Listen, all of you in far-off lands!
Before my birth and from within the womb
God’s whispered call has echoed in my heart;
I know ‘twas me; He called me by my name.
My words of judgment, sharp as two-edged swords
Shall issue from my mouth by His decree;
A polished arrow in His quiver kept
And in His hand my hiding place shall be.
“You are my servant, Prince of Israel,
The glory of the Lord you will reveal.”
I answered, “But my work for them seems vain;
For naught I spent my energy and zeal.”
Yet in God’s sovereign hand my work shall rest,
And my reward shall come from Him alone,
For He who formed me in my mother’s womb,
He reigns as Lord o’er every earthly throne.
‘Twas He who called me to restore to Him
His wayward and rebellious Israel.
‘Tis He who helps me do another task
And bring Him glory as I do His will.
“And now I have a greater task for you,”
Declares the Lord, “For you shall do much more
Than bring my wayward people back to me
To worship me again and to adore.”
“A Light to lead the nations of the world
My message to the Gentiles you will be,
Salvation and the love of God to share;
This is the task that you will do for me.”
Redeemer, Lord and King of Israel
Says to the one rejected by all men,
“The kings who held you underneath their heel
Shall worship, praise and honour you again.”
“As you pass by, princes before you bow,
For I, the faithful one, have chosen you
To be a guarantee to Israel
My promise once again to them renew.”
“This barren land, once rich with heaven’s grace,
With milk and honey flowing, now lies still;
But I will come in mercy to restore
And call my people back to do my will.”
Pris’nors of darkness hear my voice through you,
“Come out, forgiving love has set you free!”
Again my sheep will graze on grassy hills,
With eager steps they’ll gladly follow me.
Hunger and thirst will not assail them there,
Protected from the searing midday sun;
No scorching desert wind will trouble them,
Beside cool streams they’ll leap and play and run.
High mountains will be levelled out for them,
Deep valleys raised to highways for their feet;
My people shall return from far away —
Their joy and happiness will be complete.
O sing for joy, you heavens, shout, O earth;
Break forth with song, you mountains steep and high!
My people in their grief are comforted;
Compassion finally has brought them nigh.
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