Separation from God

59 Behold, (A)the Lord’s hand is not so short
That it cannot save;
(B)Nor is His ear so dull
That it cannot hear.
But your (C)iniquities have made a separation between you and your God,
And your sins have hidden His [a]face from you so that He does (D)not hear.
For your (E)hands are defiled with blood
And your fingers with iniquity;
Your lips have spoken (F)falsehood,
Your tongue mutters wickedness.
(G)No one sues righteously and (H)no one pleads [b]honestly.
They (I)trust in confusion and speak lies;
They (J)conceive mischief and bring forth iniquity.
They hatch adders’ eggs and (K)weave the spider’s web;
He who eats of their eggs dies,
And from that which is crushed a snake breaks forth.
Their webs will not become clothing,
Nor will they (L)cover themselves with their works;
Their (M)works are works of iniquity,
And an (N)act of violence is in their [c]hands.
(O)Their feet run to evil,
And they hasten to shed innocent blood;
(P)Their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity,
Devastation and destruction are in their highways.
They do not know the (Q)way of peace,
And there is (R)no justice in their tracks;
They have made their paths crooked,
(S)Whoever treads on [d]them does not know peace.

A Confession of Wickedness

Therefore (T)justice is far from us,
And righteousness does not overtake us;
We (U)hope for light, but behold, darkness,
For brightness, but we walk in gloom.
10 We (V)grope along the wall like blind men,
We grope like those who have no eyes;
We (W)stumble at midday as in the twilight,
Among those who are vigorous we are (X)like dead men.
11 All of us growl like bears,
And (Y)moan sadly like doves;
We hope for (Z)justice, but there is none,
For salvation, but it is far from us.
12 For our (AA)transgressions are multiplied before You,
And our (AB)sins [e]testify against us;
For our transgressions are with us,
And [f]we know our iniquities:
13 Transgressing and (AC)denying the Lord,
And turning away from our God,
Speaking (AD)oppression and revolt,
Conceiving in and (AE)uttering from the heart lying words.
14 (AF)Justice is turned back,
And (AG)righteousness stands far away;
For truth has stumbled in the street,
And uprightness cannot enter.
15 Yes, truth is lacking;
And he who turns aside from evil (AH)makes himself a prey.
Now the Lord saw,
And it was [g]displeasing in His sight (AI)that there was no justice.
16 And He saw that there was (AJ)no man,
And was astonished that there was no one to intercede;
Then His (AK)own arm brought salvation to Him,
And His righteousness upheld Him.
17 He put on (AL)righteousness like a breastplate,
And a (AM)helmet of salvation on His head;
And He put on (AN)garments of vengeance for clothing
And wrapped Himself with (AO)zeal as a mantle.
18 (AP)According to their [h]deeds, [i]so He will repay,
Wrath to His adversaries, recompense to His enemies;
To the coastlands He will [j]make recompense.
19 So they will fear the name of the Lord from the (AQ)west
And His glory from the (AR)rising of the sun,
For He will (AS)come like a [k]rushing stream
Which the wind of the Lord drives.
20 “A (AT)Redeemer will come to Zion,
And to those who (AU)turn from transgression in Jacob,” declares the Lord.

21 “As for Me, this is My (AV)covenant with them,” says the Lord: “My (AW)Spirit which is upon you, and My (AX)words which I have put in your mouth shall not depart from your mouth, nor from the mouth of your [l]offspring, nor from the mouth of your [m]offspring’s offspring,” says the Lord, “from now and forever.”

