43 Now, this is what the Lord says,
the one who created you, O Jacob,
and formed you, O Israel:
“Don’t be afraid, for I will protect 1 you.
I call you by name, you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters, I am with you;
when you pass 2 through the streams, they will not overwhelm you.
When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned;
the flames will not harm 3 you.
3 For I am the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel, 4 your deliverer.
I have handed over Egypt as a ransom price,
Ethiopia and Seba 5 in place of you.
4 Since you are precious and special in my sight, 6
and I love you,
I will hand over people in place of you,
nations in place of your life.
5 Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
From the east I will bring your descendants;
from the west I will gather you.
6 I will say to the north, ‘Hand them over!’
and to the south, ‘Don’t hold any back!’
Bring my sons from distant lands,
and my daughters from the remote regions of the earth,
7 everyone who belongs to me, 7
whom I created for my glory,
whom I formed – yes, whom I made!
8 Bring out the people who are blind, even though they have eyes,
those who are deaf, even though they have ears!
9 All nations gather together,
the peoples assemble.
Who among them announced this?
Who predicted earlier events for us? 8
Let them produce their witnesses to testify they were right;
let them listen and affirm, ‘It is true.’
10 You are my witnesses,” says the Lord,
“my servant whom I have chosen,
so that you may consider 9 and believe in me,
and understand that I am he.
No god was formed before me,
and none will outlive me. 10
11 I, I am the Lord,
and there is no deliverer besides me.
12 I decreed and delivered and proclaimed,
and there was no other god among you.
You are my witnesses,” says the Lord, “that I am God.
13 From this day forward I am he;
no one can deliver from my power; 11
I will act, and who can prevent it?”
14 This is what the Lord says,
your protector, 12 the Holy One of Israel: 13
“For your sake I send to Babylon
and make them all fugitives, 14
turning the Babylonians’ joyful shouts into mourning songs. 15
15 I am the Lord, your Holy One, 16
the one who created Israel, your king.”
16 This is what the Lord says,
the one who made a road through the sea,
a pathway through the surging waters,
17 the one who led chariots and horses to destruction, 17
together with a mighty army.
They fell down, 18 never to rise again;
they were extinguished, put out like a burning wick:
18 “Don’t remember these earlier events; 19
don’t recall these former events.
19 “Look, I am about to do something new.
Now it begins to happen! 20 Do you not recognize 21 it?
Yes, I will make a road in the desert
and paths 22 in the wilderness.
20 The wild animals of the desert honor me,
the jackals and ostriches,
because I put water in the desert
and streams in the wilderness,
to quench the thirst of my chosen people,
21 the people whom I formed for myself,
so they might praise me.” 23
22 “But you did not call for me, O Jacob;
you did not long 24 for me, O Israel.
23 You did not bring me lambs for your burnt offerings;
you did not honor me with your sacrifices.
I did not burden you with offerings;
I did not make you weary by demanding 25 incense.
24 You did not buy me aromatic reeds; 26
you did not present to me 27 the fat of your sacrifices.
Yet you burdened me with your sins;
you made me weary with your evil deeds. 28
25 I, I am the one who blots out your rebellious deeds for my sake;
your sins I do not remember.
26 Remind me of what happened! Let’s debate!
You, prove to me that you are right! 29
27 The father of your nation 30 sinned;
your spokesmen 31 rebelled against me.
28 So I defiled your holy princes,
and handed Jacob over to destruction,
and subjected 32 Israel to humiliating abuse.”
44 “Now, listen, Jacob my servant,
Israel whom I have chosen!”
2 This is what the Lord, the one who made you, says –
the one who formed you in the womb and helps you:
“Don’t be afraid, my servant Jacob,
Jeshurun, 1 whom I have chosen!
3 For I will pour water on the parched ground 2
and cause streams to flow 3 on the dry land.
I will pour my spirit on your offspring
and my blessing on your children.
4 They will sprout up like a tree in the grass, 4
like poplars beside channels of water.
5 One will say, ‘I belong to the Lord,’
and another will use 5 the name ‘Jacob.’
