Isaiah 40

1Your God says, “Comfort, comfort my people! 2Speak kindly to Jerusalem! Tell Jerusalem, 'Your time of service is finished. You have paid the price for your sins.’” The Lord punished Jerusalem— twice for every sin she did. 3Listen, there is a person shouting! “Prepare a way in the desert for the Lord! Make the road in the desert level for our God! 4Fill every valley. Make every mountain and hill flat. Make the crooked roads straight. Make the rough ground smooth. 5Then, the Glory of the Lord will be revealed ˻(shown)˼. And together, all people will see the Lord’s Glory. Yes, the Lord himself said these things!” 6A voice said, ”Speak!” So the man said, ”What should I say?” The voice said, ”People ˻don't live forever; they˼ are all like grass. Their goodness is like a wildflower. 7A powerful wind from the Lord blows on the grass, and the grass dies and the wildflower falls.” Yes, all people are like grass. 8Grass dies and wildflowers fall. But the word of our God continues forever.” 9Zion, you have good news to tell. Go up on a high mountain and shout the good news! Jerusalem, you have good news to tell. Don’t be afraid, speak loudly! Tell this news to all of the cities of Judah: “Look, here is your God! 10The Lord my Master is coming with power. He will use his power to rule all the people. The Lord will bring rewards for his people. He will have their payment with him. 11The Lord will lead his people like a shepherd leads sheep. The Lord will use his arm ˻(power)˼ and gather his sheep together. The Lord will pick up the little sheep and hold them in his arms. Their mothers will walk beside him. 12Who measured the oceans in the palm of his hand? Who used his hand to measure the sky? Who used a bowl to measure all the dust of the earth? Who used measuring scales to measure the mountains and hills? ˻It was the Lord!˼ 13No person told the Lord’s Spirit what he should do. No person told the Lord how to do the things he did. 14Did the Lord ask for any person’s help? Did any person teach the Lord to be fair? Did any person teach the Lord knowledge? Did any person teach the Lord to be wise? ˻No! The Lord already knew these things˼. 15Look, all the nations in the world are like one small drop in the bucket. If the Lord took all the faraway nations, and put them on his weighing scales, they would be like small pieces of dust. 16˻All the trees in˼ Lebanon are not enough to burn for the Lord. And all the animals in Lebanon are not enough to kill ˻for a sacrifice˼. 17Compared to God, all the nations of the world are nothing. Compared to God, all the nations are worth nothing at all. 18Can you compare God to anything? No! Can you make a picture of God? No! 19But some people make statues from rock or wood, and they call them gods. One worker makes a statue. Then another worker covers it with gold and makes silver chains for it. 20And for the base, he chooses a special kind of wood, a kind of wood that will not rot. Then he finds a good wood worker. And the worker makes a “god” that won’t fall over. 21Surely you know the truth, don’t you? Surely you have heard! Surely someone told you long ago! Surely you understand who made the earth! 22˻The Lord is the true God!˼ He sits above the circle of the earth, ˻and compared to him˼ people are like grasshoppers. He rolled open the skies like a piece of cloth. He stretched the skies like a tent to sit under. 23He makes rulers not important. He makes the judges of this world completely worthless. 24˻Those rulers are like plants˼; they are planted in the ground, but before they can send their roots into the ground, God blows on the “plants,” and they become dead and dry, and the wind blows them away like straw. 25The Holy One ˻(God)˼ says: ”Can you compare me to anyone? No! No one is equal to me. 26Look up to the skies. Who created all those stars? Who created all those 'armies’ ˻in the sky˼? Who knows every star by name? ˻The true God˼ is very strong and powerful, so none of these stars is lost.” 27People of Jacob, this is true! Israel, you should believe this! So why do you say: ”The Lord can’t see the way I live. God will not find me and punish me.” 28Surely you have heard and know that the Lord God is very wise. People can’t learn everything he knows. The Lord does not become tired and need to rest. The Lord made all the faraway places on earth. The Lord lives forever. 29The Lord helps weak people to be strong. He causes the people without power to become powerful. 30Young men become tired and need to rest. Even young boys stumble and fall. 31But people that trust the Lord become strong again like eagles that grow new feathers. These people run without becoming weak. These people walk without becoming tired.

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