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The Prophets Before the Exile

(Category 8 of 16)

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Woe to Ephraim and Jerusalem


1 Woe to the crown of pride, to the drunkards of Ephraim, Whose glorious beauty is a fading flower Which is at the head of the 1verdant valleys, To those who are overcome with wine!
2 Behold, the Lord has a mighty and strong one, aLike a tempest of hail and a destroying storm, Like a flood of mighty waters overflowing, Who will bring them down to the earth with His hand.
3 The crown of pride, the drunkards of Ephraim, Will be trampled underfoot;
4 And the glorious beauty is a fading flower Which is at the head of the 1verdant valley, Like the first fruit before the summer, Which an observer sees; He eats it up while it is still in his hand.

5 In that day the LORD of hosts will be For a crown of glory and a diadem of beauty To the remnant of His people,
6 For a spirit of justice to him who sits in judgment,

CHAPTER 28 References

1 1Lit. valleys
of fatness
2 aIs. 30:30;
Ezek. 13:11
4 1Lit. valley
of fatness
7 aProv. 20:1;
Is. 5:11, 22;
Hos. 4:11 bIs.
56:10, 12
9 aJer. 6:10
10 a[2 Chr.
36:15; Neh.
9:30; Jer. 25:3,
4; 35:15; 44:4] 11 aIs. 33:19;
1 Cor. 14:21
12 aIs. 30:15;
Jer. 6:16;
[Matt. 11:28,
29] 15 aIs. 9:15;
Ezek. 13:22;
Amos 2:4

And for strength to those who turn back the battle at the gate.

7 But they also ahave erred through wine, And through intoxicating drink are out of the way; bThe priest and the prophet have erred through intoxicating drink, They are swallowed up by wine, They are out of the way through intoxicating drink; They err in vision, they stumble in judgment.
8 For all tables are full of vomit and filth; No place is clean.

9 “Whoma will he teach knowledge? And whom will he make to understand the message? Those just weaned from milk? Those just drawn from the breasts?
10 aFor precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept, Line upon line, line upon line, Here a little, there a little.”

11 For with astammering lips and another tongue He will speak to this people,
12 To whom He said, “This is the arest with which You may cause the weary to rest,” And, “This is the refreshing”; Yet they would not hear.
13 But the word of the LORD was to them, “Precept upon precept, precept upon precept, Line upon line, line upon line, Here a little, there a little,” That they might go and fall backward, and be broken And snared and caught.

14 Therefore hear the word of the LORD, you scornful men, Who rule this people who are in Jerusalem,
15 Because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death, And with Sheol we are in agreement. When the overflowing scourge passes through, It will not come to us, aFor we have made lies our refuge, And under falsehood we have hidden ourselves.”

A Cornerstone in Zion

16 Therefore thus says the Lord GOD:

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“Behold, I lay in Zion aa stone for a foundation, A tried stone, a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation; Whoever believes will not act hastily.
17 Also I will make justice the measuring line, And righteousness the plummet; The hail will sweep away the refuge of lies, And the waters will overflow the hiding place.
18 Your covenant with death will be annulled, And your agreement with Sheol will not stand; When the overflowing scourge passes through, Then you will be trampled down by it.
19 As often as it goes out it will take you; For morning by morning it will pass over, And by day and by night; It will be a terror just to understand the report.”

20 For the bed is too short to stretch out on, And the covering so narrow that one cannot wrap himself in it.
21 For the LORD will rise up as at Mount aPerazim, He will be angry as in the Valley of bGibeon— That He may do His work, cHis awesome work, And bring to pass His act, His 1unusual act.
22 Now therefore, do not be mockers, Lest your bonds be made strong; For I have heard from the Lord GOD of hosts, aA 1destruction determined even upon the whole earth.

Listen to the Teaching of God

23 Give ear and hear my voice, Listen and hear my speech.
24 Does the plowman keep plowing all day to sow? Does he keep turning his soil and breaking the clods?
25 When he has leveled its surface, Does he not sow the black cummin And scatter the cummin, Plant the wheat in rows, The barley in the appointed place, And the 1spelt in its place?
26 For He instructs him in right judgment, His God teaches him.

