Isaiah – Select a Chapter

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6:9  And He said, “Go, say to that people: ‘Hear, indeed, but do not understand; See, indeed, but do not grasp.’

ו:ט  וַיֹּאמֶר לֵךְ וְאָמַרְתָּ לָעָם הַזֶּה שִׁמְעוּ שָׁמוֹעַ וְאַל־תָּבִינוּ וּרְאוּ רָאוֹ וְאַל־תֵּדָעוּ׃

10  Dull that people’s mind, Stop its ears, And seal its eyes— Lest, seeing with its eyes And hearing with its ears, It also grasp with its mind, And repent and save itself.”

י  הַשְׁמֵן לֵב־הָעָם הַזֶּה וְאָזְנָיו הַכְבֵּד וְעֵינָיו הָשַׁע פֶּן־יִרְאֶה בְעֵינָיו וּבְאָזְנָיו יִשְׁמָע וּלְבָבוֹ יָבִין וָשָׁב וְרָפָא לוֹ׃

7:14  Assuredly, my Lord will give you a sign of His own accord! Look, the young woman is with child and about to give birth to a son. Let her name him Imanu-El.

ז:יד  לָכֵן יִתֵּן אֲדֹנָי הוּא לָכֶם אוֹת הִנֵּה הָעַלְמָה הָרָה וְיֹלֶדֶת בֵּן וְקָרָאת שְׁמוֹ עִמָּנוּ אֵל׃

9:1  The people that walked in darkness 1 Have seen a brilliant light; On those who dwelt in a land of gloom Light has dawned.

ט:א  הָעָם הַהֹלְכִים בַּחֹשֶׁךְ רָאוּ אוֹר גָּדוֹל יֹשְׁבֵי בְּאֶרֶץ צַלְמָוֶת אוֹר נָגַהּ עֲלֵיהֶם׃

2  You have magnified that nation, Have given it great joy; They have rejoiced before You As they rejoice at reaping time, As they exult When dividing spoil.

ב  הִרְבִּיתָ הַגּוֹי לא [לוֹ] הִגְדַּלְתָּ הַשִּׂמְחָה שָׂמְחוּ לְפָנֶיךָ כְּשִׂמְחַת בַּקָּצִיר כַּאֲשֶׁר יָגִילוּ בְּחַלְּקָם שָׁלָל׃

29:13  My Lord said: Because that people has approached [Me] with its mouth And honored Me with its lips, But has kept its heart far from Me, And its worship of Me has been A commandment of men, learned by rote—

va-YO-mer a-do-NAI YA-an KEE ni-GASH ha-AM ha-ZEH b’-FEEV u-vis-fa-TAV ki-b’-DU-nee v’-li-BO ri-KHAK mi-ME-nee va-t’-HEE yir-a-TAM o-TEE mitz-VAT a-na-SHEEM m’-lu-ma-DAH

כט:יג  וַיֹּאמֶר אֲדֹנָי יַעַן כִּי נִגַּשׁ הָעָם הַזֶּה בְּפִיו וּבִשְׂפָתָיו כִּבְּדוּנִי וְלִבּוֹ רִחַק מִמֶּנִּי וַתְּהִי יִרְאָתָם אֹתִי מִצְוַת אֲנָשִׁים מְלֻמָּדָה׃

29:13   And its worship of Me has been a commandment of men, learned by rote

For what sin did God punish Yehuda? Compared to Shomron, the northern kingdom, with all its idolatries and immoralities, Yehuda seemed positively pious. In fact, they had purified their country under Chizkiyahu. Yeshayahu answers with one sentence. Though the people prayed and performed the ritual commandments, their service was not genuine, but only lip-service. Some commentators understood this as hypocrisy; however others interpret Yeshayahu’s description in a more literal sense — unfeeling, robotic observance that has no value. Hashem wants both our consistent external actions with corresponding internal feelings united in His service.2 comments

40:3  A voice rings out: “Clear in the desert A road for Hashem! Level in the wilderness A highway for our God!

מ:ג  קוֹל קוֹרֵא בַּמִּדְבָּר פַּנּוּ דֶּרֶךְ יְהֹוָה יַשְּׁרוּ בָּעֲרָבָה מְסִלָּה לֵאלֹהֵינוּ׃

4  Let every valley be raised, Every hill and mount made low. Let the rugged ground become level And the ridges become a plain.

ד  כָּל־גֶּיא יִנָּשֵׂא וְכָל־הַר וְגִבְעָה יִשְׁפָּלוּ וְהָיָה הֶעָקֹב לְמִישׁוֹר וְהָרְכָסִים לְבִקְעָה׃

5  The Presence of Hashem shall appear And all flesh, as one, shall behold— For Hashem Himself has spoken.”

ה  וְנִגְלָה כְּבוֹד יְהֹוָה וְרָאוּ כָל־בָּשָׂר יַחְדָּו כִּי פִּי יְהֹוָה דִּבֵּר׃

42:1  This is My servant, whom I uphold, My chosen one, in whom I delight. I have put My spirit upon him, He shall teach the true way to the nations.

מב:א  הֵן עַבְדִּי אֶתְמָךְ־בּוֹ בְּחִירִי רָצְתָה נַפְשִׁי נָתַתִּי רוּחִי עָלָיו מִשְׁפָּט לַגּוֹיִם יוֹצִיא׃

2  He shall not cry out or shout aloud, Or make his voice heard in the streets.

ב  לֹא יִצְעַק וְלֹא יִשָּׂא וְלֹא־יַשְׁמִיעַ בַּחוּץ קוֹלוֹ׃

3  He shall not break even a bruised reed, ,Or snuff out even a dim wick. He shall bring forth the true way.

ג  קָנֶה רָצוּץ לֹא יִשְׁבּוֹר וּפִשְׁתָּה כֵהָה לֹא יְכַבֶּנָּה לֶאֱמֶת יוֹצִיא מִשְׁפָּט׃

4  He shall not grow dim or be bruised Till he has established the true way on earth; And the coastlands shall await his teaching.

ד  לֹא יִכְהֶה וְלֹא יָרוּץ עַד־יָשִׂים בָּאָרֶץ מִשְׁפָּט וּלְתוֹרָתוֹ אִיִּים יְיַחֵילוּ׃

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