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Isaiah 18:4

    Isaiah 18:4 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    For so the LORD said unto me, I will take my rest, and I will consider in my dwelling place like a clear heat upon herbs, and like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    For so the LORD said to me, I will take my rest, and I will consider in my dwelling place like a clear heat on herbs, and like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    For thus hath Jehovah said unto me, I will be still, and I will behold in my dwelling-place, like clear heat in sunshine, like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    For this is what the Lord has said to me: I will be quiet, watching from my place; like the clear heat when the sun is shining, like a mist of dew in the heat of summer.

    Webster's Revision

    For thus hath Jehovah said unto me, I will be still, and I will behold in my dwelling-place, like clear heat in sunshine, like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.

    World English Bible

    For Yahweh said to me, "I will be still, and I will see in my dwelling place, like clear heat in sunshine, like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest."

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    For thus hath the LORD said unto me, I will be still, and I will behold in my dwelling place; like clear heat in sunshine, like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.

    Definitions for Isaiah 18:4

    Herbs - Vegetables.

    Clarke's Commentary on Isaiah 18:4

    For so the Lord said unto me "For thus hath Jehovah said unto me" - The subject of the remaining part of this chapter is, that God would comfort and support his own people, though threatened with immediate destruction by the Assyrians; that Sennacherib's great designs and mighty efforts against them should be frustrated; and that his vast expectations should be rendered abortive, when he thought them mature, and just ready to be crowned with success; that the chief part of his army should be made a prey for the beasts of the field and the fowls of the air, (for this is the meaning of the allegory continued through the fifth and sixth verses); and that Egypt, being delivered from his oppression, and avenged by the hand of God of the wrongs which she had suffered, should return thanks for the wonderful deliverance, both of herself and of the Jews, from this most powerful adversary.

    Like a clear heat "Like the clear heat" - The same images are employed by an Arabian poet: -

    Solis more fervens, dum frigus; quumque ardet

    Sirius, tum vero frigus ipse et umbra.

    Which is illustrated in the note by a like passage from another Arabian poet: -

    Calor est hyeme, refrigerium aestate.

    Excerpta ex Hamasa; published by Schultens, at the end of Erpenius's Arabic Grammar, p. 425.

    Upon herbs "After rain" - "אור aur here signifies rain, according to what is said Job 36:11 : 'The cloud scatters his rain.'" - Kimchi. In which place of Job the Chaldee paraphrast does indeed explain אורו auro by מטריה matereyh; and so again Job 36:21 and Job 36:30. This meaning of the word seems to make the best sense in this place; it is to be wished that it were better supported.

    In the heat of harvest "In the day of harvest" - For בחם bechom, in the heat, fourteen MSS., (several ancient), the Septuagint, Syriac, Arabic, and Vulgate read ביום beyom, in the day. The mistake seems to have arisen from כחם kechom in the line above.

    Barnes' Notes on Isaiah 18:4

    For so the Lord said unto me - So Yahweh has revealed his purpose, that is, to execute punishment on the people who have been described in the previous verses. Their state as there described is that of a fierce people making ready for war, and probably designing an alliance with the enemies of Judea, and marshalling their armies for that purpose. Yahweh here reveals to the prophet that they shall be discomfited, and shows the manner in which it will be done. He says he will sit calm while these preparations are going on - as the sun shines serenely on the earth while the harvest is growing, and the dew falls gently on the herb; but that "before" their plans are completed, he will interpose and destroy them, as if one should appear suddenly before the harvest is ripe and cut it down. The "design," therefore, of this part of the prophecy is to comfort the Jews, and to assure them that there is no danger to them from the preparations which were made against them - for Yahweh calmly beholds the proud rage of the enemy.

    I will take my rest - I will not interpose. I will remain calm - not appearing to oppose them, but keeping as calm, and as still, as if I seemed to favor their plans - as the sun shines on the herb, and the gentle dew falls on the grass, until the proper time for me to interpose and defeat them shall arise Isaiah 18:5-6.

    I will consider - I will look on; that is, I will not now interpose and disarrange their plans before they are complete. We learn here,

    (1) That God sees the plans of the wicked;

    (2) That he sees them "mature" them without attempting then to interpose to disarrange them;

    (3) That he is calm and still, because he designs that those plans shall be developed; and

    (4) That the wicked should not indulge in any dreams of security and success because God does not interpose to thwart their plans while they are forming them. He will do it in the proper time.

    In my dwelling-place - In heaven. I will sit in heaven and contemplate leisurely the plans that are going forward.

    Like a clear heat - A serene, calm, and steady sunshine, by which plants and herbs are made to grow. There seem to be two ideas blended here: the first, that of the "stillness" with which the sun shines upon the herbs; and the other, that of the fact that the sun shines that the herbs "may grow."

    Upon herbs - Margin, 'After rain' (עלי־אוי ‛ălēy 'ôry). The word אוי 'ôr usually signifies "light," or "fire." The plural form (ואורות ô'ôrôth) is used to denote herbs or vegetables in two places, in 2 Kings 4:39, and Isaiah 26:19. For in the Shemitic languages the ideas of "sprouting, being grown, growing" etc., are connected with that of the shining of the sun, or of light; that which grows in the light; that is, vegetables. But in the singular phorm the word is not thus used, unless it be in this place. That it may have this signiphication cannot be doubted; and this interpretation makes good sense, and suits the connection. The rabbis generally interpret it as it is in the margin - 'rain.' In proof of this they appeal to Job 36:30; Job 37:11; but the word in these passages more properly denotes a cloud of light or of lightning, than rain. The common interpretation is probably correct, which regards the word אור 'ôr here as the same as אורה 'ôrâh - 'herbs' (see Vitringa). The Syriac reads it על־יאר ‛al-yeor - 'upon the river.' The parallelism seems to require the sense of "herb," or something that shall answer to 'harvest' in the corresponding member.

    And like a cloud of dew - Such a dew was still, and promoted the growth of vegetables. The idea is that of stillness and rest where there is no storm or tempest to dissipate the gently-falling dew. This is an emblem of the perfect quietness with which God would regard the preparations for war until the proper time would come for him to interpose. The whole passage is similar to Psalm 2:4-5 :

    He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh;

    Jehovah shall have them in derision.

    Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath,

    continued...

    Wesley's Notes on Isaiah 18:4

    18:4 Rest - I will not bestir myself, to help this people. God is said in scripture to rest, or sit still, when he doth not work on the behalf of a person or people. Dwelling - place - In heaven, the place where God dwells. Harvest - The sense is, that God would look upon them with as uncomfortable an influence as the sun with a clear heat upon the herbs, which are scorched and killed by it; and as a cloud of the dew, which brings dew or rain, in the heat of harvest, when it is unwelcome and hurtful.