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Utley's You Can Understand the Bible Utley Commentary
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Utley. Dr. Robert. "Commentary on Isaiah 2". "Utley's You Can Understand the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
commentaries/ eng/ ubc/ isaiah-2.html. 2021.
Utley. Dr. Robert. "Commentary on Isaiah 2". "Utley's You Can Understand the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
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PARAGRAPH DIVISIONS OF MODERN TRANSLATIONS
READING CYCLE THREE (see “Guide to Good Bible Reading”)
FOLLOWING THE ORIGINAL AUTHOR'S INTENT AT PARAGRAPH LEVEL
This is a study guide commentary, which means that you are responsible for your own interpretation of the Bible. Each of us must walk in the light we have. You, the Bible, and the Holy Spirit are priority in interpretation. You must not relinquish this to a commentator.
Read the chapter in one sitting. Identify the subjects (reading cycle #3). Compareyour subject divisions with the five translations above. Paragraphing is not inspired, but it is the key to following the original author's intent, which is the heart of interpretation. Every paragraph has one and only one subject.
1. First paragraph
2. Second paragraph
3. Third paragraph
A. Isaiah 2:0 begins with another introductory phrase, like Isaiah 1:1. It is possible that editors or compilers put Isaiah's sermons/visions/messages together based on
1. chronology (under which king)
3. catch words
4. unknown literary scheme
5. a written copy of several Isaiah messages
See note in The Jewish Study Bible, p. 787.
B. This chapter is typical of the prophet's messages.
1. hope for all nations through His covenant people (Isaiah 2:2-4)
2. judgment for covenant violations and wickedness (Isaiah 2:5-22)
C. YHWH wants a righteous, holy, covenant people to reflect His character to the nations so that they can respond to Him in faith and righteousness (cf. Isaiah 45:22; Isaiah 49:6; Isaiah 60:3; Isaiah 66:18, Isaiah 66:23).
D. Remember in these poetic literary units (visions), do not push the details or single lexical studies, but the overall pattern of parallelism, word plays, and contrasts! The whole poem is meant to convey one major truth! Be careful of picking and choosing themes, words, or truths you are comfortable with or that fit you're á priori systematic theology. Let Isaiah speak!
E. Because of the unifying theme of Jerusalem (judged and blessed), Isaiah 2-4 forms a literary unit.
F. A book that has helped me understand the language of prophecy and apocalyptic is D. Brent Sandy, Plowshares and Pruning Hooks: Rethinking the Language of Biblical Prophecy and Apocalyptic, IVP, ISBN 0-83-8-2653-X.
A. The Parabolic Song, Isaiah 2:1-6
B. The Ironical Interpretation, Isaiah 2:7
C. The resultant Judgment of YHWH, Isa. 2:8-30
1. Series of woes, Isa. 2:8-23
2. Judgment, Isa. 2:24-30
a. natural, Isa. 2:25
b. invader, Isa. 2:26-30
NASB (UPDATED) TEXT: Isaiah 2:1 1The word which Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.
Isaiah 2:1 It is uncertain why Isaiah's messages are described as
1. vision, Isaiah 1:1; Isaiah 29:7 (BDB 302, cf. Micah 3:6)
2. he saw, Isaiah 1:1; Isaiah 2:1; Isaiah 13:1; Isaiah 26:11; Isaiah 33:17; Isaiah 48:6; Isaiah 57:8 (cf. Micah 1:1)
This is the mystery of revelation. It comes in different ways to different biblical authors (visions, dreams, theophanies, words, etc.). Moderns do not know how much freedom the individual writers (authors, editors, compilers) had to structure and present God's message. They obviously used their own language skills and vocabularies. Even without a full and complete understanding of the way revelation works, the concept is crucial! These are God's messages given through a historically conditioned person, to a particular time and group, yet they are relevant for all people in all times! The key for a proper interpretation is that the intent of an original inspired author must be the criteria for interpretation (one meaning but many significances/applications).
NASB (UPDATED) TEXT: Isaiah 2:2-4 Now it will come about that 2In the last days The mountain of the house of the LORD Will be established as the chief of the mountains, And will be raised above the hills; And all the nations will stream to it. 3And many peoples will come and say, “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, To the house of the God of Jacob; That He may teach us concerning His ways And that we may walk in His paths.” For the law will go forth from Zion And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. 4And He will judge between the nations, And will render decisions for many peoples; And they will hammer their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not lift up sword against nation, And never again will they learn war.
