Yeshayah 3

1 For, hinei, HaAdon, Hashem Tzva’os, doth take away from Yerushalayim and from Yehudah supply and support, the whole supply of lechem, and the whole supply of mayim.
2 The Gibbor, and the Ish Milchamah, the Shofet, and the Navi, the Diviner, and the Zaken,
3 The sar chamishim, the men of rank and yo’etz (counselor), and masters in art, and the expert enchanter.
4 And I will make ne’arim (lads) to be their sarim, and babes shall rule over them.
5 And HaAm shall be oppressed, every one by another, and every one by his re’a; the na’ar shall behave himself proudly against the zaken, and the base against the honorable.
6 When an ish shall take hold of his brother of his bais avi, saying, Thou hast clothing, be thou our katzin, and let this ruin be under thy yad;
7 In Yom Hahu shall he protest, saying, I am no curer of your ills; for in my bais is neither lechem nor simlah (clothing); make me not a Katzin Am.
8 For Yerushalayim is ruined, and Yehudah fallen; because their leshon and their deeds are against Hashem, to provoke the eyes of His kavod.
9 The show of their countenance doth testify against them; and they make known their chet like S’dom; they conceal it not. Oy to their nefesh! For they do ra’ah unto themselves.
10 Say ye to the tzaddik, that it shall be tov with him; for they shall eat the p’ri of their deeds.
11 Oy to the rasha! It shall be rah with him; for what his hands have wrought will be done to him.
12 As for My people, children are their nogesim (taskmasters), and nashim rule over them. O My people, they which lead thee cause thee to go astray, misleading and swallowing up the Derech Orkhot (way of paths) of thee.
13 Hashem hath stood to accuse, and standeth for Din (judging) the Amim (Nations).
14 Hashem will enter into mishpat with the Ziknei Amo (Elders of His People), and the sarim thereof; for ye have eaten up the kerem (vineyard); the plunder of the oni is in your batim (houses).
15 What mean ye that ye crush Ami, and grind the faces of the aniyim? saith Adonoi Hashem Tzva’os.
16 Moreover Hashem saith, Because the Banot Tziyon are haughty, and walk with stretched forth necks and winking [flirtatious] eyes, walking and tripping along as they go, and making a tinkling with their feet [ankle rings];
17 Therefore Adonoi will strike with a scab the kodkod (top of the head) Banot Tziyon, and Hashem will lay bare their nakedness.
18 In Yom Hahu, Adonoi will take away the fine show of their tinkling ornaments about their feet, and their headbands, and their crescent necklaces,
19 The earrings, and the bracelets, and the veils,
20 The diadems, and the ankle chains, and the girdles, and the perfume bottles, and the lechashim (amulets),
21 The taba’ot (rings), and nose rings,
22 The machalatzot (festal robes), and the mantles, and the cloaks, and the charitim (money purses),
23 The hand mirrors, and the sedinim (linen coverings), and the tzenifot (turbans), and the veils.
24 And it shall come to pass, that instead of fragrance there shall be stench; and instead of a sash, a rope; and instead of well-set hair, baldness; and instead of a rich cloak, a wrapping of sak (sackcloth); and branding instead of yofi (beauty).
25 Thy men shall fall by the cherev, and thy gevurah in milchamah.
26 And her gates shall lament and mourn; and she being desolate shall sit upon ha’aretz.

Yeshayah 3 Commentary

Chapter 3

The calamities about to come upon the land. (1-9) The wickedness of the people. (10-15) The distress of the proud, luxurious women of Zion. (16-26)

Verses 1-9 God was about to deprive Judah of every stay and support. The city and the land were to be made desolate, because their words and works had been rebellious against the Lord; even at his holy temple. If men do not stay themselves upon God, he will soon remove all other supports, and then they must sink. Christ is the Bread of life and the Water of life; if he be our Stay, we shall find that is a good part not to be taken away, Joh. 6:27 . Here note, 1. That the condition of sinners is exceedingly woful. 2. It is the soul that is damaged by sin. 3. Whatever evil befals sinners, be sure that they bring it on themselves.

Verses 10-15 The rule was certain; however there might be national prosperity or trouble, it would be well with the righteous and ill with the wicked. Blessed be God, there is abundant encouragement to the righteous to trust in him, and for sinners to repent and return to him. It was time for the Lord to show his might. He will call men to a strict account for all the wealth and power intrusted to and abused by them. If it is sinful to disregard the necessities of the poor, how odious and wicked a part do they act, who bring men into poverty, and then oppress them!

Verses 16-26 The prophet reproves and warns the daughters of Zion of the sufferings coming upon them. Let them know that God notices the folly and vanity of proud women, even of their dress. The punishments threatened answered the sin. Loathsome diseases often are the just punishment of pride. It is not material to ask what sort of ornaments they wore; many of these things, if they had not been in fashion, would have been ridiculed then as now. Their fashions differed much from those of our times, but human nature is the same. Wasting time and money, to the neglect of piety, charity, and even of justice, displease the Lord. Many professors at the present day, seem to think there is no harm in worldly finery; but were it not a great evil, would the Holy Spirit have taught the prophet to expose it so fully? The Jews being overcome, Jerusalem would be levelled with the ground; which is represented under the idea of a desolate female seated upon the earth. And when the Romans had destroyed Jerusalem, they struck a medal, on which was represented a woman sitting on the ground in a posture of grief. If sin be harboured within the walls, lamentation and mourning are near the gates.

Chapter Summary


In this chapter the Jews are threatened with various calamities, on account of their sins, which would issue in their entire ruin and destruction. They are threatened with a famine, Isa 3:1 with a removal of useful men in church and state, and in common life, Isa 3:2,3 with ignorant and effeminate governors; the consequences of which would be oppression and insolence, Isa 3:4,5 yea, that such would be their state and condition, that men, though naturally ambitious of honour, would refuse to have the government of them, Isa 3:6,7 the reasons of these calamities, and of this ruin and fall of them, are their evil words and actions against the Lord, which were highly provoking to him; and their impudence in sinning like Sodom, which was to their own harm, Isa 3:8,9 yet, in the midst of all this, it is the will of God that the righteous should be told it shall be well with them, with the reason of it; when it shall be ill with the wicked, as a just recompence of reward, Isa 3:10,11 the errors and mistakes of the people are attributed to their childish and effeminate governors, Isa 3:12 wherefore the Lord determines to plead their cause, and contend with their elders and rulers, because they had spoiled and devoured the poor, Isa 3:13-15 and particularly the women are threatened, for their pride and luxury, to have their ornaments taken from them, which are particularly mentioned, Isa 3:16-24 and the chapter is concluded with a prophecy, that their mighty men should perish by the sword in war, and the city should be desolate, Isa 3:25,26.

Yeshayah 3 Commentaries

The Orthodox Jewish Bible fourth edition, OJB. Copyright 2002,2003,2008,2010, 2011 by Artists for Israel International. All rights reserved.