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The Helper of Israel

41 “Be silentn before me, you islands!o

Let the nations renew their strength!p

Let them come forwardq and speak;

let us meet togetherr at the place of judgment.

“Who has stirreds up one from the east,t

calling him in righteousnessu to his servicea?v

He hands nations over to him

and subdues kings before him.

He turns them to dustw with his sword,

to windblown chaffx with his bow.y

He pursues them and moves on unscathed,z

by a path his feet have not traveled before.

Who has done this and carried it through,

callinga forth the generations from the beginning?b

I, the Lord—with the first of them

and with the lastc—I am he.d

The islandse have seen it and fear;

the ends of the earthf tremble.

They approach and come forward;

6 they help each other

and say to their companions, “Be strong!g

The metalworkerh encourages the goldsmith,i

and the one who smooths with the hammer

spurs on the one who strikes the anvil.

One says of the welding, “It is good.”

The other nails down the idol so it will not topple.j

“But you, Israel, my servant,k

Jacob, whom I have chosen,l

you descendants of Abrahamm my friend,n

I took you from the ends of the earth,o

from its farthest corners I calledp you.

I said, ‘You are my servant’;q

I have chosenr you and have not rejected you.

10 So do not fear,s for I am with you;t

do not be dismayed, for I am your God.

I will strengthenu you and helpv you;

I will uphold youw with my righteous right hand.x

11 “All who ragey against you

will surely be ashamed and disgraced;z

those who opposea you

will be as nothing and perish.b

12 Though you search for your enemies,

you will not find them.c

Those who wage war against you

will be as nothingd at all.

13 For I am the Lord your God

who takes hold of your right hande

and says to you, Do not fear;

I will helpf you.

14 Do not be afraid,g you wormh Jacob,

little Israel, do not fear,

for I myself will helpi you,” declares the Lord,

your Redeemer,j the Holy Onek of Israel.

15 “See, I will make you into a threshing sledge,l

new and sharp, with many teeth.

You will thresh the mountainsm and crush them,

and reduce the hills to chaff.n

16 You will winnowo them, the wind will pick them up,

and a galep will blow them away.q

But you will rejoicer in the Lord

and glorys in the Holy Onet of Israel.

17 “The poor and needy search for water,u

but there is none;

their tongues are parched with thirst.v

But I the Lord will answerw them;

I, the God of Israel, will not forsakex them.

18 I will make rivers flowy on barren heights,

and springs within the valleys.

I will turn the desertz into pools of water,a

and the parched ground into springs.b

19 I will put in the desertc

the cedar and the acacia,d the myrtle and the olive.

I will set juniperse in the wasteland,

the fir and the cypressf together,g

20 so that people may see and know,h

may consider and understand,i

that the handj of the Lord has done this,

that the Holy Onek of Israel has createdl it.

21 “Present your case,m” says the Lord.

“Set forth your arguments,” says Jacob’s King.n

22 “Tell us, you idols,

what is going to happen.o

Tell us what the former thingsp were,

so that we may consider them

and know their final outcome.

Or declare to us the things to come,q

23 tell us what the future holds,

so we may knowr that you are gods.

Do something, whether good or bad,s

so that we will be dismayedt and filled with fear.

24 But you are less than nothingu

and your works are utterly worthless;v

whoever chooses you is detestable.w

25 “I have stirredx up one from the north,y and he comes—

one from the rising sun who calls on my name.

He treadsz on rulers as if they were mortar,

as if he were a potter treading the clay.

26 Who told of this from the beginning,a so we could know,

or beforehand, so we could say, ‘He was right’?

No one told of this,

no one foretoldb it,

no one heard any wordsc from you.

27 I was the first to telld Zion, ‘Look, here they are!’

I gave to Jerusalem a messenger of good news.e

28 I look but there is no onef

no one among the gods to give counsel,g

no one to give answerh when I ask them.

29 See, they are all false!

Their deeds amount to nothing;i

their imagesj are but windk and confusion.


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