Isaiah 2:2-4 This brief paragraph summarizes the OT perspective on the place and purpose of the covenant people (similar to Micah 4:1-5). They were to be a light to the nations (cf. Isaiah 51:4, Isaiah 51:5; Luke 24:47)! See Special Topic: YHWH's Eternal Redemptive Plan.
Isaiah 2:2 “In the last days” This phrase refers to the future horizon of the particular biblical writer (see G. B. Caird, The Language and Imagery of the Bible, chapter 14, “The Language of Eschatology,” pp. 243-271). It denoted a time of fulfillment of God's purposes.
1. the Messianic kingdom, Genesis 49:1-27 (esp. Isaiah 49:10); Numbers 24:14-25 (esp. Isaiah 24:17); Isaiah 2:2; Jeremiah 48:47; Jeremiah 49:39; Ezekiel 38:8, Ezekiel 38:16
2. Israel's rebellion, Deuteronomy 31:29
3. Israel's return to YHWH in repentance and faith, Deuteronomy 4:30; Hosea 3:5; Jeremiah 23:19-22 (esp. Jeremiah 23:20)
4. an end-time attack on the covenant people, Ezekiel 38:16; Daniel 2:28; Daniel 10:14 (possibly Psalms 2:0)
5. exile, Amos 4:2
Only context can clarify which period. Be careful of your systematic theology!
SPECIAL TOPIC: THIS AGE AND THE AGE TO COME
▣ “The mountain of the house of the LORD” This refers to the temple located on Mt. Moriah in Jerusalem. It was the place of centralized worship of YHWH (the place He caused His name to dwell, cf. Deuteronomy 12:5, Deuteronomy 12:11, Deuteronomy 12:14, Deuteronomy 12:18, Deuteronomy 12:21, Deuteronomy 12:26; Deuteronomy 14:25; Deuteronomy 15:20; Deuteronomy 16:2, Deuteronomy 16:6, Deuteronomy 16:11, Deuteronomy 16:15; Deuteronomy 17:8, Deuteronomy 17:10; Deuteronomy 18:6; Deuteronomy 26:2; Deuteronomy 31:11).
The NIV Study Bible (pp. 962-3) comments how common in Isaiah is the theme of the mountain of the Lord where all the nations come in the last days (cf. Isaiah 11:9; Isaiah 27:13; Isaiah 56:7; Isaiah 57:13; Isaiah 65:25; Isaiah 66:20).
In a sense this elevation of Mt. Zion (i.e., Jerusalem, the site of the temple of YHWH) is depicted in Canaanite myth (cf. NIDOTTE, vol. 4, pp. 1314-1321). For the Canaanites the gods dwelt on Mt. Zaphon in the far north (cf. Isaiah 14:13), but Psalms 48:2 changes the imagery to Mt. Zion. YHWH is above all Canaanite deities!
This same concept of a temple or a city being raised is also found in Mesopotamian literature (cf. The Weidner Chronicle, Assyrian inscriptions, Marduk Prophecy). So the concept is not unique to Isaiah.
▣ Notice the metaphorical language used to describe the chief place of YHWH's revelation to Abraham's descendants.
1. “the chief of the mountains,” i.e., the place of true revelation
2. “raised above the hills,” a symbol of preeminence and exclusiveness
3. “all the nations will stream to it,” this has always been YHWH's goal, cf. Genesis 3:15; Genesis 12:3; Exodus 19:5-6; Psalms 22:27; Psalms 66:1-4; Psalms 86:8-10; Isaiah 2:2-4; Isaiah 12:4-5; Isaiah 25:6-9; Isaiah 42:6-12; Isaiah 45:22-23; Isaiah 49:5-6; Isaiah 51:4-5; Isaiah 56:6-8; Isaiah 60:1-3; Isaiah 66:23; Micah 4:1-4; Malachi 1:11; John 3:16; John 4:42; Acts 10:34-35; 1 Timothy 2:4; Titus 2:11; 2 Peter 3:9; 1 John 2:1; 1 John 4:14! This is the natural result of monotheism.
SPECIAL TOPIC: WHY ARE THE END-TIME EVENTS SO CONTROVERSIAL?
▣ “all the nations will stream to it” This VERB (BDB 625, KB 676, Qal PERFECT) denotes an ever-flowing stream of water, like an artesian well. Here it is metaphorical of the unending flow of people to YHWH.
Isaiah 2:3 Notice the request of the nations.
