The fainting children (Lam 2:12-2:12)

Lamed

“They cry

To their mothers.

‘Where is bread?

Where is wine?’

They faint

Like wounded people

In the streets

Of the city.

Their life

Is poured out

On their mothers’ bosom.”

Here again we have a very descriptive presentation about young children asking their mothers for food and drink. They want to know whether there is any bread or wine. They are fainting like wounded soldiers in the streets of the city. They are slowly dying beside their mothers. This is not a pretty picture. This verse starts with the Hebrew consonant letter Lamed. Each verse after this will use the next letter of the Hebrew alphabet in this acrostic poem.

The drinking priests and prophets (Isa 28:7-28:8)

“They also reel with wine.

They stagger with strong drink.

The priests reel with strong drink.

The prophets reel with strong drink.

They are confused with wine.

They stagger with strong drink.

They err in vision.

They stumble in giving judgment.

All tables are covered

With vomit.

No place is clean.”

Isaiah does not paint a pretty picture of these northern priests and prophets. They reel and stagger around because of strong drink. They are confused and wobble around because of their drinking habits. They have false visions and stumble when giving judgment. In colorful descriptive language, Isaiah says that their tables were so covered with vomit from drinking that there was no clean place on them.

 

The greetings in Sheol (Isa 14:9-14:11)

“Sheol beneath is stirred up.            

They want to meet you

When you come.

They rouse the shades

To greet you.

All who were leaders of the earth

Greet you.

All who were kings of the nations

Rise from their thrones.

All of them will speak.

They will say to you.

‘You too have become

As weak as we!

You have become

Like us!’

Your pomp

Is brought down to Sheol.

The sound of your harps

Is brought down to Sheol.

Maggots are the bed beneath you.

Worms are your covering.”

This haughty king now descends after his death into the shadowy underworld of Sheol. Everyone there wanted to meet this king. All the former leaders and kings of the world were there to greet this newly deceased Babylonian king. They got up from their thrones and greeted him. Then they reminded him that he had become like them, weak. All his self important pomps were gone in Sheol. There was no harp playing in Sheol. In fact, he would sleep on a bed of maggots with worms as his covering, not a pretty picture.

The death of all (Isa 13:14-13:16)

“Like a hunted gazelle,

Like sheep

With no one to gather them,

All will turn

To their own people.

All will flee

To their own lands.

Whoever is found

Will be thrust through.

Whoever is caught,

Will fall by the sword.

Their infants

Will be dashed to pieces,

Before their eyes.

Their houses will be plundered.

Their wives will be ravished.”

Now Isaiah has the death of all, no questions asked. Humans will be like hunted deer or sheep with no one guiding them. People will return to their own people and lands. However, whoever is caught would by killed by the sword. Their infants would be smashed. Their houses would be robbed and their wives raped. This is not a pretty picture.