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The Servant, a Light to the Nations

42 Behold my servant, whom I uphold,
    my chosen, in whom my soul delights;
I have put my Spirit upon him,
    he will bring forth justice to the nations.
He will not cry or lift up his voice,
    or make it heard in the street;
a bruised reed he will not break,
    and a dimly burning wick he will not quench;
    he will faithfully bring forth justice.
He will not fail[a] or be discouraged[b]
    till he has established justice in the earth;
    and the coastlands wait for his law.

Thus says God, the Lord,
    who created the heavens and stretched them out,
    who spread forth the earth and what comes from it,
who gives breath to the people upon it
    and spirit to those who walk in it:
“I am the Lord, I have called you in righteousness,
    I have taken you by the hand and kept you;
I have given you as a covenant to the people,
    a light to the nations,
    to open the eyes that are blind,
to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon,
    from the prison those who sit in darkness.
I am the Lord, that is my name;
    my glory I give to no other,
    nor my praise to graven images.
Behold, the former things have come to pass,
    and new things I now declare;
before they spring forth
    I tell you of them.”

A Hymn of Praise

10 Sing to the Lord a new song,
    his praise from the end of the earth!
Let the sea roar[c] and all that fills it,
    the coastlands and their inhabitants.
11 Let the desert and its cities lift up their voice,
    the villages that Kedar inhabits;
let the inhabitants of Sela sing for joy,
    let them shout from the top of the mountains.
12 Let them give glory to the Lord,
    and declare his praise in the coastlands.
13 The Lord goes forth like a mighty man,
    like a man of war he stirs up his fury;
he cries out, he shouts aloud,
    he shows himself mighty against his foes.

14 For a long time I have held my peace,
    I have kept still and restrained myself;
now I will cry out like a woman in travail,
    I will gasp and pant.
15 I will lay waste mountains and hills,
    and dry up all their herbage;
I will turn the rivers into islands,
    and dry up the pools.
16 And I will lead the blind
    in a way that they know not,
in paths that they have not known
    I will guide them.
I will turn the darkness before them into light,
    the rough places into level ground.
These are the things I will do,
    and I will not forsake them.
17 They shall be turned back and utterly put to shame,
    who trust in graven images,
who say to molten images,
    “You are our gods.”

18 Hear, you deaf;
    and look, you blind, that you may see!
19 Who is blind but my servant,
    or deaf as my messenger whom I send?
Who is blind as my dedicated one,
    or blind as the servant of the Lord?
20 He sees[d] many things, but does not observe them;
    his ears are open, but he does not hear.

Israel’s Disobedience

21 The Lord was pleased, for his righteousness’ sake,
    to magnify his law and make it glorious.
22 But this is a people robbed and plundered,
    they are all of them trapped in holes
    and hidden in prisons;
they have become a prey with none to rescue,
    a spoil with none to say, “Restore!”
23 Who among you will give ear to this,
    will attend and listen for the time to come?
24 Who gave up Jacob to the spoiler,
    and Israel to the robbers?
Was it not the Lord, against whom we have sinned,
    in whose ways they would not walk,
    and whose law they would not obey?
25 So he poured upon him the heat of his anger
    and the might of battle;
it set him on fire round about, but he did not understand;
    it burned him, but he did not take it to heart.

Footnotes

  1. Isaiah 42:4 Or burn dimly
  2. Isaiah 42:4 Or bruised
  3. Isaiah 42:10 Cn Compare Ps 96.11; 98.7: Heb Those who go down to the sea
  4. Isaiah 42:20 Heb you see

The Servant of the Lord

42 “Here is my servant,(A) whom I uphold,
    my chosen one(B) in whom I delight;(C)
I will put my Spirit(D) on him,
    and he will bring justice(E) to the nations.(F)
He will not shout or cry out,(G)
    or raise his voice in the streets.
A bruised reed(H) he will not break,(I)
    and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out.(J)
In faithfulness he will bring forth justice;(K)
    he will not falter or be discouraged
till he establishes justice(L) on earth.
    In his teaching(M) the islands(N) will put their hope.”(O)

This is what God the Lord says—
the Creator of the heavens,(P) who stretches them out,
    who spreads out the earth(Q) with all that springs from it,(R)
    who gives breath(S) to its people,
    and life to those who walk on it:
“I, the Lord, have called(T) you in righteousness;(U)
    I will take hold of your hand.(V)
I will keep(W) you and will make you
    to be a covenant(X) for the people
    and a light(Y) for the Gentiles,(Z)
to open eyes that are blind,(AA)
    to free(AB) captives from prison(AC)
    and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness.(AD)

“I am the Lord;(AE) that is my name!(AF)
    I will not yield my glory to another(AG)
    or my praise to idols.(AH)
See, the former things(AI) have taken place,
    and new things I declare;
before they spring into being
    I announce(AJ) them to you.”

Song of Praise to the Lord

10 Sing(AK) to the Lord a new song,(AL)
    his praise(AM) from the ends of the earth,(AN)
you who go down to the sea, and all that is in it,(AO)
    you islands,(AP) and all who live in them.
11 Let the wilderness(AQ) and its towns raise their voices;
    let the settlements where Kedar(AR) lives rejoice.
Let the people of Sela(AS) sing for joy;
    let them shout from the mountaintops.(AT)
12 Let them give glory(AU) to the Lord
    and proclaim his praise(AV) in the islands.(AW)
13 The Lord will march out like a champion,(AX)
    like a warrior(AY) he will stir up his zeal;(AZ)
with a shout(BA) he will raise the battle cry
    and will triumph over his enemies.(BB)

14 “For a long time I have kept silent,(BC)
    I have been quiet and held myself back.(BD)
But now, like a woman in childbirth,
    I cry out, I gasp and pant.(BE)
15 I will lay waste(BF) the mountains(BG) and hills
    and dry up all their vegetation;
I will turn rivers into islands
    and dry up(BH) the pools.
16 I will lead(BI) the blind(BJ) by ways they have not known,
    along unfamiliar paths I will guide them;
I will turn the darkness into light(BK) before them
    and make the rough places smooth.(BL)
These are the things I will do;
    I will not forsake(BM) them.
17 But those who trust in idols,
    who say to images, ‘You are our gods,’(BN)
    will be turned back in utter shame.(BO)

Israel Blind and Deaf

18 “Hear, you deaf;(BP)
    look, you blind, and see!
19 Who is blind(BQ) but my servant,(BR)
    and deaf like the messenger(BS) I send?
Who is blind like the one in covenant(BT) with me,
    blind like the servant of the Lord?
20 You have seen many things, but you pay no attention;
    your ears are open, but you do not listen.”(BU)
21 It pleased the Lord
    for the sake(BV) of his righteousness
    to make his law(BW) great and glorious.
22 But this is a people plundered(BX) and looted,
    all of them trapped in pits(BY)
    or hidden away in prisons.(BZ)
They have become plunder,
    with no one to rescue them;(CA)
they have been made loot,
    with no one to say, “Send them back.”

23 Which of you will listen to this
    or pay close attention(CB) in time to come?
24 Who handed Jacob over to become loot,
    and Israel to the plunderers?(CC)
Was it not the Lord,(CD)
    against whom we have sinned?
For they would not follow(CE) his ways;
    they did not obey his law.(CF)
25 So he poured out on them his burning anger,(CG)
    the violence of war.
It enveloped them in flames,(CH) yet they did not understand;(CI)
    it consumed them, but they did not take it to heart.(CJ)

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