2 Kings 18:21
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
Look, I know you are depending on Egypt, that splintered reed of a staff, which pierces the hand of anyone who leans on it! Such is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who depend on him.

New Living Translation
On Egypt? If you lean on Egypt, it will be like a reed that splinters beneath your weight and pierces your hand. Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, is completely unreliable!

English Standard Version
Behold, you are trusting now in Egypt, that broken reed of a staff, which will pierce the hand of any man who leans on it. Such is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who trust in him.

New American Standard Bible
"Now behold, you rely on the staff of this crushed reed, even on Egypt; on which if a man leans, it will go into his hand and pierce it. So is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who rely on him.

King James Bible
Now, behold, thou trustest upon the staff of this bruised reed, even upon Egypt, on which if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it: so is Pharaoh king of Egypt unto all that trust on him.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Look, you are now trusting in Egypt, that splintered reed of a staff that will enter and pierce the hand of anyone who leans on it. This is how Pharaoh king of Egypt is to all who trust in him.

International Standard Version
Look, you're trusting on Egypt to lean on like a staff, but it's a crushed reed, and if you lean on it, it will collapse and pierce your hand. Pharaoh, king of Egypt, is just like that to everyone who relies on him!

NET Bible
Now look, you must be trusting in Egypt, that splintered reed staff. If a man leans for support on it, it punctures his hand and wounds him. That is what Pharaoh king of Egypt does to all who trust in him.

New Heart English Bible
Now, look, you trust in the staff of this bruised reed, even in Egypt. If a man leans on it, it will go into his hand, and pierce it. So is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who trust on him.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Now, look! When you trust Egypt, you're trusting a broken stick for a staff. If you lean on it, it stabs your hand and goes through it. This is what Pharaoh (the king of Egypt) is like for everyone who trusts him.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Now, behold, thou trustest upon the staff of this bruised reed, even upon Egypt; whereon if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it; so is Pharaoh king of Egypt unto all that trust on him.

New American Standard 1977
“Now behold, you rely on the staff of this crushed reed, even on Egypt; on which if a man leans, it will go into his hand and pierce it. So is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who rely on him.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Now, behold, thou dost trust upon the staff of this bruised reed, even upon Egypt, on which if a man leans, it will go into his hand and pierce it; so is Pharaoh, king of Egypt unto all that trust in him.

King James 2000 Bible
Now, behold, you trust upon the staff of this bruised reed, even upon Egypt, on which if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it: so is Pharaoh king of Egypt unto all that trust in him.

American King James Version
Now, behold, you trust on the staff of this bruised reed, even on Egypt, on which if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it: so is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all that trust on him.

American Standard Version
Now, behold, thou trustest upon the staff of this bruised reed, even upon Egypt; whereon if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it: so is Pharaoh king of Egypt unto all that trust on him.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Dost thou trust in Egypt a staff of a broken reed, upon which if a man lean, it will break and go into his hand, and pierce it? so is Pharao king of Egypt, to all that trust in him.

Darby Bible Translation
Now behold, thou reliest upon the staff of that broken reed, upon Egypt, on which if a man lean, it goes into his hand and pierces it: so is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all that rely upon him.

English Revised Version
Now, behold, thou trustest upon the staff of this bruised reed, even upon Egypt; whereon if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it: so is Pharaoh king of Egypt unto all that trust on him.

Webster's Bible Translation
Now behold, thou trustest upon the staff of this bruised reed, even upon Egypt, on which if a man leaneth, it will go into his hand, and pierce it: so is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all that trust on him.

World English Bible
Now, behold, you trust in the staff of this bruised reed, even in Egypt. If a man leans on it, it will go into his hand, and pierce it. So is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who trust on him.

Young's Literal Translation
Now, lo, thou hast trusted for thee on the staff of this broken reed, on Egypt; which a man leaneth on, and it hath gone into his hand, and pierced it! -- so is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all those trusting on him.
Study Bible
Sennacherib Threatens Jerusalem
20"You say (but they are only empty words), 'I have counsel and strength for the war.' Now on whom do you rely, that you have rebelled against me? 21"Now behold, you rely on the staff of this crushed reed, even on Egypt; on which if a man leans, it will go into his hand and pierce it. So is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who rely on him. 22"But if you say to me, 'We trust in the LORD our God,' is it not He whose high places and whose altars Hezekiah has taken away, and has said to Judah and to Jerusalem, 'You shall worship before this altar in Jerusalem '?…
Cross References
Isaiah 1:1
The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz concerning Judah and Jerusalem, which he saw during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah.

Isaiah 20:5
"Then they will be dismayed and ashamed because of Cush their hope and Egypt their boast.