1. “come,”BDB 229, KB 246, Qal IMPERATIVE
2. “let us go up to the mountain of the LORD,” BDB 748, KB 828, Qal IMPERFECT used in a COHORTATIVE sense
3. “That He may teach us concerning His ways,” BDB 434, KB 436, Hiphil IMPERFECT used in a JUSSIVE sense
4. “that we may walk in His paths,” BDB 229, KB 246, Qal COHORTATIVE
5. “that the law (teachings) will go forth from Zion,” BDB 422, KB 425, Qal IMPERFECT used in a COHORTATIVE sense
▣ “His paths” This term (BDB 73) is used several times in Isaiah (cf. Isaiah 2:3; Isaiah 3:12; Isaiah 26:7, Isaiah 26:8; Isaiah 30:11; Isaiah 33:8; Isaiah 40:18; Isaiah 41:3) and prominently in Proverbs (cf. Proverbs 1:19; Proverbs 2:8, Proverbs 2:13, Proverbs 2:15, Proverbs 2:19, Proverbs 2:20; Proverbs 3:6; Proverbs 4:14, Proverbs 4:18; Proverbs 5:6; Proverbs 8:20; Proverbs 9:15; Proverbs 10:17; Proverbs 12:28; Proverbs 15:10, Proverbs 15:19, Proverbs 15:24; Proverbs 17:23; Proverbs 22:25). It metaphorically denoted a lifestyle faith that obeyed and walked in (cf. Exodus 16:4; Isaiah 30:20; Isaiah 42:24; Jeremiah 9:12; Jeremiah 26:4; Jeremiah 32:23; Jeremiah 44:10, Jeremiah 44:23; Zechariah 7:12) God's teachings. This metaphor for lifestyle, faithful living became the first title of the NT church, “The Way” (cf. John 14:6; Acts 9:2; Acts 19:9, Acts 19:23; Acts 22:4; Acts 24:14, Acts 24:22; Acts 18:25-26).
▣ “Zion” Jerusalem (like Rome) was built on seven hills. Zion (BDB 851, meaning uncertain) was the hill on which the original Canaanite city of Jebus or Salem was built (cf. 1 Kings 8:1; 2 Chronicles 5:2). As Jerusalem grew it became a way of referring to the whole city and temple (cf. Isaiah 2:3, lines 6 and 7; Jeremiah 50:28; Jeremiah 51:10).
Isaiah 2:4 “He will judge. . .render decisions” These two VERBS (BDB 1047, KB 1622 and BDB 406, KB 410) describe the reasonings and decisions of a wise ruler. YHWH and His Messiah are the ultimate wise rulers!
▣ The Lord'seshadows the Messianic Ag
presence and teachings will cause the nations to abandon their attacks on God's people (cf. Psalms 2:0; Ezekiel 38-39). They will pursue peace (cf. Isaiah 9:6-7; Isaiah 11:6-9; Isaiah 57:19; Hosea 2:18; Zechariah 9:10).
▣ “swords into plowshares” This is an idiom for peace. The opposite occurs in Joel 3:10.
NASB (UPDATED) TEXT: Isaiah 2:5-11 5Come, house of Jacob, and let us walk in the light of the LORD. 6For You have abandoned Your people, the house of Jacob, Because they are filled with influences from the east, And they are soothsayers like the Philistines, And they strike bargains with the children of foreigners. 7Their land has also been filled with silver and gold And there is no end to their treasures; Their land has also been filled with horses And there is no end to their chariots. 8Their land has also been filled with idols; They worship the work of their hands, That which their fingers have made. 9So the common man has been humbled And the man of importance has been abased, But do not forgive them. 10Enter the rock and hide in the dust From the terror of the LORD and from the splendor of His majesty. 11The proud look of man will be abased And the loftiness of man will be humbled, And the LORD alone will be exalted in that day.
Isaiah 2:5 Notice the parallel between Isaiah 2:3 (the nations) and Isaiah 2:5 (the Israelites). Lifestyle faith is the evidence of a personal trusting relationship with God. Humans must know the truth, walk in the truth, and share it with others! The nations were to learn this from Israel, but they did not!
The “light of the LORD” is the true revelation (cf. Isaiah 60:1-2, Isaiah 60:19-20). The worship of the lights of the night sky is false revelation. This verse may be a rejection of Babylonian astral worship (cf. Isaiah 2:6). YHWH and His Messiah are the true light for the nations (cf. Isaiah 9:2; Isaiah 42:6; Isaiah 49:6; Isaiah 51:4; Isaiah 53:11).
