Social Injustice Is Condemned 59 1The LORD hasn't lost his powerful strength; he can still hear and answer prayers. 2Your sins are the roadblock between you and your God. That's why he doesn't answer your prayers or let you see his face.   3Your talk is filled with lies and plans for violence; every finger on your hands is covered with blood. 4You falsely accuse others and tell lies in court; sin and trouble are the names of your children. 5You eat the deadly eggs of poisonous snakes, and more snakes crawl out from the eggs left to hatch. You weave spider webs, 6but you can't make clothes with those webs or hide behind them.   You're sinful and brutal. 7 You hurry off to do wrong or murder innocent victims. All you think about is sin; you leave ruin and destruction wherever you go. 8You don't know how to live in peace or to be fair with others. The roads you make are crooked; your followers cannot find peace. The People Confess Their Sins 9No one has come to defend us or to bring about justice. We hoped for a day of sunshine, but all we found was a dark, gloomy night. 10We feel our way along, as if we were blind; we stumble at noon, as if it were night. We can see no better than someone dead.[U]   11We growl like bears and mourn like doves. We hope for justice and victory, but they escape us. 12How often have we sinned and turned against you, the LORD God? Our sins condemn us! We have done wrong. 13We have rebelled and refused to follow you. Our hearts were deceitful, and so we lied; we planned to abuse others and turn our backs on you.   14Injustice is everywhere; justice seems far away. Truth is chased out of court; honesty is shoved aside. 15Everyone tells lies; those who turn from crime end up ruined. The LORD Will Rescue His People When the LORD noticed that justice had disappeared, he became very displeased. 16 It disgusted him even more to learn that no one would do a thing about it. So with his own powerful arm, he won victories for truth. 17 Justice was the LORD's armor; saving power was his helmet; anger and revenge were his clothes.   18Now the LORD will get furious and do to his enemies, both near and far, what they did to his people. 19He will attack like a flood in a mighty windstorm. Nations in the west and the east will then honor and praise his wonderful name. 20 The LORD has promised to rescue the city of Zion and Jacob's descendants who turn from sin.   21The LORD says: “My people, I promise to give you my Spirit and my message. These will be my gifts to you and your families forever. I, the LORD, have spoken.”
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