6 “This is what the Lord says—
I am the first and I am the last;f
apart from me there is no God.g
7 Who then is like me?h Let him proclaim it.
Let him declare and lay out before me
what has happened since I established my ancient people,
and what is yet to come—
yes, let them foretelli what will come.
Did I not proclaimj this and foretell it long ago?
You are my witnesses. Is there any Godk besides me?
No, there is no other Rock;l I know not one.”
9 All who make idolsm are nothing,
and the things they treasure are worthless.n
Those who would speak up for them are blind;o
they are ignorant, to their own shame.p
10 Who shapes a god and casts an idol,q
which can profit nothing?r
11 People who do that will be put to shame;s
such craftsmen are only human beings.
Let them all come together and take their stand;
they will be brought down to terror and shame.t
12 The blacksmithu takes a tool
and works with it in the coals;
he shapes an idol with hammers,
he forges it with the might of his arm.v
He gets hungry and loses his strength;
he drinks no water and grows faint.w
13 The carpenterx measures with a line
and makes an outline with a marker;
he roughs it out with chisels
and marks it with compasses.
He shapes it in human form,y
human form in all its glory,
that it may dwell in a shrine.z
or perhaps took a cypress or oak.
He let it grow among the trees of the forest,
or planted a pine,a and the rain made it grow.
15 It is used as fuelb for burning;
some of it he takes and warms himself,
he kindles a fire and bakes bread.
But he also fashions a god and worshipsc it;
he makes an idol and bowsd down to it.
over it he prepares his meal,
he roasts his meat and eats his fill.
He also warms himself and says,
“Ah! I am warm; I see the fire.e”
he bows down to it and worships.f
He praysg to it and says,
“Saveh me! You are my god!”
18 They know nothing, they understandi nothing;
their eyesj are plastered over so they cannot see,
and their minds closed so they cannot understand.
no one has the knowledge or understandingk to say,
“Half of it I used for fuel;l
I even baked bread over its coals,
I roasted meat and I ate.
Shall I make a detestablem thing from what is left?
Shall I bow down to a block of wood?”n
he cannot save himself, or say,
“Is not this thing in my right hand a lie?q”
21 “Rememberr these things, Jacob,
for you, Israel, are my servant.s
I have made you, you are my servant;t
Israel, I will not forget you.u
22 I have swept awayv your offenses like a cloud,
your sins like the morning mist.
Returnw to me,
for I have redeemedx you.”
23 Sing for joy,y you heavens, for the Lord has done this;
shout aloud, you earthz beneath.
Burst into song, you mountains,a
you forests and all your trees,b
for the Lord has redeemedc Jacob,
he displays his gloryd in Israel.
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