Isaiah 2:6-9 These verses describe why YHWH abandoned (BDB 643, KB 695, Qal PERFECT) His own covenant people.
1. They are filled with influence from the east, Isaiah 2:6.
2. They are soothsayers (BDB 778 II), like the Philistines, Isaiah 2:6.
3. They strike bargains with the children of foreigners, Isaiah 2:6.
4. They are wealthy and militarily strong (and trust in these things), Isaiah 2:7 (notice the three-fold repetition of “filled,” BDB 567, KB 583, Niphal IMPERFECT in Isaiah 2:7 and 8).
5. They are idolatrous, Isaiah 2:8 (cf. Isaiah 17:8; Isaiah 37:19; Isaiah 40:19; Isaiah 44:17).
6. They treat the common people with disdain, Isaiah 2:9 (cf. Isaiah 2:11, Isaiah 2:17; it is possible that this verse is parallel to Isaiah 2:8 and refers to idolatry, cf. NKJV).
What can the nations learn from people like this?!
Concerning #6 above (Isaiah 2:9), the NASB and NKJV translate it as another in a series of descriptions of how the covenant people are acting, but NRSV and TEV translate it as a summary and the last line is a plea for YHWH, not to forgive them (Peshitta) or a statement by YHWH that He will not forgive them (LXX).
NASB, NRSV“from the east” NKJV“eastern ways” TEV, JPSOA“from the East” PESHITTA“olden days” REB“traders”
The UBS Hebrew OT Text Project gives “from the east” or “from olden times” (both possible meanings of this NOUN, BDB 869) a “B” rating (some doubt). The NEB and REB add one consonant and make it “traders.” It seems to refer to religious influences from the east (i.e., Syria, Assyria, Babylon) which corrupted Israel's faith.
▣ “soothsayers” If this was meant to be a strict parallelism with the line above, it is possible that a NOUN parallel to “soothsayer,” such as “diviners” (cf. Leviticus 19:26; Deuteronomy 18:9-12), has inadvertently dropped out of the MT. The MT is not the earliest or most original Hebrew text. It does have textual problems! However, remember that these kinds of problems do not affect major doctrines.
NASB“they strike bargains with the children of foreigners” NKJV“they are pleased with the children of foreigners” NRSV“they clasp hands with foreigners” TEV“they follow foreign customs” NJB“is overrun with foreigners” LXX“many strange children were born to them” PESHITTA“they reared many alien children” REB“the children of foreigners are everywhere” JPSOA“they abound in customs of the aliens”
The term “children” is not in the MT. The VERB (1) “they strike hands” (BDB 706 I, KB 765, Hiphil IMPERFECT) or (2) “abound” (BDB 974, cf. NIDOTTE, vol. 3, p. 1769) is ambiguous. It can refer to
1. a commercial transaction
2. a political alliance
3. a friendship
4. an affirmation of the customs of foreigners
Obviously in context the unique faith of Israel is being compromised!
Isaiah 2:7 This description of Judean leadership is in direct contradiction to Deuteronomy 17:16-17. Humans who have resources tend to trust in them (cf. Isaiah 31:1), but Isaiah 2:22 (cf. Isaiah 31:3) shows the failure of trusting in physical or human resources!
Isaiah 2:9 “man. . .man” Isaiah 2:9 is a two-line, synonymous parallelism (cf. 2 Kings 7:10). The two most common terms for man/mankind are parallel.
1. adam, BDB 9, cf. Genesis 1:26; Genesis 6:1, Genesis 6:5, Genesis 6:6, Genesis 6:7; Genesis 9:5, Genesis 9:6
2. ish, BDB 35, Genesis 2:23; Numbers 23:19
NASB, NKJV, NRSV, TEV“do not forgive them” NJB, NIV“do not raise them again” LXX“do not pardon them” REB(omits as gloss, cf. Dead Sea Scroll and JB footnote)
The VERB (BDB 669, KB 724, Qal IMPERFECT used in a JUSSIVE sense) means “to lift” or “to carry.” Here it has the sense of “carry away” (i.e., remove their sin). This may be an exclamation from Isaiah, himself.
Isaiah 2:10-11 These two verses describe YHWH's advice to these covenant violators (Isaiah 2:10a).
