Coastlands, listen to me; distant peoples, pay attention. The LORD called me before I was born. He named me while I was in my mother's womb.
He made my words like a sharp sword; He hid me in the shadow of His hand. He made me like a sharpened arrow; He hid me in His quiver.
He said to me, "You are My servant, Israel; I will be glorified in him."
But I myself said: I have labored in vain, I have spent my strength for nothing and futility; yet my vindication is with the LORD, and my reward is with my God.
And now, says the LORD, who formed me from the womb to be His servant, to bring Jacob back to Him so that Israel might be gathered to Him; for I am honored in the sight of the LORD, and my God is my strength--
He says, "It is not enough for you to be My servant raising up the tribes of Jacob and restoring the protected ones of Israel. I will also make you a light for the nations, to be My salvation to the ends of the earth."
This is what the LORD, the Redeemer of Israel, his Holy One says to one who is despised, to one abhorred by people, to a servant of rulers: "Kings will see and stand up, and princes will bow down, because of the LORD, who is faithful, the Holy One of Israel-- and He has chosen you."
This is what the LORD says: I will answer you in a time of favor, and I will help you in the day of salvation. I will keep you, and I will appoint you to be a covenant for the people, to restore the land, to make them possess the desolate inheritances,
saying to the prisoners: Come out, and to those who are in darkness: Show yourselves. They will feed along the pathways, and their pastures will be on all the barren heights.
They will not hunger or thirst, the scorching heat or sun will not strike them; for their compassionate One will guide them, and lead them to springs of water.
I will make all My mountains into a road, and My highways will be raised up.
See, these will come from far away, from the north and from the west, and from the land of Sinim.
Shout for joy, you heavens! Earth, rejoice! Mountains break into joyful shouts! For the LORD has comforted His people, and will have compassion on His afflicted ones.
Zion says, "The LORD has abandoned me; The Lord has forgotten me!"
"Can a woman forget her nursing child, or lack compassion for the child of her womb? Even if these forget, yet I will not forget you.
Look, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands; your walls are continually before Me.
Your builders hurry; those who destroy and devastate you will leave you.
Look up, and look around. They all gather together; they come to you. As I live"-- the LORD's declaration-- "you will wear all your children as jewelry, and put them on as a bride does.
For your waste and desolate places and your land marked by ruins-- will now be indeed too small for the inhabitants, and those who swallowed you up will be far away.
The children that you have been deprived of will yet say in your hearing: This place is too small for me; make room for me so that I may settle.
Then you will say within yourself: Who fathered these for me? I was deprived of my children and barren, exiled and wandering-- but who brought them up? See, I was left by myself-- but these, where did they come from?"
This is what the Lord God says: Look, I will lift up My hand to the nations, and raise My banner to the peoples. They will bring your sons in their arms, and your daughters will be carried on their shoulders.
Kings will be your foster fathers, and their queens your nursing mothers. They will bow down to you with their faces to the ground, and lick the dust at your feet. Then you will know that I am the LORD; those who put their hope in Me will not be put to shame.
Can the prey be taken from the mighty, or the captives of the righteous be delivered?
For this is what the LORD says: "Even the captives of a mighty man will be taken, and the prey of a tyrant will be delivered; I will contend with the one who contends with you, and I will save your children.
I will make your oppressors eat their own flesh, and they will be drunk with their own blood as with sweet wine. Then all flesh will know that I, the LORD, am your Savior, and your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob."
This is what the LORD says: Where is your mother's divorce certificate that I used to send her away? Or who were My creditors that I sold you to? Look, you were sold for your iniquities, and your mother was put away because of your transgressions.
Why was no one there when I came? Why was there no one to answer when I called? Is My hand too short to redeem? Or do I have no power to deliver? Look, I dry up the sea by My rebuke; I turn the rivers into a wilderness; their fish rot because of lack of water and die of thirst.
I dress the heavens in black and make sackcloth their clothing.
The Lord God has given Me the tongue of those who are instructed to know how to sustain the weary with a word. He awakens [Me] each morning; He awakens My ear to listen like those being instructed.
