Isaiah 22:16
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
What are you doing here and who gave you permission to cut out a grave for yourself here, hewing your grave on the height and chiseling your resting place in the rock?

New Living Translation
"Who do you think you are, and what are you doing here, building a beautiful tomb for yourself--a monument high up in the rock?

English Standard Version
What have you to do here, and whom have you here, that you have cut out here a tomb for yourself, you who cut out a tomb on the height and carve a dwelling for yourself in the rock?

New American Standard Bible
'What right do you have here, And whom do you have here, That you have hewn a tomb for yourself here, You who hew a tomb on the height, You who carve a resting place for yourself in the rock?

King James Bible
What hast thou here? and whom hast thou here, that thou hast hewed thee out a sepulchre here, as he that heweth him out a sepulchre on high, and that graveth an habitation for himself in a rock?

Holman Christian Standard Bible
What are you doing here? Who authorized you to carve out a tomb for yourself here, carving your tomb on the height and cutting a crypt for yourself out of rock?

International Standard Version
What are you doing here, and who are your relatives here that you could carve out a grave for yourself here—cutting out a tomb at the choicest location, chiseling out a resting place for yourself out of solid rock?

NET Bible
What right do you have to be here? What relatives do you have buried here? Why do you chisel out a tomb for yourself here? He chisels out his burial site in an elevated place, he carves out his tomb on a cliff.

New Heart English Bible
'What are you doing here? Who has you here, that you have dug out a tomb here?' Cutting himself out a tomb on high, chiseling a habitation for himself in the rock."

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"What are you doing here? What right do you have to dig a tomb for yourself? What right do you have to cut it out in a prominent place? What right do you have to carve out a resting place for yourself in the rock?

JPS Tanakh 1917
What hast thou here, and whom hast thou here, That thou hast hewed thee out here a sepulchre, Thou that hewest thee out a sepulchre on high, And gravest a habitation for thyself in the rock?

New American Standard 1977
‘What right do you have here,
            And whom do you have here,
            That you have hewn a tomb for yourself here,
            You who hew a tomb on the height,
            You who carve a resting place for yourself in the rock?

Jubilee Bible 2000
What hast thou here? or whom hast thou here that thou hast hewed thee out a sepulchre here as he that hews himself out a sepulchre on a high place or that graves a habitation for himself in a rock?

King James 2000 Bible
What have you here? and whom have you here, that you have hewed you out a sepulcher here, as he that hews him out a sepulcher on high, and that carves a tomb for himself in a rock?

American King James Version
What have you here? and whom have you here, that you have hewed you out a sepulcher here, as he that hews him out a sepulcher on high, and that engraves an habitation for himself in a rock?

American Standard Version
What doest thou here? and whom has thou here, that thou hast hewed thee out here a sepulchre? hewing him out a sepulchre on high, graving a habitation for himself in the rock!

Douay-Rheims Bible
What dost thou here, or as if thou wert somebody here? for thou hast hewed thee out a sepulchre here, thou hast hewed out a monument carefully in a high place, a dwelling for thyself in a rock.

Darby Bible Translation
What hast thou here? and whom hast thou here, that thou hast hewn thee out a sepulchre here, [as] he that heweth out his sepulchre on high, cutting out in the rock a habitation for himself?

English Revised Version
What doest thou here? and whom hast thou here, that thou hast hewed thee out here a sepulchre? hewing him out a sepulchre on high, graving an habitation for himself in the rock!

Webster's Bible Translation
What hast thou here? and whom hast thou here, that thou hast hewed thee out a sepulcher here, as he that heweth him out a sepulcher on high, and that graveth a habitation for himself in a rock?

World English Bible
'What are you doing here? Who has you here, that you have dug out a tomb here?' Cutting himself out a tomb on high, chiseling a habitation for himself in the rock!"

