The Lord’s Chosen Servant
1“Look at my servant, whom I strengthen.
He is my chosen one, who pleases me.
I have put my Spirit upon him.
He will bring justice to the nations.
2He will not shout
or raise his voice in public.
3He will not crush the weakest reed
or put out a flickering candle.
He will bring justice to all who have been wronged.
4He will not falter or lose heart
until justice prevails throughout the earth.
Even distant lands beyond the sea will wait for his instruction.”
5God, the Lord, created the heavens and stretched them out.
He created the earth and everything in it.
He gives breath to everyone,
life to everyone who walks the earth.
And it is he who says,
6“I, the Lord, have called you to demonstrate my righteousness.
I will take you by the hand and guard you,
and I will give you to my people, Israel,
as a symbol of my covenant with them.
And you will be a light to guide the nations.
7You will open the eyes of the blind.
You will free the captives from prison,
releasing those who sit in dark dungeons.
8“I am the Lord; that is my name!
I will not give my glory to anyone else,
nor share my praise with carved idols.
9Everything I prophesied has come true,
and now I will prophesy again.
I will tell you the future before it happens.”
A Song of Praise to the Lord
10Sing a new song to the Lord!
Sing his praises from the ends of the earth!
Sing, all you who sail the seas,
all you who live in distant coastlands.
11Join in the chorus, you desert towns;
let the villages of Kedar rejoice!
Let the people of Sela sing for joy;
shout praises from the mountaintops!
12Let the whole world glorify the Lord;
let it sing his praise.
13The Lord will march forth like a mighty hero;
he will come out like a warrior, full of fury.
He will shout his battle cry
and crush all his enemies.
14He will say, “I have long been silent;
yes, I have restrained myself.
But now, like a woman in labor,
I will cry and groan and pant.
15I will level the mountains and hills
and blight all their greenery.
I will turn the rivers into dry land
and will dry up all the pools.
16I will lead blind Israel down a new path,
guiding them along an unfamiliar way.
I will brighten the darkness before them
and smooth out the road ahead of them.
Yes, I will indeed do these things;
I will not forsake them.
17But those who trust in idols,
who say, ‘You are our gods,’
will be turned away in shame.
Israel’s Failure to Listen and See
18“Listen, you who are deaf!
Look and see, you blind!
19Who is as blind as my own people, my servant?
Who is as deaf as my messenger?
Who is as blind as my chosen people,
the servant of the Lord?
20You see and recognize what is right
but refuse to act on it.
You hear with your ears,
but you don’t really listen.”
21Because he is righteous,
the Lord has exalted his glorious law.
22But his own people have been robbed and plundered,
enslaved, imprisoned, and trapped.
They are fair game for anyone
and have no one to protect them,
no one to take them back home.
23Who will hear these lessons from the past
and see the ruin that awaits you in the future?
24Who allowed Israel to be robbed and hurt?
It was the Lord, against whom we sinned,
for the people would not walk in his path,
nor would they obey his law.
25Therefore, he poured out his fury on them
and destroyed them in battle.
They were enveloped in flames,
but they still refused to understand.
They were consumed by fire,
but they did not learn their lesson.