Footnotes

  1. Isaiah 59:2 So versions; M.T. faces
  2. Isaiah 59:4 Lit in truth
  3. Isaiah 59:6 Lit palms
  4. Isaiah 59:8 Lit it
  5. Isaiah 59:12 Lit answer
  6. Isaiah 59:12 Lit our iniquities we know them
  7. Isaiah 59:15 Or evil
  8. Isaiah 59:18 Lit recompense
  9. Isaiah 59:18 Lit accordingly
  10. Isaiah 59:18 Lit repay
  11. Isaiah 59:19 Lit narrow
  12. Isaiah 59:21 Lit seed
  13. Isaiah 59:21 Lit seed

Sin, Confession and Redemption

59 Surely the arm(A) of the Lord is not too short(B) to save,
    nor his ear too dull to hear.(C)
But your iniquities have separated(D)
    you from your God;
your sins have hidden his face from you,
    so that he will not hear.(E)
For your hands are stained with blood,(F)
    your fingers with guilt.(G)
Your lips have spoken falsely,(H)
    and your tongue mutters wicked things.
No one calls for justice;(I)
    no one pleads a case with integrity.
They rely(J) on empty arguments, they utter lies;(K)
    they conceive trouble and give birth to evil.(L)
They hatch the eggs of vipers(M)
    and spin a spider’s web.(N)
Whoever eats their eggs will die,
    and when one is broken, an adder is hatched.
Their cobwebs are useless for clothing;
    they cannot cover themselves with what they make.(O)
Their deeds are evil deeds,
    and acts of violence(P) are in their hands.
Their feet rush into sin;
    they are swift to shed innocent blood.(Q)
They pursue evil schemes;(R)
    acts of violence mark their ways.(S)
The way of peace they do not know;(T)
    there is no justice in their paths.
They have turned them into crooked roads;(U)
    no one who walks along them will know peace.(V)

So justice is far from us,
    and righteousness does not reach us.
We look for light, but all is darkness;(W)
    for brightness, but we walk in deep shadows.
10 Like the blind(X) we grope along the wall,
    feeling our way like people without eyes.
At midday we stumble(Y) as if it were twilight;
    among the strong, we are like the dead.(Z)
11 We all growl like bears;
    we moan mournfully like doves.(AA)
We look for justice, but find none;
    for deliverance, but it is far away.

12 For our offenses(AB) are many in your sight,
    and our sins testify(AC) against us.
Our offenses are ever with us,
    and we acknowledge our iniquities:(AD)
13 rebellion(AE) and treachery against the Lord,
    turning our backs(AF) on our God,
inciting revolt and oppression,(AG)
    uttering lies(AH) our hearts have conceived.
14 So justice(AI) is driven back,
    and righteousness(AJ) stands at a distance;
truth(AK) has stumbled in the streets,
    honesty cannot enter.
15 Truth(AL) is nowhere to be found,
    and whoever shuns evil becomes a prey.

The Lord looked and was displeased
    that there was no justice.(AM)
16 He saw that there was no one,(AN)
    he was appalled that there was no one to intervene;(AO)
so his own arm achieved salvation(AP) for him,
    and his own righteousness(AQ) sustained him.
17 He put on righteousness as his breastplate,(AR)
    and the helmet(AS) of salvation on his head;
he put on the garments(AT) of vengeance(AU)
    and wrapped himself in zeal(AV) as in a cloak.
18 According to what they have done,
    so will he repay(AW)
wrath to his enemies
    and retribution to his foes;
    he will repay the islands(AX) their due.
19 From the west,(AY) people will fear the name of the Lord,
    and from the rising of the sun,(AZ) they will revere his glory.(BA)
For he will come like a pent-up flood
    that the breath(BB) of the Lord drives along.[a]

20 “The Redeemer(BC) will come to Zion,(BD)
    to those in Jacob who repent of their sins,”(BE)
declares the Lord.

21 “As for me, this is my covenant(BF) with them,” says the Lord. “My Spirit,(BG) who is on you, will not depart from you,(BH) and my words that I have put in your mouth(BI) will always be on your lips, on the lips of your children and on the lips of their descendants—from this time on and forever,” says the Lord.

Footnotes

  1. Isaiah 59:19 Or When enemies come in like a flood, / the Spirit of the Lord will put them to flight

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