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Isaiah 24:15-16

Context

24:15 So in the east 1  extol the Lord,

along the seacoasts extol 2  the fame 3  of the Lord God of Israel.

24:16 From the ends of the earth we 4  hear songs –

the Just One is majestic. 5 

But I 6  say, “I’m wasting away! I’m wasting away! I’m doomed!

Deceivers deceive, deceivers thoroughly deceive!” 7 

1 tc The Hebrew text reads literally, “in the lights,” interpreted by some to mean “in the region of light,” referring to the east. Some scholars have suggested the emendation of בָּאֻרִים (baurim) to בְּאִיֵּי הַיָּם (bÿiyyey hayyam, “along the seacoasts”), a phrase that is repeated in the next line. In this case, the two lines form synonymous parallelism. If one retains the MT reading (as above), “in the east” and “along the seacoasts” depict the two ends of the earth to refer to all the earth (as a merism).

2 tn The word “extol” is supplied in the translation; the verb in the first line does double duty in the parallelism.

3 tn Heb “name,” which here stands for God’s reputation achieved by his mighty deeds.

4 sn The identity of the subject is unclear. Apparently in vv. 15-16a an unidentified group responds to the praise they hear in the west by exhorting others to participate.

5 tn Heb “Beauty belongs to the just one.” These words may summarize the main theme of the songs mentioned in the preceding line.

6 sn The prophet seems to contradict what he hears the group saying. Their words are premature because more destruction is coming.

7 tn Heb “and [with] deception deceivers deceive.”

tn Verse 16b is a classic example of Hebrew wordplay. In the first line (“I’m wasting away…”) four consecutive words end with hireq yod ( ִי); in the second line all forms are derived from the root בָּגַד (bagad). The repetition of sound draws attention to the prophet’s lament.



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