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Isaiah 49:14-18

Context
The Lord Remembers Zion

49:14 “Zion said, ‘The Lord has abandoned me,

the sovereign master 1  has forgotten me.’

49:15 Can a woman forget her baby who nurses at her breast? 2 

Can she withhold compassion from the child she has borne? 3 

Even if mothers 4  were to forget,

I could never forget you! 5 

49:16 Look, I have inscribed your name 6  on my palms;

your walls are constantly before me.

49:17 Your children hurry back,

while those who destroyed and devastated you depart.

49:18 Look all around you! 7 

All of them gather to you.

As surely as I live,” says the Lord,

“you will certainly wear all of them like jewelry;

you will put them on as if you were a bride.

1 tn The Hebrew term translated “sovereign master” here is אֲדֹנָי (’adonay).

2 tn Heb “her suckling”; NASB “her nursing child.”

3 tn Heb “so as not to have compassion on the son of her womb?”

4 tn Heb “these” (so ASV, NASB).

5 sn The argument of v. 15 seems to develop as follows: The Lord has an innate attachment to Zion, just like a mother does for her infant child. But even if mothers were to suddenly abandon their children, the Lord would never forsake Zion. In other words, the Lord’s attachment to Zion is like a mother’s attachment to her infant child, but even stronger.

6 tn Heb “you.” Here the pronoun is put by metonymy for the person’s name.

7 tn Heb “Lift up around your eyes and see.”



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