The Compassion of the Lord

55 (A)“Come, everyone who thirsts,
    come to the waters;
and he who has no money,
    (B)come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
    without money and without price.
(C)Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread,
    and your labor for that which does not satisfy?
Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good,
    and delight yourselves in rich food.
Incline your ear, and come to me;
    (D)hear, that your soul may live;
(E)and I will make with you an everlasting covenant,
    (F)my steadfast, sure love for (G)David.
(H)Behold, I made him a witness to the peoples,
    (I)a leader and commander for the peoples.
(J)Behold, you shall call a nation that you do not know,
    and (K)a nation that did not know you shall run to you,
because of the Lord your God, and of the Holy One of Israel,
    (L)for he has glorified you.

(M)“Seek the Lord while he may be found;
    call upon him while he is near;
let the wicked forsake his way,
    and the unrighteous man his thoughts;
let him return to the Lord, that he may have compassion on him,
    and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
    neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.
(N)For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
    so are my ways higher than your ways
    and my thoughts than your thoughts.

10 (O)“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
    and do not return there but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
    (P)giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
11 so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
    it shall not return to me empty,
but (Q)it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
    and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.

12 (R)“For you shall go out in joy
    and be led forth in peace;
(S)the mountains and the hills before you
    shall break forth into singing,
    and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
13 (T)Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress;
    instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle;
and it shall make a name for the Lord,
    an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.”

Invitation to the Thirsty

55 “Come, all you who are thirsty,(A)
    come to the waters;(B)
and you who have no money,
    come, buy(C) and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk(D)
    without money and without cost.(E)
Why spend money on what is not bread,
    and your labor on what does not satisfy?(F)
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good,(G)
    and you will delight in the richest(H) of fare.
Give ear and come to me;
    listen,(I) that you may live.(J)
I will make an everlasting covenant(K) with you,
    my faithful love(L) promised to David.(M)
See, I have made him a witness(N) to the peoples,
    a ruler and commander(O) of the peoples.
Surely you will summon nations(P) you know not,
    and nations you do not know will come running to you,(Q)
because of the Lord your God,
    the Holy One(R) of Israel,
    for he has endowed you with splendor.”(S)

Seek(T) the Lord while he may be found;(U)
    call(V) on him while he is near.
Let the wicked forsake(W) their ways
    and the unrighteous their thoughts.(X)
Let them turn(Y) to the Lord, and he will have mercy(Z) on them,
    and to our God, for he will freely pardon.(AA)

“For my thoughts(AB) are not your thoughts,
    neither are your ways my ways,”(AC)
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,(AD)
    so are my ways higher than your ways
    and my thoughts than your thoughts.(AE)
10 As the rain(AF) and the snow
    come down from heaven,
and do not return to it
    without watering the earth
and making it bud and flourish,(AG)
    so that it yields seed(AH) for the sower and bread for the eater,(AI)
11 so is my word(AJ) that goes out from my mouth:
    It will not return to me empty,(AK)
but will accomplish what I desire
    and achieve the purpose(AL) for which I sent it.
12 You will go out in joy(AM)
    and be led forth in peace;(AN)
the mountains and hills
    will burst into song(AO) before you,
and all the trees(AP) of the field
    will clap their hands.(AQ)
13 Instead of the thornbush will grow the juniper,
    and instead of briers(AR) the myrtle(AS) will grow.
This will be for the Lord’s renown,(AT)
    for an everlasting sign,
    that will endure forever.”

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