1. enter the rock, BDB 97, KB 112, Qal IMPERATIVE (i.e., this relates to Isaiah 2:19-21, cf. Revelation 6:15-17)
2. hide in the dust, BDB 380, KB 377, Niphal IMPERATIVE
They are to hide from (Isaiah 2:10b)
1. the terror of the Lord, cf. Isaiah 2:19, Isaiah 2:21
2. the splendor of His majesty (cf. Isaiah 2:11c, Isaiah 2:19, Isaiah 2:21; 2 Thessalonians 1:9)
The result will be (Isaiah 2:11, note parallel in Isaiah 2:17)
1. the proud look of men will be abased, BDB 1050, KB 1631, Qal PERFECT (opposite of Isaiah 2:9)
2. the loftiness of man will be humbled, BDB 1005, KB 1458, Qal PERFECT (opposite of Isaiah 2:9, cf. Isaiah 13:11; Isaiah 23:9; 2 Corinthians 10:5)
3. the Lord alone will be exalted in that day, BDB 960, KB 1305, Niphal PERFECT (note parallel in Isaiah 2:17 and the phrase about the “terror” and “splendor” of YHWH in Isaiah 2:19c and 21b)
Some commentators think that Isaiah 2:10 is encouraging the righteous to hide from YHWH's coming judgment on the wicked (cf. NIDOTTE, vol. 2, p. 377), but in context (i.e., Isaiah 2:19-21) it refers to the covenant violators.
Isaiah 2:11 “in that day” This refers to the last days of Isaiah 2:2a. It becomes a dominate theme in Amos. The theme in Isaiah is resumed in Isaiah 2:12 (cf. Isaiah 2:20; Isaiah 3:17; Isaiah 5:30; Isaiah 28:5-6; Amos 2:16; Amos 8:9; Hosea 2:18). See Special Topic: That Day.
Conscious creation (humans and angels) will one day stand before its Creator and give account of the stewardship of the gift of life. YHWH is a moral, ethical God; creation is a moral, ethical creation. Humans do not break God's laws so much as break themselves on God's laws. The laws are for our protection in a fallen world, but humans see them as restrictions and loss of personal freedoms. One day every conscious creation, human and angel, will give an account before God!
NASB (UPDATED) TEXT: Isaiah 2:12-22 12For the LORD of hosts will have a day of reckoning Against everyone who is proud and lofty And against everyone who is lifted up, That he may be abased. 13And it will be against all the cedars of Lebanon that are lofty and lifted up, Against all the oaks of Bashan, 14Against all the lofty mountains, Against all the hills that are lifted up, 15Against every high tower, Against every fortified wall, 16Against all the ships of Tarshish And against all the beautiful craft. 17The pride of man will be humbled And the loftiness of men will be abased; And the LORD alone will be exalted in that day, 18But the idols will completely vanish. 19Men will go into caves of the rocks And into holes of the ground Before the terror of the LORD And the splendor of His majesty, When He arises to make the earth tremble. 20In that day men will cast away to the moles and the bats Their idols of silver and their idols of gold, Which they made for themselves to worship, 21In order to go into the caverns of the rocks and the clefts of the cliffs Before the terror of the LORD and the splendor of His majesty, When He arises to make the earth tremble. 22Stop regarding man, whose breath of life is in his nostrils; For why should he be esteemed?
Isaiah 2:12-13 Notice the recurrent use of terms denoting arrogant, prideful humans and nations.
1. “everyone who is proud” (BDB 144), Isaiah 2:12.
2. “and lofty” (BDB 926, KB 1202, Qal ACTIVE PARTICIPLE (note the same form in Isaiah 2:13, Isaiah 2:14), Isaiah 2:12
3. “everyone who is lifted up” (BDB 669, KB 724, Niphal ACTIVE PARTICIPLE (note the same form in Isaiah 2:13, Isaiah 2:14), Isaiah 2:12
4. “all the cedars of Lebanon that are lofty and lifted up,” Isaiah 2:13 (metaphor for humans and nations)
Isaiah 2:12 “For the LORD of hosts will have a day of reckoning” This does not follow the Hebrew text. The MT has “For the day of the LORD of hosts” (cf. NKJV). The NASB translation is trying to link this back to Isaiah 1:18.
Isaiah 2:12-16 Note the repeated use of “against” (BDB 752).
