More than 150 years before it happened, Isaiah predicts the fall of the mighty Babylonian Empire. The arrogant Babylonians became captives.
VERSE 1. “Come down and sit in the dust, virgin daughter of Babylon. Sit on the ground without a throne, daughter of the Kasdim. For you will no longer be called tender and delicate.
Babylon. Isaiah is taunting the mighty Babylonian Empire.
no longer be called tender and delicate. Isaiah is predicting the fall of the Babylonian Empire. It was conquered by the Achaemenid Empire in 539 BC.
VERSE 2. Take the millstones and grind flour. Remove your veil, lift up your skirt, uncover your legs, and wade through the rivers.
VERSE 3. Your nakedness will be uncovered. Yes, your shame will be seen. I will take vengeance, and will spare no one.”
shame will be seen. Why does the Babylonian Empire feel shame? Is it that they failed? Is it that the LORD God of Israel easily conquered them? Was their national ego that fragile?
What does the Book of Isaiah say about human sexuality and nakedness? Here are all the verses we found that allude to sexual activity or nakedness. Read more »
Our Redeemer. Our Redeemer is Jesus Christ.
the LORD of Hosts. Jesus Christ is the LORD of Heaven’s Armies.
VERSE 5. “Sit in silence, and go into darkness, daughter of the Kasdim. For you shall no longer be called the mistress of kingdoms.
NAB translation. Go into darkness and sit in silence, O daughter of the Chaldeans, No longer shall you be called sovereign mistress of kingdoms.
Go into darkness and sit in silence. This alludes to Contemplative Prayer.
VERSE 6. I was angry with my people. I profaned my inheritance and gave them into your hand. You showed them no mercy. You laid a very heavy yoke on the aged.
VERSE 7. You said, ‘I will be a princess forever,’ so that you didn’t lay these things to your heart, nor did you remember the results.
VERSE 8. “Now therefore hear this, you who are given to pleasures, who sit securely, who say in your heart, ‘I am, and there is no one else besides me. I won’t sit as a widow, neither will I know the loss of children.’
there is no one else besides me. The Babylonian Empire was profoundly selfish and convinced of its own greatness. Just like the United States is in our day.
you who are given to pleasures. That is, “voluptuous one.” (NAB translation)
VERSE 9. But these two things will come to you in a moment in one day, the loss of children and widowhood. They will come on you in their full measure, in the multitude of your sorceries, and the great abundance of your enchantments.
NLT translation. Well, both these things will come upon you in a moment: widowhood and the loss of your children. Yes, these calamities will come upon you, despite all your witchcraft and magic.
both these things will come upon you in a moment. This brings to mind Purim. It is a Jewish holiday that commemorates the saving of the Jewish people from Haman, who was planning to kill all the Jews. At Purim, rather than the Jewish people being put to death, Haman and his collaborators were put to death.
witchcraft and magic. The Torah forbids God’s people from participating in these things.
VERSE 10. For you have trusted in your wickedness. You have said, ‘No one sees me.’ Your wisdom and your knowledge has perverted you. You have said in your heart, ‘I am, and there is no one else besides me.’
VERSE 11. Therefore disaster will come on you. You won’t know when it dawns. Mischief will fall on you. You won’t be able to put it away. Desolation will come on you suddenly, which you don’t understand.
disaster will come on you. At Purim, that is what happened. At the past minute, disaster rained down on Haman and his collaborators.
VERSE 12. “Stand now with your enchantments and with the multitude of your sorceries, in which you have labored from your youth, as if you might profit, as if you might prevail.
Stand now. Isaiah is taunting the religious practices of Babylon. Elijah had done a similar thing on Mt. Carmel, when he taunted the 400 prophets of Baal:
1 Kings 18:27. At noon, Elijah mocked them, and said, “Cry aloud; for he is a god. Either he is deep in thought, or he has gone somewhere, or he is on a journey, or perhaps he sleeps and must be awakened.”
VERSE 13. You are wearied in the multitude of your counsels. Now let the astrologers, the stargazers, and the monthly prognosticators, stand up and save you from the things that will happen to you.
VERSE 14. Behold, they are like stubble. The fire will burn them. They won’t deliver themselves from the power of the flame. It won’t be a coal to warm at or a fire to sit by.
VERSE 15. The things that you labored in will be like this: those who have trafficked with you from your youth will each wander in his own way. There will be no one to save you.
NLT translation. And all your friends, those with whom you’ve done business since childhood, will go their own ways, turning a deaf ear to your cries.
with whom you’ve done business. Business partners can be fickle. They are not necessarily loyal. And they are not necessarily friends.
Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.