,
the one who makes the streets inhabitable again.’ 169
rather than doing anything you please on my holy day. 172
You must look forward to the Sabbath 173
and treat the Lord’s holy day with respect. 174
You must treat it with respect by refraining from your normal activities,
and by refraining from your selfish pursuits and from making business deals. 175
and I will give you great prosperity, 177
and cause crops to grow on the land I gave to your ancestor Jacob.” 178
Know for certain that the Lord has spoken. 179
his ear is not too deaf to hear you. 181
59:2 But your sinful acts have alienated you from your God;
your sins have caused him to reject you and not listen to your prayers. 182
59:3 For your hands are stained with blood
and your fingers with sin;
your lips speak lies,
your tongue utters malicious words.
no one sets forth his case truthfully.
They depend on false words 184 and tell lies;
they conceive of oppression 185
and give birth to sin.
59:5 They hatch the eggs of a poisonous snake
and spin a spider’s web.
Whoever eats their eggs will die,
a poisonous snake is hatched. 186
59:6 Their webs cannot be used for clothing;
they cannot cover themselves with what they make.
Their deeds are sinful;
they commit violent crimes. 187
quick to shed innocent blood. 189
Their thoughts are sinful;
they crush and destroy. 190
59:8 They are unfamiliar with peace;
their deeds are unjust. 191
They use deceitful methods,
and whoever deals with them is unfamiliar with peace. 192
and salvation does not reach us.
59:10 We grope along the wall like the blind,
we grope like those who cannot see; 201
we stumble at noontime as if it were evening.
Though others are strong, we are like dead men. 202
59:11 We all growl like bears,
we coo mournfully like doves;
we wait for deliverance, 203 but there is none,
for salvation, but it is far from us.
and our sins testify against us;
indeed, we are aware of our rebellious deeds;
we know our sins all too well. 205
59:13 We have rebelled and tried to deceive the Lord;
we turned back from following our God.
We stir up 206 oppression and rebellion;
we tell lies we concocted in our minds. 207
59:14 Justice is driven back;
godliness 208 stands far off.
Indeed, 209 honesty stumbles in the city square
and morality is not even able to enter.
59:15 Honesty has disappeared;
the one who tries to avoid evil is robbed.
The Lord watches and is displeased, 210
for there is no justice.
he is shocked 212 that no one intervenes.
So he takes matters into his own hands; 213
his desire for justice drives him on. 214
and his desire to deliver is like a helmet on his head. 217
He puts on the garments of vengeance 218
and wears zeal like a robe.
59:18 He repays them for what they have done,
dispensing angry judgment to his adversaries
and punishing his enemies. 219
He repays the coastlands. 220
in the east they recognize his splendor. 223
For he comes like a rushing 224 stream
driven on by wind sent from the Lord. 225
to those in Jacob who repent of their rebellious deeds,” 227 says the Lord.
59:21 “As for me, this is my promise to 228 them,” says the Lord. “My spirit, who is upon you, and my words, which I have placed in your mouth, will not depart from your mouth or from the mouths of your children and descendants from this time forward,” 229 says the Lord.
60:1 “Arise! Shine! For your light arrives!
The splendor 230 of the Lord shines on you!
60:2 For, look, darkness covers the earth
and deep darkness covers 231 the nations,
but the Lord shines on you;
his splendor 232 appears over you.
60:3 Nations come to your light,
kings to your bright light.
They all gather and come to you –
your sons come from far away
and your daughters are escorted by guardians.
you will be excited and your heart will swell with pride. 235
For the riches of distant lands 236 will belong to you
and the wealth of nations will come to you.
young camels from Midian and Ephah.
All the merchants of Sheba 238 will come,
bringing gold and incense
and singing praises to the Lord. 239
60:7 All the sheep of Kedar will be gathered to you;
the rams of Nebaioth will be available to you as sacrifices. 240
They will go up on my altar acceptably, 241
and I will bestow honor on my majestic temple.
who fly like doves to their shelters? 243
the large ships 245 are in the lead,
bringing your sons from far away,
along with their silver and gold,
to honor the Lord your God, 246
the Holy One of Israel, 247 for he has bestowed honor on you.
60:10 Foreigners will rebuild your walls;
their kings will serve you.
Even though I struck you down in my anger,
I will restore my favor and have compassion on you. 248
60:11 Your gates will remain open at all times;
they will not be shut during the day or at night,
so that the wealth of nations may be delivered,
with their kings leading the way. 249
such nations will be totally destroyed. 251
60:13 The splendor of Lebanon will come to you,
its evergreens, firs, and cypresses together,
to beautify my palace; 252
I will bestow honor on my throne room. 253
60:14 The children of your oppressors will come bowing to you;
all who treated you with disrespect will bow down at your feet.
They will call you, ‘The City of the Lord,
Zion of the Holy One of Israel.’ 254
60:15 You were once abandoned
and despised, with no one passing through,
but I will make you 255 a permanent source of pride
and joy to coming generations.
60:16 You will drink the milk of nations;
you will nurse at the breasts of kings. 256
Then you will recognize that I, the Lord, am your deliverer,
60:17 Instead of bronze, I will bring you gold,
instead of iron, I will bring you silver,
instead of wood, I will bring you 259 bronze,
instead of stones, I will bring you 260 iron.
I will make prosperity 261 your overseer,
and vindication your sovereign ruler. 262
or the sounds of 264 destruction and devastation within your borders.
You will name your walls, ‘Deliverance,’
and your gates, ‘Praise.’
60:19 The sun will no longer supply light for you by day,
nor will the moon’s brightness shine on you;
the Lord will be your permanent source of light –
the splendor of your God will shine upon you. 265
60:20 Your sun will no longer set;
your moon will not disappear; 266
the Lord will be your permanent source of light;
your time 267 of sorrow will be over.
they will possess the land permanently.
I will plant them like a shoot;
they will be the product of my labor,
through whom I reveal my splendor. 269
the smallest of you will become a large nation.
