Saturday, June 25, 2016

Isaiah 3

A dismal chapter, but hear in the distance the Song of Solomon and the Lamentations. Love is not lost even though we are. The whole chapter can be applied to Brexit of course - work at it. If you read closely you sill see they had outsourcing even in those days - from India (Sind).

Verses 18 to 23 are without rest. And the rest in verse 24 comes just prior to the branding.
Note the placement of the atnah on the final sackcloth in verse 24 after the long passage without the subdominant rest point.

All are under judgment for their exploitation as usual. The negative female imagery is to be applied to the daughters of Zion, i.e. the people in general. It is nonetheless negative.
I have no idea what half the words in the lists of bangles really are so I followed Delitzsch (1873) to some extent as long as I could preserve reasonable concordance. For example בָתֵּ֥י הַנֶּ֖פֶשׁ, lit house of the soul, is (according to Delitzsch), a smelling bottle, a holder of aroma. Who could argue? My imagination was limited, being a man. It is a serious error to interpret this section literally, as if Isaiah is only concerned with women.

Though after 70 years you would think I knew the difference, it is not really obvious to a man what a woman is. With my wife of 48 years in a seriously disabled condition (though day by day strengthening), I have had to find her appropriate clothes in our wardrobe. That is a difficult problem for a man. She has chosen and bought clothes for me, but rarely I for her. And though I help with laundry, it is usually to fold and sort my own. So this is new. (But there is no critique of her beautiful things and her things that are appropriate to the season, or the occasion, to which I am largely oblivious - but maybe I should not be so blind.)

I repeat: It is a serious error to interpret this section literally, as if Isaiah is only concerned with women. The condemnation is for Zion herself and the preening of her lust to power. The female is us - male and female, in the role of God's consort, the one to whom we are closer than a spouse. The chosen example for us is Zion. The men and the valiant who fall are equally neither male nor female, just the human in an untenable position, destroyed by its own internal enemies.

