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Isaiah 29:10-12


29:10 For the Lord has poured out on you

a strong urge to sleep deeply. 1 

He has shut your eyes (the prophets),

and covered your heads (the seers).

29:11 To you this entire prophetic revelation 2  is like words in a sealed scroll. When they hand it to one who can read 3  and say, “Read this,” he responds, “I can’t, because it is sealed.” 29:12 Or when they hand the scroll to one who can’t read 4  and say, “Read this,” he says, “I can’t read.” 5 

1 tn Heb “a disposition [or “spirit”] of deep sleep.” Through this mixed metaphor (sleep is likened to a liquid which one pours and in turn symbolizes spiritual dullness) the prophet emphasizes that God himself has given the people over to their spiritual insensitivity as a form of judgment.

2 tn Heb “vision” (so NASB, NIV, NRSV).

3 tn Heb “one who knows a/the scroll.”

4 tn Heb “and if the scroll is handed to one who does not know a scroll.”

5 tn Heb “I do not know a scroll.”

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