21 “Submit your case,” says the Lord.
“Present your arguments,” says Jacob’s King.
22 “Let them come and tell us
what will happen.(A)
Tell us the past events,
so that we may reflect on them
and know the outcome,
or tell us the future.
23 Tell us the coming events,(B)
then we will know that you are gods.
Indeed, do something good or bad,
then we will be in awe[a] and perceive.
24 Look, you are nothing(C)
and your work is worthless.
Anyone who chooses you is detestable.

25 “I have raised up one from the north,(D) and he has come,
one from the east(E) who invokes My[b] name.(F)
He will march over rulers as if they were mud,
like a potter who treads the clay.
26 Who told about this from the beginning,
so that we might know,
and from times past,
so that we might say: He is right?
No one announced it,
no one told it,
no one heard your words.
27 I was the first to say to Zion:[c]
Look! Here they are!
And I gave a herald of good news to Jerusalem.(G)
28 When I look, there is no one;
there is no counselor among them;
when I ask them, they have nothing to say.(H)
29 Look, all of them are a delusion;[d]
their works are nonexistent;
their images are wind and emptiness.

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Footnotes

  1. Isaiah 41:23 DSS read we may hear
  2. Isaiah 41:25 DSS read his
  3. Isaiah 41:27 Lit First to Zion
  4. Isaiah 41:29 DSS, Syr read are nothing

All who make idols are nothing,
and what they treasure does not profit.
Their witnesses do not see or know anything,
so they will be put to shame.(A)
10 Who makes a god or casts a metal image
for no profit?(B)
11 Look, all its worshipers will be put to shame,
and the craftsmen are humans.
They all will assemble and stand;
they all will be startled and put to shame.

12 The ironworker labors over the coals,
shapes the idol with hammers,
and works it with his strong arm.
Also he grows hungry and his strength fails;
he doesn’t drink water and is faint.
13 The woodworker stretches out a measuring line,
he outlines it with a stylus;
he shapes it with chisels
and outlines it with a compass.
He makes it according to a human likeness,(C)
like a beautiful person,
to dwell in a temple.
14 He cuts down[a] cedars for his use,
or he takes a cypress or an oak.
He lets it grow strong among the trees of the forest.
He plants a laurel, and the rain makes it grow.
15 It serves as fuel for man.
He takes some of it and warms himself;
also he kindles a fire and bakes bread;
he even makes it into a god and worships it;
he makes an idol from it and bows down to it.
16 He burns half of it in a fire,
and he roasts meat on that half.
He eats the roast and is satisfied.
He warms himself and says, “Ah!
I am warm, I see the blaze.”
17 He makes a god or his idol with the rest of it.
He bows down to it and worships;
He prays to it,(D) “Save me, for you are my god.”

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Footnotes

  1. Isaiah 44:14 Lit To cut down for himself

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