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TitleIsaiah 56
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsParry, Donald W.
Book TitleThe Book of Isaiah: A New Translation (Preliminary Edition)
PublisherBook of Mormon Central
CitySpringville, UT
KeywordsBible; Isaiah (Book); Isaiah (Prophet); Old Testament

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The Nations Are Welcomed to God’s Covenant (56:1–8)


56 1Thus says the LORD,

The Lord

“Guard justice
and do righteousness.

For soon My salvation will come,
and My righteousness will be revealed.

2Blessed is the man who does this,
and the son of a human who holds it fast,

who keeps the Sabbath and does not profane it,
and keeps his hand from doing any evil.”


3Let not the foreigner[1] who has joined himself to the LORD say,


“Surely the LORD will exclude me from His people.”


And let not the eunuch say,


“Behold, I am a dry tree.’”


4For thus says the LORD:

The Lord

“To the eunuchs who guard My Sabbaths,
who choose the things that please Me
and hold fast to My covenant,

5I will give to them in My House and within My walls a hand and a name,
better than sons and daughters;
I will give them an everlasting name that will not be cut off.

6And the foreigners who join themselves to the LORD, who serve Him,
who love the name of the LORD, and who are His servants,

everyone who keeps the Sabbath,
and does not profane it,
and holds fast to My covenant,

7these I will bring to My Holy Mountain
and make them rejoice in My House of Prayer.

Their burnt offerings
and their sacrifices will be accepted on My altar,

for My House will be called
‘A House of Prayer’ for all peoples.”


8The Lord, the LORD, who gathers the outcasts of Israel, declares:

The Lord

“I will gather others to it
besides those already gathered.”


Israel’s Gross Wickedness (56:9–12; 57:1–13a)


9All beasts of the field, come to eat,
all you beasts in the forest.

10His watchmen are all of them blind;
they do not know,

they are all mute dogs,
they cannot bark,

dreaming, lying down, loving to slumber.

11And the dogs have a mighty appetite;
they never have enough,

and they are shepherds that have no understanding;
they all have turned to their own way,

each to his own gain,
one and all.

Wicked leaders

12“Come, let me take wine,
and let us fill ourselves with strong drink.

And tomorrow will be like today,
or even better.”


57 1The righteous perish, but no one takes it to heart;
devout people are taken away, while no one understands that the righteous man is taken away from evil.

2He will enter into peace;
they will rest on their beds, he who walks with uprightness.

The Lord

3But you, draw near, children of the sorceress,
offspring of the adulterer and the prostitute.

4Against whom are you making sport?
Against whom do you open wide your mouth and put out your tongue?

Are you not children of transgression,
the offspring of lies?

5You burn with lust among the oaks,
under every leafy tree,

who sacrifice your children in the wadis,
under the clefts of the rocks.

6Your portion is in sections of the wadi;
they, they are your destiny.

Also, to them you have poured out a drink offering;
you have brought a cereal offering.

Will I be appeased for these things?

7Upon a high and lofty mountain you have set your bed,
and there you went up to offer sacrifice.

8Behind the door and the door post you have set up your memorial. Far removed from Me you have uncovered yourself, and you have gone up and made wide your bed. And you have made a covenant for yourself with them. You have loved their bed; you have seen their nakedness.

9You journeyed to Molech with oil
and multiplied your perfumes;

you sent your envoys far away
and sent them down, even to Sheol.

10You were wearied with the greatness of your way;
you did not say,

The wicked

“It is hopeless.”

The Lord

You found renewal for your power;
therefore, you did not faint.

11Whom did you dread
and fear, so that you lied

and did not remember Me,
nor did you lay it to heart?

Have I not held my peace for a long time,
and you did not fear Me?

12I will declare your righteousness
and your works,

but they will not profit you.
When you cry out, let your group of idols[2] deliver you;

13the wind will lift all of them,
a breath will take them away.


[1] “Foreigner” here is a technical term (nekhar in biblical Hebrew) meaning one who is not part of the house of Israel.

[2] The Hebrew reads qibbutz, literally “has collection or assemblage,” but some commentators hold that the text implies a collection of idols, so “of idols” is added to the translation.


Scripture Reference

Isaiah 56:1