Isaiah 9:10

10 "The bricks have fallen, but we will build with dressed stones; the sycamores have been cut down, but we will put cedars in their place."

Isaiah 9:10 Meaning and Commentary

Isaiah 9:10

The bricks are fallen down
Houses made of bricks, which were without the cities besieged and destroyed by the Assyrians; of which the haughty Israelites made no account, looking upon such a desolation as little, or no loss at all: but we will build with hewn stone,
so that the houses will be better and stronger, more beautiful, and more durable: the sycamores are cut down;
which grew in the fields, and outer parts of the cities, and were but a mean sort of wood, and which the Assyrians cut down to serve several purposes in their siege; of this sort of trees, (See Gill on Luke 19:4): but we will change them into cedars;
that is, will plant cedars in place of them; trees tall and large, very delightful to look at, of great worth and usefulness, and very durable; though this may regard not so much the planting of them as the use of them in building, and the sense be agreeable to the former clause; that as, instead of brick, they would build houses with hewn stone; so, instead of sycamore wood, which was not so substantial and durable, and fit for building, they would make use of cedar, which was both beautiful and lasting; so the Septuagint,

``the bricks are fallen, let us hew stones, and cut down sycamores and cedars, and build for ourselves a tower;''
and so the Arabic version; so that, upon the whole, they flattered themselves they should be gainers, and not losers, by the Assyrian invasion; thus deriding it, and despising the prophecy concerning it. Jarchi interprets the bricks and sycamores of the kings that went before, as Jehoahaz, the son of Jehu, in whose days they were lessened, and were like a building of brick, broken and falling; but their present king, Pekah, the son of Remaliah, was strong, like a building of hewn stone, and so cedars were better for building than sycamores; and to this sense agrees the Targum,
``the heads (or princes) are carried captive, but we will appoint better in their room; goods are spoiled, but what are more beautiful than them we will purchase.''

Isaiah 9:10 In-Context

8 The Lord has sent a word against Jacob, and it will fall on Israel;
9 and all the people will know, Ephraim and the inhabitants of Samaria, who say in pride and in arrogance of heart:
10 "The bricks have fallen, but we will build with dressed stones; the sycamores have been cut down, but we will put cedars in their place."
11 But the LORD raises the adversaries of Rezin against him, and stirs up his enemies.
12 The Syrians on the east and the Philistines on the west devour Israel with open mouth. For all this his anger has not turned away, and his hand is stretched out still.
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.