Isaiah 41
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Listen to this chapter in Hebrew:

1  Stand silent before Me, coastlands, And let nations renew their strength. Let them approach to state their case; Let us come forward together for argument.

א  הַחֲרִישׁוּ אֵלַי אִיִּים וּלְאֻמִּים יַחֲלִיפוּ כֹחַ יִגְּשׁוּ אָז יְדַבֵּרוּ יַחְדָּו לַמִּשְׁפָּט נִקְרָבָה׃

2  Who has roused a victor from the East, Summoned him to His service? Has delivered up nations to him, And trodden sovereigns down? Has rendered their swords like dust, Their bows like wind-blown straw?

ב  מִי הֵעִיר מִמִּזְרָח צֶדֶק יִקְרָאֵהוּ לְרַגְלוֹ יִתֵּן לְפָנָיו גּוֹיִם וּמְלָכִים יַרְדְּ יִתֵּן כֶּעָפָר חַרְבּוֹ כְּקַשׁ נִדָּף קַשְׁתּוֹ׃

3  He pursues them, he goes on unscathed; No shackle is placed on his feet.

ג  יִרְדְּפֵם יַעֲבוֹר שָׁלוֹם אֹרַח בְּרַגְלָיו לֹא יָבוֹא׃

4  Who has wrought and achieved this? He who announced the generations from the start— I, Hashem, who was first And will be with the last as well.

ד  מִי־פָעַל וְעָשָׂה קֹרֵא הַדֹּרוֹת מֵרֹאשׁ אֲנִי יְהוָה רִאשׁוֹן וְאֶת־אַחֲרֹנִים אֲנִי־הוּא׃

5  The coastlands look on in fear, The ends of earth tremble. They draw near and come;

ה  רָאוּ אִיִּים וְיִירָאוּ קְצוֹת הָאָרֶץ יֶחֱרָדוּ קָרְבוּ וַיֶּאֱתָיוּן׃

6  Each one helps the other Saying to his fellow, “Take courage!”

ו  אִישׁ אֶת־רֵעֵהוּ יַעְזֹרוּ וּלְאָחִיו יֹאמַר חֲזָק׃

7  The woodworker encourages the smith; He who flattens with the hammer [Encourages] him who pounds the anvil. He says of the riveting, “It is good!” And he fixes it with nails, That it may not topple.

ז  וַיְחַזֵּק חָרָשׁ אֶת־צֹרֵף מַחֲלִיק פַּטִּישׁ אֶת־הוֹלֶם פָּעַם אֹמֵר לַדֶּבֶק טוֹב הוּא וַיְחַזְּקֵהוּ בְמַסְמְרִים לֹא יִמּוֹט׃

8  But you, Yisrael, My servant, Yaakov, whom I have chosen, Seed of Avraham My friend—

v’-a-TAH yis-ra-AYL av-DEE ya-a-KOV a-SHER b’-khar-TEE-kha ZE-ra av-ra-HAM o-ha-VEE

ח  וְאַתָּה יִשְׂרָאֵל עַבְדִּי יַעֲקֹב אֲשֶׁר בְּחַרְתִּיךָ זֶרַע אַבְרָהָם אֹהֲבִי׃

41:8   The seed of Avraham My friend

Out of all of Israel’s ancestor’s, Abraham is singled out as ‘ohavee’ (אֹהֲבִי), which means “my friend,” or more literally, “my lover.” The commentator, Rashi, explains that unlike everyone else who followed, Abraham did not serve God out of familial obligation or fear, but searched after Him like a lover for his beloved. We, too, should strive to serve God out of love and not fear.Comment

9  You whom I drew from the ends of the earth And called from its far corners, To whom I said: You are My servant; I chose you, I have not rejected you—

ט  אֲשֶׁר הֶחֱזַקְתִּיךָ מִקְצוֹת הָאָרֶץ וּמֵאֲצִילֶיהָ קְרָאתִיךָ וָאֹמַר לְךָ עַבְדִּי־אַתָּה בְּחַרְתִּיךָ וְלֹא מְאַסְתִּיךָ׃

10  Fear not, for I am with you, Be not frightened, for I am your God; I strengthen you and I help you, I uphold you with My victorious right hand.