When the right time comes, I the Lord will quickly do this!” 271
61:1 The spirit of the sovereign Lord is upon me,
to help 276 the brokenhearted,
to decree the release of captives,
and the freeing of prisoners,
61:2 to announce the year when the Lord will show his favor,
the day when our God will seek vengeance, 277
to console all who mourn,
61:3 to strengthen those who mourn in Zion,
by giving them a turban, instead of ashes,
oil symbolizing joy, 278 instead of mourning,
They will be called oaks of righteousness, 281
trees planted by the Lord to reveal his splendor. 282
61:4 They will rebuild the perpetual ruins
and restore the places that were desolate; 283
they will reestablish the ruined cities,
the places that have been desolate since ancient times.
foreigners will work in your fields and vineyards.
61:6 You will be called, ‘the Lord’s priests,
servants of our God.’ 286
You will enjoy 287 the wealth of nations
instead of humiliation, they will rejoice over the land they receive. 291
Yes, 292 they will possess a double portion in their land
and experience lasting joy.
61:8 For I, the Lord, love justice
and hate robbery and sin.
I will repay them because of my faithfulness; 293
I will make a permanent covenant with them.
61:9 Their descendants will be known among the nations,
their offspring among the peoples.
All who see them will recognize that
the Lord has blessed them.” 294
I will be overjoyed because of my God. 297
For he clothes me in garments of deliverance;
he puts on me a robe symbolizing vindication. 298
I look like a bridegroom when he wears a turban as a priest would;
I look like a bride when she puts on her jewelry. 299
61:11 For just as the ground produces its crops
and a garden yields its produce,
so the sovereign Lord will cause deliverance 300 to grow,
and give his people reason to praise him in the sight of all the nations. 301
62:1 “For the sake of Zion I will not be silent;
for the sake of Jerusalem 302 I will not be quiet,
until her vindication shines brightly 303
and her deliverance burns like a torch.”
62:2 Nations will see your vindication,
and all kings your splendor.
You will be called by a new name
that the Lord himself will give you. 304
62:3 You will be a majestic crown in the hand of the Lord,
a royal turban in the hand of your God.
62:4 You will no longer be called, “Abandoned,”
and your land will no longer be called “Desolate.”
and your land “Married.” 307
For the Lord will take delight in you,
and your land will be married to him. 308
62:5 As a young man marries a young woman,
so your sons 309 will marry you.
As a bridegroom rejoices over a bride,
so your God will rejoice over you.
they should keep praying all day and all night. 311
You who pray to 312 the Lord, don’t be silent!
until he makes Jerusalem the pride 314 of the earth.
62:8 The Lord swears an oath by his right hand,
by his strong arm: 315
“I will never again give your grain
to your enemies as food,
and foreigners will not drink your wine,
which you worked hard to produce.
and will praise the Lord.
Those who pick the grapes will drink the wine 317
in the courts of my holy sanctuary.”
62:10 Come through! Come through the gates!
Prepare the way for the people!
Build it! Build the roadway!
Remove the stones!
Lift a signal flag for the nations!
“Say to Daughter Zion,
‘Look, your deliverer comes!
Look, his reward is with him
and his reward goes before him!’” 319
62:12 They will be called, “The Holy People,
the Ones Protected 320 by the Lord.”
You will be called, “Sought After,
City Not Abandoned.”
dressed in bright red, coming from Bozrah? 322
who marches confidently 325 because of his great strength?
“It is I, the one who announces vindication,
and who is able to deliver!” 326
63:2 Why are your clothes red?
Why do you look like someone who has stomped on grapes in a vat? 327
63:3 “I have stomped grapes in the winepress all by myself;
no one from the nations joined me.
I stomped on them 328 in my anger;
I trampled them down in my rage.
Their juice splashed on my garments,
and stained 329 all my clothes.
63:4 For I looked forward to the day of vengeance,
and then payback time arrived. 330
63:5 I looked, but there was no one to help;
I was shocked because there was no one offering support. 331
So my right arm accomplished deliverance;
my raging anger drove me on. 332
63:6 I trampled nations in my anger,
I made them drunk 333 in my rage,
I splashed their blood on the ground.” 334
63:7 I will tell of the faithful acts of the Lord,
of the Lord’s praiseworthy deeds.
I will tell about all 335 the Lord did for us,
the many good things he did for the family of Israel, 336
because of 337 his compassion and great faithfulness.
63:8 He said, “Certainly they will be my people,
children who are not disloyal.” 338
He became their deliverer.
The messenger sent from his very presence 340 delivered them.
In his love and mercy he protected 341 them;
he lifted them up and carried them throughout ancient times. 342
so he turned into an enemy
and fought against them.
Where is the one who brought them up out of the sea,
along with the shepherd of 346 his flock?
Where is the one who placed his holy Spirit among them, 347
who divided the water before them,
gaining for himself a lasting reputation, 349
63:13 who led them through the deep water?
Like a horse running on flat land 350 they did not stumble.
so the Spirit of the Lord granted them rest.
In this way 352 you guided your people,
gaining for yourself an honored reputation. 353
63:15 Look down from heaven and take notice,
from your holy, majestic palace!
Where are your zeal 354 and power?
Do not hold back your tender compassion! 355
63:16 For you are our father,
though Abraham does not know us
and Israel does not recognize us.
You, Lord, are our father;
you have been called our protector from ancient times. 356
and make our minds stubborn so that we do not obey you? 359
Return for the sake of your servants,
the tribes of your inheritance!
but then our adversaries knocked down 362 your holy sanctuary.
but you did not rule over them,
they were not your subjects. 364
The mountains would tremble 367 before you!
64:2 (64:1) As when fire ignites dry wood,
or fire makes water boil,
let your adversaries know who you are, 368
and may the nations shake at your presence!
you came down, and the mountains trembled 370 before you.
no eye has seen any God besides you,
who intervenes for those who wait for him.
who observe your commandments. 374
Look, you were angry because we violated them continually.
How then can we be saved? 375
64:6 We are all like one who is unclean,
all our so-called righteous acts are like a menstrual rag in your sight. 376
We all wither like a leaf;
our sins carry us away like the wind.
or makes an effort 378 to take hold of you.
For you have rejected us 379
and handed us over to our own sins. 380
We are the clay, and you are our potter;
we are all the product of your labor. 382
64:9 Lord, do not be too angry!
