Isaiah 59

Injustice Brings Alienation from God

59:1 Look, the Lord’s hand is not too weak1 to deliver you;

his ear is not too deaf to hear you.2

59:2 But your sinful acts have alienated you from your God;

your sins have caused him to reject you and not listen to your prayers.3

59:3 For your hands are stained with blood

and your fingers with sin;

your lips speak lies,

your tongue utters malicious words.

59:4 No one is concerned about justice;4

no one sets forth his case truthfully.

They depend on false words5 and tell lies;

they conceive of oppression6

and give birth to sin.

59:5 They hatch the eggs of a poisonous snake

and spin a spider’s web.

Whoever eats their eggs will die,

a poisonous snake is hatched.7

59:6 Their webs cannot be used for clothing;

they cannot cover themselves with what they make.

Their deeds are sinful;

they commit violent crimes.8

59:7 They are eager to do evil,9

quick to shed innocent blood.10

Their thoughts are sinful;

they crush and destroy.11

59:8 They are unfamiliar with peace;

their deeds are unjust.12

They use deceitful methods,

and whoever deals with them is unfamiliar with peace.13

Israel Confesses its Sin

59:9 For this reason deliverance14 is far from us15

and salvation does not reach us.

We wait for light,16 but see only darkness;17

we wait for18 a bright light,19 but live20 in deep darkness.21

59:10 We grope along the wall like the blind,

we grope like those who cannot see;22

we stumble at noontime as if it were evening.

Though others are strong, we are like dead men.23

59:11 We all growl like bears,

we coo mournfully like doves;

we wait for deliverance,24 but there is none,

for salvation, but it is far from us.

59:12 For you are aware of our many rebellious deeds,25

and our sins testify against us;

indeed, we are aware of our rebellious deeds;

we know our sins all too well.26

59:13 We have rebelled and tried to deceive the Lord;

we turned back from following our God.

We stir up27 oppression and rebellion;

we tell lies we concocted in our minds.28

59:14 Justice is driven back;

godliness29 stands far off.

Indeed,30 honesty stumbles in the city square

and morality is not even able to enter.

59:15 Honesty has disappeared;

the one who tries to avoid evil is robbed.

The Lord watches and is displeased,31

for there is no justice.

The Lord Intervenes

59:16 He sees there is no advocate;32

he is shocked33 that no one intervenes.

So he takes matters into his own hands;34

his desire for justice drives him on.35

59:17 He wears his desire for justice36 like body armor,37

and his desire to deliver is like a helmet on his head.38

He puts on the garments of vengeance39

and wears zeal like a robe.

59:18 He repays them for what they have done,

dispensing angry judgment to his adversaries

and punishing his enemies.40

He repays the coastlands.41

59:19 In the west, people respect42 the Lord’s reputation;43

in the east they recognize his splendor.44

For he comes like a rushing45 stream

driven on by wind sent from the Lord.46

59:20 “A protector47 comes to Zion,

to those in Jacob who repent of their rebellious deeds,”48 says the Lord.

59:21 “As for me, this is my promise to49 them,” says the Lord. “My spirit, who is upon you, and my words, which I have placed in your mouth, will not depart from your mouth or from the mouths of your children and descendants from this time forward,”50 says the Lord.

Next Chapter