My words will be italicized wherever they appear. Should the Bible be italicized near my words, I’ll do something to differentiate them.
Sins Are Piled Sky-High
1-2 “Patrol Jerusalem’s streets.
Look around. Take note.
Search the market squares.
See if you can find one man, one woman,
A single soul who does what is right
and tries to live a true life.
I want to forgive that person.”
“But if all they do is say, ‘As sure as God lives . . . ’
they’re nothing but a bunch of liars.”
And that’s why Jesus came…
3-6 But you, God,
you have an eye for truth, don’t you?
You hit them hard, but it didn’t faze them.
You disciplined them, but they refused correction.
Hardheaded, harder than rock,
they wouldn’t change.
Then I said to myself, “Well, these are just poor people.
They don’t know any better.
They were never taught anything about God.
They never went to prayer meetings.
I’ll find some people from the best families.
I’ll talk to them.
They’ll know what’s going on, the way God works.
They’ll know the score.”
But they were no better! Rebels all!
Off doing their own thing.
The invaders are ready to pounce and kill,
like a mountain lion, a wilderness wolf,
Panthers on the prowl.
The streets aren’t safe anymore.
And why? Because the people’s sins are piled sky-high;
their betrayals are past counting.
Success or goodness or religion do not prevent ppl from disregarding God…
7-9 “Why should I even bother with you any longer?
Your children wander off, leaving me,
Taking up with gods
that aren’t even gods.
I satisfied their deepest needs, and then they went off with the ‘sacred’ whores,
left me for orgies in sex shrines!
A bunch of well-groomed, lusty stallions,
each one pawing and snorting for his neighbor’s wife.
Do you think I’m going to stand around and do nothing?”
“Don’t you think I’ll take serious measures
against a people like this?
Eyes That Don’t Really Look, Ears That Don’t Really Listen
10-11 “Go down the rows of vineyards and rip out the vines,
but not all of them. Leave a few.
Prune back those vines!
That growth didn’t come from God!
They’ve betrayed me over and over again,
Judah and Israel both.”
I mentioned the vines in Isaiah. A symbol of life that shows up a lot. And the fruit of the vine was involved in the first miracle Jesus performed (John 2:1-11). Here this life was displeasing and not from God. Such a shame.
12-13 “They’ve spread lies about God.
They’ve said, ‘There’s nothing to him.
Nothing bad will happen to us,
neither famine nor war will come our way.
The prophets are all windbags.
They speak nothing but nonsense.’”
Can you imagine? Being the God who made them, delivered them after they got themselves in trouble time and time again, performed miracles for them and their ancestors, and this is what they do?! No wonder there was silence for hundreds of years between the Old and New Testaments…
14 Therefore, this is what God said to me, God-of-the-Angel-Armies:
“Because they have talked this way,
they are going to eat those words.
Watch now! I’m putting my words
as fire in your mouth.
And the people are a pile of kindling
ready to go up in flames.
Fire is a thing too. Moses and the burning bush (Exodus 3:2). Shut up in Jeremiah’s bones (Jeremiah 20:9). The way the Holy Ghost sat on those in the upper room (Acts 2:3). And many other instances I can’t recall without a search…
15-17 “Attention! I’m bringing a far-off nation
against you, O house of Israel.”
“A solid nation,
an ancient nation,
A nation that speaks another language.
You won’t understand a word they say.
When they aim their arrows, you’re as good as dead.
They’re a nation of real fighters!
They’ll clean you out of house and home,
rob you of crops and children alike.
They’ll feast on your sheep and cattle,
strip your vines and fig trees.
And the fortresses that made you feel so safe—
leveled with a stroke of the sword!
18-19 “Even then, as bad as it will be”—God’s Decree!—“it will not be the end of the world for you. And when people ask, ‘Why did our God do all this to us?’ you must say to them, ‘This is back on you. Just as you left me and served foreign gods in your own country, so now you must serve foreigners in their own country.’
20-25 “Tell the house of Jacob this,
put out this bulletin in Judah:
Listen to this,
you scatterbrains, airheads,
With eyes that see but don’t really look,
and ears that hear but don’t really listen.
Why don’t you honor me?
Why aren’t you in awe before me?
Yes, me, who made the shorelines
to contain the ocean waters.
