Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Isaiah 13:16

Their little ones also will be dashed to pieces Before their eyes; Their houses will be plundered And their wives ravished.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Cruelty;   Rape;   War;   Thompson Chain Reference - Horrors of War;   War;   War-Peace;   The Topic Concordance - Day of the Lord;   Punishment;   World;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Babylon;   Cities;   Houses;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Babylon;   Isaiah;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Captive;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Jesus Christ;   Nahum (2);   Holman Bible Dictionary - Isaiah;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Isaiah, Book of;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Babylon ;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Medes;   Rebels;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Babylon;   Messiah;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Kingdom of Judah;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Dash;   Isaiah;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Chastity;  
Devotionals:
Every Day Light - Devotion for February 20;  

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Their children also shall be dashed to pieces - This is a description of the horrors of the capture of Babylon; and there can be none more frightful and appalling than that which is here presented. That this is done in barbarous nations in the time of war, there can be no doubt. Nothing was more common among American savages, than to dash out the brains of infants against a rock or a tree, and it was often done before the eyes of the afflicted and heartbroken parents. That these horrors were not unknown in Oriental nations of antiquity, is evident. Thus, the Psalmist implies that it would be done in Babylon, in exact accordance with this prediction of Isaiah; Psalm 137:8-9:

O daughter of Babylon, who art to be destroyed:

Happy shall he be who rewardeth these as thou hast served us;

Happy shall he be who taketh and dasheth thy little ones

Against the stones.

Thus, also, it is said of Hazael, that when he came to be king of Syria, he would be guilty of this barbarity in regard to the Jews (2 Kings 8:13; compare Nahum 3:10). It was an evidence of the barbarous feelings of the times; and a proof that they were far, very far, from the humanity which is now deemed indispensable even in war.

Their houses shall be spoiled - Plundered. It is implied here, says Kimchi, that this was to be done also ‹before their eyes,‘ and thus the horrors of the capture would be greatly increased.

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Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/isaiah-13.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes,.... Upon the ground, or against the wall, as was foretold should be, Psalm 137:8 and in way of retaliation for what they did to the Jews, 2 Chronicles 36:17 and this was to be done "before their eyes", in the sight of the inhabitants, which must make it the more distressing and afflicting; and, as Kimchi observes, this phrase is to be applied to the following clauses:

their houses shall be spoiled; plundered of the substance, wealth, and riches in them, by the Persian soldiers:

and their wives ravished; by the same, and both before their eyes, and after that slain, in like manner as they had ravished the women in Zion, Lamentations 5:11.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/isaiah-13.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

Their n children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses shall be plundered, and their wives ravished.

(n) This was not accomplished when Cyrus took Babylon, but after the death of Alexander the great.
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Bibliographical Information
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/isaiah-13.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

(Psalm 137:8, Psalm 137:9).

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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/isaiah-13.html. 1871-8.

Preacher's Complete Homiletical Commentary

THE DOOM OF THE CHILDREN OF BABYLON

Isa . Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes.

Consider this terrible declaration—

I. As it regards man.

1. As a revelation of the degradation of which he is capable. History may be said to be a manifold revelation to this effect; the Bible alone gives hope for man, by disclosing his capabilities of development and exaltation.

2. As a remindal that no earthly empire is in and of itself secure against utter over throw.

3. As a remindal that what are called national disasters, are made up of sufferings endured by a vast number of individuals.

II. As it regards God. So considered, it should be remembered—

1. That His permission of such things is, when viewed comprehensively, only part of the great mystery of the permission of evil.

2. That this is an instance of the working of one of the great natural laws by which God governs the universe—the law of retribution.

3. That in the heart of this terrible prediction there is a bright ray of hope. When you see a surgeon performing a terrible operation on a patient, you are sure that he is confident that the patient will be restored to health. So when we look at the world as it is, we are certified that there is a better world to be. God would never have permitted the world to be, if He did not see how out of this present misery He could educe eternal and triumphant blessedness. Towards that better future God is leading on the world (H. E. I., 3421-3423). The revulsion of feeling with which we read this prediction is one proof of it; there was a time when such incidents in the prosecution of a war would have been regarded as a matter of course. That it should not be so now marks an advance, and is a prophecy of further advances.

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Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". Preacher's Complete Homiletical Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/phc/isaiah-13.html. Funk & Wagnalls Company, 1892.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Isaiah 13:16 Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses shall be spoiled, and their wives ravished.

Ver. 16. Their children shall be dashed in pieces, &c.] As had been prayed and prophesied long before [Psalms 137:9] and this was but lex talionis. See 2 Chronicles 36:17, Lamentations 5:11.

Their houses shall be spoiled, and their wives ravished.] As those three commandments, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, are ranked together in the law, so they are commonly violated together in the lawless violence of war.

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Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/isaiah-13.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes, as a just recompence for the like cruelty acted by them upon the Jews, 2 Chronicles 36:17, which also was foretold, Psalms 137:9.

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Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/isaiah-13.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

16.Their children — Whose children? Either those of foreigners, or of foreigners and natives, according as slaughter was seen to be restricted or general. It was likely to be general, in which case all children are to be slain, every house despoiled, and every woman ravished.

 

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Bibliographical Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/isaiah-13.html. 1874-1909.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

children = babes.

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Bibliographical Information
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/isaiah-13.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses shall be spoiled, and their wives ravished.

(Psalms 137:8-9.)

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Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/isaiah-13.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(16) Their children also shall be dashed.—Better, their sucklings. The words of the prediction seem to have been in the minds of the exiles in Babylon when they uttered their dread beatitude on those who were to be the ministers of a righteous vengeance (Psalms 137:9). Outrages such as these were then, as they have been ever since, the inevitable accompaniments of the capture of a besieged city.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/isaiah-13.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses shall be spoiled, and their wives ravished.
children
Psalms 137:8,9; Hosea 10:14; Nahum 3:10
and their
Lamentations 5:11; Zechariah 14:2
Reciprocal: 2 Kings 8:12 - dash;  Psalm 37:25 - yet;  Isaiah 13:18 - shall dash;  Isaiah 47:6 - thou didst;  Jeremiah 39:6 - before;  Jeremiah 51:52 - the wounded;  Hosea 13:16 - their infants;  Amos 7:17 - Thy wife;  Habakkuk 2:7 - they

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/isaiah-13.html.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

16.Their children shall be dashed in pieces. He draws a picture of extreme cruelty. It is the utmost pitch of ferocity exercised by an invading army, when no age is spared, and infants, whose age makes it impossible for them to defend themselves, are slain. He represents it as still more shocking, when he adds, “in the sight of their parents.” To the same purpose is what follows about plundering houses and ravishing wives; for these things happen when the enemies have forgotten all humanity, and are inflamed to cruelty, and wish that those whom they have subdued, and even their very name, should be rooted out.

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Bibliographical Information
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Isaiah 13:16". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/isaiah-13.html. 1840-57.