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Isaiah 49:2

    Isaiah 49:2 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And he hath made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of his hand hath he hid me, and made me a polished shaft; in his quiver hath he hid me;

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And he has made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of his hand has he hid me, and made me a polished shaft; in his quiver has he hid me;

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    and he hath made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of his hand hath he hid me: and he hath made me a polished shaft; in his quiver hath he kept me close:

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And he has made my mouth like a sharp sword, in the shade of his hand he has kept me; and he has made me like a polished arrow, keeping me in his secret place;

    Webster's Revision

    and he hath made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of his hand hath he hid me: and he hath made me a polished shaft; in his quiver hath he kept me close:

    World English Bible

    and he has made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of his hand, he has hidden me: and he has made me a polished shaft; in his quiver has he kept me close:

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    and he hath made my mouth like a sharp sword, in the shadow of his hand hath he hid me; and he hath made me a polished shaft, in his quiver hath he kept me close:

    Clarke's Commentary on Isaiah 49:2

    And he hath made my mouth like a sharp sword "And he hath made my mouth a sharp sword" - The servant of God, who speaks in the former part of this chapter, must be the Messiah. If any part of this character can in any sense belong to the prophet, yet in some parts it must belong exclusively to Christ; and in all parts to him in a much fuller and more proper sense. Isaiah's mission was to the Jews, not to the distant nations, to whom the speaker in this place addresses himself. "He hath made my mouth a sharp sword;" "to reprove the wicked, and to denounce unto them punishment," says Jarchi, understanding it of Isaiah. But how much better does it suit him who is represented as having "a sharp two-edged sword going out of his mouth," Revelation 1:16; who is himself the Word of God; which word is "quick and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart;" Hebrews 4:12. This mighty Agent and Instrument of God, "long laid up in store with him, and sealed up among his treasures," is at last revealed and produced by his power, and under his protection, to execute his great and holy purposes. He is compared to a polished shaft stored in his quiver for use in his due time. The polished shaft denotes the same efficacious word which is before represented by the sharp sword. The doctrine of the Gospel pierced the hearts of its hearers, "bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ." The metaphor of the sword and the arrow, applied to powerful speech, is bold, yet just. It has been employed by the most ingenious heathen writers, if with equal elegance, not with equal force. It is said of Pericles by Aristophanes, (see Cicero, Epist. ad Atticum, 12:6): -

    Οὑτως εκηλει, και μονος των ῥητορων

    Το κεντρον εγκατελειπε τοις ακροωμενοις.

    Apud. Diod. lib. xii.

    His powerful speech

    Pierced the hearer's soul, and left behind

    Deep in his bosom its keen point infixed.

    Pindar is particularly fond of this metaphor, and frequently applies it to his own poetry: -

    Επεχε νυν σκοπῳ τοξον,

    Αγε, θυμε. τινα βαλλομεν

    Εκ μαλθακας αυτε φρε-

    νος ευκλεας οΐστους

    Ἱεντες - ;

    Olymp. 2:160.

    continued...

    Barnes' Notes on Isaiah 49:2

    And he hath made my mouth - The idea here is, that he had qualified him for a convincing and powerful eloquence - for the utterance of words which would penetrate the heart like a sharp sword. The mouth here, by an obvious figure, stands for discourse. The comparison of words that are pungent, penetrating, powerful, to a sword, is common. Indeed the very terms that I have incidentally used, 'pungent,' 'penetrating,' are instances of the same kind of figure, and are drawn from a needle, or anything sharp and pointed, that penetrates. Instances of this occur in the following places in the Scriptures: 'The words of the wise are as goads, and as nails fastened by the masters of assemblies' Ecclesiastes 12:11. 'The word of God is quick and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow' Hebrews 4:12. In Revelation 1:16, probably in reference to this passage, the Redeemer is represented as seen by John as having a 'sharp two-edged sword' proceeding out of his mouth. So in Isaiah 19:15 : 'And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword.' The bold and striking metaphor of the sword and arrow applied to powerful discourse, has been used also by pagan writers with great elegance and force. In the passages quoted by Lowth, it is said of Pericles by Aristophanes:

    'His powerful speech

    Pierced the hearer's soul, and left behind

    Deep in his bosom its keen point infixt.'

    So Pindar, Olym. ii.:160:

    'Come on! thy brighest shafts prepare,

    And bend, O Muse, thy sounding bow:

    Say, through what paths of liquid air

    Our arrows shall we throw?'

    West

    A similar expression occurs in a fragment of Eupolis, in Diod. Sic. xii. 40, when speaking of Pericles:

    - καὶ μόνος τῶν ῥητόρων

    τὸ κέντρον ἐγκατέλειπε τοἴς ἀκροωμένοις.

    - kai monos tōn rētorōn

    continued...

    Wesley's Notes on Isaiah 49:2

    49:2 A sword - As he made me the great teacher of his church, so he made my word, quick and powerful, and sharper than any two - edged sword. Hath he hid - He will protect me from all mine enemies. Made me - Like an arrow, whose point is bright and polished; which therefore pierceth deeper.