Do not hold our sins against us continually! 383
Take a good look at your people, at all of us! 384
Zion has become a desert,
Jerusalem 386 is a desolate ruin.
the place where our ancestors praised you,
has been burned with fire;
all our prized possessions have been destroyed. 388
How can you be silent and continue to humiliate us?
I appeared to those who did not look for me. 391
I said, ‘Here I am! Here I am!’
to a nation that did not invoke 392 my name.
65:2 I spread out my hands all day long
to my rebellious people,
who lived in a way that is morally unacceptable,
and who did what they desired. 393
as they sacrifice in their sacred orchards 395
and burn incense on brick altars. 396
and keep watch all night long. 398
They eat pork, 399
and broth 400 from unclean sacrificial meat is in their pans.
65:5 They say, ‘Keep to yourself!
Don’t get near me, for I am holier than you!’
These people are like smoke in my nostrils,
like a fire that keeps burning all day long.
I will not keep silent, but will pay them back;
I will pay them back exactly what they deserve, 402
“Because they burned incense on the mountains
and offended 404 me on the hills,
I will punish them in full measure.” 405
65:8 This is what the Lord says:
“When 406 juice is discovered in a cluster of grapes,
someone says, ‘Don’t destroy it, for it contains juice.’ 407
So I will do for the sake of my servants –
I will not destroy everyone. 408
65:9 I will bring forth descendants from Jacob,
and from Judah people to take possession of my mountains.
My chosen ones will take possession of the land; 409
my servants will live there.
they will belong to my people, who seek me. 413
65:11 But as for you who abandon the Lord
and forget about worshiping at 414 my holy mountain,
who prepare a feast for the god called ‘Fortune,’ 415
and fill up wine jugs for the god called ‘Destiny’ 416 –
all of you will kneel down at the slaughtering block, 418
because I called to you, and you did not respond,
I spoke and you did not listen.
You did evil before me; 419
you chose to do what displeases me.”
65:13 So this is what the sovereign Lord says:
“Look, my servants will eat, but you will be hungry!
Look, my servants will drink, but you will be thirsty!
Look, my servants will rejoice, but you will be humiliated!
But you will cry out as sorrow fills your hearts; 421
you will wail because your spirits will be crushed. 422
The sovereign Lord will kill you,
but he will give his servants another name.
will do so in the name of the faithful God; 425
whoever makes an oath in the earth
will do so in the name of the faithful God. 426
For past problems will be forgotten;
I will no longer think about them. 427
65:17 For look, I am ready to create
new heavens and a new earth! 428
The former ones 429 will not be remembered;
no one will think about them anymore. 430
65:18 But be happy and rejoice forevermore
over what I am about to create!
and her people to be a source of happiness. 433
65:19 Jerusalem will bring me joy,
and my people will bring me happiness. 434
The sound of weeping or cries of sorrow
will never be heard in her again.
or an old man die before his time. 436
Indeed, no one will die before the age of a hundred, 437
anyone who fails to reach 438 the age of a hundred will be considered cursed.
65:21 They will build houses and live in them;
they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
or plant a vineyard only to have another eat its fruit, 440
for my people will live as long as trees, 441
and my chosen ones will enjoy to the fullest what they have produced. 442
65:23 They will not work in vain,
or give birth to children that will experience disaster. 443
For the Lord will bless their children
and their descendants. 444
while they are still speaking, I will hear.
a lion, like an ox, will eat straw, 447
and a snake’s food will be dirt. 448
They will no longer injure or destroy
on my entire royal mountain,” 449 says the Lord.
66:1 This is what the Lord says:
“The heavens are my throne
and the earth is my footstool.
Where then is the house you will build for me?
Where is the place where I will rest?
that is how they came to be,” 451 says the Lord.
I show special favor 452 to the humble and contrite,
who respect what I have to say. 453
the one who sacrifices a lamb also breaks a dog’s neck; 455
the one who presents an offering includes pig’s blood with it; 456
the one who offers incense also praises an idol. 457
They have decided to behave this way; 458
they enjoy these disgusting practices. 459
I will bring on them what they dread,
because I called, and no one responded,
I spoke and they did not listen.
They did evil before me; 461
they chose to do what displeases me.”
66:5 Hear the word of the Lord,
you who respect what he has to say! 462
Your countrymen, 463 who hate you
and exclude you, supposedly for the sake of my name,
say, “May the Lord be glorified,
then we will witness your joy.” 464
But they will be put to shame.
66:6 The sound of battle comes from the city;
the sound comes from the temple!
It is the sound of the Lord paying back his enemies.
66:7 Before she goes into labor, she gives birth!
Before her contractions begin, she delivers a boy!
66:8 Who has ever heard of such a thing?
Who has ever seen this?
Can a country 465 be brought forth in one day?
Can a nation be born in a single moment?
Yet as soon as Zion goes into labor she gives birth to sons!
66:9 “Do I bring a baby to the birth opening and then not deliver it?”
asks the Lord.
“Or do I bring a baby to the point of delivery and then hold it back?”
asks your God. 466
66:10 Be happy for Jerusalem
and rejoice with her, all you who love her!
Share in her great joy,
all you who have mourned over her!
you will feed with joy from her milk-filled breasts. 469
66:12 For this is what the Lord says:
“Look, I am ready to extend to her prosperity that will flow like a river,
the riches of nations will flow into her like a stream that floods its banks. 470
You will nurse from her breast 471 and be carried at her side;
you will play on her knees.
so I will console you,
and you will be consoled over Jerusalem.”
