The Message to Ahaz
1This took place during the reign of Ahaz, son of Jotham, son of Uzziah king of Judah: Aram’s King Rezin and Israel’s King Pekah son of Remaliah went to fight against Jerusalem, but they were not able to conquer it.
2When it became known to the house of David that Aram had occupied Ephraim, the heart of Ahaz and the hearts of his people trembled like trees of a forest shaking in the wind.
3The Lord said to Isaiah, “Go out with your son Shear-jashub to meet Ahaz at the end of the conduit of the upper pool, by the road to the Launderer’s Field. 4Say to him: Calm down and be quiet. Don’t be afraid or cowardly because of these two smoldering sticks, the fierce anger of Rezin and Aram, and the son of Remaliah. 5For Aram, along with Ephraim and the son of Remaliah, has plotted harm against you. They say, 6‘Let’s go up against Judah, terrorize it, and conquer it for ourselves. Then we can install Tabeel’s son as king in it.’”
7This is what the Lord God says:
It will not happen; it will not occur.
8The chief city of Aram is Damascus,
the chief of Damascus is Rezin
(within sixty-five years
Ephraim will be too shattered to be a people),
9the chief city of Ephraim is Samaria,
and the chief of Samaria is the son of Remaliah.
If you do not stand firm in your faith,
then you will not stand at all.
The Immanuel Prophecy
10Then the Lord spoke again to Ahaz: 11“Ask for a sign from the Lord your God — it can be as deep as Sheol or as high as heaven.”
12But Ahaz replied, “I will not ask. I will not test the Lord.”
13Isaiah said, “Listen, house of David! Is it not enough for you to try the patience of men? Will you also try the patience of my God? 14Therefore, the Lord himself will give you a sign: See, the virgin will conceive, have a son, and name him Immanuel. 15By the time he learns to reject what is bad and choose what is good, he will be eating curds and honey. 16For before the boy knows to reject what is bad and choose what is good, the land of the two kings you dread will be abandoned. 17The Lord will bring on you, your people, and your father’s house such a time as has never been since Ephraim separated from Judah: He will bring the king of Assyria.”
18On that day
the Lord will whistle to flies
at the farthest streams of the Nile
and to bees in the land of Assyria.
19All of them will come and settle
in the steep ravines, in the clefts of the rocks,
in all the thornbushes, and in all the water holes.
20On that day the Lord will use a razor hired from beyond the Euphrates River — the king of Assyria — to shave the hair on your heads, the hair on your legs, and even your beards.
21On that day
a man will raise a young cow and two sheep,
22and from the abundant milk they give
he will eat curds,
for every survivor in the land will eat curds and honey.
23And on that day
every place where there were a thousand vines,
worth a thousand pieces of silver,
will become thorns and briers.
24A man will go there with bow and arrows
because the whole land will be thorns and briers.
25You will not go to all the hills
that were once tilled with a hoe,
for fear of the thorns and briers.
Those hills will be places for oxen to graze
and for sheep to trample.