Isaiah 65
Contemporary English Version

The Lord Will Punish the Guilty

1 I, the Lord, was ready

to answer even those

who were not asking

and to be found by those

who were not searching.

To a nation that refused

to worship me,+

I said, “Here I am!”

2 All day long I have reached out

to stubborn and sinful people

going their own way.

3They keep making me angry

by sneering at me,

while offering sacrifices

to idols in gardens

and burning incense

to them on bricks.

4They spend their nights

hiding in burial caves;

they eat the meat of pigs,+

cooked in sauces

made of stuff unfit to eat.

5And then they say to others,

“Don't come near us!

We're dedicated to God.”

Such people are like smoke,

irritating my nose all day.

6I have written this down;

I won't keep silent.

I'll pay them back

just as their sins deserve.

7I, the Lord, will make them pay

for their sins and for those

of their ancestors—

they have disgraced me

by burning incense

on mountains.

8Here is what the Lord says:

A cluster of grapes

that produces wine

is worth keeping!

So, because of my servants,

I won't destroy everyone.

9I have chosen the people

of Israel and Judah,

and I will bless them

with many descendants.

They will settle here

in this land of mountains,

and it will be theirs.

10 My people will worship me.

Then the coastlands of Sharon

and the land as far

as Achor Valley+

will turn into pastureland

where cattle and sheep

will feed and rest.

11What will I, the Lord, do

if any of you reject me

and my holy mountain?

What will happen to you

for offering food and wine

to the gods you call

“Good Luck” and “Fate”?

12Your luck will end!

I will see to it that you

are slaughtered with swords.

You refused to answer

when I called out;

you paid no attention

to my instructions.

Instead, you did what I hated,

knowing it was wrong.

13I, the Lord God, will give

food and drink to my servants,

and they will celebrate.

But all of you sinners

will go hungry and thirsty,

overcome with disgrace.

14My servants will laugh and sing,

but you will be sad

and cry out in pain.

15I, the Lord God, promise

to see that you are killed

and that my chosen servants use

your names as curse words.

But I will give new names+

to my servants.+

16I am God! I can be trusted.

Your past troubles are gone;

I no longer think of them.

When you pray for someone

to receive a blessing,

or when you make a promise,

you must do it in my name.

I alone am the God

who can be trusted.

The Lord's New Creation

17 I am creating new heavens

and a new earth;

everything of the past

will be forgotten.

18Celebrate and be glad forever!

I am creating a Jerusalem,

full of happy people.

19 I will celebrate with Jerusalem

and all its people;

there will be no more crying

or sorrow in that city.

20No child will die in infancy;

everyone will live

a very long life.

Anyone a hundred years old

will be considered young,

and to die younger than that

will be considered a curse.

21My people will live

in the houses they build;

they will enjoy grapes

from their own vineyards.

22No one will take away

their homes or vineyards.

My chosen people will live

to be as old as trees,

and they will enjoy

what they have earned.

23Their work won't be wasted,

and their children won't die

of dreadful diseases.+

I will bless their children

and their grandchildren.

24I will answer their prayers

before they finish praying.

25 Wolves and lambs

will graze together;

lions and oxen

will feed on straw.

Snakes will eat only dirt!

They won't bite or harm anyone

on my holy mountain.

I, the Lord, have spoken!


65.1 refused … me: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
65.4 burial … pigs: Coming in contact with the dead or eating the meat of pigs made a person unacceptable to God.
65.10 coastlands of Sharon … Achor Valley: Sharon is the coastal plain on the west, and Achor Valley is in the east near Jericho. These two places stand for the whole country.
65.15 new names: The giving of a new name suggests the beginning of a new life.
65.15 But I … servants: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
65.23 their children … diseases: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.

Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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