I drew a line in the sand
that cannot be crossed.
Waves roll in but cannot get through;
breakers crash but that’s the end of them.
But this people—what a people!
Uncontrollable, untamable runaways.
It never occurs to them to say,
‘How can we honor our God with our lives,
The God who gives rain in both spring and autumn
and maintains the rhythm of the seasons,
Who sets aside time each year for harvest
and keeps everything running smoothly for us?’
Of course you don’t! Your bad behavior blinds you to all this.
Your sins keep my blessings at a distance.
I scoffed. Scatterbrains and airheads…🤦🏾♀️🤣😂 I feel Him. How?
To Stand for Nothing and Stand Up for No One
26-29 “My people are infiltrated by wicked men,
unscrupulous men on the hunt.
They set traps for the unsuspecting.
Their victims are innocent men and women.
Their houses are stuffed with ill-gotten gain,
like a hunter’s bag full of birds.
Pretentious and powerful and rich,
hugely obese, oily with rolls of fat.
Worse, they have no conscience.
Right and wrong mean nothing to them.
They stand for nothing, stand up for no one,
throw orphans to the wolves, exploit the poor.
Do you think I’ll stand by and do nothing about this?”
“Don’t you think I’ll take serious measures
against a people like this?
Lord help this not to be me. Grateful for grace n mercy. Sheesh.
30-31 “Unspeakable! Sickening!
What’s happened in this country?
Prophets preach lies
and priests hire on as their assistants.
And my people love it. They eat it up!
But what will you do when it’s time to pick up the pieces?”
Uh is this BC or 2021 👀👀👀
A City Full of Lies
1-5 “Run for your lives, children of Benjamin!
Get out of Jerusalem, and now!
Give a blast on the ram’s horn in Blastville.
Send up smoke signals from Smoketown.
Doom pours out of the north—
I have likened my dear daughter Zion
to a lovely meadow.
Well, now ‘shepherds’ from the north have discovered her
and brought in their flocks of soldiers.
They’ve pitched camp all around her,
and plan where they’ll ‘graze.’
And then, ‘Prepare to attack! The fight is on!
To arms! We’ll strike at noon!
Oh, it’s too late? Day is dying?
Evening shadows are upon us?
Well, up anyway! We’ll attack by night
and tear apart her defenses stone by stone.’”
They were coming no matter what!
6-8 God-of-the-Angel-Armies gave the orders:
“Chop down her trees.
Build a siege ramp against Jerusalem,
A city full of brutality,
bursting with violence.
Just as a well holds a good supply of water,
she supplies wickedness nonstop.
The streets echo the cries: ‘Violence! Rape!’
Victims, bleeding and moaning, lie all over the place.
You’re in deep trouble, Jerusalem.
You’ve pushed me to the limit.
You’re on the brink of being wiped out,
being turned into a ghost town.”
If you could see my face.
9 More orders from God-of-the-Angel-Armies:
“Time’s up! Harvest the grapes for judgment.
Salvage what’s left of Israel.
Go back over the vines.
Pick them clean, every last grape.
Is Anybody Listening?
10-11 “I’ve got something to say. Is anybody listening?
I’ve a warning to post. Will anyone notice?
It’s hopeless! Their ears are stuffed with wax—
deaf as a post, blind as a bat.
It’s hopeless! They’ve tuned out God.
They don’t want to hear from me.
But I’m bursting with the wrath of God.
I can’t hold it in much longer.
Deaf as a post blind as a bat. But how many thought they were hearing and seeing God? How many of us???….
11-12 “So dump it on the children in the streets.
Let it loose on the gangs of youth.
For no one’s exempt: Husbands and wives will be taken,
the old and those ready to die;
Their homes will be given away—
all they own, even their loved ones—
When I give the signal
against all who live in this country.”
Judgment is coming for us too. It’s already arrived for some of us. We have not learned but we call ourselves Bible believing, Bible lead Christians…
13-15 “Everyone’s after the dishonest dollar,
little people and big people alike.
Prophets and priests and everyone in between
twist words and doctor truth.
My people are broken—shattered!—
and they put on Band-Aids,
Saying, ‘It’s not so bad. You’ll be just fine.’
But things are not ‘just fine’!
Do you suppose they are embarrassed
over this outrage?
No, they have no shame.