and you will be revived. 474
The Lord will reveal his power to his servants
and his anger to his enemies. 475
66:15 For look, the Lord comes with fire,
his chariots come like a windstorm, 476
to reveal his raging anger,
his battle cry, and his flaming arrows. 477
with fire and his sword;
the Lord will kill many. 479
66:17 “As for those who consecrate and ritually purify themselves so they can follow their leader and worship in the sacred orchards, 480 those who eat the flesh of pigs and other disgusting creatures, like mice 481 – they will all be destroyed together,” 482 says the Lord. 66:18 “I hate their deeds and thoughts! So I am coming 483 to gather all the nations and ethnic groups; 484 they will come and witness my splendor. 66:19 I will perform a mighty act among them 485 and then send some of those who remain to the nations – to Tarshish, Pul, 486 Lud 487 (known for its archers 488 ), Tubal, Javan, 489 and to the distant coastlands 490 that have not heard about me or seen my splendor. They will tell the nations of my splendor. 66:20 They will bring back all your countrymen 491 from all the nations as an offering to the Lord. They will bring them 492 on horses, in chariots, in wagons, on mules, and on camels 493 to my holy hill Jerusalem,” says the Lord, “just as the Israelites bring offerings to the Lord’s temple in ritually pure containers. 66:21 And I will choose some of them as priests and Levites,” says the Lord. 66:22 “For just as the new heavens and the new earth I am about to make will remain standing before me,” says the Lord, “so your descendants and your name will remain. 66:23 From one month 494 to the next and from one Sabbath to the next, all people 495 will come to worship me,” 496 says the Lord. 66:24 “They will go out and observe the corpses of those who rebelled against me, for the maggots that eat them will not die, 497 and the fire that consumes them will not die out. 498 All people will find the sight abhorrent.” 499
[54:4] 5 tn Another option is to translate, “the disgrace of our widowhood” (so NRSV). However, the following context (vv. 6-7) refers to Zion’s husband, the Lord, abandoning her, not dying. This suggests that an אַלְמָנָה (’almanah) was a woman who had lost her husband, whether by death or abandonment.
[54:9] 13 tc The Hebrew text reads literally, “For [or “indeed”] the waters of Noah [is] this to me.” כִּי־מֵי (ki-me, “for the waters of”) should be emended to כְּמֵי (kÿmey, “like the days of”), which is supported by the Qumran scroll 1QIsaa and all the ancient versions except LXX.
[54:14] 22 tn Heb “in righteousness [or “vindication”] you will be established.” The precise meaning of צְדָקָה (tsÿdaqah) here is uncertain. It could mean “righteousness, justice,” indicating that the city will be a center for justice. But the context focuses on deliverance, suggesting that the term means “deliverance, vindication” here.
[55:1] 31 tn The Hebrew term הוֹי (hoy, “woe, ah”) was used in funeral laments and is often prefixed to judgment oracles for rhetorical effect. But here it appears to be a simple interjection, designed to grab the audience’s attention. Perhaps there is a note of sorrow or pity. See BDB 223 s.v.
[55:1] 32 sn The statement is an oxymoron. Its ironic quality adds to its rhetorical impact. The statement reminds one of the norm (one must normally buy commodities) as it expresses the astounding offer. One might paraphrase the statement: “Come and take freely what you normally have to pay for.”
[55:3] 41 tn Heb “the reliable expressions of loyalty of David.” The syntactical relationship of חַסְדֵי (khasde, “expressions of loyalty”) to the preceding line is unclear. If the term is appositional to בְּרִית (bÿrit, “covenant”), then the Lord here transfers the promises of the Davidic covenant to the entire nation. Another option is to take חַסְדֵי (khasde) as an adverbial accusative and to translate “according to the reliable covenantal promises.” In this case the new covenantal arrangement proposed here is viewed as an extension or perhaps fulfillment of the Davidic promises. A third option, the one reflected in the above translation, is to take the last line as comparative. In this case the new covenant being proposed is analogous to the Davidic covenant. Verses 4-5, which compare David’s international prominence to what Israel will experience, favors this view. In all three of these interpretations, “David” is an objective genitive; he is the recipient of covenantal promises. A fourth option would be to take David as a subjective genitive and understand the line as giving the basis for the preceding promise: “Then I will make an unconditional covenantal promise to you, because of David’s faithful acts of covenantal loyalty.”
[55:10] 61 tn This verse begins in the Hebrew text with כִּי כַּאֲשֶׁר (ki ka’asher, “for, just as”), which is completed by כֵּן (ken, “so, in the same way”) at the beginning of v. 11. For stylistic reasons, this lengthy sentence is divided up into separate sentences in the translation.
[55:11] 62 tn Heb “so is the word which goes out from my mouth, it does not return to empty.” “Word” refers here to divine promises, like the ones made just prior to and after this (see vv. 7b, 12-13).
[55:11] sn Verses 8-11 focus on the reliability of the divine word and support the promises before (vv. 3-5, 7b) and after (vv. 12-13) this. Israel can be certain that repentance will bring forgiveness and a new covenantal relationship because God’s promises are reliable. In contrast to human plans (or “thoughts”), which are destined to fail (Ps 94:11) apart from divine approval (Prov 19:21), and human deeds (or “ways”), which are evil and lead to destruction (Prov 1:15-19; 3:31-33; 4:19), God’s plans are realized and his deeds accomplish something positive.
[56:8] 80 tn The meaning of the statement is unclear. The text reads literally, “Still I will gather upon him to his gathered ones.” Perhaps the preposition -לְ (lamed) before “gathered ones” introduces the object of the verb, as in Jer 49:5. The third masculine singular suffix on both עָלָיו (’alayv) and נִקְבָּצָיו (niqbatsayv) probably refers to “Israel.” In this case one can translate literally, “Still I will gather to him his gathered ones.”
[56:10] 83 tn The Hebrew text has הֹזִים (hozim), which appears to be derived from an otherwise unattested verbal root הָזָה (hazah). On the basis of alleged cognates, BDB 223 s.v. הָזָה offers the definition “dream, rave” while HALOT 243 s.v. הזה lists “pant.” In this case the dog metaphor of the preceding lines continues. The reference to dogs at the beginning of v. 11 favors the extension of the metaphor. The Qumran scroll 1QIsaa has חזים (“seers”) here. In this case the “watchmen” are directly identified as prophets and depicted as lazy.
[57:1] 95 tn The term מִפְּנֵי (mippÿne, “from the face of”) often has a causal nuance. It also appears with the Niphal of אָסַף (’asaph, “gather”) in 2 Chr 12:5: אֲשֶׁר־נֶאֶסְפוּ אֶל־יְרוּשָׁלַם מִפְּנֵי שִׁישָׁק (’asher-ne’esphu ’el-yÿrushalam mippÿney shishaq, “who had gathered at Jerusalem because of [i.e., due to fear of] Shishak”).
