45This is what the Lord says to Cyrus, his anointed one, whose right hand he will empower. Before him, mighty kings will be paralyzed with fear. Their fortress gates will be opened, never to shut again.2This is what the Lord says. “I will go before you, Cyrus, and level the mountains. I will smash down gates of bronze and cut through bars of iron.3And I will give you treasures hidden in the darkness—secret riches. I will do this so you may know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, the one who calls you by name.4“And why have I called you for this work? Why did I call you by name when you did not know me? It is for the sake of Jacob my servant, Israel my chosen one.5I am the Lord; there is no other God. I have equipped you for battle, though you don’t even know me,6so all the world from east to west will know there is no other God. I am the Lord, and there is no other.7I create the light and make the darkness. I send good times and bad times. I, the Lord, am the one who does these things.8“Open up, O heavens, and pour out your righteousness. Let the earth open wide so salvation and righteousness can sprout up together. I, the Lord, created them.9“What sorrow awaits those who argue with their Creator. Does a clay pot argue with its maker? Does the clay dispute with the one who shapes it, saying, ‘Stop, you’re doing it wrong!’ Does the pot exclaim, ‘How clumsy can you be?’10How terrible it would be if a newborn baby said to its father, ‘Why was I born?’ or if it said to its mother, ‘Why did you make me this way?’”11This is what the Lord says—the Holy One of Israel and your Creator. “Do you question what I do for my children? Do you give me orders about the work of my hands?12I am the one who made the earth and created people to live on it. With my hands I stretched out the heavens. All the stars are at my command.13I will raise up Cyrus to fulfill my righteous purpose, and I will guide his actions. He will restore my city and free my captive people—without seeking a reward! I, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, have spoken!”
Future Conversion of Gentiles
14This is what the Lord says. “You will rule the Egyptians, the Ethiopians, and the Sabeans. They will come to you with all their merchandise, and it will all be yours. They will follow you as prisoners in chains. They will fall to their knees in front of you and say, ‘God is with you, and he is the only God. There is no other.’”15Truly, O God of Israel, our Savior, you work in mysterious ways.16All craftsmen who make idols will be humiliated. They will all be disgraced together.17But the Lord will save the people of Israel with eternal salvation. Throughout everlasting ages, they will never again be humiliated and disgraced.18For the Lord is God, and he created the heavens and earth and put everything in place. He made the world to be lived in, not to be a place of empty chaos. “I am the Lord,” he says, “and there is no other.19I publicly proclaim bold promises. I do not whisper obscurities in some dark corner. I would not have told the people of Israel to seek me if I could not be found. I, the Lord, speak only what is true and declare only what is right.20“Gather together and come, you fugitives from surrounding nations. What fools they are who carry around their wooden idols and pray to gods that cannot save!21Consult together, argue your case. Get together and decide what to say. Who made these things known so long ago? What idol ever told you they would happen? Was it not I, the Lord? For there is no other God but me, a righteous God and Savior. There is none but me.22Let all the world look to me for salvation! For I am God; there is no other.23I have sworn by my own name; I have spoken the truth, and I will never go back on my word. Every knee will bend to me, and every tongue will confess allegiance to me.”24The people will declare, “The Lord is the source of all my righteousness and strength.” And all who were angry with him will come to him and be ashamed.25In the Lord all the generations of Israel will be justified, and in him they will boast.