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Isaiah 28 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Ephraim’s Captivity Predicted

28 Woe to the proud crown of the drunkards of Ephraim,
And to the fading flower of its glorious beauty,
Which is at the head of the [a]fertile valley
Of those who are [b]overcome with wine!
Behold, the Lord has a strong and mighty agent;
As a storm of hail, a tempest of destruction,
Like a storm of mighty overflowing waters,
He has cast it down to the earth with His hand.
The proud crown of the drunkards of Ephraim is trodden under foot.
And the fading flower of its glorious beauty,
Which is at the head of the [c]fertile valley,
Will be like the first-ripe fig prior to summer,
Which [d]one sees,
And [e]as soon as it is in his [f]hand,
He swallows it.
In that day the Lord of hosts will become a beautiful crown
And a glorious diadem to the remnant of His people;
A spirit of justice for him who sits in judgment,
A strength to those who repel the [g]onslaught at the gate.
And these also reel with wine and stagger from strong drink:
The priest and the prophet reel with strong drink,
They are confused by wine, they stagger from strong drink;
They reel while [h]having visions,
They totter when rendering judgment.
For all the tables are full of filthy vomit, without a single clean place.

“To whom would He teach knowledge,
And to whom would He interpret the message?
Those just weaned from milk?
Those just taken from the breast?
10 “For He says,
[i]Order on order, order on order,
Line on line, line on line,
A little here, a little there.’”
11 Indeed, He will speak to this people
Through stammering lips and a foreign tongue,
12 He who said to them, “Here is rest, give rest to the weary,”
And, “Here is repose,” but they would not listen.
13 So the word of the Lord to them will be,
[j]Order on order, order on order,
Line on line, line on line,
A little here, a little there,”
That they may go and stumble backward, be broken, snared and taken captive.

Judah Is Warned

14 Therefore, hear the word of the Lord, O scoffers,
Who rule this people who are in Jerusalem,
15 Because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death,
And with [k]Sheol we have made a [l]pact.
The overwhelming [m]scourge will not reach us when it passes by,
For we have made falsehood our refuge and we have concealed ourselves with deception.”

16 Therefore thus says the Lord [n]God,

Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone,
A costly cornerstone for the foundation, [o]firmly placed.
He who believes in it will not be [p]disturbed.
17 “I will make justice the measuring line
And righteousness the level;
Then hail will sweep away the refuge of lies
And the waters will overflow the secret place.
18 “Your covenant with death will be [q]canceled,
And your pact with Sheol will not stand;
When the overwhelming scourge passes through,
Then you become its trampling place.
19 “As often as it passes through, it will [r]seize you;
For morning after morning it will pass through, anytime during the day or night,
And it will be [s]sheer terror to understand [t]what it means.”
20 The bed is too short on which to stretch out,
And the blanket is too [u]small to wrap oneself in.
21 For the Lord will rise up as at Mount Perazim,
He will be stirred up as in the valley of Gibeon,
To do His task, His [v]unusual task,
And to work His work, His [w]extraordinary work.
22 And now do not carry on as scoffers,
Or your fetters will be made stronger;
For I have heard from the Lord [x]God of hosts
Of decisive destruction on all the earth.

23 Give ear and hear my voice,
Listen and hear my words.
24 Does the [y]farmer plow [z]continually to plant seed?
Does he continually [aa]turn and harrow the ground?
25 Does he not level its surface
And sow dill and scatter cummin
And [ab]plant wheat in rows,
Barley in its place and rye within its [ac]area?
26 For his God instructs and teaches him properly.
27 For dill is not threshed with a threshing sledge,
Nor is the cartwheel [ad]driven over cummin;
But dill is beaten out with a rod, and cummin with a club.
28 Grain for bread is crushed,
Indeed, he does not continue to thresh it forever.
Because the wheel of his cart and his horses eventually [ae]damage it,
He does not thresh it longer.
29 This also comes from the Lord of hosts,
Who has made His counsel wonderful and His wisdom great.

Footnotes:

  1. Isaiah 28:1 Lit valley of fatness
  2. Isaiah 28:1 Lit smitten
  3. Isaiah 28:4 Lit valley of fatness
  4. Isaiah 28:4 Lit the one seeing sees
  5. Isaiah 28:4 Lit while it is yet
  6. Isaiah 28:4 Lit palm
  7. Isaiah 28:6 Lit battle
  8. Isaiah 28:7 Lit seeing
  9. Isaiah 28:10 Heb Sav lasav, sav lasav, Kav lakav, kav lakav, Ze’ er sham, ze’ er sham These Hebrew monosyllables, imitating the babbling of a child, mock the prophet’s preaching
  10. Isaiah 28:13 V 10, note 1 The Lord responds to their scoffing by imitating their mockery, to represent the unintelligible language of a conqueror
  11. Isaiah 28:15 I.e. the nether world
  12. Isaiah 28:15 So some ancient versions; Heb seer
  13. Isaiah 28:15 Or flood
  14. Isaiah 28:16 Heb YHWH, usually rendered Lord
  15. Isaiah 28:16 Lit well-laid
  16. Isaiah 28:16 Lit in a hurry
  17. Isaiah 28:18 Lit covered over
  18. Isaiah 28:19 Lit take
  19. Isaiah 28:19 Lit only
  20. Isaiah 28:19 Lit the report, or, the message
  21. Isaiah 28:20 Lit narrow
  22. Isaiah 28:21 Lit task is strange
  23. Isaiah 28:21 Lit work is alien
  24. Isaiah 28:22 Heb YHWH, usually rendered Lord
  25. Isaiah 28:24 Lit plowman
  26. Isaiah 28:24 Lit all day
  27. Isaiah 28:24 Lit open
  28. Isaiah 28:25 Lit put
  29. Isaiah 28:25 Lit region
  30. Isaiah 28:27 Lit rolled
  31. Isaiah 28:28 Lit discomfit
New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation

