Isaiah 1

1The vision concerning Judah and Jerusalem that Isaiah son of Amoz saw during the reigns of Kings Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah of Judah.

Judah on Trial

2Listen, heavens, and pay attention, earth,

for the Lord has spoken:

“I have raised children and brought them up,

but they have rebelled against me.

3The ox knows its owner,

and the donkey its master’s feeding trough,

but Israel does not know;

my people do not understand.”

4Oh sinful nation,

people weighed down with iniquity,

brood of evildoers,

depraved children!

They have abandoned the Lord;

they have despised the Holy One of Israel;

they have turned their backs on him.

5Why do you want more beatings?

Why do you keep on rebelling?

The whole head is hurt,

and the whole heart is sick.

6From the sole of the foot even to the head,

no spot is uninjured —

wounds, welts, and festering sores

not cleansed, bandaged,

or soothed with oil.

7Your land is desolate,

your cities burned down;

foreigners devour your fields

right in front of you —

a desolation, like a place demolished by foreigners.

8Daughter Zion is abandoned

like a shelter in a vineyard,

like a shack in a cucumber field,

like a besieged city.

9If the Lord of Armies

had not left us a few survivors,

we would be like Sodom,

we would resemble Gomorrah.

10Hear the word of the Lord,

you rulers of Sodom!

Listen to the instruction of our God,

you people of Gomorrah!

11“What are all your sacrifices to me?”

asks the Lord.

“I have had enough of burnt offerings and rams

and the fat of well-fed cattle;

I have no desire for the blood of bulls,

lambs, or male goats.

12When you come to appear before me,

who requires this from you —

this trampling of my courts?

13Stop bringing useless offerings.

Your incense is detestable to me.

New Moons and Sabbaths,

and the calling of solemn assemblies —

I cannot stand iniquity with a festival.

14I hate your New Moons and prescribed festivals.

They have become a burden to me;

I am tired of putting up with them.

15When you spread out your hands in prayer,

I will refuse to look at you;

even if you offer countless prayers,

I will not listen.

Your hands are covered with blood.

Purification of Jerusalem

16“Wash yourselves. Cleanse yourselves.

Remove your evil deeds from my sight.

Stop doing evil.

17Learn to do what is good.

Pursue justice.

Correct the oppressor.

Defend the rights of the fatherless.

Plead the widow’s cause.

18“Come, let’s settle this,”

says the Lord.

“Though your sins are scarlet,

they will be as white as snow;

though they are crimson red,

they will be like wool.

19If you are willing and obedient,

you will eat the good things of the land.

20But if you refuse and rebel,

you will be devoured by the sword.”

For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.

21The faithful town —

what an adulteress she has become!

She was once full of justice.

Righteousness once dwelt in her,

but now, murderers!

22Your silver has become dross to be discarded,

your beer is diluted with water.

23Your rulers are rebels,

friends of thieves.

They all love graft

and chase after bribes.

They do not defend the rights of the fatherless,

and the widow’s case never comes before them.

24Therefore the Lord God of Armies,

the Mighty One of Israel, declares:

“Ah, I will get even with my foes;

I will take revenge against my enemies.

25I will turn my hand against you

and will burn away your dross completely;

I will remove all your impurities.

26I will restore your judges to what they were at first,

and your advisers to what they were at the start.

Afterward you will be called the Righteous City,

a Faithful Town.”

27Zion will be redeemed by justice,

those who repent, by righteousness.

28At the same time both rebels and sinners will be broken,

and those who abandon the Lord will perish.

29Indeed, they will be ashamed of the sacred trees

you desired,

and you will be embarrassed because of the garden shrines

you have chosen.

30For you will become like an oak

whose leaves are withered,

and like a garden without water.

31The strong one will become tinder,

and his work a spark;

both will burn together,

with no one to extinguish the flames.