New International Version

Isaiah 8

Isaiah and His Children as Signs

1The Lord said to me, “Take a large scroll and write on it with an ordinary pen: Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz.”[a] So I called in Uriah the priest and Zechariah son of Jeberekiah as reliable witnesses for me. Then I made love to the prophetess, and she conceived and gave birth to a son. And the Lord said to me, “Name him Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz. For before the boy knows how to say ‘My father’ or ‘My mother,’ the wealth of Damascus and the plunder of Samaria will be carried off by the king of Assyria.”

The Lord spoke to me again:

“Because this people has rejected
    the gently flowing waters of Shiloah
and rejoices over Rezin
    and the son of Remaliah,
therefore the Lord is about to bring against them
    the mighty floodwaters of the Euphrates—
    the king of Assyria with all his pomp.
It will overflow all its channels,
    run over all its banks
and sweep on into Judah, swirling over it,
    passing through it and reaching up to the neck.
Its outspread wings will cover the breadth of your land,
    Immanuel[b]!”

Raise the war cry,[c] you nations, and be shattered!
    Listen, all you distant lands.
Prepare for battle, and be shattered!
    Prepare for battle, and be shattered!
10 Devise your strategy, but it will be thwarted;
    propose your plan, but it will not stand,
    for God is with us.[d]

11 This is what the Lord says to me with his strong hand upon me, warning me not to follow the way of this people:

12 “Do not call conspiracy
    everything this people calls a conspiracy;
do not fear what they fear,
    and do not dread it.
13 The Lord Almighty is the one you are to regard as holy,
    he is the one you are to fear,
    he is the one you are to dread.
14 He will be a holy place;
    for both Israel and Judah he will be
a stone that causes people to stumble
    and a rock that makes them fall.
And for the people of Jerusalem he will be
    a trap and a snare.
15 Many of them will stumble;
    they will fall and be broken,
    they will be snared and captured.”

16 Bind up this testimony of warning
    and seal up God’s instruction among my disciples.
17 I will wait for the Lord,
    who is hiding his face from the descendants of Jacob.
I will put my trust in him.

18 Here am I, and the children the Lord has given me. We are signs and symbols in Israel from the Lord Almighty, who dwells on Mount Zion.

The Darkness Turns to Light

19 When someone tells you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living? 20 Consult God’s instruction and the testimony of warning. If anyone does not speak according to this word, they have no light of dawn. 21 Distressed and hungry, they will roam through the land; when they are famished, they will become enraged and, looking upward, will curse their king and their God. 22 Then they will look toward the earth and see only distress and darkness and fearful gloom, and they will be thrust into utter darkness.

Footnotes

  1. Isaiah 8:1 Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz means quick to the plunder, swift to the spoil; also in verse 3.
  2. Isaiah 8:8 Immanuel means God with us.
  3. Isaiah 8:9 Or Do your worst
  4. Isaiah 8:10 Hebrew Immanuel

New International Reader's Version

Isaiah 8

Isaiah and His Children Are Signs

1The Lord said to me, “Get a large sheet of paper. Write ‘Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz’ on it with a pen.” So I sent for Zechariah and Uriah the priest. Zechariah is the son of Jeberekiah. Zechariah and Uriah were witnesses for me whom I could trust. Then I went and slept with my wife, who was a prophet. She became pregnant and had a baby boy. The Lord said to me, “Name him Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz. The king of Assyria will carry off the wealth of Damascus. He will also carry away the goods that were taken from Samaria. That will happen before the boy knows how to say ‘My father’ or ‘My mother.’ ”

The Lord continued,

“I am like the gently flowing stream of Siloam.
    But the people of Judah have turned their backs on me.
They are filled with joy because of the fall of Rezin
    and the son of Remaliah.
So I am about to bring against these people
    the king of Assyria and his whole army.
The Assyrians will be like the mighty Euphrates River
    when it is flooding.
    They will run over everything in their path.
They will sweep on into Judah like a flood.
    They will pass through Judah and reach all the way to Jerusalem.
Immanuel, they will attack your land like an eagle.
    Their wings will spread out and cover it.”

Sound the battle cry, you nations!
    But you will be torn apart.
    Listen, all you lands far away!
Prepare for battle! But you will be torn apart.
    Prepare for battle! But you will be torn apart.
10 Make your battle plans! But you won’t succeed.
    Give your orders! But they won’t be carried out.
    That’s because God is with us.

11 The Lord speaks to me while his powerful hand is on me. He is warning me not to live the way these people live. He says,

12 “People of Judah, do not agree with those who say
    Isaiah is guilty of treason.
Do not fear what they fear.
    Do not be afraid.
13 The Lord rules over all.
    So you must think about him as holy.
You must have respect for him.
    You must fear him.
14 Then the Lord will be a holy place of safety for you.
    But that’s not true for many people in Israel and Judah.
    He will be a stone that causes them to trip.
    He will be a rock that makes them fall.
And for the people of Jerusalem
    he will be a trap and a snare.
15 Many of them will trip.
    They will fall and be broken.
    They will be trapped and captured.”

16 Tie up and seal this warning that the Lord said to you through me.
    Preserve among my followers what he taught you through me.
17 I will wait for the Lord.
    He is turning his face away from Jacob’s people.
    I will put my trust in him.

18 Here I am. Here are the children the Lord has given me. We are signs and reminders to Israel from the Lord who rules over all. He lives on Mount Zion.

The Darkness Turns to Light

19 There are people who get messages from those who have died. But these people only whisper words that are barely heard. Suppose someone tells you to ask for advice from these people. Shouldn’t you ask for advice from your God instead? Why should you get advice from dead people to help those who are alive? 20 Follow what the Lord taught you and said to you through me. People who don’t speak in keeping with these words will have no hope in the morning. 21 They will suffer and be hungry. They’ll wander through the land. When they are very hungry, they will become angry. They’ll look up toward heaven. They’ll ask for bad things to happen to their king and their God. 22 Then they will look at the earth. They’ll see nothing but suffering and darkness. They’ll see terrible sadness. They’ll be driven into total darkness.