1The Lord says, “People who live on the islands, come and stand quietly in front of me. Let the nations gain new strength in order to state their case. Let them come forward and speak. Let us go to court and find out who is right.2“Who has stirred up a king from the east? Who has helped him win his battles? I hand nations over to him. I bring kings under his control. He turns them into dust with his sword. With his bow he turns them into straw blowing in the wind.3He hunts them down. Then he moves on unharmed. He travels so fast that his feet don't seem to touch the ground.4Who has made that happen? Who has carried it out? Who has created all of the people who have ever lived? I, the Lord, have done it. I was with the first of them. And I will be with the last of them.”5The people on the islands have seen that king coming. And it has made them afraid. People tremble with fear from one end of the earth to the other. They come and gather together.6They help each other. They say to one another, “Be strong!”7One skilled worker makes a statue of a god. Another covers it with gold. The first worker says to the second, “You have done a good job.” Another worker smooths out the metal with a hammer. Still another gives the statue its final shape. The third worker says to the last one, “You have done a good job.” Then they nail the statue down so it won't fall over.8The Lord says, “People of Israel, you are my servants. Family of Jacob, I have chosen you. You are the children of my friend Abraham.9I gathered you from one end of the earth to the other. From the farthest places on earth I brought you together. I said, ‘You are my servants.’ I have chosen you. I have not turned my back on you.10So do not be afraid. I am with you. Do not be terrified. I am your God. I will make you strong and help you. My powerful right hand will take good care of you. I always do what is right.11“All those who are angry with you will be put to shame. And they will be dishonored. Those who oppose you will be destroyed. And they will vanish.12You might search for your enemies. But you will not find them. Those who go to war against you will completely disappear.13I am the Lord your God. I take hold of your right hand. I say to you, ‘Do not be afraid. I will help you.’14Family of Jacob, you are as weak as a worm. But do not be afraid. People of Israel, there are only a few of you. But do not be afraid. I myself will help you,” announces the Lord. He is the one who sets his people free. He is the Holy One of Israel.15He says, “I will make you into a threshing sled. It will be new and sharp. It will have many teeth. You will grind the mountains down and crush them. You will turn the hills into nothing but straw.16You will toss them in the air. A strong wind will catch them and blow them away. You will be glad because I will make that happen. You will praise me. I am the Holy One of Israel.17“Those who are poor and needy search for water. But there isn't any. Their tongues are dry because they are thirsty. But I will help them. I am the Lord. I will not desert them. I am Israel's God.18I will make streams flow on the bare hilltops. I will make springs come up in the valleys. I will turn the desert into pools of water. I will turn the dry and cracked ground into flowing springs.19I will make trees grow in the desert. I will plant cedar and acacia trees there. I will plant myrtle and olive trees there. I will make pine trees grow in the dry and empty desert. I will plant fir and cypress trees there.20Then people will see and know that my powerful hand has done it. They will consider and understand that I have created it. I am the Holy One of Israel.”21The Lord says to the nations and their gods, “State your case.” Jacob's King says to them, “Prove your case to me.22Show me your facts. Tell me and my people what is going to happen. Tell us what happened in the past. Then we can check it out and see if it is really true. Or announce to us the things that will take place.23Tell us what will happen in the days ahead. Then we will know that you are gods. Do something. It does not matter whether it is good or bad. Then we will be terrified and filled with fear.24But you are less than nothing. Your actions are completely worthless. I hate it when people worship you.25“I have stirred up a king who will come from the north. He lives in the east. He will bring honor to me. He walks all over rulers as if they were mud. He steps on them just as a potter stomps on clay.26Which one of you gods said those things would happen before they did? Who told us about them so we could know them? Who told us ahead of time? Who told us so we could say, ‘You are right’? None of you told us about them. None of you told us ahead of time. In fact, no one heard you say anything at all.27I was the first to tell Zion. I said, ‘Look! The people of Israel are coming back!’ I sent a prophet to Jerusalem with the good news.28I look, but there is no one among the gods that can give me advice. None of them can answer when I ask them the simplest question.29So they are not really gods at all. What they do does not amount to anything. They are as useless as wind.