י  אַל־תִּירָא כִּי עִמְּךָ־אָנִי אַל־תִּשְׁתָּע כִּי־אֲנִי אֱלֹהֶיךָ אִמַּצְתִּיךָ אַף־עֲזַרְתִּיךָ אַף־תְּמַכְתִּיךָ בִּימִין צִדְקִי׃

11  Shamed and chagrined shall be All who contend with you; They who strive with you Shall become as naught and shall perish.

יא  הֵן יֵבֹשׁוּ וְיִכָּלְמוּ כֹּל הַנֶּחֱרִים בָּךְ יִהְיוּ כְאַיִן וְיֹאבְדוּ אַנְשֵׁי רִיבֶךָ׃

12  You may seek, but shall not find Those who struggle with you; Less than nothing shall be The men who battle against you.

יב  תְּבַקְשֵׁם וְלֹא תִמְצָאֵם אַנְשֵׁי מַצֻּתֶךָ יִהְיוּ כְאַיִן וּכְאֶפֶס אַנְשֵׁי מִלְחַמְתֶּךָ׃

13  For I Hashem am your God, Who grasped your right hand, Who say to you: Have no fear; I will be your help.

יג  כִּי אֲנִי יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ מַחֲזִיק יְמִינֶךָ הָאֹמֵר לְךָ אַל־תִּירָא אֲנִי עֲזַרְתִּיךָ׃

14  Fear not, O worm Yaakov, O men of Yisrael: I will help you —declares Hashem— I your Redeemer, the Holy One of Yisrael.

יד  אַל־תִּירְאִי תּוֹלַעַת יַעֲקֹב מְתֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אֲנִי עֲזַרְתִּיךְ נְאֻם־יְהוָה וְגֹאֲלֵךְ קְדוֹשׁ יִשְׂרָאֵל׃

15  I will make of you a threshing board, A new thresher, with many spikes; You shall thresh mountains to dust, And make hills like chaff.

טו  הִנֵּה שַׂמְתִּיךְ לְמוֹרַג חָרוּץ חָדָשׁ בַּעַל פִּיפִיּוֹת תָּדוּשׁ הָרִים וְתָדֹק וּגְבָעוֹת כַּמֹּץ תָּשִׂים׃

16  You shall winnow them And the wind shall carry them off; The whirlwind shall scatter them. But you shall rejoice in Hashem, And glory in the Holy One of Yisrael.

טז  תִּזְרֵם וְרוּחַ תִּשָּׂאֵם וּסְעָרָה תָּפִיץ אוֹתָם וְאַתָּה תָּגִיל בַּיהוָה בִּקְדוֹשׁ יִשְׂרָאֵל תִּתְהַלָּל׃

17  The poor and the needy Seek water, and there is none; Their tongue is parched with thirst. I Hashem will respond to them. I, the God of Yisrael, will not forsake them.

יז  הָעֲנִיִּים וְהָאֶבְיוֹנִים מְבַקְשִׁים מַיִם וָאַיִן לְשׁוֹנָם בַּצָּמָא נָשָׁתָּה אֲנִי יְהוָה אֶעֱנֵם אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לֹא אֶעֶזְבֵם׃

18  I will open up streams on the bare hills And fountains amid the valleys; I will turn the desert into ponds, The arid land into springs of water.

יח  אֶפְתַּח עַל־שְׁפָיִים נְהָרוֹת וּבְתוֹךְ בְּקָעוֹת מַעְיָנוֹת אָשִׂים מִדְבָּר לַאֲגַם־מַיִם וְאֶרֶץ צִיָּה לְמוֹצָאֵי מָיִם׃

19  I will plant cedars in the wilderness, Acacias and myrtles and oleasters; I will set cypresses in the desert, Box trees and elms as well—

יט  אֶתֵּן בַּמִּדְבָּר אֶרֶז שִׁטָּה וַהֲדַס וְעֵץ שָׁמֶן אָשִׂים בָּעֲרָבָה בְּרוֹשׁ תִּדְהָר וּתְאַשּׁוּר יַחְדָּו׃

20  That men may see and know, Consider and comprehend That Hashem’s hand has done this, That the Holy One of Yisrael has wrought it.

