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Isaiah 24:21--25:12

Context
The Lord Will Become King

24:21 At that time 1  the Lord will punish 2 

the heavenly forces in the heavens 3 

and the earthly kings on the earth.

24:22 They will be imprisoned in a pit, 4 

locked up in a prison,

and after staying there for a long time, 5  they will be punished. 6 

24:23 The full moon will be covered up, 7 

the bright sun 8  will be darkened; 9 

for the Lord who commands armies will rule 10 

on Mount Zion in Jerusalem 11 

in the presence of his assembly, in majestic splendor. 12 

25:1 O Lord, you are my God! 13 

I will exalt you in praise, I will extol your fame. 14 

For you have done extraordinary things,

and executed plans made long ago exactly as you decreed. 15 

25:2 Indeed, 16  you have made the city 17  into a heap of rubble,

the fortified town into a heap of ruins;

the fortress of foreigners 18  is no longer a city,

it will never be rebuilt.

25:3 So a strong nation will extol you;

the towns of 19  powerful nations will fear you.

25:4 For you are a protector for the poor,

a protector for the needy in their distress,

a shelter from the rainstorm,

a shade from the heat.

Though the breath of tyrants 20  is like a winter rainstorm, 21 

25:5 like heat 22  in a dry land,

you humble the boasting foreigners. 23 

Just as the shadow of a cloud causes the heat to subside, 24 

so he causes the song of tyrants to cease. 25 

25:6 The Lord who commands armies will hold a banquet for all the nations on this mountain. 26 

At this banquet there will be plenty of meat and aged wine –

tender meat and choicest wine. 27 

25:7 On this mountain he will swallow up

the shroud that is over all the peoples, 28 

the woven covering that is over all the nations; 29 

25:8 he will swallow up death permanently. 30 

The sovereign Lord will wipe away the tears from every face,

and remove his people’s disgrace from all the earth.

Indeed, the Lord has announced it! 31 

25:9 At that time they will say, 32 

“Look, here 33  is our God!

We waited for him and he delivered us.

Here 34  is the Lord! We waited for him.

Let’s rejoice and celebrate his deliverance!”

25:10 For the Lord’s power will make this mountain secure. 35 

Moab will be trampled down where it stands, 36 

as a heap of straw is trampled down in 37  a manure pile.

25:11 Moab 38  will spread out its hands in the middle of it, 39 

just as a swimmer spreads his hands to swim;

the Lord 40  will bring down Moab’s 41  pride as it spreads its hands. 42 

25:12 The fortified city (along with the very tops of your 43  walls) 44  he will knock down,

he will bring it down, he will throw it down to the dusty ground. 45 

1 tn Or “in that day” (so KJV). The verb that introduces this verse serves as a discourse particle and is untranslated; see note on “in the future” in 2:2.

2 tn Heb “visit [in judgment].”

3 tn Heb “the host of the height in the height.” The “host of the height/heaven” refers to the heavenly luminaries (stars and planets, see, among others, Deut 4:19; 17:3; 2 Kgs 17:16; 21:3, 5; 23:4-5; 2 Chr 33:3, 5) that populate the divine/heavenly assembly in mythological and prescientific Israelite thought (see Job 38:7; Isa 14:13).

4 tn Heb “they will be gathered [in] a gathering [as] a prisoner in a cistern.” It is tempting to eliminate אֲסֵפָה (’asefah, “a gathering”) as dittographic or as a gloss, but sound repetition is one of the main characteristics of the style of this section of the chapter.

5 tn Heb “and after a multitude of days.”

6 tn Heb “visited” (so KJV, ASV). This verse can mean to visit for good or for evil. The translation assumes the latter, based on v. 21a. However, BDB 823 s.v. פָּקַד B.Niph.2 suggests the meaning “visit graciously” here, in which case one might translate “they will be released.”

7 tn Heb “will be ashamed.”

8 tn Or “glow of the sun.”

9 tn Heb “will be ashamed” (so NCV).

10 tn Or “take his throne,” “become king.”

11 map For location see Map5 B1; Map6 F3; Map7 E2; Map8 F2; Map10 B3; JP1 F4; JP2 F4; JP3 F4; JP4 F4.

12 tn Heb “and before his elders [in] splendor.”

13 sn The prophet speaks here as one who has observed the coming judgment of the proud.

14 tn Heb “name.” See the note at 24:15.

