1Surely the arm of the Lord is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear.2But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.3For your hands are stained with blood, your fingers with guilt. Your lips have spoken falsely, and your tongue mutters wicked things.4No-one calls for justice; no-one pleads a case with integrity. They rely on empty arguments, they utter lies; they conceive trouble and give birth to evil.5They hatch the eggs of vipers and spin a spider’s web. Whoever eats their eggs will die, and when one is broken, an adder is hatched.6Their cobwebs are useless for clothing; they cannot cover themselves with what they make. Their deeds are evil deeds, and acts of violence are in their hands.7Their feet rush into sin; they are swift to shed innocent blood. They pursue evil schemes; acts of violence mark their ways.8The way of peace they do not know; there is no justice in their paths. They have turned them into crooked roads; no-one who walks along them will know peace.9So justice is far from us, and righteousness does not reach us. We look for light, but all is darkness; for brightness, but we walk in deep shadows.10Like the blind we grope along the wall, feeling our way like people without eyes. At midday we stumble as if it were twilight; among the strong, we are like the dead.11We all growl like bears; we moan mournfully like doves. We look for justice, but find none; for deliverance, but it is far away.12For our offences are many in your sight, and our sins testify against us. Our offences are ever with us, and we acknowledge our iniquities:13rebellion and treachery against the Lord, turning our backs on our God, inciting revolt and oppression, uttering lies our hearts have conceived.14So justice is driven back, and righteousness stands at a distance; truth has stumbled in the streets, honesty cannot enter.15Truth is nowhere to be found, and whoever shuns evil becomes a prey. The Lord looked and was displeased that there was no justice.16He saw that there was no-one, he was appalled that there was no-one to intervene; so his own arm achieved salvation for him, and his own righteousness sustained him.17He put on righteousness as his breastplate, and the helmet of salvation on his head; he put on the garments of vengeance and wrapped himself in zeal as in a cloak.18According to what they have done, so will he repay wrath to his enemies and retribution to his foes; he will repay the islands their due.19From the west, people will fear the name of the Lord, and from the rising of the sun, they will revere his glory. For he will come like a pent-up flood that the breath of the Lord drives along.20‘The Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who repent of their sins,’ declares the Lord.21‘As for me, this is my covenant with them,’ says the Lord. ‘My Spirit, who is on you, will not depart from you, and my words that I have put in your mouth will always be on your lips, on the lips of your children and on the lips of their descendants – from this time on and for ever,’ says the Lord.
English Standard Version
Evil and Oppression
1Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save, or his ear dull, that it cannot hear; (Nu 11:23; Isa 50:2)2but your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear. (Jer 5:25)3For your hands are defiled with blood and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies; your tongue mutters wickedness. (Isa 1:15)4No one enters suit justly; no one goes to law honestly; they rely on empty pleas, they speak lies, they conceive mischief and give birth to iniquity. (Job 15:35; Ps 7:14; Isa 59:14)5They hatch adders’ eggs; they weave the spider’s web; he who eats their eggs dies, and from one that is crushed a viper is hatched.6Their webs will not serve as clothing; men will not cover themselves with what they make. Their works are works of iniquity, and deeds of violence are in their hands. (Job 8:14)7Their feet run to evil, and they are swift to shed innocent blood; their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; desolation and destruction are in their highways. (Pr 1:16; Ro 3:15)8The way of peace they do not know, and there is no justice in their paths; they have made their roads crooked; no one who treads on them knows peace. (Isa 48:22; Isa 57:21)9Therefore justice is far from us, and righteousness does not overtake us; we hope for light, and behold, darkness, and for brightness, but we walk in gloom. (Isa 59:11; Isa 60:2)10We grope for the wall like the blind; we grope like those who have no eyes; we stumble at noon as in the twilight, among those in full vigor we are like dead men. (De 28:29; Job 5:14; Job 12:25; Isa 42:18; 1Co 4:9)11We all growl like bears; we moan and moan like doves; we hope for justice, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far from us. (Isa 38:14; Isa 46:13; Isa 56:1; Isa 59:9)12For our transgressions are multiplied before you, and our sins testify against us; for our transgressions are with us, and we know our iniquities:13transgressing, and denying the Lord, and turning back from following our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart lying words. (Isa 59:3)
Judgment and Redemption
14Justice is turned back, and righteousness stands far away; for truth has stumbled in the public squares, and uprightness cannot enter. (Isa 51:4)15Truth is lacking, and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey. The Lord saw it, and it displeased him that there was no justice.16He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no one to intercede; then his own arm brought him salvation, and his righteousness upheld him. (Isa 51:18; Isa 63:5)17He put on righteousness as a breastplate, and a helmet of salvation on his head; he put on garments of vengeance for clothing, and wrapped himself in zeal as a cloak. (Isa 9:7; Eph 6:13; 1Th 5:8)18According to their deeds, so will he repay, wrath to his adversaries, repayment to his enemies; to the coastlands he will render repayment. (Isa 41:1; Isa 41:5; Isa 63:4; Isa 63:6)19So they shall fear the name of the Lord from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun; for he will come like a rushing stream, which the wind of the Lord drives. (Ps 113:3; Isa 30:27)20“And a Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who turn from transgression,” declares the Lord. (Isa 40:9; Isa 43:14; Joe 2:32; Ro 11:26)21“And as for me, this is my covenant with them,” says the Lord: “My Spirit that is upon you, and my words that I have put in your mouth, shall not depart out of your mouth, or out of the mouth of your offspring, or out of the mouth of your children’s offspring,” says the Lord, “from this time forth and forevermore.” (De 4:10; Isa 51:16; Jer 31:31; Heb 8:10; Heb 10:16)