[57:1] 96 tn The translation assumes that this verse, in proverbial fashion, laments society’s apathy over the persecution of the godly. The second half of the verse observes that such apathy results in more widespread oppression. Since the next verse pictures the godly being taken to a place of rest, some interpret the second half of v. 1 in a more positive vein. According to proponents of this view, God removes the godly so that they might be spared suffering and calamity, a fact which the general populace fails to realize.
[57:2] 97 tn Heb “he enters peace, they rest on their beds, the one who walks straight ahead of himself.” The tomb is here viewed in a fairly positive way as a place where the dead are at peace and sleep undisturbed.
[57:3] 98 tc The Hebrew text reads literally, “offspring of an adulterer [masculine] and [one who] has committed adultery.” Perhaps the text has suffered from transposition of vav (ו) and tav (ת) and מְנָאֵף וַתִּזְנֶה (mÿna’ef vattizneh) should be emended to מְנָאֶפֶת וְזֹנָה (mÿna’efet vÿzonah, “an adulteress and a prostitute”). Both singular nouns would be understood in a collective sense. Most modern English versions render both forms as nouns.
[57:6] 103 tn The text reads literally, “Because of these am I relenting?” If the prefixed interrogative particle is retained at the beginning of the sentence, then the question would be rhetorical, with the Niphal of נָחָם (nakham) probably being used in the sense of “relent, change one’s mind.” One could translate: “Because of these things, how can I relent?” However, the initial letter he may be dittographic (note the final he [ה] on the preceding word). In this case one may understand the verb in the sense of “console oneself, seek vengeance,” as in 1:24.
[57:8] 104 tn The precise referent of זִכָּרוֹן (zikkaron) in this context is uncertain. Elsewhere the word refers to a memorial or commemorative sign. Here it likely refers to some type of idolatrous symbol.
[57:8] 106 tc The Hebrew text reads literally, “from me you uncover.” The translation assumes an emendation of the Piel form גִּלִּית (gillit, “you uncover”), which has no object expressed here, to the Qal גָּלִית (galit, “you depart”).
[57:8] 108 tc Heb “and you [second masculine singular, unless the form be taken as third feminine singular] cut for yourself [feminine singular] from them.” Most English translations retain the MT reading in spite of at least three problems. This section makes significant use of feminine verbs and noun suffixes because of the sexual imagery. The verb in question is likely a 2nd person masculine singular verb. Nevertheless, this kind of fluctuation in gender appears elsewhere (GKC 127-28 §47.k and 462 §144.p; cf. Jer 3:5; Ezek 22:4; 23:32; cf. J. N. Oswalt, Isaiah [NICOT], 2:473, n. 13). Secondly, when this verbal root signifies establishing a covenant, it is normally accompanied by the noun for “covenant” (בְּרִית, bÿrit). Finally, this juxtaposition of the verb “to cut” and “covenant” normally is followed by the preposition “with,” while here it is “from.” The translation above assumes an emendation of וַתִּכְרָת (vatikhrah, “and you cut”) to וְכָרִית (vÿkharit, “and you purchase”) from the root כָּרָה (kharah); see HALOT 497 s.v. II כרה.
[57:8] 110 tn Heb “[at] a hand you gaze.” The term יָד (yad, “hand”) probably has the sense of “power, manhood” here, where it is used, as in Ugaritic, as a euphemism for the genitals. See HALOT 387 s.v. I יָד.
[57:9] 112 tn Heb “the king.” Since the context refers to idolatry and child sacrifice (see v. 5), some emend מֶלֶך (melekh, “king”) to “Molech.” Perhaps Israel’s devotion to her idols is likened here to a subject taking tribute to a ruler.
[57:13] 123 tn The Hebrew text has קִבּוּצַיִךְ (qibbutsayikh, “your gatherings”), an otherwise unattested noun from the verbal root קָבַץ (qavats, “gather”). Perhaps this alludes to their religious assemblies and by metonymy to their rituals. Since idolatry is a prominent theme in the context, some understand this as a reference to a collection of idols. The second half of the verse also favors this view.
[57:15] 129 tn Heb “the one who dwells forever.” שֹׁכֵן עַד (shokhen ’ad) is sometimes translated “the one who lives forever,” and understood as a reference to God’s eternal existence. However, the immediately preceding and following descriptions (“high and exalted” and “holy”) emphasize his sovereign rule. In the next line, he declares, “I dwell in an exalted and holy [place],” which refers to the place from which he rules. Therefore it is more likely that שֹׁכֵן עַד (shokhen ’ad) means “I dwell [in my lofty palace] forever” and refers to God’s eternal kingship.
[57:15] 130 tn Heb “and also with the crushed and lowly of spirit.” This may refer to the repentant who have humbled themselves (see 66:2) or more generally to the exiles who have experienced discouragement and humiliation.
[57:19] 138 tc The Hebrew text has literally, “one who creates fruit of lips.” Perhaps the pronoun אֲנִי (’ani) should be inserted after the participle; it may have been accidentally omitted by haplography: נוּב שְׂפָתָיִם[אֲנִי] בּוֹרֵא (bore’ [’ani] nuv sÿfatayim). “Fruit of the lips” is often understood as a metonymy for praise; perhaps it refers more generally to joyful shouts (see v. 18).
[58:8] sn Light here symbolizes God’s favor and restored blessing, as the immediately following context makes clear.
[58:12] 169 tc The Hebrew text has “the one who restores paths for dwelling.” The idea of “paths to dwell in” is not a common notion. Some have proposed emending נְתִיבוֹת (nÿtivot, “paths”) to נְתִיצוֹת (nÿtitsot, “ruins”), a passive participle from נָתַץ (natats, “tear down”; see HALOT 732 s.v. *נְתִיצָה), because tighter parallelism with the preceding line is achieved. However, none of the textual sources support this emendation. The line may mean that paths must be repaired in order to dwell in the land.