15 tn Heb “plans from long ago [in] faithfulness, trustworthiness.” The feminine noun אֱמוּנָה (’emunah, “faithfulness”) and masculine noun אֹמֶן (’omen, “trustworthiness”), both of which are derived from the root אָמַן (’aman), are juxtaposed to emphasize the basic idea conveyed by the synonyms. Here they describe the absolute reliability of the divine plans.

16 tn Or “For” (KJV, NAB, NASB, NRSV).

17 tn The Hebrew text has “you have made from the city.” The prefixed mem (מ) on עִיר (’ir, “city”) was probably originally an enclitic mem suffixed to the preceding verb. See J. N. Oswalt, Isaiah (NICOT), 1:456, n. 3.

18 tc Some with support from the LXX emend זָרִים (zarim, “foreigners”) to זֵדִים (zedim, “the insolent”).

19 tn The Hebrew text has a singular form, but it should be emended to a plural or eliminated altogether. The noun may have been accidentally copied from the preceding verse.

20 tn Or perhaps, “the violent”; NIV, NRSV “the ruthless.”

21 tc The Hebrew text has, “like a rainstorm of a wall,” which might be interpreted to mean, “like a rainstorm battering against a wall.” The translation assumes an emendation of קִיר (qir, “wall”) to קֹר (qor, “cold, winter”; cf. Gen 8:22). See J. N. Oswalt, Isaiah (NICOT), 1:457, n. 6, for discussion.

22 tn Or “drought” (TEV).

23 tn Heb “the tumult of foreigners.”

24 tn Heb “[like] heat in the shadow of a cloud.”

25 tn The translation assumes that the verb יַעֲנֶה (yaaneh) is a Hiphil imperfect from עָנָה (’anah, “be afflicted, humiliated”). In this context with “song” as object it means to “quiet” (see HALOT 853-54 s.v. II ענה). Some prefer to emend the form to the second person singular, so that it will agree with the second person verb earlier in the verse. BDB 776 s.v. III עָנָה Qal.1 understands the form as Qal, with “song” as subject, in which case one might translate “the song of tyrants will be silent.” An emendation of the form to a Niphal (יֵעָנֶה, yeaneh) would yield the same translation.

26 sn That is, Mount Zion (see 24:23); cf. TEV; NLT “In Jerusalem.”

27 tn Heb “And the Lord who commands armies [traditionally, the Lord of hosts] will make for all the nations on this mountain a banquet of meats, a banquet of wine dregs, meats filled with marrow, dregs that are filtered.”

28 tn The Hebrew text reads, “the face of the shroud, the shroud over all the nations.” Some emend the second הַלּוֹט (hallot) to a passive participle הַלּוּט (hallut, “that is wrapped”).

29 sn The point of the imagery is unclear. Perhaps the shroud/covering referred to was associated with death in some way (see v. 8).

30 sn The image of the Lord “swallowing” death would be especially powerful, for death was viewed in Canaanite mythology and culture as a hungry enemy that swallows its victims. See the note at 5:14.

31 tn Heb “has spoken” (so NAB, NASB, NIV, NRSV, NLT).

32 tn Heb “and one will say in that day.”

33 tn Heb “this [one].”

34 tn Heb “this [one].”

35 tn Heb “for the hand of the Lord will rest on this mountain”; TEV “will protect Mount Zion”; NCV “will protect (rest on NLT) Jerusalem.”

36 tn Heb “under him,” i.e., “in his place.”

37 tc The marginal reading (Qere) is בְּמוֹ (bÿmo, “in”). The consonantal text (Kethib) has בְּמִי (bÿmi, “in the water of”).

38 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Moab) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

39 tn The antecedent of the third masculine singular pronominal suffix is probably the masculine noun מַתְבֵּן (matben, “heap of straw”) in v. 10 rather than the feminine noun מַדְמֵנָה (madmenah, “manure pile”), also in v. 10.

40 tn Heb “he”; the referent (the Lord) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

41 tn Heb “his”; the referent (Moab) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

42 tn The Hebrew text has, “he will bring down his pride along with the [?] of his hands.” The meaning of אָרְבּוֹת (’arbot), which occurs only here in the OT, is unknown. Some (see BDB 70 s.v. אָרְבָּה) translate “artifice, cleverness,” relating the form to the verbal root אָרָב (’arav, “to lie in wait, ambush”), but this requires some convoluted semantic reasoning. HALOT 83 s.v. *אָרְבָּה suggests the meaning “[nimble] movements.” The translation above, which attempts to relate the form to the preceding context, is purely speculative.

43 sn Moab is addressed.

44 tn Heb “a fortification, the high point of your walls.”

45 tn Heb “he will bring [it] down, he will make [it] touch the ground, even to the dust.”



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