The Prophecy of Consolation
These verses are taken from the Book of Isaiah and are read on the Sabbath of Nachamu – the first Sabbath after Tisah B’Av.
This Sabbath is one of the seven Sabbaths between Tisha B’Av and Rosh Hashana in which we read about prophecies dealing in consolation and the vision of redemption, as it shall be at the end of the days. The Haftoras are all taken from a collection of consolation prophecies in the Book of Isaiah, starting from Verse 40.
The Book of Isaiah, Verse 40:1-11
1 Comfort, comfort my people - says your God.
2 Speak tenderly to Jerusalem and proclaim to her
that her hard service has been completed that her sin has been paid for,
that she has received from the Lord’s hand double for all her sins.
3 A voice of one calling: In the wilderness prepare the way for the Lord; make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
4 Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low;
the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain.
5 And the glory of the Lord will be revealed and all people will see it together for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”
6 A voice says: Cry out and I said: What shall I cry?
All people are like grass, and all their faithfulness is like the flowers of the field.
7 The grass withers and the flowers fall, because the breath of the Lord blows on them. Surely the people are grass.
8 The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.
9 You who bring good news to Zion, go up on a high mountain.
You who bring good news to Jerusalem, lift up your voice with a shout,
lift it up, do not be afraid; say to the towns of Judah: Here is your God
10 See, the Sovereign Lord comes with power and he rules with a mighty arm. See, his reward is with him and his recompense accompanies him.
11 He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms
and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.