Isaiah 59; Isaiah 60; Isaiah 61; 2 Thessalonians 3

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Isaiah 59

1 The LORD is not too weak to save or his ear too deaf to hear.
2 But your wrongs have separated you from your God, and your sins have made him hide his face so that he doesn't hear you.
3 Your hands are stained with blood, and your fingers are stained with sin. You speak lies, and you mutter wicked things.
4 No one calls for justice, and no one pleads his case truthfully. People trust pointless arguments and speak lies. They conceive trouble and give birth to evil.
5 They hatch viper eggs and weave spiderwebs. Those who eat their eggs will die. When an egg is crushed, a poisonous snake is hatched.
6 Their webs can't be used for clothes, nor can they cover themselves with their works. Their works are evil. Their hands have committed acts of violence.
7 Their feet run to do evil. They hurry to shed innocent blood. Their plans are evil. Ruin and destruction are on their highways.
8 They don't know the way of peace. There's no justice on their highways. They've made their paths crooked. Whoever walks on them will never know peace.
9 That is why justice is far from us, and righteousness doesn't reach us. We hope for light, but we walk in darkness. We hope for brightness, but we walk in gloom.
10 We grope like blind men along a wall. We grope like people without eyes. We stumble at noon as if it were twilight. We are like dead people among healthy people.
11 We all growl like bears. We coo like doves. We hope for justice, but there is none. We hope for salvation, but it's far from us.
12 You are aware of our many rebellious acts. Our sins testify against us. Our rebellious acts are with us. We know our wrongdoings.
13 We have rebelled and denied the LORD. We have turned away from our God. We have spoken about oppression and revolt. We have conceived and uttered lies in our hearts.
14 Justice is turned back, and righteousness stands far away. Truth has fallen in the street, and honesty can't come in.
15 Truth is missing. Those who turn away from evil make themselves victims. The LORD sees it, and he's angry because there's no justice.
16 He sees that there's no one to help. He's astounded that there's no one to intercede. So with his own power he wins a victory. His righteousness supports him.
17 He puts on righteousness like a coat of armor and a helmet of salvation on his head. He wears clothes of vengeance. He wraps himself with fury as a coat.
18 He will pay them back according to their deeds. He will pay back his opponents with wrath and punish his enemies. He will pay back the people who live on the coastlands.
19 The people of the west will fear the name of the LORD. Those in the east will fear his glory. He will come like a rushing stream. The wind of the LORD pushes him.
20 "Then a Savior will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who turn from rebellion," declares the LORD.
21 "This is my promise to them," says the LORD. "My Spirit, who is on you, and my words that I put in your mouth will not leave you. They will be with your children and your grandchildren permanently," says the LORD.

Isaiah 60

1 Arise! Shine! Your light has come, and the glory of the LORD has dawned.
2 Darkness now covers the earth, and thick darkness covers the nations. But the LORD dawns, and his glory appears over you.
3 Nations will come to your light, and kings will come to the brightness of your dawn.
4 "Look up, look around, and watch. All of your people assemble and come to you. Your sons come from far away. Your daughters are carried in their arms.
5 Then you will see this and rejoice, and your heart will be thrilled with joy, because the riches of the sea will be brought to you. The wealth of the nations will come to you.
6 "Many camels will cover your [land], young camels from Midian and Ephah. Everyone from Sheba will come. They will bring gold and incense. They will sing the praises of the LORD.
7 All of the flocks from Kedar will gather and come to you. The rams of Nebaioth will serve you. They will be sacrificed as acceptable [offerings] on my altar. So I will honor my beautiful temple.
8 "Who are these people that fly by like clouds, like doves to their nests?
9 Certainly, the coastlands wait with hope for me. The ships from Tarshish are the first to bring your children from far away. Their silver and their gold comes with them to honor the name of the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, because he has honored you.
10 "Foreigners will rebuild your walls, and their kings will serve you. In my anger I struck you, but in my favor I have compassion on you.
11 Your gates will always be open. They will never be closed day or night so that people may bring you the wealth of nations, with their kings led as prisoners.
12 Nations and kingdoms that do not serve you will be destroyed. The nations will certainly be ruined.
13 "Lebanon's glory will come to you: Cedar, fir, and cypress trees will come to beautify my holy place, and I will honor the place where my feet rest.
14 The descendants of those who oppress you will bow in front of you. All who despise you will bow at your feet. They will call you the city of the LORD, Zion, the city of the Holy One of Israel.
15 "You have been abandoned and hated; no one has passed through you. But now I will make you a source of everlasting pride, a joy for all generations.
16 You will drink milk from other nations and nurse at royal breasts. Then you will know that I am the LORD, your Savior, the Mighty One of Jacob, your Defender.
17 I will bring gold instead of bronze. I will bring silver instead of iron, bronze instead of wood, and iron instead of stone. I will appoint peace as your governor and righteousness as your ruler.
18 No longer will you hear about violence in your land or desolation and destruction within your borders. You will call your walls Salvation and your gates Praise.
19 The sun will no longer be your light during the day, nor will the brightness of the moon give you light, But the LORD will be your everlasting light. Your God will be your glory.
20 Your sun will no longer go down, nor will your moon disappear. The LORD will be your everlasting light, and your days of sadness will be over.
21 Then all your people will be righteous, and they will possess the land permanently. They will be the seedling I have planted, the honored work of my hands.
22 The smallest of them will become a family. The weakest of them will become a mighty nation. At the right time I, the LORD, will make it happen quickly."

