New Living Translation

Isaiah 31

The Futility of Relying on Egypt

1What sorrow awaits those who look to Egypt for help,
    trusting their horses, chariots, and charioteers
and depending on the strength of human armies
    instead of looking to the Lord,
    the Holy One of Israel.
In his wisdom, the Lord will send great disaster;
    he will not change his mind.
He will rise against the wicked
    and against their helpers.
For these Egyptians are mere humans, not God!
    Their horses are puny flesh, not mighty spirits!
When the Lord raises his fist against them,
    those who help will stumble,
and those being helped will fall.
    They will all fall down and die together.

But this is what the Lord has told me:

“When a strong young lion
    stands growling over a sheep it has killed,
it is not frightened by the shouts and noise
    of a whole crowd of shepherds.
In the same way, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies
    will come down and fight on Mount Zion.
The Lord of Heaven’s Armies will hover over Jerusalem
    and protect it like a bird protecting its nest.
He will defend and save the city;
    he will pass over it and rescue it.”

Though you are such wicked rebels, my people, come and return to the Lord. I know the glorious day will come when each of you will throw away the gold idols and silver images your sinful hands have made.

“The Assyrians will be destroyed,
    but not by the swords of men.
The sword of God will strike them,
    and they will panic and flee.
The strong young Assyrians
    will be taken away as captives.
Even the strongest will quake with terror,
    and princes will flee when they see your battle flags,”
says the Lord, whose fire burns in Zion,
    whose flame blazes from Jerusalem.

New International Reader's Version

Isaiah 31

The Lord Will Judge Those Who Depend on Egypt

1How terrible it will be for those who go down to Egypt for help!
    How terrible for those who depend on horses!
They trust in how many chariots they have.
    They trust in how strong their horsemen are.
But they don’t look to the Holy One of Israel.
    They don’t ask the Lord for his help.
He too is wise. He can bring horrible trouble.
    He does what he says he’ll do.
He’ll rise up against that evil nation.
    He’ll fight against those who help them.
The men of Egypt are only human beings.
    They aren’t God.
Their horses are only flesh and blood.
    They aren’t spirits.
The Lord will reach out his powerful hand
    to punish everyone.
The Egyptians provide help.
    But they will be tripped up.
The people of Judah receive the help.
    But they will fall down.
    All of them will be destroyed.

The Lord says to me,

“A powerful lion stands over its food and growls.
    A lot of shepherds can be brought together to drive it away.
But the lion is not frightened by their shouts.
    It is not upset by the noise they make.
In the same way, I will come down from heaven.
    I will fight on Mount Zion and on its hills.
Nothing will drive me away.
    I am the Lord who rules over all.
Like a bird hovering over its nest, I will guard Jerusalem.
    I will keep it safe.
I will ‘pass over’ it and save it.
    I am the Lord who rules over all.”

People of Israel, return to the Lord. He’s the God you have so strongly opposed. You sinned when you made your gods out of silver and gold. The time will come when all of you will turn away from them.

The Lord says, “The Assyrians will be killed by swords.
    But the swords that kill them will not be used by human beings.
The Assyrians will run away from those swords.
    But their young men will be caught
    and forced to work hard.
Their hiding places will be destroyed
    when terror strikes them.
Their commanders will see their enemy’s battle flags.
    Then they will be filled with panic,”
    announces the Lord.
His fire blazes out from Mount Zion.
    His furnace burns in Jerusalem.