We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
40:21 Have you not known? Have you not heard? Has it not been told you from the beginning? Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth?
40:22 It is he who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers; who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them like a tent to live in;
40:23 who brings princes to naught, and makes the rulers of the earth as nothing.
40:24 Scarcely are they planted, scarcely sown, scarcely has their stem taken root in the earth, when he blows upon them, and they wither, and the tempest carries them off like stubble.
40:25 To whom then will you compare me, or who is my equal? says the Holy One.
40:26 Lift up your eyes on high and see: Who created these? He who brings out their host and numbers them, calling them all by name; because he is great in strength, mighty in power, not one is missing.
40:27 Why do you say, O Jacob, and speak, O Israel, "My way is hidden from the LORD, and my right is disregarded by my God"?
40:28 Have you not known? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable.
40:29 He gives power to the faint, and strengthens the powerless.
40:30 Even youths will faint and be weary, and the young will fall exhausted;
40:31 but those who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.
This chapter contains 2 of the 7 "haftarot of comfort" - haftarah is a relevant passage from the prophets that is read after the main reading from the Torah (5 books of Moses) on Sabbath morning.
Fast of the 9th of Av - commemorating the destruction of the Temple - is preceded by 3 haftarot of condemnation, and followed by 7 haftarot of comfort... since the Temple was destroyed mid-summer, the 7 weeks of comforting passages take us into the Jewish New Year and High Holidays.
So - go read the whole chapter, it's beautiful... "comfort, comfort my people" - several very nice musical settings, if I recall...
In general, a good translation - but as always, the Hebrew original is less verbose.
22 - the "circle of the earth" uses a root that also means "compass/encompass". Some translate this as "equator".
The heavens are a "veil" and not a "curtain" - the word used is actually a poetic borrowing of the root for "fine, thin" - and "spreads them out" is "draws them tight"
23 - "scarcely" captures the terseness of the original nicely - it's literally "yet not" = not yet.
26 - Too many syllables: "Raise high your eyes, and see"
Also, God "brings out their host by numbers" - only He can count the infinite stars.
I believe this was the verse cited by Yemenite Jews in the early '50
s when they saw the Israeli planes that brought them to Israel: the Jews were not surprised nor frightened, as they knew from Isaiah that they would be born on the wings of eagles.