Isaiah 61

1 The Spirit of the Almighty LORD is with me because the LORD has anointed me to deliver good news to humble people. He has sent me to heal those who are brokenhearted, to announce that captives will be set free and prisoners will be released.
2 [He has sent me] to announce the year of the LORD's good will and the day of our God's vengeance, to comfort all those who grieve.
3 [He has sent me] to provide for all those who grieve in Zion, to give them crowns instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of [tears of] grief, and clothes of praise instead of a spirit of weakness. They will be called Oaks of Righteousness, the Plantings of the LORD, so that he might display his glory.
4 They will rebuild the ancient ruins. They will restore the places destroyed long ago. They will renew the ruined cities, the places destroyed generations ago.
5 Foreigners will come forward and become shepherds for your flocks, and children of foreigners will work your fields and vineyards.
6 You will be called the priests of the LORD. You will be called the servants of our God. You will consume the wealth of the nations. You will boast in their splendor.
7 You will receive a double measure of wealth instead of your shame. You will sing about your wealth instead of being disgraced. That is why you will have a double measure of wealth in your land. You will have everlasting joy.
8 I, the LORD, love justice. I hate robbery and wrongdoing. I will faithfully reward my people's work. I will make an everlasting promise to them.
9 Then their offspring will be known among the nations and their descendants among the people. Everyone who sees them will recognize that they are the descendants whom the LORD has blessed.
10 I will find joy in the LORD. I will delight in my God. He has dressed me in the clothes of salvation. He has wrapped me in the robe of righteousness like a bridegroom with a priest's turban, like a bride with her jewels.
11 Like the ground that brings forth its crops and like a garden that makes the seed in it grow, so the Almighty LORD will make righteousness and praise spring up in front of all nations.

2 Thessalonians 3

1 Finally, brothers and sisters, pray that we spread the Lord's word rapidly and that it will be honored the way it was among you.
2 Also pray that we may be rescued from worthless and evil people, since not everyone shares our faith.
3 But the Lord is faithful and will strengthen you and protect you against the evil one.
4 The Lord gives us confidence that you are doing and will continue to do what we ordered you to do.
5 May the Lord direct your lives as you show God's love and Christ's endurance.
6 Brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ we order you not to associate with any believer who doesn't live a disciplined life and doesn't follow the tradition you received from us.
7 You know what you must do to imitate us. We lived a disciplined life among you.
8 We didn't eat anyone's food without paying for it. Instead, we worked hard and struggled night and day in order not to be a burden to any of you.
9 It's not as though we didn't have a right to receive support. Rather, we wanted to set an example for you to follow.
10 While we were with you, we gave you the order: "Whoever doesn't want to work shouldn't be allowed to eat."
11 We hear that some of you are not living disciplined lives. You're not working, so you go around interfering in other people's lives.
12 We order and encourage such people by the Lord Jesus Christ to pay attention to their own work so they can support themselves.
13 Brothers and sisters, we can't allow ourselves to get tired of doing what is right.
14 It may be that some people will not listen to what we say in this letter. Take note of them and don't associate with them so that they will feel ashamed.
15 Yet, don't treat them like enemies, but instruct them like brothers and sisters.
16 May the Lord of peace give you his peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you.
17 I, Paul, am writing this greeting with my own hand. In every letter that I send, this is proof that I wrote it.
18 The good will of our Lord Jesus Christ be with all of you.