The Lord's Love for Israel
54 (A)Jerusalem, you have been like a childless woman,
but now you can sing and shout for joy.
Now you will have more children
than a woman whose husband never left her.
2 Make the tent you live in larger;
lengthen its ropes and strengthen the pegs!
3 You will extend your boundaries on all sides;
your people will get back the land
that the other nations now occupy.
Cities now deserted will be filled with people.
4 Do not be afraid—you will not be disgraced again;
you will not be humiliated.
You will forget your unfaithfulness as a young wife,
and your desperate loneliness as a widow.
5 Your Creator will be like a husband to you—
the Lord Almighty is his name.
The holy God of Israel will save you—
he is the ruler of all the world.
6 Israel, you are like a young wife,
deserted by her husband and deeply distressed.
But the Lord calls you back to him and says:
7 “For one brief moment I left you;
with deep love I will take you back.
8 I turned away angry for only a moment,
but I will show you my love forever.”
So says the Lord who saves you.
9 (B)“In the time of Noah I promised
never again to flood the earth.
Now I promise not to be angry with you again;
I will not reprimand or punish you.
10 (C)The mountains and hills may crumble,
but my love for you will never end;
I will keep forever my promise of peace.”
So says the Lord who loves you.
The Future Jerusalem
11 (D)The Lord says,
“O Jerusalem, you suffering, helpless city,
with no one to comfort you,
I will rebuild your foundations with precious stones.
12 I will build your towers with rubies,
your gates with stones that glow like fire,
and the wall around you with jewels.
13 (E)“I myself will teach your people
and give them prosperity and peace.
14 Justice and right will make you strong.
You will be safe from oppression and terror.
15 Whoever attacks you,
does it without my consent;
whoever fights against you will fall.
16 “I create the blacksmith,
who builds a fire and forges weapons.
I also create the soldier,
who uses the weapons to kill.
17 But no weapon will be able to hurt you;
you will have an answer for all who accuse you.
I will defend my servants
and give them victory.”
The Lord has spoken.
God's Offer of Mercy
55 (F)The Lord says,
“Come, everyone who is thirsty—
here is water!
Come, you that have no money—
buy grain and eat!
Come! Buy wine and milk—
it will cost you nothing!
2 (G)Why spend money on what does not satisfy?
Why spend your wages and still be hungry?
Listen to me and do what I say,
and you will enjoy the best food of all.
3 (H)“Listen now, my people, and come to me;
come to me, and you will have life!
I will make a lasting covenant with you
and give you the blessings I promised to David.
4 I made him a leader and commander of nations,
and through him I showed them my power.
5 Now you will summon foreign nations;
at one time they did not know you,
but now they will come running to join you!
I, the Lord your God, the holy God of Israel,
will make all this happen;
I will give you honor and glory.”
6 Turn to the Lord and pray to him,
now that he is near.
7 Let the wicked leave their way of life
and change their way of thinking.
Let them turn to the Lord, our God;
he is merciful and quick to forgive.
8 “My thoughts,” says the Lord, “are not like yours,
and my ways are different from yours.
9 As high as the heavens are above the earth,
so high are my ways and thoughts above yours.
10 (I)“My word is like the snow and the rain
that come down from the sky to water the earth.
They make the crops grow
and provide seed for planting and food to eat.
11 So also will be the word that I speak—
it will not fail to do what I plan for it;
it will do everything I send it to do.
12 “You will leave Babylon with joy;
you will be led out of the city in peace.
The mountains and hills will burst into singing,
and the trees will shout for joy.
13 Cypress trees will grow where now there are briers;
myrtle trees will come up in place of thorns.
This will be a sign that will last forever,
a reminder of what I, the Lord, have done.”
God's People Will Include All Nations
56 The Lord says to his people, “Do what is just and right, for soon I will save you. 2 I will bless those who always observe the Sabbath and do not misuse it. I will bless those who do nothing evil.”
3 A foreigner who has joined the Lord's people should not say, “The Lord will not let me worship with his people.”
A man who has been castrated should never think that because he cannot have children, he can never be part of God's people. 4 (J)The Lord says to such a man, “If you honor me by observing the Sabbath and if you do what pleases me and faithfully keep my covenant, 5 then your name will be remembered in my Temple and among my people longer than if you had sons and daughters. You will never be forgotten.”
6 And the Lord says to those foreigners who become part of his people, who love him and serve him, who observe the Sabbath and faithfully keep his covenant: 7 (K)“I will bring you to Zion, my sacred hill,[a] give you joy in my house of prayer, and accept the sacrifices you offer on my altar. My Temple will be called a house of prayer for the people of all nations.”
8 The Sovereign Lord, who has brought his people Israel home from exile, has promised that he will bring still other people to join them.
Israel's Leaders Are Condemned
9 The Lord has told the foreign nations to come like wild animals and devour his people. 10 He says, “All the leaders, who are supposed to warn my people, are blind! They know nothing. They are like watch dogs that don't bark—they only lie around and dream. How they love to sleep! 11 They are like greedy dogs that never get enough. These leaders have no understanding. They each do as they please and seek their own advantage. 12 ‘Let's get some wine,’ these drunkards say, ‘and drink all we can hold! Tomorrow will be even better than today!’”
Israel's Idolatry Is Condemned
57 Good people die, and no one understands or even cares. But when they die, no calamity can hurt them. 2 Those who live good lives find peace and rest in death.
