Isaiah 22
Contemporary English Version

Trouble in Vision Valley

1This is a message about Vision Valley:+

Why are you celebrating

on the flat roofs+

of your houses?

2Your city is filled

with noisy shouts.

Those who lie drunk

in your streets

were not killed in battle.

3Your leaders ran away,

but they were captured

without a fight.

No matter how far they ran,

they were found and caught.+

4Then I said, “Leave me alone!

Let me cry bitter tears.

My people have been destroyed,

so don't try to comfort me.”

5The Lord All-Powerful

had chosen a time

for noisy shouts and confusion

to fill Vision Valley,

and for everyone to beg

the mountains for help.+

6The people of Elam and Kir+

attacked with chariots+

and carried shields.

7Your most beautiful valleys

were covered with chariots;

your cities were surrounded

by cavalry troops.

8Judah was left defenseless.

At that time you trusted in the weapons you had stored in Forest Palace.+ 9You saw the holes in the outer wall of Jerusalem, and you brought water from the lower pool.+ 10You counted the houses in Jerusalem and tore down some of them, so you could get stones to repair the city wall. 11Then you built a large tank between the walls+ to store the water. But you refused to trust the God who planned this long ago and made it happen.

A Time To Weep

12When all of this happened,

the Lord All-Powerful told you

to weep and mourn,

to shave your heads,

and wear sackcloth.

13 But instead, you celebrated

by feasting on beef and lamb

and by drinking wine,

because you said,

“Let's eat and drink today!

Tomorrow we may die.”

14The Lord All-Powerful

has spoken to me

this solemn promise:

“I won't forgive them for this,

not as long as they live.”

Selfish Officials Are Doomed

15The Lord All-Powerful is sending me with this message for Shebna, the prime minister:

16Shebna, what gives you the right to have a tomb carved out of rock in this burial place of royalty? None of your relatives are buried here. 17You may be powerful, but the Lord is about to snatch you up and throw you away. 18He will roll you into a ball and throw you into a wide open country, where you will die and your chariots will be destroyed. You're a disgrace to those you serve.

19The Lord is going to take away your job! 20-21He will give your official robes and your authority to his servant Eliakim son of Hilkiah.

Eliakim will be like a father to the people of Jerusalem and to the royal family of Judah. 22 The Lord will put him in charge of the key that belongs to King David's family. No one will be able to unlock what he locks, and no one will be able to lock what he unlocks. 23The Lord will make him as firm in his position as a tent peg hammered in the ground, and Eliakim will bring honor to his family.

24His children and relatives will be supported by him, like pans hanging from a peg on the wall. 25That peg is fastened firmly now, but someday it will be shaken loose and fall down. Then everything that was hanging on it will be destroyed. This is what the Lord All-Powerful has promised.




Footnotes:

22.1 Vision Valley: The exact location is not known. In Hebrew the name sounds something like “Hinnom Valley,” where the people of Jerusalem sometimes offered human sacrifices to the gods of Canaan.
22.1 flat roofs: In Palestine the houses usually had a flat roof. Stairs on the outside led up to the roof, which was made of beams and boards covered with packed earth.
22.3 No matter … caught: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
22.5 and for … help: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
22.6 Elam and Kir: Regions in the Iranian highlands.
22.6 chariots: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
22.8 Forest Palace: Built by Solomon (1 Kings 7.2) and used as a place for storing weapons.
22.9 the lower pool: Mentioned only here; probably in the southern part of the Central Valley (Tyropoean Valley) of Jerusalem.
22.11 between the walls: Some cities had two walls with a space between them. If the enemy broke through the outer wall, the city was still protected by the inner wall. The houses that were torn down to repair the outer wall were probably squatters' huts that had been built between the two walls.


Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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