English Standard Version
Fear Not, for I Am with You
1Listen to me in silence, O coastlands; let the peoples renew their strength; let them approach, then let them speak; let us together draw near for judgment. (Isa 11:11; Hab 2:20; Zec 2:13)2Who stirred up one from the east whom victory meets at every step? He gives up nations before him, so that he tramples kings underfoot; he makes them like dust with his sword, like driven stubble with his bow. (Jud 4:10; 2Ch 36:23; Isa 40:24; Isa 45:1; Isa 46:11)3He pursues them and passes on safely, by paths his feet have not trod.4Who has performed and done this, calling the generations from the beginning? I, the Lord, the first, and with the last; I am he. (Isa 41:26; Isa 43:10; Isa 44:6; Isa 48:12; Re 1:8; Re 1:17; Re 22:13)5The coastlands have seen and are afraid; the ends of the earth tremble; they have drawn near and come. (Isa 11:11)6Everyone helps his neighbor and says to his brother, “Be strong!”7The craftsman strengthens the goldsmith, and he who smooths with the hammer him who strikes the anvil, saying of the soldering, “It is good”; and they strengthen it with nails so that it cannot be moved. (Isa 40:19; Isa 40:20)8But you, Israel, my servant, Jacob, whom I have chosen, the offspring of Abraham, my friend; (De 7:6; De 10:15; De 14:2; 2Ch 20:7; Ps 135:4; Isa 44:1; Jas 2:23; 1Pe 2:9)9you whom I took from the ends of the earth, and called from its farthest corners, saying to you, “You are my servant, I have chosen you and not cast you off”; (Isa 41:8; Isa 43:5)10fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. (Ps 48:10)11Behold, all who are incensed against you shall be put to shame and confounded; those who strive against you shall be as nothing and shall perish. (Isa 45:24)12You shall seek those who contend with you, but you shall not find them; those who war against you shall be as nothing at all. (Ps 37:10; Isa 40:17)13For I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, “Fear not, I am the one who helps you.”14Fear not, you worm Jacob, you men of Israel! I am the one who helps you, declares the Lord; your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel. (Ps 22:6; Ps 78:35; Isa 43:14; Isa 54:5)15Behold, I make of you a threshing sledge, new, sharp, and having teeth; you shall thresh the mountains and crush them, and you shall make the hills like chaff; (Isa 2:14; Mic 4:13)16you shall winnow them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the tempest shall scatter them. And you shall rejoice in the Lord; in the Holy One of Israel you shall glory. (Isa 41:2; Isa 45:25; Jer 51:2)17When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue is parched with thirst, I the Lord will answer them; I the God of Israel will not forsake them. (Isa 44:3)18I will open rivers on the bare heights, and fountains in the midst of the valleys. I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water. (Ps 107:35; Isa 35:6)19I will put in the wilderness the cedar, the acacia, the myrtle, and the olive. I will set in the desert the cypress, the plane and the pine together, (Isa 35:1; Isa 55:12; Isa 60:13)20that they may see and know, may consider and understand together, that the hand of the Lord has done this, the Holy One of Israel has created it. (Job 12:9)
The Futility of Idols
21Set forth your case, says the Lord; bring your proofs, says the King of Jacob.22Let them bring them, and tell us what is to happen. Tell us the former things, what they are, that we may consider them, that we may know their outcome; or declare to us the things to come. (Isa 41:26; Isa 44:7; Isa 45:21; Isa 46:10)23Tell us what is to come hereafter, that we may know that you are gods; do good, or do harm, that we may be dismayed and terrified. (Isa 41:22; Isa 45:7)24Behold, you are nothing, and your work is less than nothing; an abomination is he who chooses you. (Ps 115:8; Isa 41:29; 1Co 8:4)25I stirred up one from the north, and he has come, from the rising of the sun, and he shall call upon my name; he shall trample on rulers as on mortar, as the potter treads clay. (Ps 44:5; Isa 41:2; Jer 50:3)26Who declared it from the beginning, that we might know, and beforehand, that we might say, “He is right”? There was none who declared it, none who proclaimed, none who heard your words. (Isa 41:22)27I was the first to say to Zion, “Behold, here they are!” and I give to Jerusalem a herald of good news. (Isa 40:9; Isa 51:12; Isa 52:7)28But when I look, there is no one; among these there is no counselor who, when I ask, gives an answer. (Isa 41:21)29Behold, they are all a delusion; their works are nothing; their metal images are empty wind. (Isa 41:12)