Isaiah 1
Contemporary English Version

1 I am Isaiah, the son of Amoz.

And this is the message+ that I was given about Judah and Jerusalem when Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah were the kings of Judah:+

A Guilty Nation

2The Lord has said,

“Listen, heaven and earth!

The children I raised

have turned against me.

3Oxen and donkeys know

who owns and feeds them,

but my people won't ever learn.”

4Israel, you are a sinful nation

loaded down with guilt.

You are wicked and corrupt

and have turned from the Lord,

the holy God of Israel.

5Why be punished more?

Why not give up your sin?

Your head is badly bruised,

and you are weak all over.

6From your head to your toes

there isn't a healthy spot.

Bruises, cuts, and open sores

go without care

or oil to ease the pain.

A Country in Ruins

7Your country lies in ruins;

your towns are in ashes.

Foreigners and strangers

take and destroy your land

while you watch.

8Enemies surround Jerusalem,

alone like a hut

in a vineyard+

or in a cucumber field.

9 Zion would have disappeared

like Sodom and Gomorrah,+

if the Lord All-Powerful

had not let a few

of its people survive.

Justice, Not Sacrifices

10You are no better

than the leaders and people

of Sodom and Gomorrah!

So listen to the Lord God:

11 “Your sacrifices

mean nothing to me.

I am sick of your offerings

of rams and choice cattle;

I don't like the blood

of bulls or lambs or goats.

12“Who asked you to bring all this

when you come to worship me?

Stay out of my temple!

13Your sacrifices are worthless,

and your incense disgusting.

I can't stand the evil you do

on your New Moon Festivals

or on your Sabbaths

and other times of worship.

14I hate your New Moon Festivals

and all others as well.

They are a heavy burden

I am tired of carrying.

15“No matter how much you pray,

I won't listen.

You are too violent.

16Wash yourselves clean!

I hate your filthy deeds.

Stop doing wrong

17and learn to live right.

See that justice is done.

Defend widows and orphans

and help the oppressed.”+

An Invitation from the Lord

18I, the Lord, invite you

to come and talk it over.

Your sins are scarlet red,

but they will be whiter

than snow or wool.

19If you willingly obey me,

the best crops in the land

will be yours.

20But if you turn against me,

your enemies will kill you.

I, the Lord, have spoken.

The Lord Condemns Jerusalem

21Jerusalem, you are like

an unfaithful wife.

Once your judges were honest

and your people lived right;

now you are a city

full of murderers.

22Your silver is fake,

and your wine

is watered down.

23Your leaders have rejected me

to become friends of crooks;

your rulers are looking

for gifts and bribes.

Widows and orphans

never get a fair trial.

24I am the Lord All-Powerful,

the mighty ruler of Israel,

and I make you a promise:

You are now my enemy,

and I will show my anger

by taking revenge on you.

25I will punish you terribly

and burn away everything

that makes you unfit

to worship me.

26Jerusalem, I will choose

judges and advisors

like those you had before.

Your new name will be

“Justice and Faithfulness.”

The Lord Will Save Jerusalem

27Jerusalem, you will be saved

by showing justice;+

Zion's people who turn to me

will be saved

by doing right.

28But those rebellious sinners

who turn against me, the Lord,

will all disappear.

29You will be made ashamed

of those groves of trees

where you worshiped idols.

30You will be like a grove of trees

dying in a drought.

31Your strongest leaders

will be like dry wood

set on fire by their idols.+

No one will be able to help,

as they all go up in flames.


1.1 message: Or “vision.”
1.1 kings of Judah: Uzziah (783–742 b.c.); Jotham (742–735 b.c.; Ahaz (735–715 b.c.); Hezekiah (715–687 b.c.).
1.8 a hut in a vineyard: When it was almost time for grapes to ripen, farmers would put up a temporary shelter or hut in the field or vineyard and stay there to keep thieves and wild animals away.
1.9 Sodom and Gomorrah: Two ancient cities of Palestine that God destroyed because the people were so wicked (see Genesis 19.1-29).
1.17 and help the oppressed: Or “and punish cruel people.”
1.27 by showing justice: Or “by my saving power.”
1.31 Your … idols: Or “Your wealth will be like dry wood, set on fire by its owners.”

Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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