16 aGen. 49:24;
Ps. 118:22; Is.
8:14, 15; Matt.
21:42; Mark
12:10; Luke
20:17; Acts
4:11; Rom.
9:33; 10:11;
Eph. 2:20;
1 Pet. 2:6–8
21 a2 Sam.
5:20; 1 Chr.
14:11 bJosh.
10:10, 12;
2 Sam. 5:25;
1 Chr. 14:16
c[Lam. 3:33;
19:41–44] 1Lit.
22 aIs. 10:22;
Dan. 9:27 1Lit.
complete end
25 1rye
29 aPs. 92:5; Is.
9:6; Jer. 32:19
1sound wisdom

CHAPTER 29 References

1 aEzek. 24:6,
9 b2 Sam. 5:9
lit. Lion of
4 aIs. 8:19
5 aIs. 25:5 bJob
21:18; Is.
17:13 cIs.
30:13; 47:11;
1 Thess. 5:3
6 aIs. 28:2;
30:30 b1 Sam.
2:10; Zech.
14:4; Matt.
24:7; Mark
13:8; Luke
21:11; Rev.
16:18, 19
7 aIs. 37:36;
Mic. 4:11, 12;
Zech. 12:9
bJob 20:8
8 aPs. 73:20


27 For the black cummin is not threshed with a threshing sledge, Nor is a cartwheel rolled over the cummin; But the black cummin is beaten out with a stick, And the cummin with a rod.
28 Bread flour must be ground; Therefore he does not thresh it forever, Break it with his cartwheel, Or crush it with his horsemen.
29 This also comes from the LORD of hosts, aWho is wonderful in counsel and excellent in 1guidance.

Woe to Jerusalem


1 “Woe ato 1Ariel, to Ariel, the city bwhere David dwelt! Add year to year; Let feasts come around.
2 Yet I will distress Ariel; There shall be heaviness and sorrow, And it shall be to Me as Ariel.
3 I will encamp against you all around, I will lay siege against you with a mound, And I will raise siegeworks against you.
4 You shall be brought down, You shall speak out of the ground; Your speech shall be low, out of the dust; Your voice shall be like a medium’s, aout of the ground; And your speech shall whisper out of the dust.

5 “Moreover the multitude of your afoes Shall be like fine dust, And the multitude of the terrible ones Like bchaff that passes away; Yes, it shall be cin an instant, suddenly.
6 aYou will be punished by the LORD of hosts With thunder and bearthquake and great noise, With storm and tempest And the flame of devouring fire.
7 aThe multitude of all the nations who fight against 1Ariel, Even all who fight against her and her fortress, And distress her, Shall be bas a dream of a night vision.
8 aIt shall even be as when a hungry man dreams, And look—he eats; But he awakes, and his soul is still empty; Or as when a thirsty man dreams,

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And look—he drinks; But he awakes, and indeed he is faint, And his soul still craves: So the multitude of all the nations shall be, Who fight against Mount Zion.”

The Blindness of Disobedience

9 Pause and wonder! Blind yourselves and be blind! aThey are drunk, bbut not with wine; They stagger, but not with intoxicating drink.
10 For athe LORD has poured out on you The spirit of deep sleep, And has bclosed your eyes, namely, the prophets; And He has covered your heads, namely, cthe seers.

11 The whole vision has become to you like the words of a 1book athat is sealed, which men deliver to one who is literate, saying, “Read this, please.” bAnd he says, “I cannot, for it is sealed.”
12 Then the book is delivered to one who 1is illiterate, saying, “Read this, please.” And he says, “I am not literate.”
13 Therefore the Lord said:

a“Inasmuch as these people draw near with their mouths And honor Me bwith their lips, But have removed their hearts far from Me, And their fear toward Me is taught by the commandment of men,
14 aTherefore, behold, I will again do a marvelous work Among this people, A marvelous work and a wonder; bFor the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, And the understanding of their prudent men shall be hidden.”

15 aWoe to those who seek deep to hide their counsel far from the LORD, And their works are in the dark; bThey say, “Who sees us?” and, “Who knows us?”
16 Surely you have things turned around! Shall the potter be esteemed as the clay; For shall the athing made say of him who made it, “He did not make me”? Or shall the thing formed say of him who formed it, “He has no understanding”?

