Isaiah 281 Woe to the crown of arrogance, to the inebriated of Ephraim, and to the falling flower, the glory of his exultation, to those who were at the top of the very fat valley, staggering from wine. 2 Behold, the Lord is powerful and steadfast, like a storm of hail, like a crushing whirlwind, like the force of many waters, inundating, sent forth over a spacious land. 3 The arrogant crown of the inebriated of Ephraim will be trampled under foot. 4 And the falling flower, the glory of his exultation, who is at the summit of the fat valley, will be like a premature fruit before the ripeness of autumn, which, when the onlooker beholds it, as soon he takes it in his hand, he will devour it. 5 In that day, the Lord of hosts will be the crown of glory and the wreath of exultation for the remnant of his people. 6 And he will be the spirit of judgment for those who sit in judgment, and the strength of those who return from war to the gates. 7 Yet truly, these also have been ignorant due to wine, and they have gone astray due to inebriation. The priest and the prophet have been ignorant because of inebriation. They have been absorbed by wine. They have staggered in drunkenness. They have not known the One who sees. They have been ignorant of judgment. 8 For all the tables have been filled with vomit and filth, so much so that there was no place left. 9 To whom will he teach knowledge? And to whom will he grant an understanding of what is heard? To those who have been weaned from the milk, who have been pulled away from the breasts. 10 So then: command, and command again; command, and command again; expect, and expect again; a little here, and a little there. 11 For with the speech of lips and with a different language, he will speak to this people. 12 He said to them: “This is my rest. Refresh the weary,” and, “This is my refreshment.” And yet they were unwilling to listen. 13 And so, the word of the Lord to them will be: “Command, and command again; command, and command again; expect, and expect again; a little here, and a little there,” so that they may go forward and fall backward, and so that they may be broken and ensnared and captured. 14 Because of this, listen to the word of the Lord, you mocking men, who lord it over my people who are at Jerusalem. 15 For you have said: “We struck a deal with death, and we formed a pact with Hell. When the inundating scourge passes through, it will not overwhelm us. For we have placed our hope in lies, and we are protected by what is false.” 16 For this reason, thus says the Lord God: Behold, I will set a stone within the foundations of Zion, a tested stone, a cornerstone, a precious stone, which has been established in the foundation: whoever trusts in him need not hurry. 17 And I will establish judgment in weights, and justice in measures. And a hailstorm will overturn hope in what is false; and waters will inundate its protection. 18 And your deal with death will be abolished, and your pact with Hell will not stand. When the inundating scourge passes through, you will be trampled down by it. 19 Whenever it passes through, it will take you away. For, at first light of morning, it will pass through, in the day and in the night, and vexation alone will make you understand what you hear. 20 For the bed has been narrowed, so much so that one alone would fall out, and the short blanket is not able to cover two. 21 For the Lord will stand, just as at the mountain of divisions. He will be angry, just as in the valley which is in Gibeon, so that he may accomplish his work, his strange work, so that he may complete his work, his work which is foreign even to him. 22 And now, do not be willing to mock, lest your chains be tightened. For I have heard, from the Lord, the God of hosts, about the consummation and the abridgement concerning the entire earth. 23 Pay close attention, and listen to my voice! Attend and hear my eloquence! 24 Would the plowman, after plowing all day so that he may sow, instead cut open and hoe his soil? 25 Will he not, when he has made the surface level, sow coriander, and scatter cumin, and plant wheat in rows, and barley, and millet, and vetch in their places? 26 For he will be instructed in judgment; his God will teach him. 27 For coriander cannot be threshed with a saw, and a cartwheel cannot revolve over cumin. Instead, coriander is shaken out with a stick, and cumin with a staff. 28 But grain for bread must be crushed. Truly, the thresher cannot thresh it unceasingly, and the cartwheel can neither disrupt it, nor break it with its surface. 29 And this has gone forth from the Lord, the God of hosts, so that he may accomplish his miraculous plan and magnify justice.
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