One will write on his hand, ‘The Lord’s,’
and use the name ‘Israel.’” 6
6 This is what the Lord, Israel’s king, says,
their protector, 7 the Lord who commands armies:
“I am the first and I am the last,
there is no God but me.
7 Who is like me? Let him make his claim! 8
Let him announce it and explain it to me –
since I established an ancient people – 9
let them announce future events! 10
8 Don’t panic! Don’t be afraid! 11
Did I not tell you beforehand and decree it?
You are my witnesses! Is there any God but me?
There is no other sheltering rock; 12 I know of none.
9 All who form idols are nothing;
the things in which they delight are worthless.
Their witnesses cannot see;
they recognize nothing, so they are put to shame.
10 Who forms a god and casts an idol
that will prove worthless? 13
11 Look, all his associates 14 will be put to shame;
the craftsmen are mere humans. 15
Let them all assemble and take their stand!
They will panic and be put to shame.
12 A blacksmith works with his tool 16
and forges metal over the coals.
He forms it 17 with hammers;
he makes it with his strong arm.
He gets hungry and loses his energy; 18
he drinks no water and gets tired.
13 A carpenter takes measurements; 19
he marks out an outline of its form; 20
he scrapes 21 it with chisels,
and marks it with a compass.
He patterns it after the human form, 22
like a well-built human being,
and puts it in a shrine. 23
14 He cuts down cedars
and acquires a cypress 24 or an oak.
He gets 25 trees from the forest;
he plants a cedar 26 and the rain makes it grow.
15 A man uses it to make a fire; 27
he takes some of it and warms himself.
Yes, he kindles a fire and bakes bread.
Then he makes a god and worships it;
he makes an idol and bows down to it. 28
16 Half of it he burns in the fire –
over that half he cooks 29 meat;
he roasts a meal and fills himself.
Yes, he warms himself and says,
‘Ah! I am warm as I look at the fire.’
17 With the rest of it he makes a god, his idol;
he bows down to it and worships it.
He prays to it, saying,
‘Rescue me, for you are my god!’
18 They do not comprehend or understand,
for their eyes are blind and cannot see;
their minds do not discern. 30
19 No one thinks to himself,
nor do they comprehend or understand and say to themselves:
‘I burned half of it in the fire –
yes, I baked bread over the coals;
I roasted meat and ate it.
With the rest of it should I make a disgusting idol?
Should I bow down to dry wood?’ 31
20 He feeds on ashes; 32
his deceived mind misleads him.
He cannot rescue himself,
nor does he say, ‘Is this not a false god I hold in my right hand?’ 33
21 Remember these things, O Jacob,
O Israel, for you are my servant.
I formed you to be my servant;
O Israel, I will not forget you! 34
22 I remove the guilt of your rebellious deeds as if they were a cloud,
the guilt of your sins as if they were a cloud. 35
Come back to me, for I protect 36 you.”
23 Shout for joy, O sky, for the Lord intervenes; 37
shout out, you subterranean regions 38 of the earth.
O mountains, give a joyful shout;
you too, O forest and all your trees! 39
For the Lord protects 40 Jacob;
he reveals his splendor through Israel. 41
24 This is what the Lord, your protector, 42 says,
the one who formed you in the womb:
“I am the Lord, who made everything,
who alone stretched out the sky,
who fashioned the earth all by myself, 43
25 who frustrates the omens of the empty talkers 44
and humiliates 45 the omen readers,
who overturns the counsel of the wise men 46
and makes their advice 47 seem foolish,
26 who fulfills the oracles of his prophetic servants 48
and brings to pass the announcements 49 of his messengers,
who says about Jerusalem, 50 ‘She will be inhabited,’
and about the towns of Judah, ‘They will be rebuilt,
her ruins I will raise up,’
27 who says to the deep sea, ‘Be dry!
I will dry up your sea currents,’
28 who commissions 51 Cyrus, the one I appointed as shepherd 52
to carry out all my wishes 53
and to decree concerning Jerusalem, ‘She will be rebuilt,’
and concerning the temple, ‘It will be reconstructed.’” 54