Isaiah 53

Isaiah 53Who has believed our report?

The arm of the Lord rests on those to whom it has been revealed.

He grew up as a tender shoot before him

Like a root from dry ground

there was no form or majesty[i] that we should look to him,

Nor beauty that we should desire him.

He was despised and abandoned by men,

a man suffering in pain and acquainted with injury.

Like one from whom we turn our face,

we despised[ii] him and thought nothing of him.

And yet he was wounded for us,

and suffered in our place.

We thought he was stricken,

struck down by God, and afflicted.

But he was pierced for our transgressions

and crushed for our iniquity.

The punishment for our peace was upon him

and by his stripes we were healed.

All of us are like wandering sheep,

Each one headed his own way.

And the Lord placed on him[iii] the iniquity of us all.

 

He was oppressed and afflicted

but he did not open his mouth.

Like a lamb being lead to the slaughter or a sheep bound before its shearers

He did not open his mouth

Through coercion and judgment he was taken away

and who is concerned about his descendants?

even though he was cut off from the land of the living,

and he was punished for the transgression of his[iv] people.

They[v] intended to place his grave with the wicked

but in death he was given a place with the rich

because he had not acted violently nor spoken deceitfully.

The Lord desired to crush him and to pierce him[vi]

 

If[vii] he makes atonement

He will see his offspring,

His days will be prolonged,

And the desire of the Lord will prosper in his hand.

Because of the trouble of his soul has endured,

He will see light[viii] and he will be satisfied.

By his knowledge, my righteous servant will vindicate many

and he will bear their iniquity.

Therefore I will allot to him abundant spoils and he will divide the plunder of[ix] the strong,

because he exposed his soul to death and was counted among the transgressors

and took upon himself the sin of many and interceded for their transgressions[x].

 


[i] The MT reads ‘and no majesty (ולא חדר)’ but 1QIsaa reads ‘and no majesty to him (ולוא חדר לו)’  which more closely mirrors the prior phrase ‘no form to him (לא תאר לו)’

[ii] The MT reads ‘he was despised (נבזה)’ but 1QIsaa reads ‘and we despised him (ונבוזהו)’

[iii] Lit ‘met in him’

[iv] The great Isaiah Scroll from the Dead Sea reads “his people”; the MT reads “my people”

[v] The great Isaiah Scroll from the Dead Sea reads “they gave”; the MT reads “he gave”

[vi] The great Isaiah Scroll from the Dead sea reads “and YHWH desired to crush him and pierce him (ויהוה חפץ דכאו ויחללהו).” This mirrors the statement in verse. 5 which reads “he was pierced for our transgressions and crushed for our iniquity” and is a much easier reading than the MT which reads “and YHWH desired to crush him, caused sickness (ויהוה חפץ דכאו החלי)”

[vii] Lit. “if his soul make atonement”

[viii] The great Isaiah Scroll from the Dead Sea reads “he will see light”; the MT reads “He will see.” The reading found in the Great Isaiah Scroll is also supported in the LXX.

[ix] The LXX reads “of the rich”

[x] The MT reads ‘and for the transgressors (ולפשעים)’ but 1QIsaa reads ‘and for their transgressions (ולפשעיהמה)’