Isaiah 28 New International Version (NIV)

Woe to the Leaders of Ephraim and Judah

28 Woe to that wreath, the pride of Ephraim’s drunkards,
    to the fading flower, his glorious beauty,
set on the head of a fertile valley
    to that city, the pride of those laid low by wine!
See, the Lord has one who is powerful and strong.
    Like a hailstorm and a destructive wind,
like a driving rain and a flooding downpour,
    he will throw it forcefully to the ground.
That wreath, the pride of Ephraim’s drunkards,
    will be trampled underfoot.
That fading flower, his glorious beauty,
    set on the head of a fertile valley,
will be like figs ripe before harvest—
    as soon as people see them and take them in hand,
    they swallow them.

In that day the Lord Almighty
    will be a glorious crown,
a beautiful wreath
    for the remnant of his people.
He will be a spirit of justice
    to the one who sits in judgment,
a source of strength
    to those who turn back the battle at the gate.

And these also stagger from wine
    and reel from beer:
Priests and prophets stagger from beer
    and are befuddled with wine;
they reel from beer,
    they stagger when seeing visions,
    they stumble when rendering decisions.
All the tables are covered with vomit
    and there is not a spot without filth.

“Who is it he is trying to teach?
    To whom is he explaining his message?
To children weaned from their milk,
    to those just taken from the breast?
10 For it is:
    Do this, do that,
    a rule for this, a rule for that[a];
    a little here, a little there.

11 Very well then, with foreign lips and strange tongues
    God will speak to this people,
12 to whom he said,
    “This is the resting place, let the weary rest”;
and, “This is the place of repose”—
    but they would not listen.
13 So then, the word of the Lord to them will become:
    Do this, do that,
    a rule for this, a rule for that;
    a little here, a little there
so that as they go they will fall backward;
    they will be injured and snared and captured.

14 Therefore hear the word of the Lord, you scoffers
    who rule this people in Jerusalem.
15 You boast, “We have entered into a covenant with death,
    with the realm of the dead we have made an agreement.
When an overwhelming scourge sweeps by,
    it cannot touch us,
for we have made a lie our refuge
    and falsehood[b] our hiding place.

16 So this is what the Sovereign Lord says:

“See, I lay a stone in Zion, a tested stone,
    a precious cornerstone for a sure foundation;
the one who relies on it
    will never be stricken with panic.
17 I will make justice the measuring line
    and righteousness the plumb line;
hail will sweep away your refuge, the lie,
    and water will overflow your hiding place.
18 Your covenant with death will be annulled;
    your agreement with the realm of the dead will not stand.
When the overwhelming scourge sweeps by,
    you will be beaten down by it.
19 As often as it comes it will carry you away;
    morning after morning, by day and by night,
    it will sweep through.”

The understanding of this message
    will bring sheer terror.
20 The bed is too short to stretch out on,
    the blanket too narrow to wrap around you.
21 The Lord will rise up as he did at Mount Perazim,
    he will rouse himself as in the Valley of Gibeon
to do his work, his strange work,
    and perform his task, his alien task.
22 Now stop your mocking,
    or your chains will become heavier;
the Lord, the Lord Almighty, has told me
    of the destruction decreed against the whole land.

23 Listen and hear my voice;
    pay attention and hear what I say.
24 When a farmer plows for planting, does he plow continually?
    Does he keep on breaking up and working the soil?
25 When he has leveled the surface,
    does he not sow caraway and scatter cumin?
Does he not plant wheat in its place,[c]
    barley in its plot,[d]
    and spelt in its field?
26 His God instructs him
    and teaches him the right way.

27 Caraway is not threshed with a sledge,
    nor is the wheel of a cart rolled over cumin;
caraway is beaten out with a rod,
    and cumin with a stick.
28 Grain must be ground to make bread;
    so one does not go on threshing it forever.
The wheels of a threshing cart may be rolled over it,
    but one does not use horses to grind grain.
29 All this also comes from the Lord Almighty,
    whose plan is wonderful,
    whose wisdom is magnificent.

Footnotes:

  1. Isaiah 28:10 Hebrew / sav lasav sav lasav / kav lakav kav lakav (probably meaningless sounds mimicking the prophet’s words); also in verse 13
  2. Isaiah 28:15 Or false gods
  3. Isaiah 28:25 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.
  4. Isaiah 28:25 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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