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Isaiah 5:26

    Isaiah 5:26 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And he will lift up an ensign to the nations from far, and will hiss unto them from the end of the earth: and, behold, they shall come with speed swiftly:

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And he will lift up an ensign to the nations from far, and will hiss to them from the end of the earth: and, behold, they shall come with speed swiftly:

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And he will lift up an ensign to the nations from far, and will hiss for them from the end of the earth; and, behold, they shall come with speed swiftly.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And he will let a flag be lifted up as a sign to a far-off nation, whistling to them from the ends of the earth: and they will come quickly and suddenly.

    Webster's Revision

    And he will lift up an ensign to the nations from far, and will hiss for them from the end of the earth; and, behold, they shall come with speed swiftly.

    World English Bible

    He will lift up a banner to the nations from far, and he will whistle for them from the end of the earth. Behold, they will come speedily and swiftly.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And he will lift up an ensign to the nations from far, and will hiss for them from the end of the earth: and, behold, they shall come with speed swiftly:

    Definitions for Isaiah 5:26

    Ensign - An example.
    Hiss - Whistle.

    Clarke's Commentary on Isaiah 5:26

    He will - hiss "He will hist" - "The metaphor is taken from the practice of those that keep bees, who draw them out of their hives into the fields, and lead them back again, συρισμασι, by a hiss or a whistle." - Cyril, on this place; and to the same purpose Theodoret, ib. In Isaiah 7:18, the metaphor is more apparent, by being carried farther, where the hostile armies are expressed by the fly and the bee: -

    "Jehovah shall hist the fly That is in the utmost parts of Egypt; And the bee, that is in the land of Assyria."

    On which place see Deuteronomy 1:44; Psalm 118:12; and God calls the locusts his great army, Joel 2:25; Exodus 23:28. See Huet, Quest. Alnet. 2:12. שרק sharak or shrak, he shall whistle for them, call loud and shrill; he shall shriek, and they (their enemies) shall come at his call.

    With speed - This refers to the Isaiah 5:19. As the scoffers had challenged God to make speed, and to hasten his work of vengeance, so now God assures them that with speed and swiftly it shall come.

    Barnes' Notes on Isaiah 5:26

    And he will lift up an ensign ... - The idea here is, that the nations of the earth are under his control, and that he can call whom he pleases to execute his purposes. This power over the nations he often claims; compare Isaiah 44:28; Isaiah 45:1-7; Isaiah 10:5-7; Isaiah 9:11; Isaiah 8:18. An "ensign" is the "standard," or "flag" used in an army. The elevation of the standard was a signal for assembling for war. God represents himself here as simply raising the standard, expecting that the nations would come at once.

    And will hiss unto them - This means that he would "collect" them together to accomplish his purposes. The expression is probably taken from the manner in which bees were hived. Theodoret and Cyril, on this place, say, that in Syria and Palestine, they who kept bees were able to draw them out of their hives, and conduct them into fields, and bring them back again, with the sound of a flute or the noise of hissing. It is certain also that the ancients had this idea respecting bees. Pliny (lib. xi. ch. 20) says: Gaudent plausu, atque tinnitu aeris, coque convocantur. 'They rejoice in a sound, and in the tinkling of brass, and are thus called together.' AElian (lib. v. ch. 13) says, that when they are disposed to fly away, their keepers make a musical and harmonious sound, and that they are thus brought back as by a siren, and restored to their hives. So Virgin says, when speaking of bees:

    Tinnitusque cie, et Matris quate cymbala circum.

    Georg. iv. 64.

    'On brazen vessels beat a tinkling sound,

    And shake the cymbals of the goddess round;

    Then all will hastily retreat, and fill

    The warm resounding hollow of their cell.'

    Addison

    So Ovid:

    Jamque erat ad Rhodopen Pangaeaque flumina ventum,

    Aeriferae comitum cum crepuere manus.

    Ecce! novae coeunt volucres tinnitibus actae

    Quosque movent sonitus aera sequuntur apes.

    continued...

    Wesley's Notes on Isaiah 5:26

    5:26 An ensign - To call them together for his service. From far - To the Chaldeans; for even Babylon is called a far country, chap.39:3. And he saith nations, because the Chaldean army was made up of several nations. Will hiss - Or, will whistle unto, or for them: will gather them together by his word. as shepherds gather their sheep. He intimates how easily and speedily God can do this work. From the ends - Which is not to be understood strictly, but with a latitude, from very remote places.