They don’t even know how to blush.
There’s no hope for them. They’ve hit bottom
and there’s no getting up.
As far as I’m concerned,
God has spoken.
I’ve been talking about greedy, capitalist America a lot lately. Huh. Not here of course. But still… The accuracy of today in this portion
Death Is on the Prowl
16-20 God’s Message yet again:
“Go stand at the crossroads and look around.
Ask for directions to the old road,
The tried-and-true road. Then take it.
Discover the right route for your souls.
But they said, ‘Nothing doing.
We aren’t going that way.’
I even provided watchmen for them
to warn them, to set off the alarm.
But the people said, ‘It’s a false alarm.
It doesn’t concern us.’
And so I’m calling in the nations as witnesses:
‘Watch, witnesses, what happens to them!’
And, ‘Pay attention, Earth!
Don’t miss these bulletins.’
I’m visiting catastrophe on this people, the end result
of the games they’ve been playing with me.
They’ve ignored everything I’ve said,
had nothing but contempt for my teaching.
What would I want with incense brought in from Sheba,
rare spices from exotic places?
Your burnt sacrifices in worship give me no pleasure.
Your religious rituals mean nothing to me.”
21 So listen to this. Here’s God’s verdict on your way of life:
“Watch out! I’m putting roadblocks and barriers
on the road you’re taking.
They’ll send you sprawling,
parents and children, neighbors and friends—
and that will be the end of the lot of you.”
My eyes 👀.
22-23 And listen to this verdict from God:
“Look out! An invasion from the north,
a mighty power on the move from a faraway place:
Armed to the teeth,
vicious and pitiless,
Booming like sea storm and thunder—tramp, tramp, tramp—
riding hard on war horses,
In battle formation
against you, dear Daughter Zion!”
24-25 We’ve heard the news,
and we’re as limp as wet dishrags.
We’re paralyzed with fear.
Terror has a death grip on our throats.
Don’t dare go outdoors!
Don’t leave the house!
Death is on the prowl.
26 “Dear Daughter Zion: Dress in black.
Blacken your face with ashes.
Weep most bitterly,
as for an only child.
The countdown has begun . . .
six, five, four, three . . .
The Terror is on us!”
Yoooo. He was playing no games. And He’s not gonna play any with us when we know better and profess Him without acing like we know Him.
27-30 God gave me this task:
“I have made you the examiner of my people,
to examine and weigh their lives.
They’re a thickheaded, hard-nosed bunch,
rotten to the core, the lot of them.
Refining fires are cranked up to white heat,
but the ore stays a lump, unchanged.
It’s useless to keep trying any longer.
Nothing can refine evil out of them.
Men will give up and call them ‘slag,’
thrown on the slag heap by me, their God.”
Thickheaded, hard-nosed bunch, rotten to the core. His way with words… What a way to end the chapter.
Pastor Tony Evans created a list of all the names of God and their pronunciations that can be found here. He also included the scripture for each one. I am going to put every English translation from biblegateway.com. I don’t know what all of the abbreviations stand for. You can click the hyperlink abbreviation to be directed to biblegateway.com and discover which version is which if you are unsure. 😉 My thoughts are italicized.
MEANING: God, my Rock
He’s a firm foundation!
VERSE: 2 Samuel 22:47
KJ21 “The Lord liveth! And blessed be my Rock! And exalted be the God of the rock of my salvation!
Okay worship. My rock. Possession. David wrote these words after God delivered him from his enemies and Saul per verse one.
ASV Jehovah liveth; And blessed be my rock; And exalted be God, the rock of my salvation,
AMP “The Lord lives, and blessed be my rock, And exalted be my God, the rock of my salvation.
AMPC The Lord lives; blessed be my Rock, and exalted be God, the Rock of my salvation.
BRG The Lord liveth; and blessed be my rock; and exalted be the God of the rock of my salvation.
CSB The Lord lives—blessed be my rock! God, the rock of my salvation, is exalted.
CEB The Lord lives! Bless God, my rock! Let my God, the rock of my salvation, be lifted high!
Be lifted high. Also. He is high and lifted up...Isaiah 6:1 King James Version (KJV).
CJB “Adonai is alive! Blessed is my Rock! Exalted be God, the Rock of my salvation,
CEV You are the living Lord! I will praise you! You are a mighty rock. I will honor you for keeping me safe.
