Futile Confidence in Egypt

  1“Woe to the rebellious children,” says the Lord,
   “Who take counsel, but not of Me,
   And who devise plans, but not of My Spirit,
   That they may add sin to sin;
   2Who walk to go down to Egypt,
   And have not asked My advice,
   To strengthen themselves in the strength of Pharaoh,
   And to trust in the shadow of Egypt!
   3Therefore the strength of Pharaoh
   Shall be your shame,
   And trust in the shadow of Egypt
   Shall be your humiliation.
   4For his princes were at Zoan,
   And his ambassadors came to Hanes.
   5They were all ashamed of a people who could not benefit them,
   Or be help or benefit,
   But a shame and also a reproach.”
6The burden against the beasts of the South.
  Through a land of trouble and anguish,
   From which came the lioness and lion,
   The viper and fiery flying serpent,
   They will carry their riches on the backs of young donkeys,
   And their treasures on the humps of camels,
   To a people who shall not profit;
   7For the Egyptians shall help in vain and to no purpose.
   Therefore I have called her

A Rebellious People

  8Now go, write it before them on a tablet,
   And note it on a scroll,
   That it may be for time to come,
   Forever and ever:
   9That this is a rebellious people,
   Lying children,
   Children who will not hear the law of the Lord;
   10Who say to the seers, “Do not see,”
   And to the prophets, “Do not prophesy to us right things;
   Speak to us smooth things, prophesy deceits.
   11Get out of the way,
   Turn aside from the path,
   Cause the Holy One of Israel
   To cease from before us.”
12Therefore thus says the Holy One of Israel:
  “Because you despise this word,
   And trust in oppression and perversity,
   And rely on them,
   13Therefore this iniquity shall be to you
   Like a breach ready to fall,
   A bulge in a high wall,
   Whose breaking comes suddenly, in an instant.
   14And He shall break it like the breaking of the potter’s vessel,
   Which is broken in pieces;
   He shall not spare.
   So there shall not be found among its fragments
   A shard to take fire from the hearth,
   Or to take water from the cistern.”
15For thus says the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel:
  “In returning and rest you shall be saved;
   In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.”
   But you would not,
   16And you said, “No, for we will flee on horses”—
   Therefore you shall flee!
   And, “We will ride on swift horses”—
   Therefore those who pursue you shall be swift!
  17One thousand shall flee at the threat of one,
   At the threat of five you shall flee,
   Till you are left as a pole on top of a mountain
   And as a banner on a hill.

God Will Be Gracious

  18Therefore the Lord will wait, that He may be gracious to you;
   And therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you.
   For the Lordis a God of justice;
   Blessed are all those who wait for Him.
  19For the people shall dwell in Zion at Jerusalem;
   You shall weep no more.
   He will be very gracious to you at the sound of your cry;
   When He hears it, He will answer you.
   20And though the Lord gives you
   The bread of adversity and the water of affliction,
   Yet your teachers will not be moved into a corner anymore,
   But your eyes shall see your teachers.
   21Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying,
   “This is the way, walk in it,”
   Whenever you turn to the right hand
   Or whenever you turn to the left.
   22You will also defile the covering of your images of silver,
   And the ornament of your molded images of gold.
   You will throw them away as an unclean thing;
   You will say to them, “Get away!”
  23Then He will give the rain for your seed
   With which you sow the ground,
   And bread of the increase of the earth;
   It will be fat and plentiful.
   In that day your cattle will feed
   In large pastures.
   24Likewise the oxen and the young donkeys that work the ground
   Will eat cured fodder,
   Which has been winnowed with the shovel and fan.
   25There will be on every high mountain
   And on every high hill
   Rivers and streams of waters,
   In the day of the great slaughter,
   When the towers fall.
   26Moreover the light of the moon will be as the light of the sun,
   And the light of the sun will be sevenfold,
   As the light of seven days,
   In the day that the Lord binds up the bruise of His people
   And heals the stroke of their wound.

Judgment on Assyria

  27Behold, the name of the Lord comes from afar,
   Burning with His anger,
   And His burden is heavy;
   His lips are full of indignation,
   And His tongue like a devouring fire.
   28His breath is like an overflowing stream,
   Which reaches up to the neck,
   To sift the nations with the sieve of futility;
   And there shall bea bridle in the jaws of the people,
   Causing them to err.
  29You shall have a song
   As in the night when a holy festival is kept,
   And gladness of heart as when one goes with a flute,
   To come into the mountain of the Lord,
   To the Mighty One of Israel.
   30The Lord will cause His glorious voice to be heard,
   And show the descent of His arm,
   With the indignation of His anger
   And the flame of a devouring fire,
   With scattering, tempest, and hailstones.
   31For through the voice of the Lord
   Assyria will be beaten down,
   As He strikes with the rod.
   32And in every place where the staff of punishment passes,
   Which the Lord lays on him,
   It will be with tambourines and harps;
   And in battles of brandishing He will fight with it.
   33For Tophet was established of old,
   Yes, for the king it is prepared.
   He has made it deep and large;
   Its pyre is fire with much wood;
   The breath of the Lord, like a stream of brimstone,
   Kindles it.