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Isaiah 13:20-21


13:20 No one will live there again;

no one will ever reside there again. 1 

No bedouin 2  will camp 3  there,

no shepherds will rest their flocks 4  there.

13:21 Wild animals will rest there,

the ruined 5  houses will be full of hyenas. 6 

Ostriches will live there,

wild goats will skip among the ruins. 7 

1 tn Heb “she will not be inhabited forever, and she will not be dwelt in to generation and generation (i.e., forever).” The Lord declares that Babylon, personified as a woman, will not be inhabited. In other words, her people will be destroyed and the Chaldean empire will come to a permanent end.

2 tn Or “Arab” (NAB, NASB, NIV); cf. CEV, NLT “nomads.”

3 tn יַהֵל (yahel) is probably a corrupted form of יֶאֱהַל (yeehal). See GKC 186 §68.k.

4 tn The words “their flocks” are supplied in the translation for clarification. The Hebrew text does not supply the object here, but see Jer 33:12.

5 tn The word “ruined” is supplied in the translation for clarification.

6 tn The precise referent of this word in uncertain. See HALOT 29 s.v. *אֹחַ. Various English versions translate as “owls” (e.g., NAB, NASB), “wild dogs” (NCV); “jackals” (NIV); “howling creatures” (NRSV, NLT).

7 tn Heb “will skip there.”

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