9 aIs. 28:7, 8
bIs. 51:21
10 aPs. 69:23;
Is. 6:9, 10;
Mic. 3:6; Rom.
11:8 bPs.
69:23; Is. 6:10
c1 Sam. 9:9;
Is. 44:18; Mic.
3:6; [2 Thess.
2:9–12] 11 aIs. 8:16
bDan. 12:4, 9;
Rev. 5:1–5, 9
12 1Lit. does
not know
13 aPs. 78:36;
Ezek. 33:31;
Matt. 15:8, 9;
Mark 7:6, 7
bCol. 2:22
14 aIs. 6:9, 10;
28:21; Hab.
1:5 bIs. 44:25;
Jer. 49:7;
Obad. 8;
1 Cor. 1:19
15 aIs. 30:1
bPs. 10:11;
94:7; Is. 47:10;
Ezek. 8:12;
Mal. 2:17
16 aIs. 45:9;
Jer. 18:1–6;
9:19–21] 17 aIs. 32:15
18 aIs. 35:5;
Matt. 11:5;
Mark 7:37
19 a[Ps. 25:9;
37:11; Is. 11:4;
61:1; Matt.
5:5; 11:29] bIs.
14:30; [Matt.
5:3; 11:5;
James 2:5] 20 aIs. 28:14
bIs. 59:4; Mic.
2:1 1terrifying
21 aAmos 5:10,
12 bProv.
22 aJosh. 24:3
bIs. 45:17
23 a[Is. 45:11;
49:20–26; Eph.
2:10] 24 aIs. 28:7

CHAPTER 30 References

1 aIs. 29:15
bDeut. 29:19
1Lit. weave a
2 aIs. 31:1; Jer.
43:7 bNum.
27:21; Josh.
9:14; 1 Kin.
22:7; Jer. 21:2;
42:2, 20
3 aIs. 20:5; Jer.
37:5, 7
4 aIs. 19:11

Future Recovery of Wisdom

17 Is it not yet a very little while Till aLebanon shall be turned into a fruitful field, And the fruitful field be esteemed as a forest?
18 aIn that day the deaf shall hear the words of the book, And the eyes of the blind shall see out of obscurity and out of darkness.
19 aThe humble also shall increase their joy in the LORD, And bthe poor among men shall rejoice In the Holy One of Israel.
20 For the 1terrible one is brought to nothing, aThe scornful one is consumed, And all who bwatch for iniquity are cut off—
21 Who make a man an offender by a word, And alay a snare for him who reproves in the gate, And turn aside the just bby empty words.

22 Therefore thus says the LORD, awho redeemed Abraham, concerning the house of Jacob:

Jacob shall not now be bashamed, Nor shall his face now grow pale;
23 But when he sees his children, aThe work of My hands, in his midst, They will hallow My name, And hallow the Holy One of Jacob, And fear the God of Israel.
24 These also awho erred in spirit will come to understanding, And those who complained will learn doctrine.”

Futile Confidence in Egypt


1 “Woe to the rebellious children,” says the LORD, a“Who take counsel, but not of Me, And who 1devise plans, but not of My Spirit, bThat they may add sin to sin;
2 aWho walk to go down to Egypt, And bhave not asked My advice, To strengthen themselves in the strength of Pharaoh, And to trust in the shadow of Egypt!
3 aTherefore the strength of Pharaoh Shall be your shame, And trust in the shadow of Egypt Shall be your humiliation.
4 For his princes were at aZoan, And his ambassadors came to Hanes.

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5 aThey were all ashamed of a people who could not benefit them, Or be help or benefit, But a shame and also a reproach.”

6 aThe 1burden against the beasts of the South.

Through a land of trouble and anguish, From which came the lioness and lion, bThe viper and fiery flying serpent, They will carry their riches on the backs of young donkeys, And their treasures on the humps of camels, To a people who shall not profit;
7 aFor the Egyptians shall help in vain and to no purpose. Therefore I have called her 1Rahab-Hem-Shebeth.

