The Bible – Old Testament
Thus says the LORD: The heavens are my throne, the earth is my footstool. What kind of house can you build for me; what is to be my resting place?
My hand made all these things when all of them came to be, says the LORD. This is the one whom I approve: the lowly and afflicted man who trembles at my word.
Merely slaughtering an ox is like slaying a man; sacrificing a lamb, like breaking a dog’s neck; Bringing a cereal offering, like offering swine’s blood; burning incense, like paying homage to an idol. Since these have chosen their own ways and taken pleasure in their own abominations,
1 I in turn will choose ruthless treatment for them and bring upon them what they fear. Because, when I called, no one answered, when I spoke, no one listened; Because they did what was evil in my sight, and chose what gave me displeasure,
Hear the word of the LORD, you who tremble at his word: Your brethren who, because of my name, hate and reject you, say, “Let the LORD show his glory that we may see your joy”; but they shall be put to shame.
A sound of roaring from the city, a sound from the temple, The sound of the LORD repaying his enemies their deserts!
2 Before she comes to labor, she gives birth; Before the pains come upon her, she safely delivers a male child.
Who ever heard of such a thing, or saw the like? Can a country be brought forth in one day, or a nation be born in a single moment? Yet Zion is scarcely in labor when she gives birth to her children.
Shall I bring a mother to the point of birth, and yet not let her child be born? says the LORD; Or shall I who allow her to conceive, yet close her womb? says your God.
Rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad because of her, all you who love her; Exult, exult with her, all you who were mourning over her!
Oh, that you may suck fully of the milk of her comfort, That you may nurse with delight at her abundant breasts!
For thus says the LORD: Lo, I will spread prosperity over her like a river, and the wealth of the nations like an overflowing torrent. As nurslings, you shall be carried in her arms, and fondled in her lap;
As a mother comforts her son, so will I comfort you; in Jerusalem you shall find your comfort.
When you see this, your heart shall rejoice, and your bodies flourish like the grass; The LORD’S power shall be known to his servants, but to his enemies, his wrath.
Lo, the LORD shall come in fire, his chariots like the whirlwind, To wreak his wrath with burning heat and his punishment with fiery flames.
For the LORD shall judge all mankind by fire and sword. and many shall be slain by the LORD.
They who sanctify and purify themselves to go to the groves, as followers of one who stands within, they who eat swine’s flesh, loathsome things and mice, shall all perish with their deeds and their thoughts, says the LORD.
3 I come to gather nations of every language; they shall come and see my glory.
I will set a sign among them; from them I will send fugitives to the nations: to Tarshish, Put and Lud, Mosoch, Tubal and Javan, to the distant coastlands that have never heard of my fame, or seen my glory; and they shall proclaim my glory among the nations.
They shall bring all your brethren from all the nations as an offering to the LORD, on horses and in chariots, in carts, upon mules and dromedaries, to Jerusalem, my holy mountain, says the LORD, just as the Israelites bring their offering to the house of the LORD in clean vessels.
Some of these I will take as priests and Levites, says the LORD.
As the new heavens and the new earth which I will make Shall endure before me, says the LORD, so shall your race and your name endure.
From one new moon to another, and from one sabbath to another, All mankind shall come to worship before me, says the LORD.
4 They shall go out and see the corpses of the men who rebelled against me; Their worm shall not die, nor their fire be extinguished; and they shall be abhorrent to all mankind.
1 [4-5] Worship which is merely external is as evil as though it were idolatry.
2 [7-9] The absence of labor in Zion’s childbearing is a symbol of the joyful begetting of the new people of God.
3 [18-21] God summons the neighboring nations to Zion and from among them will send some to far distant lands to proclaim his glory. All your brethren: Jews in exile.
4  God’s enemies lie dead outside the walls of the New Jerusalem; just as in the past, corpses, filth and refuse lay in the Valley of Hinnom outside the city, where huge fires were constantly burning; cf ⇒ Joshua 15:8; ⇒ 2 Chron 28:3; ⇒ Mark 9:45-48.