Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Isaiah 47:14

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Behold, they shall be as stubble - They shall be no more able to resist the judgments which are coming upon the city, than dry stubble can resist the action of the fire. A similar figure is used in Isaiah 1:31 (see the notes at that verse). Compare also Isaiah 29:6; Isaiah 30:30, where fire is a symbol of the devouring judgments of God.

They shall not deliver themselves - Margin, as Hebrew, ‹Their souls.‘ The meaning is, that they would be unable to protect themselves from the calamities which would come upon them and the city.

There shall not be a coal to warm at - The meaning is, that they would be entirely consumed - so completely, that not even a coal or spark would be left, as when stubble, or a piece of wood, is entirely burned up. According to this interpretation, the sense is, that the judgments of God would come upon them and the city, so that entire destruction would ensue. Rosenmuller, however, Cocceius, and some others, suppose this should be rendered, ‹there shall not remain a coal so that bread could be baked by it.‘ But the more common, and more correct interpretation, is that suggested above. Compare Gesenius and Rosenmuller on the place.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
Let us beware of acting and speaking as Babylon did; of trusting in tyranny and oppression; of boasting as to our abilities, relying on ourselves, and ascribing success to our own prudence and wisdom; lest we partake of her plagues. Those in the height of prosperity, are apt to fancy themselves out of the reach of adversity. It is also common for sinners to think they shall be safe, because they think to be secret in wicked ways. But their security shall be their ruin. Let us draw from such passages as the foregoing, those lessons of humility and trust in God which they convey. If we believe the word of God, we may know how it will be with the righteous and the wicked to all eternity. We may learn how to escape the wrath to come, to glorify God, to have peace through life, hope in death, and everlasting happiness. Let us then stand aloof from all delusions.
Ellen G. White
Prophets and Kings, 533-4

To the last ruler of Babylon, as in type to its first, had come the sentence of the divine Watcher: “O king, ... to thee it is spoken; The kingdom is departed from thee.” Daniel 4:31. PK 533.1

“Come down, and sit in the dust, O virgin daughter of
Sit on the ground: there is no throne....
Sit thou silent,
And get thee into darkness, O daughter of the Chaldeans:
For thou shalt no more be called, The lady of kingdoms.
PK 533.2

“I was wroth with My people,
I have polluted Mine inheritance, and given them into
thine hand:
Thou didst show them no mercy; ...
PK 533.3

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