God Helps His Servant
1[a]The Lord declares this;
“Where is the certificate of divorce
By which I have sent your mother away, [O Israel]?
Or to which one of My creditors did I sell you [as slaves]?
In fact, You were sold for your wickedness [your sin, your injustice, your wrongdoing],
And for your transgressions your mother was sent away.
“Why, when I came, was there no man [to greet Me]?
When I called, why was there no one to answer?
Is My hand really so short that it cannot redeem [My servants]?
Or have I no power to rescue?
Listen carefully, with My rebuke I dry up the sea,
I make the rivers into a desert;
Their fish stink because there is no water
And die of thirst.
“I clothe the heavens with the blackness [of storm clouds]
And make sackcloth [of mourning] their clothing.”
The Lord God has given Me [His [b]Servant] the tongue of disciples [as One who is taught],
That I may know how to sustain the weary with a word.
He awakens Me morning by morning,
He awakens My ear to listen as a disciple [as One who is taught].
The Lord God has opened My ear,
And I have not been rebellious
Nor have I turned back.
I turned My back to those who strike Me,
And My cheeks to those who pluck out the beard;
I did not hide My face from insults and spitting.
For the Lord God helps Me,
Therefore, I have not been ashamed or humiliated.
Therefore, I have made My face like flint,
And I know that I shall not be put to shame.
He who declares Me in the right is near;
Who will [dare to] contend with Me?
Let us stand up to each other;
Who is My adversary?
Let him approach Me.
In fact, the Lord God helps Me;
Who is he who condemns Me [as guilty]?
Indeed, they will all wear out like a garment;
The moth will eat them.
Who is among you who fears the Lord,
Who obeys the voice of His Servant,
Yet who walks in darkness and has no light?
Let him trust and be confident in the name of the Lord and let him rely on his God.
Listen carefully, all you who kindle your own fire [devising your own man-made plan of salvation],
Who surround yourselves with torches,
Walk by the light of your [self-made] fire
And among the torches that you have set ablaze.
But this you will have from My hand:
You will lie down in [a place of] torment.