3 Come here to be judged, you sinners! You are no better than sorcerers, adulterers, and prostitutes. 4 Who are you making fun of? Who are you liars jeering at? 5 You worship the fertility gods by having sex under those sacred trees of yours. You offer your children as sacrifices in the rocky caves near stream beds. 6 You take smooth stones from there and worship them as gods. You pour out wine as offerings to them and bring them grain offerings. Do you think I am pleased with all this? 7 You go to the high mountains to offer sacrifices and have sex. 8 You set up your obscene idols just inside your front doors. You forsake me; you take off your clothes and climb in your large beds with your lovers, whom you pay to sleep with you. And there you satisfy your lust. 9 You put on your perfumes and ointments and go to worship the god Molech. To find gods to worship, you send messengers far and wide, even to the world of the dead. 10 You wear yourselves out looking for other gods, but you never give up. You think your obscene idols give you strength, and so you never grow weak.
11 The Lord says, “Who are these gods that make you afraid, so that you tell me lies and forget me completely? Have you stopped honoring me because I have kept silent for so long? 12 You think that what you do is right, but I will expose your conduct, and your idols will not be able to help you. 13 When you cry for help, let those idols of yours save you! A puff of wind will carry them off! But those who trust in me will live in the land and will worship me in my Temple.”
God's Promise of Help and Healing
14 The Lord says, “Let my people return to me. Remove every obstacle from their path! Build the road and make it ready!
- Isaiah 56:7 See 2.3.
- Isaiah 54:1 : Gal 4:27
- Isaiah 54:9 : Gen 9:8-Gen 9:17
- Isaiah 54:10 : Jdt 16:15
- Isaiah 54:11 : Rev 21:18-Rev 21:21; Isa 54:11; Tob 13:16, 17
- Isaiah 54:13 : John 6:45
- Isaiah 55:1 : Rev 21:6; Isa 22:17
- Isaiah 55:2 : Sir 24:19-Sir 24:22
- Isaiah 55:3 : Acts 13:34
- Isaiah 55:10 : 2Cor 9:10
- Isaiah 56:4 : Wis 3:14; Wis 3:15
- Isaiah 56:7 : Matt 21:13; Mark 11:17; Luke 19:46
Children and Parents
6 (A)Children, it is your Christian duty to[a] obey your parents, for this is the right thing to do. 2 (B)“Respect your father and mother” is the first commandment that has a promise added: 3 “so that all may go well with you, and you may live a long time in the land.”
4 (C)Parents, do not treat your children in such a way as to make them angry. Instead, raise them with Christian discipline and instruction.
Slaves and Masters
5 (D)Slaves, obey your human masters with fear and trembling; and do it with a sincere heart, as though you were serving Christ. 6 Do this not only when they are watching you, because you want to gain their approval; but with all your heart do what God wants, as slaves of Christ. 7 Do your work as slaves cheerfully, as though you served the Lord, and not merely human beings. 8 Remember that the Lord will reward each of us, whether slave or free, for the good work we do.
9 (E)Masters, behave in the same way toward your slaves and stop using threats. Remember that you and your slaves belong to the same Master in heaven, who judges everyone by the same standard.
The Whole Armor of God
10 Finally, build up your strength in union with the Lord and by means of his mighty power. 11 (F)Put on all the armor that God gives you, so that you will be able to stand up against the Devil's evil tricks. 12 For we are not fighting against human beings but against the wicked spiritual forces in the heavenly world, the rulers, authorities, and cosmic powers of this dark age. 13 So put on God's armor now! Then when the evil day comes, you will be able to resist the enemy's attacks; and after fighting to the end, you will still hold your ground.
14 (G)So stand ready, with truth as a belt tight around your waist, with righteousness as your breastplate, 15 (H)and as your shoes the readiness to announce the Good News of peace. 16 At all times carry faith as a shield; for with it you will be able to put out all the burning arrows shot by the Evil One. 17 (I)And accept salvation as a helmet, and the word of God as the sword which the Spirit gives you. 18 Do all this in prayer, asking for God's help. Pray on every occasion, as the Spirit leads. For this reason keep alert and never give up; pray always for all God's people. 19 And pray also for me, that God will give me a message when I am ready to speak, so that I may speak boldly and make known the gospel's secret. 20 For the sake of this gospel I am an ambassador, though now I am in prison. Pray that I may be bold in speaking about the gospel as I should.
21 (J)Tychicus, our dear brother and faithful servant in the Lord's work, will give you all the news about me, so that you may know how I am getting along. 22 That is why I am sending him to you—to tell you how all of us are getting along and to encourage you.
23 May God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give to all Christians peace and love with faith. 24 May God's grace be with all those who love our Lord Jesus Christ with undying love.
- Ephesians 6:1 Some manuscripts do not have it is your Christian duty to.
- Ephesians 6:1 : Col 3:20
- Ephesians 6:2 : Exod 20:12; Deut 5:16
- Ephesians 6:4 : Col 3:21
- Ephesians 6:5 : Col 3:22-Col 3:25
- Ephesians 6:9 : Col 4:1; Eph 6:9; Deut 10:17; Col 3:25
- Ephesians 6:11 : Wis 5:17
- Ephesians 6:14 : Wis 5:18-Wis 5:23; Eph 6:14; Isa 11:5; Eph 6:14; Isa 59:17
- Ephesians 6:15 : Isa 52:7
- Ephesians 6:17 : Isa 59:17
- Ephesians 6:21 : Acts 20:4; 2Tim 4:12; Eph 6:21; Col 4:7; Col 4:8
70 Save me, O God!
Lord, help me now!
2 May those who try to kill me
be defeated and confused.
May those who are happy because of my troubles
be turned back and disgraced.
3 May those who make fun of me
be dismayed by their defeat.
4 May all who come to you
be glad and joyful.
May all who are thankful for your salvation
always say, “How great is God!”
5 I am weak and poor;
come to me quickly, O God.
You are my savior and my Lord—
hurry to my aid!
- Psalm 70:1 HEBREW TITLE: A psalm by David; a lament.
8 If you are always planning evil, you will earn a reputation as a troublemaker.