Mighty rock. Keeping me safe.
DARBY Jehovah liveth; and blessed be my rock; And exalted be the God, the rock of my salvation,
DRA The Lord liveth, and my God is blessed: and the strong God of my salvation shall be exalted:
ERV The Lord lives! I praise my Rock! How great is my God, the Rock who saves me!
He is alive. Lives. Exists. Present.
EHV The Lord lives! Blessed be my Rock! May God, the Rock who saves me, be exalted!
Rock who saves me. Not a one time deal.
ESV “The Lord lives, and blessed be my rock, and exalted be my God, the rock of my salvation,
ESVUK “The Lord lives, and blessed be my rock, and exalted be my God, the rock of my salvation,
EXB “The Lord lives! May my Rock be ·praised [blessed]! Praise God, the Rock, ·who saves me […of my salvation]!
May the Rock be praised, blessed.
GNV Let the Lord live, and blessed be my strength: and God, even the force of my salvation be exalted.
My strength. The force of my salvation.
GW The Lord lives! Thanks be to my rock! May God, the rock of my salvation, be glorified.
Thanks! Gratitude. Be glorified.
GNT The Lord lives! Praise my defender! Proclaim the greatness of the strong God who saves me!
My defender. Proclaim. Speak up. Greatness. Strong God. Who saves me. Sheesh.
HCSB The Lord lives—may my rock be praised! God, the rock of my salvation, is exalted.
ICB “The Lord lives! May my Rock be praised! Praise God, the Rock, who saves me!
ISV The Lord lives! Blessed be my Rock, and may my God be exalted, the Rock who is my salvation!
JUB The LORD lives, and blessed be my rock, and exalted be the God who is the rock of my salvation.
KJV The Lord liveth; and blessed be my rock; and exalted be the God of the rock of my salvation.
AKJV The Lord liveth; and blessed be my rock; and exalted be the God of the rock of my salvation.
LEB Yahweh lives! Blessed be my rock! May God, the rock of my salvation, be exalted!
TLB The Lord lives. Blessed be my Rock. Praise to him— The Rock of my salvation.
MSG Live, God! Blessing to my Rock, my towering Salvation-God! This God set things right for me and shut up the people who talked back. He rescued me from enemy anger. You pulled me from the grip of upstarts, You saved me from the bullies. That’s why I’m thanking you, God, all over the world. That’s why I’m singing songs that rhyme your name. God’s king takes the trophy; God’s chosen is beloved. I mean David and all his children— always.
Um. Yes. Lol. Singing songs that rhyme your name.
MEV The Lord lives; blessed be my rock. May the God of the rock of my salvation be exalted,
NOG Yahweh lives! Thanks be to my rock! May Elohim, the rock of my salvation, be glorified.
NABRE The Lord lives! Blessed be my rock! Exalted be God, the rock of my salvation.
NASB The Lord lives, and blessed be my Rock; And exalted be my God, the rock of my salvation,
NASB1995 “The Lord lives, and blessed be my rock; And exalted be God, the rock of my salvation,
NCV “The Lord lives! May my Rock be praised! Praise God, the Rock, who saves me!
NET The Lord is alive! My Protector is praiseworthy! The God who delivers me is exalted as king!
My protector is praiseworthy. For who delivers me is exalted as king.
NIRV “The Lord lives! Give praise to my Rock! Give honor to my God, the Rock! He is my Savior!
NIV “The Lord lives! Praise be to my Rock! Exalted be my God, the Rock, my Savior!
NIVUK ‘The Lord lives! Praise be to my Rock! Exalted be my God, the Rock, my Saviour!
NKJV “The Lord lives! Blessed be my Rock! Let God be exalted, The Rock of my salvation!
Let God be exalted. Make the choice. Make the decision.
NLV “The Lord lives. Thanks be to my Rock. May God be honored, the Rock that saves me.
NLT “The Lord lives! Praise to my Rock! May God, the Rock of my salvation, be exalted!
NRSV The Lord lives! Blessed be my rock, and exalted be my God, the rock of my salvation,
NRSVA The Lord lives! Blessed be my rock, and exalted be my God, the rock of my salvation,
NRSVACE The Lord lives! Blessed be my rock, and exalted be my God, the rock of my salvation,
NRSVCE The Lord lives! Blessed be my rock, and exalted be my God, the rock of my salvation,
OJB Hashem liveth; and baruch be my Tzur; and exalted be the Elohei Tzur of my Salvation.