A Rebellious People

8 Now go, awrite it before them on a tablet, And note it on a scroll, That it may be for time to come, Forever and ever:
9 That athis is a rebellious people, Lying children, Children who will not hear the law of the LORD;
10 aWho say to the seers, “Do not see,” And to the prophets, “Do not prophesy to us right things; bSpeak to us smooth things, prophesy deceits.
11 Get out of the way, Turn aside from the path, Cause the Holy One of Israel To cease from before us.”

12 Therefore thus says the Holy One of Israel:

“Because you adespise this word, And trust in oppression and perversity, And rely on them,
13 Therefore this iniquity shall be to you aLike a breach ready to fall, A bulge in a high wall, Whose breaking bcomes suddenly, in an instant.
14 And aHe shall break it like the breaking of the potter’s vessel, Which is broken in pieces; He shall not spare. So there shall not be found among its fragments

5 aJer. 2:36
6 aIs. 57:9;
Hos. 8:9; 12:1
bDeut. 8:15;
Is. 14:29 1oracle,
7 aJer. 37:7
1Lit. Rahab
Sits Idle
8 aHab. 2:2
9 aDeut. 32:20;
Is. 1:2, 4; 65:2
10 aIs. 5:20;
Jer. 11:21;
Amos 2:12;
Mic. 2:6
b1 Kin. 22:8,
13; Jer. 6:14;
23:17, 26;
Ezek. 13:7;
Mic. 2:11;
Rom. 16:18;
2 Tim. 4:3, 4
12 aLev. 26:43;
Num. 15:31;
Prov. 1:30;
13:13; Is. 5:24;
Ezek. 20:13,
16, 24; Amos
13 a1 Kin.
20:30; Ps.
62:3, 4; Is.
58:12 bIs. 29:5
14 aPs. 2:9; Jer.
19:11 1A piece
of broken pottery
15 aPs. 116:7;
Is. 7:4; 28:12
bMatt. 23:37
17 aLev. 26:36;
Deut. 28:25;
32:30; Josh.
23:10; [Prov.
28:1] 1A tree
stripped of
18 aIs. 33:2
bPs. 2:12; 34:8;
Prov. 16:20;
Jer. 17:7 cIs.
19 aIs. 65:9;
[Ezek. 37:25,
28] bIs. 25:8
cPs. 50:15; Is.
65:24; [Matt.
7:7–11] 20 a1 Kin.
22:27; Ps.
127:2 bPs.
74:9; Amos
8:11 1oppression
21 aJosh. 1:7
22 a2 Chr. 31:1;
Is. 2:20; 31:7
bHos. 14:8

ISAIAH 30:22

1A shard to take fire from the hearth, Or to take water from the cistern.”

15 For thus says the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel:

a“In returning and rest you shall be saved; In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.” bBut you would not,
16 And you said, “No, for we will flee on horses”— Therefore you shall flee! And, “We will ride on swift horses”— Therefore those who pursue you shall be swift!

17 aOne thousand shall flee at the threat of one, At the threat of five you shall flee, Till you are left as a 1pole on top of a mountain And as a banner on a hill. God Will Be Gracious

18 Therefore the LORD will wait, that He may be agracious to you; And therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you. For the LORD is a God of justice; bBlessed are all those who cwait for Him.

19 For the people ashall dwell in Zion at Jerusalem; You shall bweep no more. He will be very gracious to you at the sound of your cry; When He hears it, He will canswer you.
20 And though the Lord gives you aThe bread of adversity and the water of 1affliction, Yet byour teachers will not be moved into a corner anymore, But your eyes shall see your teachers.
21 Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” Whenever you aturn to the right hand Or whenever you turn to the left.
22 aYou will also defile the covering of your images of silver, And the ornament of your molded images of gold. You will throw them away as an unclean thing; bYou will say to them, “Get away!”