1. against everyone who is proud and lofty, Isaiah 2:12
2. against all that is lifted up, Isaiah 2:12
3. against all the cedars of Lebanon that are lofty and lifted up, Isaiah 2:13
4. against all the oaks of Bashan (who are also lofty and lifted up), Isaiah 2:13
5. against all the lofty mountains, Isaiah 2:14
6. against all the hills that are lifted up, Isaiah 2:14
7. against every high tower, Isaiah 2:15
8. against every fortified wall, Isaiah 2:15
9. against all the ships of Tarshish, Isaiah 2:16
10. against all beautiful craft, Isaiah 2:16 (this word “craft” [BDB 967] appears only here and its meaning is uncertain; it seems to be parallel to “ships of Tarshish” in Isaiah 2:16a)
The Lord opposes the proud (cf. Isaiah 2:11 and 17).
Isaiah 2:13 Because of the allusion to idolatry with trees (Isaiah 1:29) and gardens (Isaiah 1:29-30) and that YHWH will burn them, one wonders if this mention of lofty trees reflects
1. the pride and arrogance of nations
2. the worship of idols connected with trees/wood
Because of the larger context (i.e., “against” series) the first option seems best. The problem of human pride is summarized in Isaiah 2:17 (which may be the theme of the entire book).
Isaiah 2:16 “all the ships of Tarshish” See note at Isaiah 23:1.
Isaiah 2:17 This is parallel in thought to Isaiah 2:11, which is the opposite of what evil leaders and wealthy socialites had done to the poor and humble in Isaiah 2:9. Many see this verse as a summary theme of the entire book!
Isaiah 2:18 Idolatry will cease completely (cf. Isaiah 21:9) because the worship of them is “emptiness” (cf. Isaiah 30:22; Isaiah 31:7; Isaiah 40:18-20; Isaiah 44:9-20; Isaiah 46:5-7)!
Isaiah 2:19 “When He arises to make the earth tremble” The first VERBAL “arise” (BDB 877, KB 1086, Qal INFINITIVE CONSTRUCT) can denote
1. appear on the scene, Exodus 1:8; Deuteronomy 34:10; Judges 5:7; 2 Kings 23:25
2. arise for action (from His throne), Numbers 10:35; 2 Chronicles 6:41; Job 31:14; Psalms 76:9; Psalms 132:8
The second VERBAL “tremble” (BDB 791, KB 888, Qal INFINITIVE CONSTRUCT) describes physical creation as its creator approaches (cf. Isaiah 13:13; Isaiah 24:1, Isaiah 24:19, Isaiah 24:20; Psalms 18:7; Psalms 68:7-8; Haggai 2:6). YHWH can come for blessing or judgment. In this context it is for judgment!
Isaiah 2:20-21 To clarify the first line of Isaiah 2:10, humans will try to hide from God
1. in caves in the rocks (cf. Isaiah 2:21)
2. in holes in the ground
They will try to get rid of their precious idols
1. cast away to moles (the meaning of the word is uncertain. LXX has “vanities”; REB has “dung-beetles”; JPSOA has “flying foxes” [a type of bat, therefore, parallel to the next line of poetry]. It seems to be related to the VERB “to dig” [BDB 343])
2. cast away to bats
These two verses have a series of INFINITIVE CONSTRUCTS.
1. to the moles (lit. “to dig”), BDB 343, KB 340, Qal INFINITIVE CONSTRUCT
2. to worship (lit, “bow down”), BDB 1005, KB 295, Hishtaphel INFINITIVE CONSTRUCT
3. to go into, BDB 97, KB 112, Qal INFINITIVE CONSTRUCT
4. arises, BDB 877, KB 1086, Qal INFINITIVE CONSTRUCT, same form as Isaiah 2:19 (line 5)
5. tremble (lit. “to frighten,” BDB 791, KB 888, Qal INFINITIVE CONSTRUCT, same as Isaiah 2:19 (line 5)
In the IVP Bible Background Commentary “a Sumerian Hymn of Enheduanna to the goddess Inanna from the third millennium depicts gods fluttering away like bats to their caves from the goddess's terrible presence” (p. 588). This means that it must remain a possibility that it is the idols themselves that were carried down by insects (beetles) or digging animals seeking refuge from the coming of YHWH because they could not move themselves.
Isaiah 2:22 YHWH commands respect for human life (“cease,” BDB 292, KB 292, Qal IMPERATIVE) because it is contingent of God's gift of life (“breath,” ruah, see Special Topic: Breath, Wind, Spirit). Mankind is transitory (cf. Psalms 144:3-4). This is a truth that atheistic humanism needs to hear!