The Glorious Future
1Behold, a King will reign in righteousness,
And princes will rule with justice.
2Each [one of them] will be like a hiding place from the wind
And a shelter from the storm,
Like streams of water in a dry land,
Like the shade of a huge rock in a parched and weary land [to those who turn to them].
3Then the eyes of those who see will not be blinded,
And the ears of those who hear will listen attentively.
4The heart (mind) of those who act impulsively will discern the truth,
And the tongue of the stammerers will hurry to speak clearly.
5The fool (the good-for-nothing) will no longer be called noble,
Nor the rogue said to be generous.
6For the fool speaks nonsense,
And his heart (mind) plans wickedness:
To practice ungodliness and to speak error concerning the Lord,
To keep the craving of the hungry unsatisfied
And to deprive the thirsty of drink.
7As for the rogue, his weapons are evil;
He conceives wicked plans
To ruin the poor with lies,
Even when the plea of the needy one is just and right.
8But the noble man conceives noble and magnificent things;
And he stands by what is noble and magnificent.
9Rise up, you women who are carefree,
And hear my voice,
You confident and unsuspecting daughters!
Listen to what I am saying.
10In little more than a year
You will tremble [with anxiety], you unsuspecting and complacent women;
For the vintage has ended,
And the harvest will not come.
11Tremble, you women who are carefree;
Tremble with fear, you complacent ones!
Strip, undress and wear sackcloth on your waist [in grief],
12Beat your breasts [in mourning] for the beautiful fields, for the fruitful vine,
13For the land of my people growing over with thorns and briars—
Yes, [mourn] for all the houses of joy in the joyous city.
14For the palace has been abandoned, the populated city deserted;
The hill [of the city] and the watchtower have become caves [for wild animals] forever,
A delight for wild donkeys, a pasture for flocks,
15Until the Spirit is poured out upon us from on high,
And the wilderness becomes a fertile field,
And the fertile field is valued as a forest.
16Then justice will dwell in the wilderness,
And righteousness will live in the fertile field.
17And the effect of righteousness will be peace,
And the result of righteousness will be quietness and confident trust forever.
18Then my people will live in a peaceful surrounding,
And in secure dwellings and in undisturbed resting places.
19But it will hail, when the forest comes down,
And the [capital] city will fall in utter humiliation.
20Blessed (happy, fortunate) are you who cast your seed upon all waters [when the river overflows its banks and irrigates the land],
You who allow the ox and the donkey to roam freely.