[58:13] 175 tn Heb “and you honor it [by refraining] from accomplishing your ways, from finding your desire and speaking a word.” It is unlikely that the last phrase (“speaking a word”) is a prohibition against talking on the Sabbath; instead it probably refers to making transactions or plans (see Hos 10:4). Some see here a reference to idle talk (cf. 2 Sam 19:30).
[58:14] 177 tn Heb “and I will cause you to ride upon the heights of the land.” The statement seems to be an allusion to Deut 32:13, where it is associated, as here, with God’s abundant provision of food.
[58:14] 178 tn Heb “and I will cause you to eat the inheritance of Jacob your father.” The Hebrew term נַחֲלָה (nakhalah) likely stands by metonymy for the crops that grow on Jacob’s “inheritance” (i.e., the land he inherited as a result of God’s promise).
[58:14] 179 tn Heb “for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.” The introductory כִּי (ki) may be asseverative (as reflected in the translation) or causal/explanatory, explaining why the preceding promise will become reality (because it is guaranteed by the divine word).
[59:9] 193 tn מִשְׁפָּט (mishpat), which refers to “justice” in the earlier verses, here refers to “justice from God,” or “vindication.” Because the people are unjust, God refuses to vindicate them before their enemies. See v. 11.
[59:21] sn The Lord promises the repentant (note “to them”) that they and their offspring will possess his spirit and function as his spokesmen. In this regard they follow in the footsteps of the Lord’s special servant. See 42:1; 49:2; 51:16.
[60:7] 240 tn Heb “will serve you,” i.e., be available as sacrifices (see the next line). Another option is to understood these “rams” as symbolic of leaders who will be subject to the people of Zion. See v. 10.
[60:7] 241 tc Heb “they will go up on acceptance [on] my altar.” Some have suggested that the preposition עַל (’al) is dittographic (note the preceding יַעֲלוּ [ya’alu]). Consequently, the form should be emended to לְרָצוֹן (lÿratson, “acceptably”; see BDB 953 s.v. רָצוֹן). However, the Qumran scroll 1QIsaa has both לרצון followed by the preposition על, which would argue against deleted the preposition. As the above translation seeks to demonstrate, the preposition עַל (’al) indicates a norm (“in accordance with acceptance” or “acceptably”; IBHS 218 §11.2.13e, n. 111) and the “altar” functions as an objective accusative with a verb of motion (cf. Gen 49:4; Lev 2:2; Num 13:17; J. N. Oswalt, Isaiah [NICOT], 2:534, n. 14).
[60:17] 262 tn The plural indicates degree. The language is ironic; in the past Zion was ruled by oppressive tyrants, but now personified prosperity and vindication will be the only things that will “dominate” the city.
[60:20] 266 sn In this verse “sun” and “moon” refer to the Lord’s light, which will replace the sun and moon (see v. 19). Light here symbolizes the restoration of divine blessing and prosperity in conjunction with the Lord’s presence. See 30:26.
[61:1] 273 sn The speaker is not identified, but he is distinct from the Lord and from Zion’s suffering people. He possesses the divine spirit, is God’s spokesman, and is sent to release prisoners from bondage. The evidence suggests he is the Lord’s special servant, described earlier in the servant songs (see 42:1-4, 7; 49:2, 9; 50:4; see also 51:16).
[61:3] 281 tn Rather than referring to the character of the people, צֶדֶק (tsedeq) may carry the nuance “vindication” here, suggesting that God’s restored people are a testimony to his justice. See v. 2, which alludes to the fact that God will take vengeance against the enemies of his people. Cf. NAB “oaks of justice.”
[61:5] 284 sn The Lord speaks in vv. 7-8 (and possibly v. 9). It is not clear where the servant’s speech (see vv. 1-3a) ends and the Lord’s begins. Perhaps the direct address to the people signals the beginning of the Lord’s speech.
[61:6] 288 tc The form in the Hebrew text is probably a corruption of יִתְאַמְּרוּ (yit’ammÿru), a Hitpael from אָמַר (’amar), meaning “boast about” (see HALOT 67 s.v. II אמר, HALOT 416 s.v. ימר, and BDB 56 s.v. אָמַר).
[61:10] 299 tn Heb “like a bridegroom [who] acts like a priest [by wearing] a turban, and like a bride [who] wears her jewelry.” The words “I look” are supplied for stylistic reasons and clarification.
[62:4] 308 tn That is, the land will be restored to the Lord’s favor and once again enjoy his blessing and protection. To indicate the land’s relationship to the Lord, the words “to him” have been supplied at the end of the clause.
[62:5] 309 tc The Hebrew text has “your sons,” but this produces an odd metaphor and is somewhat incongruous with the parallelism. In the context (v. 4b, see also 54:5-7) the Lord is the one who “marries” Zion. Therefore several prefer to emend “your sons” to בֹּנָיִךְ (bonayikh, “your builder”; e.g., NRSV). In Ps 147:2 the Lord is called the “builder of Jerusalem.” However, this emendation is not the best option for at least four reasons. First, although the Lord is never called the “builder” of Jerusalem in Isaiah, the idea of Zion’s children possessing the land does occur (Isa 49:20; 54:3; cf. also 14:1; 60:21). Secondly, all the ancient versions support the MT reading. Thirdly, although the verb בָּעַל (ba’al) can mean “to marry,” its basic idea is “to possess.” Consequently, the verb stresses a relationship more than a state. All the ancient versions render this verb “to dwell in” or “to dwell with.” The point is not just that the land will be reinhabited, but that it will be in a relationship of “belonging” to the Israelites. Hence a relational verb like בָּעַל is used (J. N. Oswalt, Isaiah [NICOT], 2:581). Finally, “sons” is a well-known metaphor for “inhabitants” (J. de Waard, Isaiah, 208).
[62:9] 317 tn Heb “and those who gather it will drink it.” The masculine singular pronominal suffixes attached to “gather” and “drink” refer back to the masculine noun תִּירוֹשׁ (tirosh, “wine”) in v. 8b.
[63:3] 329 tn Heb “and I stained.” For discussion of the difficult verb form, see HALOT 170 s.v. II גאל. Perhaps the form is mixed, combining the first person forms of the imperfect (note the alef prefix) and perfect (note the תי- ending).
