The Bible – Old Testament
Hear this, O house of Jacob called by the name Israel, sprung from the stock of Judah, You who swear by the name of the LORD and invoke the God of Israel without sincerity or justice,
Though you are named after the holy city and rely on the God of Israel, whose name is the LORD of hosts.
Things of the past I foretold long ago, they went forth from my mouth, I let you hear of them; then suddenly I took action and they came to be.
Because I know that you are stubborn and that your neck is an iron sinew and your forehead bronze,
I foretold them to you of old; before they took place I let you hear of them, That you might not say, “My idol did them, my statue, my molten image commanded them.”
Now that you have heard, look at all this; must you not admit it? From now on I announce new things to you, hidden events of which you knew not.
Now, not long ago, they are brought into being, and beforetime you did not hear of them, so that you cannot claim to have known them;
You neither heard nor knew, they did not reach your ears beforehand. Yes, I know you are utterly treacherous, a rebel you were called from birth.
For the sake of my name I restrain my anger, for the sake of my renown I hold it back from you, lest I should destroy you.
See, I have refined you like silver, tested you in the furnace of affliction.
For my sake, for my own sake, I do this; why should I suffer profanation? My glory I will not give to another.
Listen to me, Jacob, Israel, whom I named! I, it is I who am the first, and also the last am I.
Yes, my hand laid the foundations of the earth; my right hand spread out the heavens. When I call them, they stand forth at once.
1 All of you assemble and listen: Who among you foretold these things? The LORD’S friend shall do his will against Babylon and the progeny of Chaldea.
I myself have spoken, I have called him, I have brought him, and his way succeeds!
2 Come near to me and hear this! Not from the beginning did I speak it in secret; At the time it comes to pass, I am present: “Now the Lord GOD has sent me, and his spirit.”
Thus says the LORD, your redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: I, the LORD, your God, teach you what is for your good, and lead you on the way you should go.
If you would hearken to my commandments, your prosperity would be like a river, and your vindication like the waves of the sea;
Your descendants would be like the sand, and those born of your stock like its grains, Their name never cut off or blotted out from my presence.
Go forth from Babylon, flee from Chaldea! With shouts of joy proclaim this, make it known; Publish it to the ends of the earth, and say, “The LORD has redeemed his servant Jacob.
They did not thirst when he led them through dry lands; Water from the rock he set flowing for them; he cleft the rock, and waters welled forth.”
(There is no peace for the wicked, says the LORD.)
1  The LORD’s friend: Cyrus, who carries out God’s plans.
2  “Now the Lord . . . spirit”: said by Cyrus; cf ⇒ Isaiah 48:14.