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Isaiah 23:1

Context
The Lord Will Judge Tyre

23:1 Here is a message about Tyre:

Wail, you large ships, 1 

for the port is too devastated to enter! 2 

From the land of Cyprus 3  this news is announced to them.

Isaiah 23:6

Context

23:6 Travel to Tarshish!

Wail, you residents of the coast!

Isaiah 23:10

Context

23:10 Daughter Tarshish, travel back to your land, as one crosses the Nile;

there is no longer any marketplace in Tyre. 4 

Isaiah 23:14

Context

23:14 Wail, you large ships, 5 

for your fortress is destroyed!

1 tn Heb “ships of Tarshish.” This probably refers to large ships either made in or capable of traveling to the distant western port of Tarshish.

2 tc The Hebrew text reads literally, “for it is destroyed, from a house, from entering.” The translation assumes that the mem (מ) on בַּיִת (bayit) was originally an enclitic mem suffixed to the preceding verb. This assumption allows one to take בַּיִת as the subject of the preceding verb. It is used in a metaphorical sense for the port city of Tyre. The preposition min (מִן) prefixed to בּוֹא (bo’) indicates negative consequence: “so that no one can enter.” See BDB 583 s.v. מִן 7.b.

3 tn Heb “the Kittim,” a designation for the people of Cyprus. See HALOT 504-05 s.v. כִּתִּיִּים.

4 tc This meaning of this verse is unclear. The Hebrew text reads literally, “Cross over your land, like the Nile, daughter of Tarshish, there is no more waistband.” The translation assumes an emendation of מֵזַח (mezakh, “waistband”) to מָחֹז (makhoz, “harbor, marketplace”; see Ps 107:30). The term עָבַר (’avar, “cross over”) is probably used here of traveling over the water (as in v. 6). The command is addressed to personified Tarshish, who here represents her merchants. The Qumran scroll 1QIsaa has עבדי (“work, cultivate”) instead of עִבְרִי (’ivri, “cross over”). In this case one might translate “Cultivate your land, like they do the Nile region” (cf. NIV, CEV). The point would be that the people of Tarshish should turn to agriculture because they will no longer be able to get what they need through the marketplace in Tyre.

5 tn Heb “ships of Tarshish.” See the note at v. 1.



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