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The Eternal Covenant of Peace


Sing, O barren one who did not bear;

burst into song and shout,

you who have not been in labor!

For the children of the desolate woman will be more

than the children of her that is married, says the L ord.


Enlarge the site of your tent,

and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out;

do not hold back; lengthen your cords

and strengthen your stakes.


For you will spread out to the right and to the left,

and your descendants will possess the nations

and will settle the desolate towns.



Do not fear, for you will not be ashamed;

do not be discouraged, for you will not suffer disgrace;

for you will forget the shame of your youth,

and the disgrace of your widowhood you will remember no more.


For your Maker is your husband,

the L ord of hosts is his name;

the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer,

the God of the whole earth he is called.


For the L ord has called you

like a wife forsaken and grieved in spirit,

like the wife of a man’s youth when she is cast off,

says your God.


For a brief moment I abandoned you,

but with great compassion I will gather you.


In overflowing wrath for a moment

I hid my face from you,

but with everlasting love I will have compassion on you,

says the L ord, your Redeemer.



This is like the days of Noah to me:

Just as I swore that the waters of Noah

would never again go over the earth,

so I have sworn that I will not be angry with you

and will not rebuke you.


For the mountains may depart

and the hills be removed,

but my steadfast love shall not depart from you,

and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,

says the L ord, who has compassion on you.



O afflicted one, storm-tossed, and not comforted,

I am about to set your stones in antimony,

and lay your foundations with sapphires.


I will make your pinnacles of rubies,

your gates of jewels,

and all your wall of precious stones.


All your children shall be taught by the L ord,

and great shall be the prosperity of your children.


In righteousness you shall be established;

you shall be far from oppression, for you shall not fear;

and from terror, for it shall not come near you.


If anyone stirs up strife,

it is not from me;

whoever stirs up strife with you

shall fall because of you.


See it is I who have created the smith

who blows the fire of coals,

and produces a weapon fit for its purpose;

I have also created the ravager to destroy.


No weapon that is fashioned against you shall prosper,

and you shall confute every tongue that rises against you in judgment.

This is the heritage of the servants of the L ord

and their vindication from me, says the L ord.


17. Every weapon. He again infers what has been already said, that wicked men, even though they exert themselves to the utmost, will gain nothing; for their attacks are guided and restrained by the secret, purpose of God. He makes use of the word “every,” meaning by it that wicked men will have the means of attempting many and diversified methods for destroying the Church, but that their efforts shall be vain and fruitless, 7575     “Mais tout s’evanouira comme fumee.” “But all shall vanish away like smoke.” for the Lord will restrain them. Heaven permits them, indeed, to a great extent, in order to try the patience of believers; but, when God thinks proper, he strips them of their strength and armor.

And every tongue. After having spoken of the “weapons” with which wicked men attack the Church, he expressly mentions the “tongue;“ because no other “weapon” is so deadly and destructive. Not only do they revile, and slander, and defame the servants of God, but, as far as lies in their power, they extinguish the truth of God, and alienate the hearts of men from it; which ought to distress us more than if life were taken from us a hundred times. Besides, good and upright men find slander to be more distressing, and to inflict more severe pain than any bodily stroke; and, therefore, there was good reason for mentioning this deadly “weapon.”

That shall rise up against thee in judgment. When he says that tongues “rise up in judgment,” he means that wicked men are so daring and insolent, that they openly attack and annoy the children of God. He adds that this is done “in judgment;“ because they hold out plausible pretexts, which give them the appearance of having a just cause. In like manner, the Papists, when they call us heretics, schismatics, and dogs, plead against us, as it were, “in judgment,” and wish to be regarded as the defenders of catholic truth, though they maintain falsehood and idolatry. And yet so plausible are the pretexts by which their slanders are covered, that they produce very strong hatred against us among those who are ignorant of our cause. But although they assail us by arms, and by the “tongue,” and by “weapons” of every kind, yet, relying on this prediction, let us hope that we shall be victorious; for victory is here promised to us, and, since we are certain of it, we ought to fight valiantly and with unshaken courage.

This is the inheritance. He shows that the Lord has granted this to believers, as it were, by a right of “inheritance,” so that they shall never be deprived of it; for, as no title is more certain than that of an heir, so he shows that there is nothing of which the Lord’s servants ought to be more certain than of his constant guardianship and preservation, by which he defends them against all dangers.

And their righteousness from me. “Righteousness” here denotes what is conveyed by us in the ordinary expression, (Leur droit,) “Their right.” In a word, he means that the Lord will defend his people, so as to protect their innocence. Whenever, therefore, we are attacked and injured by men, let us learn to betake ourselves forthwith to the Lord; for, when we seek other assistance, the consequence is, that we are deprived of his guardianship and protection.

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