Isaiah 3
כִּי֩ הִנֵּ֨ה הָאָד֜וֹן יְהוָ֣ה צְבָא֗וֹת מֵסִ֤יר מִירוּשָׁלִַ֙ם֙ וּמִ֣יהוּדָ֔ה מַשְׁעֵ֖ן וּמַשְׁעֵנָ֑ה
כֹּ֚ל מִשְׁעַן־לֶ֔חֶם וְכֹ֖ל מִשְׁעַן־מָֽיִם
1 For behold the Lord Yahweh of hosts puts aside from Jerusalem and from Judah staff and buttress,
everything to lean on, bread and the whole staff of water:
27
11
גִּבּ֖וֹר וְאִ֣ישׁ מִלְחָמָ֑ה
שׁוֹפֵ֥ט וְנָבִ֖יא וְקֹסֵ֥ם וְזָקֵֽן
2 Valiant, and man of war,
judge, and prophet, soothsayer and elder,
7
11
שַׂר־חֲמִשִּׁ֖ים וּנְשׂ֣וּא פָנִ֑ים
וְיוֹעֵ֛ץ וַחֲכַ֥ם חֲרָשִׁ֖ים וּנְב֥וֹן לָֽחַשׁ
3 Chief of fifty, one who is shown partiality,
and counselor and shrewd of artifice, and discerning conjurer.
8
13
וְנָתַתִּ֥י נְעָרִ֖ים שָׂרֵיהֶ֑ם
וְתַעֲלוּלִ֖ים יִמְשְׁלוּ־בָֽם
4 And I will give youngsters as their nobility,
infants, and they will govern them.
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9
וְנִגַּ֣שׂ הָעָ֔ם אִ֥ישׁ בְּאִ֖ישׁ וְאִ֣ישׁ בְּרֵעֵ֑הוּ
יִרְהֲב֗וּ הַנַּ֙עַר֙ בַּזָּקֵ֔ן וְהַנִּקְלֶ֖ה בַּנִּכְבָּֽד
5 And the people will harass each other and each his associate,
the youngster will defy the elder, and the disgraced the glorified.
14
16
כִּֽי־יִתְפֹּ֨שׂ אִ֤ישׁ בְּאָחִיו֙ בֵּ֣ית אָבִ֔יו שִׂמְלָ֣ה לְכָ֔ה קָצִ֖ין תִּֽהְיֶה־לָּ֑נוּ
וְהַמַּכְשֵׁלָ֥ה הַזֹּ֖את תַּ֥חַת יָדֶֽךָ
6 For each will arrest his kin, of the house of his father, A stole you have. Dictator you will be for us,
so this stumbling will be under your hand.
20
12
יִשָּׂא֩ בַיּ֨וֹם הַה֤וּא ׀ לֵאמֹר֙ לֹא־אֶהְיֶ֣ה חֹבֵ֔שׁ וּבְבֵיתִ֕י אֵ֥ין לֶ֖חֶם וְאֵ֣ין שִׂמְלָ֑ה
לֹ֥א תְשִׂימֻ֖נִי קְצִ֥ין עָֽם
7 He will forbear in that day saying, I will not be the one who binds, and in my house there is no bread, and there is no stole.
You will not set me up as dictator of the people.
23
8
כִּ֤י כָשְׁלָה֙ יְר֣וּשָׁלִַ֔ם וִיהוּדָ֖ה נָפָ֑ל
כִּֽי־לְשׁוֹנָ֤ם וּמַֽעַלְלֵיהֶם֙ אֶל־יְהוָ֔ה לַמְר֖וֹת עֵנֵ֥י כְבוֹדֽוֹ
8 For Jerusalem has stumbled and Judah fallen,
for their tongues and their wantonness to Yahweh are a provocation of the eyes of his glory.
12
19
הַכָּרַ֤ת פְּנֵיהֶם֙ עָ֣נְתָה בָּ֔ם וְחַטָּאתָ֛ם כִּסְדֹ֥ם הִגִּ֖ידוּ לֹ֣א כִחֵ֑דוּ
א֣וֹי לְנַפְשָׁ֔ם כִּֽי־גָמְל֥וּ לָהֶ֖ם רָעָֽה
9 The expression on their faces answers in them, and their sin as Sodom they make evident. They do conceal it.
Woe to them, for they have rewarded themselves evil.
22
12
אִמְר֥וּ צַדִּ֖יק כִּי־ט֑וֹב
כִּֽי־פְרִ֥י מַעַלְלֵיהֶ֖ם יֹאכֵֽלוּ
10 Say to the righteous one that it will be good,
for the fruit of their wantonness they will eat.
6
10
א֖וֹי לְרָשָׁ֣ע רָ֑ע
כִּֽי־גְמ֥וּל יָדָ֖יו יֵעָ֥שֶׂה לּֽוֹ
11 Woe to the wicked one, evil,
because the reward of his hands will be done for him.
6
9
עַמִּי֙ נֹגְשָׂ֣יו מְעוֹלֵ֔ל וְנָשִׁ֖ים מָ֣שְׁלוּ ב֑וֹ
עַמִּי֙ מְאַשְּׁרֶ֣יךָ מַתְעִ֔ים וְדֶ֥רֶךְ אֹֽרְחֹתֶ֖יךָ בִּלֵּֽעוּ ס
12 My people, its taskmasters are infants, and women govern it.
My people, those making you happy are wandering and the way of of your paths, they engulf.
13
19
נִצָּ֥ב לָרִ֖יב יְהוָ֑ה