RSV “The Lord lives; and blessed be my rock, and exalted be my God, the rock of my salvation,
RSVCE “The Lord lives; and blessed be my rock, and exalted be my God, the rock of my salvation,
TLV Adonai lives! And blessed be my Rock! Exalted be God—the Rock of my salvation!
It was at this moment that I finally caught the rock and salvation references. In Matthew 16, Jesus asked the disciples who men said he was. They said the people said all kind of stuff. Bold Simon said he was the son of God. Jesus said flesh and blood didn’t reveal it but his father in heaven. He changed his name to Peter, Petras, rock. Jesus told him upon that rock he would build his church. Then the Holy Ghost came after they obeyed Jesus and waited for the promised comforter mentioned in John (Acts 1; Acts 2). Peter spoke up and provided the people with what Jesus laid out as the plan of salvation (John 3:5; Acts 2). Aaaaaahhhhhh.
VOICE The Eternal One is alive! May my Rock be blessed; and the True God, the Rock of my deliverance be exalted,
WEB Yahweh lives! Blessed be my rock! Exalted be God, the rock of my salvation,
WYC The Lord liveth, and my God is blessed; and the strong God of mine health shall be enhanced. (The Lord liveth, and blessed is my God; yea, the strong God of my salvation shall be exalted.)
YLT Jehovah liveth, and blessed [is] my Rock, And exalted is my God — The Rock of my salvation.
Is. Not be. Tuh.
My words will be italicized wherever they appear. Should the Bible be italicized near my words, I’ll do something to differentiate them.
It Was All Numbers, Dead Numbers, Profit and Loss
1-4 Wail, ships of Tarshish,
your strong seaports all in ruins!
When the ships returned from Cyprus,
they saw the destruction.
Hold your tongue, you who live on the seacoast,
merchants of Sidon.
Your people sailed the deep seas,
buying and selling,
Making money on wheat from Shihor,
grown along the Nile—
multinational broker in grains!
Hang your head in shame, Sidon. The Sea speaks up,
the powerhouse of the ocean says,
“I’ve never had labor pains, never had a baby,
never reared children to adulthood,
Never gave life, never worked with life.
It was all numbers, dead numbers, profit and loss.”
5 When Egypt gets the report on Tyre,
what wailing! what wringing of hands!
Here we go. No games.
Nothing Left Here to Be Proud Of
6-12 Visit Tarshish, you who live on the seacoast.
Take a good, long look and wail—yes, cry buckets of tears!
Is this the city you remember as energetic and alive,
bustling with activity, this historic old city,
Expanding throughout the globe,
buying and selling all over the world?
And who is behind the collapse of Tyre,
the Tyre that controlled the world markets?
Tyre’s merchants were the business tycoons.
Tyre’s traders called all the shots.
God-of-the-Angel-Armies ordered the crash
to show the sordid backside of pride
and puncture the inflated reputations.
Sail for home, O ships of Tarshish.
There are no docks left in this harbor.
God reached out to the sea and sea traders,
threw the sea kingdoms into turmoil.
God ordered the destruction
of the seacoast cities, the centers of commerce.
God said, “There’s nothing left here to be proud of,
bankrupt and bereft Sidon.
Do you want to make a new start in Cyprus?
Don’t count on it. Nothing there will work out for you either.”
Tarshish made me think of Paul formerly known as Saul (Acts 9:11). But it is also where Jonah fled to (Jonah 1:3) …
13 Look at what happened to Babylon: There’s nothing left of it. Assyria turned it into a desert, into a refuge for wild dogs and stray cats. They brought in their big siege engines, tore down the buildings, and left nothing behind but rubble.
14 Wail, ships of Tarshish,
your strong seaports all in ruins!
15-16 For the next seventy years, a king’s lifetime, Tyre will be forgotten. At the end of the seventy years, Tyre will stage a comeback, but it will be the comeback of a worn-out whore, as in the song:
Threescore and ten a.k.a. 70 (Psalm 90:10 KJV).
“Take a harp, circle the city,
Sing your old songs, your many old songs.