[63:4] 330 tn Heb “for the day of vengeance was in my heart, and the year of my revenge came.” The term גְּאוּלַי (gÿ’ulai) is sometimes translated here “my redemption,” for the verbal root גאל often means “deliver, buy back.” A גֹּאֵל (go’el, “kinsman-redeemer”) was responsible for protecting the extended family’s interests, often by redeeming property that had been sold outside the family. However, the responsibilities of a גֹּאֵל extended beyond financial concerns. He was also responsible for avenging the shed blood of a family member (see Num 35:19-27; Deut 19:6-12). In Isa 63:4, where vengeance is a prominent theme (note the previous line), it is probably this function of the family protector that is in view. The Lord pictures himself as a blood avenger who waits for the day of vengeance to arrive and then springs into action.
[63:9] sn This may refer to the “angel of God” mentioned in Exod 14:19, who in turn may be identical to the divine “presence” (literally, “face”) referred to in Exod 33:14-15 and Deut 4:37. Here in Isa 63 this messenger may be equated with God’s “holy Spirit” (see vv. 10-11) and “the Spirit of the Lord” (v. 14). See also Ps 139:7, where God’s “Spirit” seems to be equated with his “presence” (literally, “face”) in the synonymous parallelistic structure.
[63:11] 345 tn Heb “and he remembered the days of antiquity, Moses, his people.” The syntax of the statement is unclear. The translation assumes that “his people” is the subject of the verb “remembered.” If original, “Moses” is in apposition to “the days of antiquity,” more precisely identifying the time period referred to. However, the syntactical awkwardness suggests that “Moses” may have been an early marginal note (perhaps identifying “the shepherd of his flock” two lines later) that has worked its way into the text.
[63:11] 346 tn The Hebrew text has a plural form, which if retained and taken as a numerical plural, would probably refer to Moses, Aaron, and the Israelite tribal leaders at the time of the Exodus. Most prefer to emend the form to the singular (רָעָה, ra’ah) and understand this as a reference just to Moses.
[63:15] 355 tn The Hebrew text reads literally, “the agitation of your intestines and your compassion to me they are held back.” The phrase “agitation of your intestines” is metonymic, referring to the way in which one’s nervous system reacts when one feels pity and compassion toward another. אֵלַי (’elay, “to me”) is awkward in this context, where the speaker represents the nation and, following the introduction (see v. 7), utilizes first person plural forms. The translation assumes an emendation to the negative particle אַל (’al). This also necessitates emending the following verb form (which is a plural perfect) to a singular jussive (תִתְאַפָּק, tit’appaq). The Hitpael of אָפַק (’afaq) also occurs in 42:14.
[63:17] 357 tn Some suggest a tolerative use of the Hiphil here, “[why do] you allow us to stray?” (cf. NLT). Though the Hiphil of תָעָה (ta’ah) appears to be tolerative in Jer 50:6, elsewhere it is preferable or necessary to take it as causative. See Isa 3:12; 9:15; and 30:28, as well as Gen 20:13; 2 Kgs 21:9; Job 12:24-25; Prov 12:26; Jer 23:13, 32; Hos 4:12; Amos 2:4; Mic 3:5.
[63:17] sn How direct this hardening is, one cannot be sure. The speaker may envision direct involvement on the Lord’s part. The Lord has brought the exile as judgment for the nation’s sin and now he continues to keep them at arm’s length by blinding them spiritually. The second half of 64:7 might support this, though the precise reading of the final verb is uncertain. On the other hand, the idiom of lament is sometimes ironic and hyperbolically deterministic. For example, Naomi lamented that Shaddai was directly opposing her and bringing her calamity (Ruth 1:20-21), while the author of Ps 88 directly attributes his horrible suffering and loneliness to God (see especially vv. 6-8, 16-18). Both individuals make little, if any, room for intermediate causes or the principle of sin and death which ravages the human race. In the same way, the speaker in Isa 63:17 (who evidences great spiritual sensitivity and is anything but “hardened”) may be referring to the hardships of exile, which discouraged and even embittered the people, causing many of them to retreat from their Yahwistic faith. In this case, the “hardening” in view is more indirect and can be lifted by the Lord’s intervention. Whether the hardening here is indirect or direct, it is important to recognize that the speaker sees it as one of the effects of rebellion against the Lord (note especially 64:5-6).
[63:19] 364 tn Heb “you did not rule them, your name was not called over them.” The expression “the name is called over” indicates ownership; see the note at 4:1. As these two lines stand they are very difficult to interpret. They appear to be stating that the adversaries just mentioned in v. 18 have not been subject to the Lord’s rule in the past, perhaps explaining why they could commit the atrocity described in v. 18b.
[64:1] 365 sn In BHS the chapter division occurs in a different place from the English Bible: 64:1 ET (63:19b HT) and 64:2-12 (64:1-11 HT). Beginning with 65:1 the verse numbers in the English Bible and the Hebrew Bible are again the same.
[64:1] 367 tn Or “quake.” נָזֹלּוּ (nazollu) is from the verbal root זָלַל (zalal, “quake”; see HALOT 272 s.v. II זלל). Perhaps there is a verbal allusion to Judg 5:5, the only other passage where this verb occurs. In that passage the poet tells how the Lord’s appearance to do battle caused the mountains to shake.
[64:2] 368 tn Heb “to make known your name to your adversaries.” Perhaps the infinitive construct with preposition -לְ (lamed) should be construed with “come down” in v. 1a, or subordinated to the following line: “To make known your name to your adversaries, let the nations shake from before you.”
[64:5] 375 tc The Hebrew text reads literally, “look, you were angry and we sinned against them continually [or perhaps, “in ancient times”] and we were delivered.” The statement makes little sense as it stands. The first vav [ו] consecutive (“and we sinned”) must introduce an explanatory clause here (see Num 1:48 and Isa 39:1 for other examples of this relatively rare use of the vav [ו] consecutive). The final verb (if rendered positively) makes no sense in this context – God’s anger at their sin resulted in judgment, not deliverance. One of the alternatives involves an emendation to וַנִּרְשָׁע (vannirsha’, “and we were evil”; LXX, NRSV, TEV). The Vulgate and the Qumran scroll 1QIsaa support the MT reading. One can either accept an emendation or cast the statement as a question (as above).
