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Isaiah 28

Ephraim and its prophets reap disaster for being delusional and for rejecting divine revelation.

1 Woe to the garlands of gloryof the drunkards of Ephraim!Their crowning splendor has become as fading wreathson the heads of athe opulenta overcome with wine.
2 My Lord has in store one mighty and strong:as a ravaging hailstorm sweeping down,or like an inundating deluge of mighty waters,he will hurl them to the ground by his hand. 3 The proud garlands of the drunkards of Ephraimshall be trodden underfoot. 4 And the fading wreaths, the crowns of gloryon the heads of athe opulent,ashall be like the first-ripe fruitbefore summer harvest:he who sees it devours itthe moment he has hold of it.
5 In that day shall Jehovah of Hostsbe as a crown of beauty and wreath of gloryto the remnant of his people: 6 a spirit of justice to him who sits in judgment,a source of strengthto those who repulse the attack at the gates.
7 These too have indulged in wineand are giddy with strong drink:priests and prophets have gone astray through liquor.They are intoxicated with wineand stagger because of strong drink;they err as seers, they blunder in their decisions. 8 For all tables are filled with vomit;no spot is without excrement.
9 Whom shall he give instruction?Whom shall he enlighten with revelation?Weanlings weaned from milk,those just taken from the breast? 10 For it is but line upon line, line upon line,precept upon precept, precept upon precept;a trifle here, a trifle there.
11 Therefore, by incomprehensible speechand a strange tonguemust he speak to these people, 12 to whom he said, This is rest; let the weary rest!This is a respite! But they would not listen. 13 So to them the word of Jehovah remained:Line upon line, line upon line,precept upon precept, precept upon precept;a trifle here, a trifle there, that,persisting, they might lapse into stumblingand break themselves,become ensnared and be taken captive.
14 Therefore hear the word of Jehovah, you scofferswho preside over these people in Jerusalem. 15 You have supposed, by taking refuge in deceptionand hiding behind falsehoods,to have covenanted with Death,or reached an understanding with Sheol, that,should a flooding scourge sweep through the earth,it shall not reach you.
16 Therefore, thus says my Lord Jehovah:I lay in Zion a stone, a keystone,a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation.They who believe it will not do rashly.
17 I will make justice the measure,righteousness the weight;a hail shall sweep away your false refugeand waters flood the hiding place. 18 Your covenant with Death shall prove void,byour understanding with Sheol have no effect:when the flooding scourge sweeps through,you shall be overrun by it. 19 As often as it sweeps through,you shall be seized by it:morning after morning it shall sweep through,by day and by night it shall seize you;it shall cause terror merely to hear word of it. 20 Then shall come to pass the proverb:The couch is too short to stretch out on,the covering too narrow to wrap oneself in.
21 For Jehovah will rise upas he did on Mount Perazim,and be stirred to anger, as in the Valley of Gibeon—to perform his act, his unwonted act,and do his work, his bizarre work. 22 Now therefore scoff not,lest your bonds grow severe,for I have heard utter destructiondecreed by my Lord, Jehovah of Hosts,upon the whole earth.
23 Give heed, and hear my voice!Be attentive, and listen to what I say! 24 Will the plowman be forever plowing to sow seed,disking and harrowing the same ground? 25 When he has smoothed its surface,does he not sprinkle fennel and scatter cumin?Does he not demarcate wheat from barleyand plant buckwheat in its own plot? 26 His God instructs him,directing him in the proper procedure.
27 Fennel is not threshed with a sharp-toothed sledge,nor is a cartwheel rolled over cumin:fennel is beaten out with a stickand cumin with a rod. 28 Domestic grain is ground;one does not go on endlessly threshing it.It cannot be groundby driving horse and threshing cart over it. 29 These things originate with Jehovah of Hosts,whose counsel is wonderful,whose inspiration is surpassing.

  • a1 Hebrew gěᵓê šěmānîm; so 1QIsaa. MT gěᵓ šěmānîm, fat gully/ravine.
  • a4 Hebrew gěᵓê šěmānîm; so 1QIsaa. MT gěᵓ šěmānîm, fat gully/ravine.
  • b18 Hebrew kūppar, expiated, emended to hūpar.


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