Young's Literal Translation
What -- to thee here? And who -- to thee here? That thou hast hewn out to thee here -- a sepulchre? Hewing on high his sepulchre, Graving in a rock a dwelling for himself.
Study Bible
A Message for Shebna
15Thus says the Lord GOD of hosts, "Come, go to this steward, To Shebna, who is in charge of the royal household, 16What right do you have here, And whom do you have here, That you have hewn a tomb for yourself here, You who hew a tomb on the height, You who carve a resting place for yourself in the rock? 17'Behold, the LORD is about to hurl you headlong, O man. And He is about to grasp you firmly…
Cross References
Matthew 27:60
and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut into the rock. Then he rolled a great stone across the entrance to the tomb and went away.

Genesis 50:5
'My father made me swear, saying, "Behold, I am about to die; in my grave which I dug for myself in the land of Canaan, there you shall bury me." Now therefore, please let me go up and bury my father; then I will return.'"

2 Samuel 18:18
Now Absalom in his lifetime had taken and set up for himself a pillar which is in the King's Valley, for he said, "I have no son to preserve my name." So he named the pillar after his own name, and it is called Absalom's Monument to this day.

2 Chronicles 16:14
They buried him in his own tomb which he had cut out for himself in the city of David, and they laid him in the resting place which he had filled with spices of various kinds blended by the perfumers' art; and they made a very great fire for him.

Isaiah 14:19
"But you have been cast out of your tomb Like a rejected branch, Clothed with the slain who are pierced with a sword, Who go down to the stones of the pit Like a trampled corpse.

Isaiah 22:17
'Behold, the LORD is about to hurl you headlong, O man. And He is about to grasp you firmly
Treasury of Scripture

What have you here? and whom have you here, that you have hewed you out a sepulcher here, as he that hews him out a sepulcher on high, and that engraves an habitation for himself in a rock?

what hast

Isaiah 52:5 Now therefore, what have I here, said the LORD, that my people is …

Micah 2:10 Arise you, and depart; for this is not your rest: because it is polluted, …

hewed. There are some monuments still remaining in Persia, of great antiquity, says Bp. Lowth, called Naksi Rustam, which give a clear idea of Shebna's pompous design for his sepulchre. They consist of several sepulchres, each of them hewn in a high rock near the top. The front of the rock to the valley below is adorned with carved work in relieve, being the outside of the sepulchre. Some of these sepulchres are about thirty feet in the perpendicular from the valley, which is itself raised perhaps about half as much by the accumulation of the earth since they were made.

Isaiah 14:18 All the kings of the nations, even all of them, lie in glory, every …

2 Samuel 18:18 Now Absalom in his lifetime had taken and reared up for himself a …

2 Chronicles 16:14 And they buried him in his own sepulchers, which he had made for …

Job 3:14 With kings and counsellors of the earth, which build desolate places …

Matthew 27:60 And laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock: …

as he. or, O he

(16) What hast thou here? . . .--The prophet's indignation is roused by Shebna's last act of arrogance. He had no "sepulchre of his fathers" to deck with fresh stateliness, and, like the kings and great ones of the earth (the kings of Sidon, the Pharaohs of Egypt, the kings of Assyria), had built one for himself, hollowed out of the wells (probably on one of the hills of Jerusalem), to be his own everlasting "habitation," his domus terna. So in Ecclesiastes 12:5, the grave is the "long home" of man. Rock-hewn sepulchres of this type are found on the slopes of all the hills in the neighbourhood of the holy city.

