49:2 He made my mouth like a sharp sword,
he hid me in the hollow of his hand;
he made me like a sharpened 1 arrow,
he hid me in his quiver. 2
52:11 Leave! Leave! Get out of there!
Don’t touch anything unclean!
Get out of it!
Stay pure, you who carry the Lord’s holy items! 3
1 tn Or perhaps, “polished” (so KJV, ASV, NAB, NIV, NRSV); NASB “a select arrow.”
2 sn The figurative language emphasizes the servant’s importance as the Lord’s effective instrument. The servant’s mouth, which stands metonymically for his words, is compared to a sharp sword because he will be an effective spokesman on God’s behalf (see 50:4). The Lord holds his hand on the servant, ready to draw and use him at the appropriate time. The servant is like a sharpened arrow reserved in a quiver for just the right moment.
3 tn Heb “the vessels of the Lord” (so KJV, NAB).