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Isaiah 24:1-3

The Lord Will Judge the Earth

24:1 Look, the Lord is ready to devastate the earth

and leave it in ruins;

he will mar its surface

and scatter its inhabitants.

24:2 Everyone will suffer – the priest as well as the people, 1 

the master as well as the servant, 2 

the elegant lady as well as the female attendant, 3 

the seller as well as the buyer, 4 

the borrower as well as the lender, 5 

the creditor as well as the debtor. 6 

24:3 The earth will be completely devastated

and thoroughly ransacked.

For the Lord has decreed this judgment. 7 

Isaiah 24:10


24:10 The ruined town 8  is shattered;

all of the houses are shut up tight. 9 

Isaiah 24:12


24:12 The city is left in ruins; 10 

the gate is reduced to rubble. 11 

1 tn Heb “and it will be like the people, like the priest.”

2 tn Heb “like the servant, like his master.”

3 tn Heb “like the female servant, like her mistress.”

4 tn Heb “like the buyer, like the seller.”

5 tn Heb “like the lender, like the borrower.”

6 tn Heb “like the creditor, just as the one to whom he lends.”

7 tn Heb “for the Lord has spoken this word.”

8 tn Heb “the city of chaos” (so NAB, NASB, NRSV). Isaiah uses the term תֹּהוּ (tohu) rather frequently of things (like idols) that are empty and worthless (see BDB 1062 s.v.), so the word might characterize the city as rebellious or morally worthless. However, in this context, which focuses on the effects of divine judgment, it probably refers to the ruined or worthless condition in which the city is left (note the use of the word in Isa 34:11). For a discussion of the identity of this city, see R. Chisholm, “The ‘Everlasting Covenant’ and the ‘City of Chaos’: Intentional Ambiguity and Irony in Isaiah 24,” CTR 6 (1993): 237-53. In the context of universal judgment depicted in Isa 24, this city represents all the nations and cities of the world which, like Babylon of old and the powers/cities mentioned in chapters 13-23, rebel against God’s authority. Behind the stereotypical language one can detect various specific manifestations of this symbolic and paradigmatic city, including Babylon, Moab, and Jerusalem, all of which are alluded or referred to in chapters 24-27.

9 tn Heb “every house is closed up from entering.”

10 tn Heb “and there is left in the city desolation.”

11 tn Heb “and [into] rubble the gate is crushed.”

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