Necessity of Punishment
1I was ready to respond to those who asked me not, to be found by those who sought me not. I said: Here I am! Here I am! To a nation that did not call upon my name. f Rom 10, 20 . 2I have stretched out my hands all the day to a rebellious people, Who walk in evil paths and follow their own thoughts, g Rom 10, 21 . 3People who provoke me continually, to my face, Offering sacrifices in the groves and burning incense on bricks, 4Living among the graves and spending the night in caverns, Eating swine's flesh, with carrion broth in their dishes, 5Crying out, “Hold back, do not touch me; I am too sacred for you!” *
These things enkindle my wrath, a fire that burns all the day. 6Lo, before me it stands written; I will not be quiet until I have paid in full 7Your crimes and the crimes of your fathers as well, says the LORD. Since they burned incense on the mountains, and disgraced me on the hills, I will at once pour out in full measure their recompense into their laps.
Fate of the Good and the Bad in Israel 8Thus says the LORD:
When the juice is pressed from grapes, men say, “Do not discard them, for there is still good in them”; Thus will I do with my servants: I will not discard them all; 9From Jacob I will save offspring, from Judah, those who are to inherit my mountains; My chosen ones shall inherit the land, my servants shall dwell there. 10Sharon shall be a pasture for the flocks and the valley of Achor a resting place for the cattle of my people who have sought me.
11But you who forsake the LORD, forgetting my holy mountain, You who spread a table for Fortune and fill cups of blended wine for Destiny,* 12You I will destine for the sword; you shall all go down in slaughter. Since I called and you did not answer, I spoke and you did not listen, But did what was evil in my sight and preferred things which displease me, h Is 66, 4; Prv 1, 24; Jer 7, 13 . 13therefore thus says the Lord GOD: Lo, my servants shall eat, but you shall go hungry; My servants shall drink, but you shall be thirsty; My servants shall rejoice, but you shall be put to shame; 14My servants shall shout for joy of heart, But you shall cry out for grief of heart and howl for anguish of spirit. 15The Lord GOD shall slay you, and the name you leave Shall be used by my chosen ones for cursing; but my servants shall be called by another name 16By which he will be blessed on whom a blessing is invoked in the land; He who takes an oath in the land shall swear by the God of truth; For the hardships of the past shall be forgotten, and hidden from my eyes.
The World Renewed
17Lo, I am about to create new heavens and a new earth; The things of the past shall not be remembered or come to mind. i Is 66, 22; Rv 21, 1 . 18Instead, there shall always be rejoicing and happiness in what I create; For I create Jerusalem to be a joy and its people to be a delight; 19I will rejoice in Jerusalem and exult in my people. No longer shall the sound of weeping be heard there, or the sound of crying; 20No longer shall there be in it an infant who lives but a few days, or an old man who does not round out his full lifetime; He dies a mere youth who reaches but a hundred years, and he who fails of a hundred shall be thought accursed.
21They shall live in the houses they build, and eat the fruit of the vineyards they plant; 22They shall not build houses for others to live in, or plant for others to eat. As the years of a tree, so the years of my people; and my chosen ones shall long enjoy the produce of their hands. 23They shall not toil in vain, nor beget children for sudden destruction; For a race blessed by the LORD are they and their offspring. 24Before they call, I will answer; while they are yet speaking, I will hearken to them. 25The wolf and the lamb shall graze alike, and the lion shall eat hay like the ox [but the serpent's food shall be dust]. j Is 11, 6–9 . None shall hurt or destroy on all my holy mountain, says the LORD.*