Isaiah 30:2
Who proceed down to Egypt Without consulting Me, To take refuge in the safety of Pharaoh And to seek shelter in the shadow of Egypt!

Isaiah 30:3
"Therefore the safety of Pharaoh will be your shame And the shelter in the shadow of Egypt, your humiliation.

Jeremiah 46:2
To Egypt, concerning the army of Pharaoh Neco king of Egypt, which was by the Euphrates River at Carchemish, which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon defeated in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah:

Ezekiel 29:6
"Then all the inhabitants of Egypt will know that I am the LORD, Because they have been only a staff made of reed to the house of Israel.

Ezekiel 29:7
"When they took hold of you with the hand, You broke and tore all their hands; And when they leaned on you, You broke and made all their loins quake."

Hosea 1:1
The word of the LORD which came to Hosea the son of Beeri, during the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and during the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash, king of Israel.
Treasury of Scripture

Now, behold, you trust on the staff of this bruised reed, even on Egypt, on which if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it: so is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all that trust on him.

trustest. Heb. trustest thee. the staff.

Isaiah 36:6 See, you trust in the staff of this broken reed, on Egypt; where …

Ezekiel 29:6,7 And all the inhabitants of Egypt shall know that I am the LORD, because …

upon Egypt.

Isaiah 30:2,7 That walk to go down into Egypt, and have not asked at my mouth; …

Isaiah 31:1-3 Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and …

so is Pharaoh.

2 Kings 17:4 And the king of Assyria found conspiracy in Hoshea: for he had sent …

Jeremiah 46:17 They did cry there, Pharaoh king of Egypt is but a noise; he has …

(21) The staff of this bruised reed.--Cracked or flawed would be better than bruised; because, as is clear from the following words, the idea is that of a reed splitting and piercing the hand that rests upon it. (Comp. Isaiah 42:3.) As to the Judan expectations from Egypt, comp. Isaiah 20:1-5; Isaiah 30:1-8; Isaiah 31:1-4, passages in which such expectations are denounced as implying want of faith in Jehovah.

Verse 21. - Now, behold, thou trustest upon the staff of this bruised reed, even upon Egypt. Sennacherib had good information. Hezekiah's embassy to Egypt (Isaiah 30:2-7) was known to him; and he rightly judged that Hezekiah was expecting aid from this quarter. This expectation he ridicules. What is Egypt but a "bruised reed"? The Nile bulrush (רצץ) has a goodly show; it rears itself aloft, and leeks strong and stately; but use it as a staff, lean upon it, and it snaps at once. Such is Pharaoh - nay, he is worse; he is a bruised reed, which can give no support at all, even for a moment. The Assyrian monarch was justified in his contempt. Egypt had never yet given any effectual support to the states attacked by Assyria Shebek gave no manner of aid to Hoshea, but allowed Samaria to be conquered in B.C. 722 without making the slightest effort on her behalf. In B.C. 720 he came to the aid of Gaza ('Eponym Canon,' p. 126), but Gaza was captured notwithstanding. In B.C. 711 either he or Sabatok undertook the protection of Ashdod, but with the same lack of success (ibid., pp. 130, 131). "Kings of Egypt" assisted the Ascalonites against Sennacherib himself in B.C. 701, and were again completely defeated (ibid., pp. 133, 134). Sargon calls the King of Egypt, whoso aid was invited by the Ashdedites (ibid., p. 130, line 37), "a monarch who could not save them." On which if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it; i.e. trust in Egypt will not only bring a country no advantage, but it will bring positive injury. The sharp siliceous casing of a reed might run into the hand and give an ugly wound. So is Pharaoh King of Egypt unto all that trust on him. Sargon in one place (ibid., p. 130, line 36) speaks of a King of Egypt under the title of "Pharaoh." 18:17-37 Rabshakeh tries to convince the Jews, that it was to no purpose for them to stand it out. What confidence is this wherein thou trustest? It were well if sinners would submit to the force of this argument, in seeking peace with God. It is, therefore, our wisdom to yield to him, because it is in vain to contend with him: what confidence is that which those trust in who stand out against him? A great deal of art there is in this speech of Rabshakeh; but a great deal of pride, malice, falsehood, and blasphemy. Hezekiah's nobles held their peace. There is a time to keep silence, as well as a time to speak; and there are those to whom to offer any thing religious or rational, is to cast pearls before swine. Their silence made Rabshakeh yet more proud and secure. It is often best to leave such persons to rail and blaspheme; a decided expression of abhorrence is the best testimony against them. The matter must be left to the Lord, who has all hearts in his hands, committing ourselves unto him in humble submission, believing hope, and fervent prayer.
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OT History: 2 Kings 18:21 Now behold you trust on the staff (2Ki iiKi ii ki 2 kg 2kg) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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