Isaiah 5:26

26 He will 1raise a signal for nations far away, and 2whistle for them 3from the ends of the earth; and behold, quickly, speedily they come!

Isaiah 5:26 Meaning and Commentary

Isaiah 5:26

And he will lift up an ensign to the nations from far,
&c.] Not to the Chaldeans or Babylonians, for they were not nations, but one nation, and were a people near; but to the Romans, who consisted of many nations, and were afar off, and extended their empire to the ends of the earth; these, by one providence or another, were stirred up to make an expedition into the land of Judea, and besiege Jerusalem: and this lifting up of an ensign is not, as sometimes, for the gathering and enlisting of soldiers, or to prepare them for the battle, or to give them the signal when to begin the fight; but as a direction to decamp and proceed on a journey, on some expedition: and will hiss unto them from the end of the earth,
or "to him" F9; the king, or general of them, wherever he is, even though at the end of the earth: and the phrase denotes the secret and powerful influence of divine Providence, in moving upon the hearts of the Romans, and their general, to enter upon such a design against the Jews; and which was as easily done as for one man to hiss or call to another; or as for a shepherd to whistle for his sheep; to which the allusion seems to be; the Lord having the hearts of all in his hands, and can turn them as he pleases, to do his will: and, behold, they shall come with speed swiftly;
or "he shall come"; the king with his army; and so the Targum paraphrases it;

``and behold, a king with his army shall come swiftly, as light clouds;''
this shows the swift and sudden destruction that should come upon the Jews; and is an answer to their scoffs, ( Isaiah 5:19 ) .

F9 (wl) "ei", Vatablus; Montanus; "illi", Cocceius; "ad se", Junius & Tremellius.

Isaiah 5:26 In-Context

24 Therefore, as the tongue of fire devours the stubble, and as dry grass sinks down in the flame, so their root will be as rottenness, and their blossom go up like dust; for they have rejected the law of the LORD of hosts, and have despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.
25 Therefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against his people, and he stretched out his hand against them and struck them, and the mountains quaked; and their corpses were as refuse in the midst of the streets. For all this his anger has not turned away, and his hand is stretched out still.
26 He will raise a signal for nations far away, and whistle for them from the ends of the earth; and behold, quickly, speedily they come!
27 None is weary, none stumbles, none slumbers or sleeps, not a waistband is loose, not a sandal strap broken;
28 their arrows are sharp, all their bows bent, their horses' hoofs seem like flint, and their wheels like the whirlwind.

Cross References 3

  • 1. Isaiah 11:12; Isaiah 13:2; Isaiah 18:3
  • 2. Isaiah 7:18; Zechariah 10:8
  • 3. Isaiah 10:3; Deuteronomy 28:49
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.