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Isaiah 41

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 1 "Keep silence before me, O islands, and let the people renew their strength. Let them come near, then let them speak; let us come together for judgment.

 2 Who raised up the man from the east, and in righteousness called him to his service, and gave the nations before him, and made him rule over kings? He gave them as the dust to his sword, and as driven stubble to his bow.

 3 He pursued them and passed safely, even by the way that his feet had not gone before.

 4 Who has performed and done it, calling the generations from the beginning? 'I the LORD, the first, and with the last — I am he.'"

 5 The islands saw it, and feared, the ends of the earth were afraid, drew near, and came.

 6 They helped everyone his neighbor and everyone said to his brother, 'Be of good courage.'

 7 So the carpenter encouraged the goldsmith, and he who smoothed with the hammer encouraged him who smote the anvil, saying, 'It is ready for the soldering;' and he fastened it with nails, that it should not be moved.

 8 But you, Israel, are my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham my friend.

 9 You whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, and called from its chief men, and said to you, 'You are my servant; I have chosen you and not cast you away.

 10 Fear not, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, yes, I will uphold you with the right hand of my righteousness.'

 11 Behold, all those who were enraged against you shall be ashamed and confounded, they shall be as nothing; and those who strive with you shall perish.

 12 You shall seek them and not find them, even those who contended with you; those who war against you shall be as nothing and as a thing of nothing.

 13 For I the LORD your God will hold your right hand, saying to you, Fear not, I will help you.

 14 Fear not, you worm Jacob, and you men of Israel; I will help you,' says the LORD, your redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.

 15 Behold, I will make you into a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth; you shall thresh the mountains and beat them small, and make the hills like chaff.

 16 You shall winnow them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the whirlwind shall scatter them; and you shall rejoice in the LORD, and glory in the Holy One of Israel.

 17 When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue fails for thirst, I the LORD will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them.

 18 I will open rivers in high places, and fountains in the midst of the valleys; I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water.

 19 I will plant in the wilderness the cedar, the acacia tree, the myrtle and the olive tree; I will set in the desert the fir tree, and the pine, and the box tree together,

 20 So that they may see and know, and consider and understand together, that the hand of the LORD has done this, and the Holy One of Israel has created it.

 21 'Present your cause,' says the LORD; 'bring forth your strong reasons,' says the King of Jacob.

 22 Let them [idols] bring them forth and show us things that will happen; let them show the former things, what they are, so that we may consider them, and know the outcome of them; or declare to us things to come.

 23 Show us the things that are to come, that we may know that you are gods; yes, do good or do evil, that we may be dismayed, and see it together.

 24 Behold, you are nothing, and your work nothing; whoever chooses you is an abomination.

 25 I have raised up one from the north, and he shall come; he shall call upon my name from the rising of the sun; and he shall come against princes as upon mortar, and as the potter treads clay.

 26 Who has declared this from the beginning, that we may know? And beforehand, that we may say, 'He is righteous?' Yes, there is none that shows, yes, there is none that declares, yes, there is none that hears your words.

 27  I first said to Zion,' Behold, behold them, and I will give to Jerusalem one who brings good tidings.

 28 For I looked, and there was no man, and there was no counselor among them, that, when I asked of them, could answer a word.

 29 Behold, they are all vanity, their works are nothing; their molten images are wind and confusion."

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