Maybe someone will remember.”
17-18 At the end of the seventy years, God will look in on Tyre. She’ll go back to her old whoring trade, selling herself to the highest bidder, doing anything with anyone—promiscuous with all the kingdoms of earth—for a fee. But everything she gets, all the money she takes in, will be turned over to God. It will not be put in banks. Her profits will be put to the use of God-Aware, God-Serving-People, providing plenty of food and the best of clothing.
The Landscape Will Be a Moonscape
1-3 Danger ahead! God’s about to ravish the earth
and leave it in ruins,
Rip everything out by the roots
and send everyone scurrying:
priests and laypeople alike,
owners and workers alike,
celebrities and nobodies alike,
buyers and sellers alike,
bankers and beggars alike,
the haves and have-nots alike.
The landscape will be a moonscape,
And why? Because God says so.
He’s issued the orders.
Hw wasn’t playin. From the root. He wanted that dead dead.
4 The earth turns gaunt and gray,
the world silent and sad,
sky and land lifeless, colorless.
Well He spoke and created it in Genesis 1 so….
Earth Polluted by Its Very Own People
5-13 Earth is polluted by its very own people,
who have broken its laws,
Disrupted its order,
violated the sacred and eternal covenant.
Therefore a curse, like a cancer,
ravages the earth.
Its people pay the price of their sacrilege.
They dwindle away, dying out one by one.
No more wine, no more vineyards,
no more songs or singers.
The laughter of castanets is gone,
the shouts of celebrants, gone,
the laughter of fiddles, gone.
No more parties with toasts of champagne.
Serious drinkers gag on their drinks.
The chaotic cities are unlivable. Anarchy reigns.
Every house is boarded up, condemned.
People riot in the streets for wine,
but the good times are gone forever—
no more joy for this old world.
The city is dead and deserted,
bulldozed into piles of rubble.
That’s the way it will be on this earth.
This is the fate of all nations:
An olive tree shaken clean of its olives,
a grapevine picked clean of its grapes.
But the promise of new vines and Jesus’s/Jesus’ (idk) mentioning vines in John 15.
14-16 But there are some who will break into glad song.
Out of the west they’ll shout of God’s majesty.
Yes, from the east God’s glory will ascend.
Every island of the sea
Will broadcast God’s fame,
the fame of the God of Israel.
From the four winds and the seven seas we hear the singing:
“All praise to the Righteous One!”
16-20 But I said, “That’s all well and good for somebody,
but all I can see is doom, doom, and more doom.”
All of them at one another’s throats,
yes, all of them at one another’s throats.
Terror and pits and booby traps
are everywhere, whoever you are.
If you run from the terror,
you’ll fall into the pit.
If you climb out of the pit,
you’ll get caught in the trap.
Chaos pours out of the skies.
The foundations of earth are crumbling.
Earth is smashed to pieces,
earth is ripped to shreds,
earth is wobbling out of control,
Earth staggers like a drunk,
sways like a shack in a high wind.
Its piled-up sins are too much for it.
It collapses and won’t get up again.
My, my, my.
21-23 That’s when God will call on the carpet
rebel powers in the skies and
Rebel kings on earth.
They’ll be rounded up like prisoners in a jail,
Corralled and locked up in a jail,
and then sentenced and put to hard labor.
Shamefaced moon will cower, humiliated,
red-faced sun will skulk, disgraced,
Because God-of-the-Angel-Armies will take over,
ruling from Mount Zion and Jerusalem,
Splendid and glorious
before all his leaders.
When I was a teenager, my grandfather’s wife was our Bible Class for a while. She told us if we could do several things we would be gifted with a Thompson Chain Reference Bible. All I can remember is saying all of the books of the Bible forward and backward and the structure of the Books of the Bible. Here’s how the Bible is structured.
- The Law
- 1 Samuel
- 2 Samuel
- 1 Kings
- 2 Kings
- 1 Chronicles
- 2 Chronicles
- Song of Solomon
- Major Prophets
- Minor Prophets
- Paul’s Letters
- 1 Corinthians
- 2 Corinthians
- 1 Thessalonians
- 2 Thessalonians
- 1 Timothy
- 2 Timothy
- General Letters
- 1 Peter
- 2 Peter
- 1 John
- 2 John
- 3 John