Isaiah 13:18

18 Their bows will strike down the young men; they will have no mercy on infants, nor will they look with compassion on children.

Read Isaiah 13:18 Using Other Translations

Their bows also shall dash the young men to pieces; and they shall have no pity on the fruit of the womb; their eye shall not spare children.
Their bows will slaughter the young men; they will have no mercy on the fruit of the womb; their eyes will not pity children.
The attacking armies will shoot down the young men with arrows. They will have no mercy on helpless babies and will show no compassion for children.”

What does Isaiah 13:18 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Isaiah 13:18

[Their] bows also shall dash their young men to pieces,
&c.] That is, the bows of the Medes should dash in pieces the young men of the Babylonians. The meaning is, either that they should put them into their bows, instead of arrows, and shoot them upon the ground, or against a wall, and so dash them to pieces; or that they should first shoot them through with their arrows, and then dash them with their bows; according to Xenophon F12, Cyrus came to Babylon with great numbers of archers and slingers: and they shall have no pity on the fruit of the womb;
even of those that were in the womb, but should rip up women with child, and cut them in pieces: their eyes shall not spare children;
in the arms of their parents, or running to them, shrieking and crying, and in the utmost fright; and yet their tender and innocent age would meet with no mercy. The Medes were notorious for their cruelty F13, and which issued at last in the ruin of their empire.


FOOTNOTES:

F12 Cyropaedia, l. 2. sect. 1.
F13 Ammian. Marcellin. l. 23. c. 6. Diodor. Sicul. l. 13. p. 342.
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