Isaiah 7–8

1 And it came to pass in the days of Ahaz the son of Jotham, the son of Uzziah, king of Judah, that Rezin the king of Aram, and Pekah the son of Remaliah, king of Israel, went up toward Jerusalem to war against it, but could not prevail against it.

2 It was said to the house of David, “Aram is allied with Ephraim.” Then his heart trembled and the heart of his people, as the trees of the wood tremble with the wind.

3 Then the Lord said to Isaiah: Go out now to meet Ahaz, you, and Shear-Jashub your son, at the end of the conduit of the upper pool in the highway of the fuller’s field, 4 and say to him, Take heed, and be quiet. Do not fear nor be fainthearted because of the two tails of these smoking firebrands, because of the fierce anger of Rezin with Aram and of the son of Remaliah, 5 because Aram, Ephraim, and the son of Remaliah have taken evil counsel against you, saying, 6 Let us go up against Judah, and trouble it, and let us make a breach there for us, and set a king in the midst of it, even the son of Tabeel. 7 Thus says the Lord God:

It shall not stand,

nor shall it come to pass.

8 For the head of Aram is Damascus,

and the head of Damascus is Rezin.

Now within sixty-five years

Ephraim shall be broken so that it is not a people.

9 The head of Ephraim is Samaria,

and the head of Samaria is the son of Remaliah.

If you will not believe,

surely you shall not be established.

10 Moreover the Lord spoke again to Ahaz, saying: 11 Ask for a sign from the Lord your God. Make it either as deep as Sheol or as high as heaven.

12 But Ahaz said, I will not ask, nor will I tempt the Lord.

13 Then he said, “Hear now, O house of David. Is it a small thing for you to weary men, but will you weary my God also? 14 Therefore the Lord Himself shall give you a sign: The virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. 15 Curds and honey he shall eat at the time that he knows enough to refuse the evil and choose the good. 16 For before the child shall know to refuse the evil and choose the good, the land that you dread shall be forsaken of both her kings. 17 The Lord shall bring upon you, and upon your people, and upon your father’s house, days that have not come from the day that Ephraim departed from Judah, even the king of Assyria.”

18 In that day the Lord shall whistle for the fly that is in the uttermost part of the rivers of Egypt, and for the bee that is in the land of Assyria. 19 They shall come, and all of them shall rest in the desolate valleys, and in the holes of the rocks, and on all thorns, and on all bushes. 20 In that same day the Lord shall shave with a hired razor, from regions beyond the River, with the king of Assyria, the head, and the hair of the legs, and it shall also remove the beard. 21 In that day a man shall nourish a young cow and two sheep, 22 and because of the abundance of milk that they give, he shall eat curds; for everyone who is left in the land shall eat curds and honey. 23 In that day every place where there were a thousand vines, worth a thousand shekels of silver, shall become briers and thorns. 24 With arrows and with bows shall men come there because all the land shall become briers and thorns. 25 On all hills that used to be cultivated with the hoe, you will not go there for fear of briers and thorns. But it shall be for pasturing oxen and for sheep to tread.

Chapter 8

1 Moreover the Lord said to me, Take for yourself a large book and write in it with a man’s pen: “Swift is the booty, speedy is the prey.” 2 I will take to Myself faithful witnesses for testimony, Uriah the priest and Zechariah the son of Jeberekiah. 3 So I went in to the prophetess, and she conceived and bore a son. Then the Lord said to me, Call his name Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz. 4 For before the child knows how to cry “My father” and “My mother,” the riches of Damascus and the spoil of Samaria shall be taken away before the king of Assyria.

5 The Lord spoke to me again, saying:

6 Because this people refuses

the gently flowing waters of Shiloah

and rejoices in Rezin

and the son of Remaliah,

7 now therefore the Lord certainly is about to bring upon them

the strong and plentiful waters of the River,

even the king of Assyria and all his glory;

and he shall come up over all his channels

and go over all his banks.

8 And he shall pass through Judah, he shall overflow and go over,

he shall reach even to the neck,

and the stretching out of his wings shall fill the breadth of your land,

O Immanuel.

9 Be broken, O you peoples, and be broken in pieces.

And give ear, all you from far countries.

Gird yourselves, but be broken in pieces;

gird yourselves, but be broken in pieces.

10 Take counsel together, but it shall come to nothing;

speak the word, but it shall not stand

for God is with us.

11 For the Lord spoke thus to me with a strong hand and instructed me that I should not walk in the way of this people, saying:

12 You should not say, “It is a conspiracy,”

concerning all that this people calls a conspiracy,

neither fear their threats

nor be afraid of them.

13 Sanctify the Lord of Hosts Himself,

and let Him be your fear,

and let Him be your dread.

14 He shall become a sanctuary,

but a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense

to both the houses of Israel,

and a trap and a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

15 Many among them shall stumble

and fall and be broken

and be snared and be taken.

16 Bind up the testimony;

seal the law among My disciples.

17 I will wait on the Lord,

who hides His face from the house of Jacob,

and I will eagerly look for Him.

18 See, I and the children whom the Lord has given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the Lord of Hosts who dwells in Mount Zion.

19 When they say to you, “Seek after the mediums and the wizards, who whisper and mutter,” should not a people seek after their God? Should they consult the dead for the living? 20 To the law and to the testimony; if they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. 21 They shall pass through the land hard-pressed and hungry; when they are hungry, they shall be furious and curse their king and their God as they look upward. 22 Then they shall look to the earth and see trouble and darkness, gloom of anguish. And they shall be driven away into darkness.

Ephesians 2

1 And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, 2 in which you formerly walked according to the age of this world and according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, 3 among them we all also once lived in the lusts of our flesh, doing the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and we were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. 4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5 even when we were dead in sins, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6 and He raised us up and seated us together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the coming ages He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not of yourselves. It is the gift of God, 9 not of works, so that no one should boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, so that we should walk in them.

11 Therefore remember that formerly you, the Gentiles in the flesh, who are called the “uncircumcision” by the so-called “circumcision” in the flesh by human hands, 12 were at that time apart from Christ, alienated from the citizenship of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who were formerly far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

14 For He is our peace, who has made both groups one and has broken down the barrier of the dividing wall, 15 by abolishing in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of the commandments contained in ordinances, that in Himself He might make the two into one new man, thus making peace, 16 and that He might reconcile both to God into one body through the cross, thereby slaying the enmity. 17 And He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. 18 For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father.

19 Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 having been built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, 21 in whom the entire building, tightly framed together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, 22 in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God through the Spirit.