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ISAIAH 30:23

23 aThen He will give the rain for your seed With which you sow the ground, And bread of the increase of the earth; It will be 1fat and plentiful. In that day your cattle will feed In large pastures.
24 Likewise the oxen and the young donkeys that work the ground Will eat cured fodder, Which has been winnowed with the shovel and fan.
25 There will be aon every high mountain And on every high hill Rivers and streams of waters, In the day of the bgreat slaughter, When the towers fall.
26 Moreover athe light of the moon will be as the light of the sun, And the light of the sun will be sevenfold, As the light of seven days, In the day that the LORD binds up the bruise of His people And heals the stroke of their wound.

Judgment on Assyria

27 Behold, the name of the LORD comes from afar, Burning with His anger, And His burden is heavy; His lips are full of indignation, And His tongue like a devouring fire.
28 aHis breath is like an overflowing stream, bWhich reaches up to the neck, To sift the nations with the sieve of futility; And there shall be ca bridle in the jaws of the people, Causing them to err.

29 You shall have a song As in the night when a holy festival is kept, And gladness of heart as when one goes with a flute, To come into athe mountain of the LORD, To 1the Mighty One of Israel.
30 aThe LORD will cause His glorious voice to be heard, And show the descent of His arm, With the indignation of His anger And the flame of a devouring fire, With scattering, tempest, band hailstones.
31 For athrough the voice of the LORD Assyria will be 1beaten down, As He strikes with the brod.
32 And in every place where the

23 a[Matt.
6:33]; 1 Tim.
6:8 1rich
25 aIs. 2:14, 15
bIs. 2:10–21;
26 a[Is. 60:19,
20; Rev. 21:23;
22:5] 28 aIs. 11:4;
2 Thess. 2:8
bIs. 8:8 c2 Kin.
19:28; Is.
29 a[Is. 2:3] 1Lit. the Rock
30 aIs. 29:6 bIs.
31 aIs. 14:25;
37:36 bIs. 10:5,
24 1Lit. shattered
32 aIs. 11:15
33 a2 Kin.
23:10; Jer.

staff of punishment passes, Which the LORD lays on him, It will be with tambourines and harps; And in battles of abrandishing He will fight with it.
33 aFor Tophet was established of old, Yes, for the king it is prepared. He has made it deep and large; Its pyre is fire with much wood; The breath of the LORD, like a stream of brimstone, Kindles it.

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The Futility of Idols and the Trustworthiness of God

1 NOT aunto us, O LORD, not unto us, But to Your name give glory, Because of Your mercy, Because of Your truth.
2 Why should the 1Gentiles say, a“So where is their God?”

3 aBut our God is in heaven; He does whatever He pleases.
4 aTheir idols are silver and gold, The work of men’s hands.
5 They have mouths, but they do not speak; Eyes they have, but they do not see;
6 They have ears, but they do not hear; Noses they have, but they do not smell;
7 They have hands, but they do not handle; Feet they have, but they do not walk; Nor do they mutter through their throat.
8 aThose who make them are like them; So is everyone who trusts in them.

9 aO Israel, trust in the LORD; bHe is their help and their shield.

PSALM 115 References

1 a[Is. 48:11];
Ezek. 36:32
2 aPs. 42:3, 10
3 a[1 Chr.
16:26] 4 aDeut. 4:28;
2 Kin. 19:18;
Is. 37:19;
44:10, 20; Jer.
8 aPs. 135:18;
Is. 44:9–11
9 aPs. 118:2, 3
bPs. 33:20
12 1has remembered
13 aPs. 128:1, 4
15 a[Gen.
14:19] bGen.
1:1; Acts
14:15; Rev.
17 aPs. 6:5;
88:10–12; [Is.
38:18] 18 aPs. 113:2;
Dan. 2:20

10 O house of Aaron, trust in the LORD; He is their help and their shield.
11 You who fear the LORD, trust in the LORD; He is their help and their shield.

12 The LORD 1has been mindful of us; He will bless us; He will bless the house of Israel; He will bless the house of Aaron.
13 aHe will bless those who fear the LORD, Both small and great.

14 May the LORD give you increase more and more, You and your children.
15 May you be ablessed by the LORD, bWho made heaven and earth.
16 The heaven, even the heavens, are the LORD’s; But the earth He has given to the children of men.
17 aThe dead do not praise the LORD, Nor any who go down into silence.
18 aBut we will bless the LORD From this time forth and forevermore.

Praise the LORD!




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