The Lord God has opened My ear, and I was not rebellious; I did not turn back.
I gave My back to those who beat Me, and My cheeks to those who tore out My beard. I did not hide My face from scorn and spitting.
The Lord God will help Me; therefore I have not been humiliated; therefore I have set My face like flint, and I know I will not be put to shame.
The One who justifies Me is near; who will contend with Me? Let us confront each other. Who has a case against Me? Let him come near Me!
In truth, the Lord God will help Me; who is he who will condemn Me? Indeed, all of them will wear out like a garment; a moth will devour them.
Who among you fears the LORD, listening to the voice of His servant? Who [among you] walks in darkness, and has no light? Let him trust in the name of the LORD; let him lean on his God.
Look, all you who kindle a fire, who encircle yourselves with firebrands; walk in the light of your fire and in the firebrands you have lit! This is what you'll get from My hand: you will lie down in a place of torment.
Listen to Me, you who pursue righteousness, you who seek the LORD: Look to the rock from which you were cut, and to the quarry from which you were dug.
Look to Abraham your father, and to Sarah who gave birth to you in pain. When I called him, he was only one; I blessed him and made him many.
For the LORD will comfort Zion; He will comfort all her waste places, and He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the LORD. Joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and melodious song.
Pay attention to Me, My people, and listen to Me, My nation; for instruction will come from Me, and My justice for a light to the nations. I will bring it about quickly.
My righteousness is near, My salvation appears, and My arms will bring justice to the nations. The coastlands will put their hope in Me, and they will look to My strength.
Look up to the heavens, and look at the earth beneath; for the heavens will vanish like smoke, the earth will wear out like a garment, and its inhabitants will die in like manner. But My salvation will last forever, and My righteousness will never be shattered.
Listen to Me, you who know righteousness, the people in whose heart is My instruction: do not fear disgrace by men, and do not be shattered by their taunts.
For the moth will devour them like a garment, and the worm will eat them like wool. But My righteousness will last forever, and My salvation for all generations.
Wake up, wake up! Put on the strength of the LORD's power. Wake up as in days past, as in generations of long ago. Wasn't it You who hacked Rahab to pieces, who pierced the sea monster?
Wasn't it You who dried up the sea, the waters of the great deep, who made the sea-bed into a road for the redeemed to pass over?
And the ransomed of the LORD will return and come to Zion with singing, crowned with unending joy. Joy and gladness will overtake [them], and sorrow and sighing will flee.
I-- I am the One who comforts you. Who are you that you should fear man who dies, or a son of man who is given up like grass?
But you have forgotten the LORD, your Maker, who stretched out the heavens and laid the foundations of the earth. You are in constant dread all day long because of the fury of the oppressor, who has set himself to destroy. But where is the fury of the oppressor?
The prisoner is soon to be set free; he will not die [and go] to the Pit, and his food will not be lacking.
For I am the LORD your God who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar-- His name is Yahweh of Hosts.
I have put My words in your mouth, and covered you in the shadow of My hand, in order to plant the heavens, to found the earth, and to say to Zion, "You are My people."
Wake yourself, wake yourself up! Stand up, Jerusalem, you who have drunk the cup of His fury from the hand of the LORD; you who have drunk the goblet to the dregs-- the cup that [causes people] to stagger.
There is no one to guide her among all the children she has raised; there is no one to take hold of her hand among all the offspring she has brought up.
These two things have happened to you: devastation and destruction, famine and sword. Who will grieve for you? How can I comfort you?
Your children have fainted; they lie at the head of every street like an antelope in a net. They are full of the LORD's fury, the rebuke of your God.
So listen to this, afflicted and drunken one-- but not with wine.
This is what your Lord says-- Yahweh, even your God, who defends His people-- "Look, I have removed the cup of staggering from your hand; that goblet, the cup of My fury. You will never drink it again.
I will put it into the hands of your tormenters, who said to you: Lie down, so we can walk over you. You made your back like the ground, and like a street for those who walk on it.