1During the days of Achaz the son of Yotam, the son of ‘Uziyahu, king of Y’hudah, Retzin the king of Aram and Pekach the son of Remalyah, king of Isra’el, advanced on Yerushalayim to attack it but were unable to conquer it. 2It was told to the house of David that Aram and Efrayim had become allies. Achaz’s heart began to tremble, as did the hearts of his people, like forest trees shaken by the wind.
3Then Adonai said to Yesha‘yahu, “Go out now to meet Achaz, you and your son Sh’ar Yashuv, at the end of the aqueduct from the Upper Pool, on the road to the Launderers’ Field; 4and say to him, ‘Take care to stay calm and unafraid; don’t be demoralized by these two smoldering stumps of firewood, by the blazing anger of Retzin and Aram or the son of Remalyah; 5or because Aram, Efrayim and the son of Remalyah have been plotting against you, thinking, 6“We will invade Y’hudah, tear it apart, divide it among ourselves and appoint the son of Tav’el as king there.”
7“‘This is what Adonai Elohim says:
“It won’t occur, it won’t happen.
8For the head of Aram is Dammesek,
and the head of Dammesek Retzin.
In sixty-five years Efrayim will be broken
and will cease to be a people.
9The head of Efrayim is Shomron,
and the head of Shomron is the son of Remalyah.
Without firm faith,
you will not be firmly established.”’”
10Adonai spoke again to Achaz; he said, 11“Ask Adonai your God to give you a sign. Ask it anywhere, from the depths of Sh’ol to the heights above.” 12But Achaz answered, “I won’t ask, I won’t test Adonai.”
13Then [the prophet] said,
“Listen here, house of David!
Is trying people’s patience
such a small thing for you
that you must try the patience
of my God as well?
14Therefore Adonai himself
will give you people a sign:
the young woman* will become pregnant,
bear a son and name him ‘Immanu El [God is with us].
15By the time he knows enough
to refuse evil and choose good,
he will [have to] eat
curdled milk and [wild] honey.
16Yes, before the child knows enough
to refuse evil and choose good,
the land whose two kings you dread
will be left abandoned.
17Adonai will bring the king of Ashur
on you, your people and your father’s house.
These will be days worse than any you’ve known
since Efrayim broke loose from Y’hudah.”
18Yes, when that day comes,
Adonai will whistle for the fly
in the farthest streams of the Nile in Egypt
and for the bee in the land of Ashur.
19They will come and settle, all of them,
in steep vadis and holes in the rocks
and on all thorn bushes and brambles.
20When that day comes, Adonai will shave —
with a razor hired beyond the [Euphrates] River,
that is, with the king of Ashur —
the head and the hair between the legs,
and get rid of the beard as well.
21When that day comes, a man will raise
a young cow and two sheep.
22Will they produce in abundance?
No, he will [have to] eat curdled milk.
Indeed, everyone left in the land
will eat curdled milk and [wild] honey.
23When that day comes,
wherever there once were a thousand grapevines,
worth a thousand pieces of silver,
there will be only briars and thorns.
24One will go there [to hunt] with bow and arrow,
because all the land will be briars and thorns.
25You won’t visit hills once worked with a hoe,
for fear of the briars and thorns;
it will be good only for pasturing cattle
and being trampled down by sheep.