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Isaiah 4:4

    Isaiah 4:4 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the middle thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    when the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof, by the spirit of justice, and by the spirit of burning.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    When Zion has been washed from her sin by the Lord, and Jerusalem made clean from her blood by a judging and a burning wind.

    Webster's Revision

    when the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof, by the spirit of justice, and by the spirit of burning.

    World English Bible

    when the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from its midst, by the spirit of justice, and by the spirit of burning.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    when the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof, by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning.

    Clarke's Commentary on Isaiah 4:4

    The spirit of burning - Means the fire of God's wrath, by which he will prove and purify his people; gathering them into his furnace, in order to separate the dross from the silver, the bad from the good. The severity of God's judgments, the fiery trial of his servants, Ezekiel (Ezekiel 22:18-22) has set forth at large, after his manner, with great boldness of imagery and force of expression. God threatens to gather them into the midst of Jerusalem, as into the furnace; to blow the fire upon them, and to melt them. Malachi, Malachi 3:2, Malachi 3:3, treats the same subject, and represents the same event, under the like images: -

    "But who may abide the day of his coming?

    And who shall stand when he appeareth?

    For he is like the fire of the refiner,

    And like the soap of the fullers.

    And he shall sit refining and purifying the silver;

    And he shall purify the sons of Levi;

    And cleanse them like gold, and like silver;

    That they may be Jehovah's ministers,

    Presenting unto him an offering in righteousness."

    This is an allusion to a chemist purifying metals. He first judges of the state of the ore or adulterated metal. Secondly, he kindles the proper degree of fire, and applies the requisite test; and thus separates the precious from the vile.

    Barnes' Notes on Isaiah 4:4

    When the Lord - That is, "after" God has done this, then all that are written among the living shall be called holy. The prophet in this verse states the benefits of "affliction" in purifying the people of God. He had said, in the previous verse, that all who should be left in Zion should be called holy. He here states that "previous" to that, the defilement of the people would be removed by judgment.

    Shall have washed away - The expression, "to wash," is often used to denote to "purify" in any way. In allusion to this fact is the beautiful promise in Zechariah 13:1; see the note at Isaiah 1:16.

    The filth - This word here refers to their "moral" defilement - their pride, vanity, haughtiness; and perhaps to the idolatry and general sins of the people. As the prophet, however, in Isaiah 3:16-23, had particularly specified the sins of the female part of the Jewish people, the expression here probably refers especially to them, and to the judgments which were to come upon them; Isaiah 3:24. It is not departing from the spirit of this passage to remark, that the church is purified, and true religion is often promoted, by God's humbling the pride and vanity of females. A love of excessive ornament; a fondness for dress and display; and an exhibition of great gaiety, often stand grievously in the way of pure religion.

    The daughters of Zion - see Isaiah 3:16.

    And shall have purged - This is synonymous with the expression "to wash." It means to purify, to remove, as one removes blood from the hands by washing.

    Blood of Jerusalem - Crime, blood-guiltiness - particularly the crime of "oppression, cruelty," and "robbery," which the prophet Isaiah 1:15 had charged on them.

    By the spirit of judgment - This refers, doubtless, to the "calamities," or "punishment," that would come upon the nation; principally, to the Babylonian captivity. After God should have humbled and reformed the nation by a series of judgments, then they who were purified by them should be called holy. The word "spirit" here cannot be shown to be the Holy Spirit; and especially as the Holy Spirit is not represented in the Scriptures as the agent in executing judgment. It perhaps would be best denoted by the word "influence," or "power." The word properly denotes "wind, air, motion" Genesis 8:1; Job 1:19; then "breathing, exhalation, or breath" Job 7:7; Psalm 33:6; hence, it means the "soul;" and it means also God's "influence," or his putting forth his power and life-giving energy in animating and sustaining the universe; and also, as here, his putting forth any influence in accomplishing his works and designs.

    And by the spirit of burning - "Fire" is often, in the Scriptures, the emblem of punishment, and also of purifying; compare the note at Matthew 3:11-12; see Malachi 3:2-3. The Chaldee translates this, 'by the word of judgment, and by the word of consuming.' The reference is to the "punishments" which would be sent to purify the people "before" the coming of the Messiah.

    Wesley's Notes on Isaiah 4:4

    4:4 When - This shall be accomplished when God hath throughly cleansed the Jewish nation from their sins. The blood - The blood - guiltiness, and especially that of killing the Lord of life. Burning - This is opposed to the former legal way of purification, which was by water. The Holy Spirit of old accompanied the preaching of the gospel, and did this work in part, and will do it fully. This spirit may well be called a spirit of judgment, because it executes judgment in the church, and in the consciences of men, separating the precious from the vile, convincing men of sin, and righteousness, and judgment. And the same spirit may be fitly called the spirit of burning, because he doth burn up and consume the dross which is in the church, and in the hearts of men, and inflames the souls of believers with love to God, and zeal for his glory.