Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Isaiah 23:16

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Take an harp - This is a continuation of the figure commenced in the previous verse, a direct command to Tyre as an harlot, to go about the city with the usual expressions of rejoicing. Thus Donatus, in Terent. Eunuch., iii. 2,4, says:

Fidicinam esse meretricum est;‘

And thus Horace:

Nec meretrix tibicina, cujus

Ad strepitum salias.‘

1Epis. xiv. 25.

Thou harlot that hast been forgotten - For seventy years thou hast lain unknown, desolate, ruined.

Make sweet melody … - Still the prophet keeps up the idea of the harlot that had been forgotten, and that would now call her lovers again to her dwelling. The sense is, that Tyre would rise to her former splendor, and that the nations would be attracted by the proofs of returning prosperity to renew their commercial contact with her.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
The desolations of Tyre were not to be for ever. The Lord will visit Tyre in mercy. But when set at liberty, she will use her old arts of temptation. The love of worldly wealth is spiritual idolatry; and covetousness is spiritual idolatry. This directs those that have wealth, to use it in the service of God. When we abide with God in our worldly callings, when we do all in our power to further the gospel, then our merchandise and hire are holiness to the Lord, if we look to his glory. Christians should carry on business as God's servants, and use riches as his stewards.