[64:7] 380 tc The Hebrew text reads literally, “and you caused us to melt in the hand of our sin.” The verb וַתְּמוּגֵנוּ (vattÿmugenu) is a Qal preterite 2nd person masculine singular with a 1st person common plural suffix from the root מוּג (mug, “melt”). However, elsewhere the Qal of this verb is intransitive. If the verbal root מוּג (mug) is retained here, the form should be emended to a Polel pattern (וַתְּמֹגְגֵנוּ, vattÿmogÿgenu). The translation assumes an emendation to וַתְּמַגְּנֵנוּ (vattÿmaggÿnenu, “and you handed us over”). This form is a Piel preterite 2nd person masculine singular with a 1st person common plural suffix from the verbal root מִגֵּן (miggen, “hand over, surrender”; see HALOT 545 s.v. מגן and BDB 171 s.v. מָגָן). The point is that God has abandoned them to their sinful ways and no longer seeks reconciliation.
[65:4] 398 tn The Hebrew text reads literally, “and in the watches they spend the night.” Some understand נְּצוּרִים (nÿtsurim) as referring to “secret places” or “caves,” while others emend the text to וּבֵין צוּרִים (uven tsurim, “between the rocky cliffs”).
[65:12] 417 tn Heb “I assign you to the sword.” Some emend the Qal verb form מָנִיתִי (maniti, “I assign”) to the Piel מִנִּיתִי (minniti, “ I ordain”). The verb sounds like the name of the god Meni (מְנִי, mÿni, “Destiny, Fate”). The sound play draws attention to the irony of the statement. The sinners among God’s people worship the god Meni, apparently in an effort to ensure a bright destiny for themselves. But the Lord is the one who really determines their destiny and he has decreed their demise.
[65:20] 437 tn Heb “for the child as a son of one hundred years will die.” The point seems to be that those who die at the age of a hundred will be considered children, for the average life span will be much longer than that. The category “child” will be redefined in light of the expanded life spans that will characterize this new era.
[65:20] 438 tn Heb “the one who misses.” חָטָא (khata’) is used here in its basic sense of “miss the mark.” See HALOT 305 s.v. חטא. Another option is to translate, “and the sinner who reaches the age of a hundred will be cursed.”
[65:25] 448 sn Some see an allusion to Gen 3:14 (note “you will eat dirt”). The point would be that even in this new era the snake (often taken as a symbol of Satan) remains under God’s curse. However, it is unlikely that such an allusion exists. Even if there is an echo of Gen 3:14, the primary allusion is to 11:8, where snakes are pictured as no longer dangerous. They will no longer attack other living creatures, but will be content to crawl along the ground. (The statement “you will eat dirt” in Gen 3:14 means “you will crawl on the ground.” In the same way the statement “dirt will be its food” in Isa 65:25 means “it will crawl on the ground.”)
[66:3] 454 tn Heb “one who slaughters a bull, one who strikes down a man.” Some understand a comparison here and in the following lines. In God’s sight the one who sacrifices is like (i.e., regarded as) a murderer or one whose worship is ritually defiled or idolatrous. The translation above assumes that the language is not metaphorical, but descriptive of the sinners’ hypocritical behavior. (Note the last two lines of the verse, which suggests they are guilty of abominable practices.) On the one hand, they act pious and offer sacrifices; but at the same time they commit violent crimes against men, defile their sacrifices, and worship other gods.
[66:3] sn The significance of breaking a dog’s neck is uncertain, though the structure of the statement when compared to the preceding and following lines suggests the action is viewed in a negative light. According to Exod 13:13 and 34:20, one was to “redeem” a firstborn donkey by offering a lamb; if one did not “redeem” the firstborn donkey in this way, then its neck must be broken. According to Deut 21:1-9 a heifer’s neck was to be broken as part of the atonement ritual to purify the land from the guilt of bloodshed. It is not certain if these passages relate in any way to the action described in Isa 66:3.
[66:3] 457 tn Heb “one who offers incense as a memorial offering, one who blesses something false.” Some understand a comparison, but see the note at the end of the first line. אָוֶן (’aven), which has a wide variety of attested nuances, here refers metonymically to an idol. See HALOT 22 s.v. and BDB 20 s.v. 2.
[66:4] 460 tn The precise meaning of the noun is uncertain. It occurs only here and in 3:4 (but see the note there). It appears to be derived from the verbal root עָלַל (’alal), which can carry the nuance “deal severely.”
[66:17] 480 tn Heb “the ones who consecrate themselves and the ones who purify themselves toward the orchards [or “gardens”] after the one in the midst.” The precise meaning of the statement is unclear, though it is obvious that some form of idolatry is in view.
[66:18] 483 tc The Hebrew text reads literally “and I, their deeds and their thoughts, am coming.” The syntax here is very problematic, suggesting that the text may have suffered corruption. Some suggest that the words “their deeds and their thoughts” have been displaced from v. 17. This line presents two primary challenges. In the first place, the personal pronoun “I” has no verb after it. Most translations insert “know” for the sake of clarity (NASB, NRSV, NLT, ESV). The NIV has “I, because of their actions and their imaginations…” Since God’s “knowledge” of Israel’s sin occasions judgment, the verb “hate” is an option as well (see above translation). The feminine form of the next verb (בָּאָה, ba’ah) could be understood in one of two ways. One could provide an implied noun “time” (עֵת, ’et) and render the next line “the time is coming/has come” (NASB, ESV). One could also emend the feminine verb to the masculine בָּא (ba’) and have the “I” at the beginning of the line govern this verb as well (for the Lord is speaking here): “I am coming” (cf. NIV, NCV, NRSV, TEV, NLT).
[66:19] 485 tn Heb “and I will set a sign among them.” The precise meaning of this statement is unclear. Elsewhere “to set a sign” means “perform a mighty act” (Ps 78:43; Jer 32:20), “make [someone] an object lesson” (Ezek 14:8), and “erect a [literal] standard” (Ps 74:4).
[66:24] sn This verse depicts a huge mass burial site where the seemingly endless pile of maggot-infested corpses are being burned.