וְעֹמֵ֖ד לָדִ֥ין עַמִּֽים
13 Yahweh stood firm to contend,
and he will stand to make the case for the peoples.
6
7
יְהוָה֙ בְּמִשְׁפָּ֣ט יָב֔וֹא עִם־זִקְנֵ֥י עַמּ֖וֹ וְשָׂרָ֑יו
וְאַתֶּם֙ בִּֽעַרְתֶּ֣ם הַכֶּ֔רֶם גְּזֵלַ֥ת הֶֽעָנִ֖י בְּבָתֵּיכֶֽם
14 Yahweh enters into judgment with the elders of his people and their nobility,
for you, you have kindled the vineyard. The ravaging of the poor is in your houses.
15
19
מַה־לָּכֶם֙‬ תְּדַכְּא֣וּ עַמִּ֔י וּפְנֵ֥י עֲנִיִּ֖ים תִּטְחָ֑נוּ
נְאֻם־אֲדֹנָ֥י יְהוִ֖ה צְבָאֽוֹת ס
15 Why for yourselves do you crush my people, and the faces of the poor you grind?
An oracle of my Lord Yahweh of hosts.
16
11
וַיֹּ֣אמֶר יְהוָ֗ה יַ֚עַן כִּ֤י גָֽבְהוּ֙ בְּנ֣וֹת צִיּ֔וֹן וַתֵּלַ֙כְנָה֙ נְטוּי֣וֹת גָּר֔וֹן וּֽמְשַׂקְּר֖וֹת עֵינָ֑יִם
הָל֤וֹךְ וְטָפֹף֙ תֵּלַ֔כְנָה וּבְרַגְלֵיהֶ֖ם תְּעַכַּֽסְנָה
16 And Yahweh said, Because high and lofty are the daughters of Zion and they walk with stretched gullets and ogling eyes,
walking mincing in their gait and with their feet tinkling,
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16
וְשִׂפַּ֣ח אֲדֹנָ֔י קָדְקֹ֖ד בְּנ֣וֹת צִיּ֑וֹן
וַיהוָ֖ה פָּתְהֵ֥ן יְעָרֶֽה ס
17 So my Lord will deform the scalp of daughters of Zion,
and Yahweh their fragments will expose.
12
8
בַּיּ֨וֹם הַה֜וּא יָסִ֣יר אֲדֹנָ֗י אֵ֣ת תִּפְאֶ֧רֶת הָעֲכָסִ֛ים וְהַשְּׁבִיסִ֖ים וְהַשַּׂהֲרֹנִֽים 18 In that day my Lord will put aside the adornment of the ankle-clasps, and their head-bands and crescents, 27
הַנְּטִיפ֥וֹת וְהַשֵּׁיר֖וֹת וְהָֽרְעָלֽוֹת 19 the ear-droplets, and the arm-chains, and the fluttering veils, 11
הַפְּאֵרִ֤ים וְהַצְּעָדוֹת֙ וְהַקִּשֻּׁרִ֔ים וּבָתֵּ֥י הַנֶּ֖פֶשׁ וְהַלְּחָשִֽׁים 20 the diadems and the stepping-chains, and the dress-girdles, and the smelling-bottles, and the amulets, 22
הַטַּבָּע֖וֹת וְנִזְמֵ֥י הָאָֽף 21 the finger-rings and nose-rings, 9
הַמַּֽחֲלָצוֹת֙ וְהַמַּ֣עֲטָפ֔וֹת וְהַמִּטְפָּח֖וֹת וְהָחֲרִיטִֽים 22 the gala-dresses and the sleeve-frocks and the cloaks and the pockets, 21
וְהַגִּלְיֹנִים֙ וְהַסְּדִינִ֔ים וְהַצְּנִיפ֖וֹת וְהָרְדִידִֽים 23 and the hand mirrors and the linen from Sind and the head-dresses and the wraps, 17
וְהָיָה֩ תַ֨חַת בֹּ֜שֶׂם מַ֣ק יִֽהְיֶ֗ה וְתַ֨חַת חֲגוֹרָ֤ה נִקְפָּה֙ וְתַ֨חַת מַעֲשֶׂ֤ה מִקְשֶׁה֙ קָרְחָ֔ה וְתַ֥חַת פְּתִיגִ֖יל מַחֲגֹ֣רֶת שָׂ֑ק
כִּי־תַ֖חַת יֹֽפִי
24 And it will be instead of spices there will be rot, and instead of the sash a tether, and instead of a hair-do, baldness, and instead of a dress-cloak, a sash with sackcloth,
a brand instead of beauty.
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4
מְתַ֖יִךְ בַּחֶ֣רֶב יִפֹּ֑לוּ
וּגְבוּרָתֵ֖ךְ בַּמִּלְחָמָֽה
25 Your men by the sword will fall,
and your valiant in the battle.
9
8
וְאָנ֥וּ וְאָבְל֖וּ פְּתָחֶ֑יהָ
וְנִקָּ֖תָה לָאָ֥רֶץ תֵּשֵֽׁב
26 And her doors will moan and will lament,
and acquitted on the earth, she will sit.
10
9
Of course she is ultimately acquitted - not desolate.

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