The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Prophecy of Isaias
What burden for the Valley of Revelation?✻ Here is great stir among the townspeople, climb they eagerly to the house-tops.
What means this shouting everywhere, these thronged streets, as of a city that makes holiday? Alas for thy dead, that were never slain by the sword, never died in battle;
alas for rulers of thine, who with one accord have fled, or else been cruelly bound! Chains for all that were left, and distant exile.
I pray you then, leave me alone, to weep bitterly; never try to comfort me, now that this people of mine is widowed.
Day of doom, when the Lord of hosts will have yonder Valley of Revelation defeated, overrun, thrown into confusion; a day to test its ramparts, and overawe its citadel;✻
to archer, to chariot, to horseman, Elam sends out her challenge, bids shield come down from its place on the wall.
Chariots up and down all thy favoured valleys, horsemen halted at thy gate!
Here is Juda, then, stripped bare; here is a day for looking to the armoury, there in the Forest House.✻
How many breaches, already, in the wall of David’s city! Water you must bring in from the lower pool;
take count of the houses in Jerusalem, pulling down some to build up the defences;
you must find a bed between the two walls to contain the waters of the old pool. And all the while, no thought of him who made it all, no eyes for him who fashioned it, long ago.
This day the Lord, the God of hosts, summons you to mourn and lament, to shave your heads and wear sackcloth;
and instead all is mirth and gladness, oxen killed here, rams slaughtered there, meat being eaten and wine drunk; come, let us eat and drink, for to-morrow we die!
Plain it rings in my ear, the voice of the Lord of hosts, Never while you live shall this sin of yours be pardoned.
A message from the Lord God of hosts; Up, to my house betake thee, and find Sobna, that has charge of the temple.✻ This be thy word to him,
What claim of rank or kinship hast thou here, that thou shouldst hew out a burying-place for thyself? A tomb carefully hewed out on the hill side, an eyrie for thyself among the rocks?
Wait till the Lord trusses thee like a trussed fowl, folds thee like a cloak,
twines thee about with misfortune, and tosses thee like a ball into the great open plain! There shalt thou lie, and there that chariot which is thy pride, which is the shame of thy master’s house.
I mean to expel thee from the rank thou holdest, deprive thee of thy office.
And when that time comes, I will summon one who is a true servant of mine, Eliacim the son of Helcias,
clothe him with thy robe, gird him with thy girdle, entrust him with the power that once was thine; to rule all the citizens of Jerusalem, all Juda’s race, with a father’s care.
I will give him the key of David’s house to bear upon his shoulders; none may shut when he opens, none open when he shuts.✻
I will fix him securely in his place, like a peg that is to carry all the royal honour of his father’s house;
all the honour of his father’s house will rest upon him, as a man’s goods rest on a peg, the smaller of them, here a cooking-pan, there an instrument of music.
A day is coming, says the Lord of hosts, when the peg that was once securely fixed will be dislodged from its place; suddenly it must break and fall, and all that hung from it be ruined; the Lord decrees it.✻
The Holy Bible