כ  לְמַעַן יִרְאוּ וְיֵדְעוּ וְיָשִׂימוּ וְיַשְׂכִּילוּ יַחְדָּו כִּי יַד־יְהוָה עָשְׂתָה זֹּאת וּקְדוֹשׁ יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּרָאָהּ׃

21  Submit your case, says Hashem; Offer your pleas, says the King of Yaakov.

כא  קָרְבוּ רִיבְכֶם יֹאמַר יְהוָה הַגִּישׁוּ עֲצֻמוֹתֵיכֶם יֹאמַר מֶלֶךְ יַעֲקֹב׃

22  Let them approach and tell us what will happen. Tell us what has occurred, And we will take note of it; Or announce to us what will occur, That we may know the outcome.

כב  יַגִּישׁוּ וְיַגִּידוּ לָנוּ אֵת אֲשֶׁר תִּקְרֶינָה הָרִאשֹׁנוֹת מָה הֵנָּה הַגִּידוּ וְנָשִׂימָה לִבֵּנוּ וְנֵדְעָה אַחֲרִיתָן אוֹ הַבָּאוֹת הַשְׁמִיעֻנוּ׃

23  Foretell what is yet to happen, That we may know that you are gods! Do anything, good or bad, That we may be awed and see.

כג  הַגִּידוּ הָאֹתִיּוֹת לְאָחוֹר וְנֵדְעָה כִּי אֱלֹהִים אַתֶּם אַף־תֵּיטִיבוּ וְתָרֵעוּ וְנִשְׁתָּעָה ונרא [וְנִרְאֶה] יַחְדָּו׃

24  Why, you are less than nothing, Your effect is less than nullity; One who chooses you is an abomination.

כד  הֵן־אַתֶּם מֵאַיִן וּפָעָלְכֶם מֵאָפַע תּוֹעֵבָה יִבְחַר בָּכֶם׃

25  I have roused him from the north, and he has come, From the sunrise, one who invokes My name; And he has trampled rulers like mud, Like a potter treading clay.

כה  הַעִירוֹתִי מִצָּפוֹן וַיַּאת מִמִּזְרַח־שֶׁמֶשׁ יִקְרָא בִשְׁמִי וְיָבֹא סְגָנִים כְּמוֹ־חֹמֶר וּכְמוֹ יוֹצֵר יִרְמָס־טִיט׃

26  Who foretold this from the start, that we may note it; From aforetime, that we might say, “He is right”? Not one foretold, not one announced; No one has heard your utterance!

כו  מִי־הִגִּיד מֵרֹאשׁ וְנֵדָעָה וּמִלְּפָנִים וְנֹאמַר צַדִּיק אַף אֵין־מַגִּיד אַף אֵין מַשְׁמִיעַ אַף אֵין־שֹׁמֵעַ אִמְרֵיכֶם׃

27  The things once predicted to Tzion— Behold, here they are! And again I send a herald to Yerushalayim.

כז  רִאשׁוֹן לְצִיּוֹן הִנֵּה הִנָּם וְלִירוּשָׁלִַם מְבַשֵּׂר אֶתֵּן׃

28  But I look and there is not a man; Not one of them can predict Or can respond when I question him.

כח  וְאֵרֶא וְאֵין אִישׁ וּמֵאֵלֶּה וְאֵין יוֹעֵץ וְאֶשְׁאָלֵם וְיָשִׁיבוּ דָבָר׃

29  See, they are all nothingness, Their works are nullity, Their statues are naught and nil.

 

כט  הֵן כֻּלָּם אָוֶן אֶפֶס מַעֲשֵׂיהֶם רוּחַ וָתֹהוּ נִסְכֵּיהֶם׃

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Isaiah 40
Isaiah 42

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Isaiah 41

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