Verse 16. - What hast thou here? i.e. what business, or what right? It seems, certainly, to be implied that Shebna was wholly unconnected with Jerusalem. Whom hast thou here? i.e. what relations? what family? To be justified in hewing out a large tomb, Shebna should have had a numerous family for whom graves would be needed. Otherwise, his excavation of a grand sepulcher was merely selfish and ostentatious. As he that heweth him out a sepulcher on high. Jewish tombs of any pretension were generally excavations in the solid rock, on the side of some hill or mountain, and had often a very elevated position. Tombs exist on the slopes of all the hills about Jerusalem, but are most numerous on the eastern side of the temple mount, which slopes steeply to the Kedron valley. A square-topped doorway leads into a chamber, generally square, from which recesses, six or seven feet long, two broad, and three high, are carried into the rock horizontally, either on a level with the floor, or with a platform, or shelf, halfway up one of the walls. These recesses have been called loculi. After a body had been placed in one, it was commonly closed by a stone, which fitted into the end, and thus shut off the body from the chamber. Chambers had sometimes twelve such loculi. An habitation (comp. Ecclesiastes 12:5). We must not suppose, however, that the Jews, like the Egyptians and Etruscans, regarded the soul as inhabiting the tomb. The soul descended into sheol; the grave was the "habitation" of the body only. What hast thou here?.... In the king's house, or in Jerusalem; what business hast thou here? thou art unworthy of such an office, nor shalt thou long continue in it; what inheritance hast thou here? thou art an alien from the commonwealth of Israel and hast no estate or possession in the land:

and whom hast thou here? of thy family and kindred; what ancestors hast thou? where did they live or die, and were buried? what children hast thou to succeed thee in honour and estate? or what relations to be interred, when deceased, in thy grave, that thou hast made such a provision as follows? and it may be observed, that wherever he is spoken of, the name of his father is never mentioned. Aben Ezra's gloss is, who hast thou here of thy family that can help thee? his fall and ruin being at hand:

that thou hast hewed thee out a sepulchre here; in the city of Jerusalem, or near it; the Jews say (x), among the sepulchres of the kings of the house of David; as if he thought to live and die here, and so had provided a sepulchre for himself and family, to lie in great pomp and splendour, like the kings and princes of the earth:

as he that heweth him out a sepulchre on high, and that graveth an habitation for himself in a rock; where sepulchres, as well as palaces, used to be built; see Matthew 27:60 and great men, especially the Egyptians, used to build sepulchres like to palaces; though it may be observed, that the word "as" is not in the text; and the words may be understood of Shebna's hewing out a sepulchre in some high place near Jerusalem, and building a fine house upon a rock there; and which may design either one and the same thing, a grave or sepulchre being called a house, Job 30:23 or two different things, a sepulchre to be buried in when dead, and a palace to dwell in while living; and so the words may be rendered thus (y), "O he that heweth himself", &c.; "O he that graveth an habitation", &c.; so the Syriac version, "O thou that hewest thy sepulchre on high", &c.

(x) T. Bab. Sanhedrin fol. 26. 2.((y) "O caedens, &c. O statuens", &c. Junius & Tremellius. 16. What … whom—The prophet accosts Shebna at the very place where he was building a grand sepulcher for himself and his family (compare Isa 14:18; Ge 23:1-20; 49:29; 50:13). "What (business) hast thou here, and whom hast thou (of thy family, who is likely to be buried) here, that thou buildest," etc., seeing that thou art soon to be deposed from office and carried into captivity? [Maurer].

on high—Sepulchres were made in the highest rocks (2Ch 32:33, Margin).

habitation for himself—compare "his own house" (Isa 14:18).22:15-25 This message to Shebna is a reproof of his pride, vanity, and security; what vanity is all earthly grandeur, which death will so soon end! What will it avail, whether we are laid in a magnificent tomb, or covered with the green sod? Those who, when in power, turn and toss others, will be justly turned and tossed themselves. Eliakim should be put into Shebna's place. Those called to places of trust and power, should seek to God for grace to enable them to do their duty. Eliakim's advancement is described. Our Lord Jesus describes his own power as Mediator, Re 3:7, that he has the key of David. His power in the kingdom of heaven, and in ordering all the affairs of that kingdom, is absolute. Rulers should be fathers to those under their government; and the honour men bring unto their families, by their piety and usefulness, is more to be valued than what they derive from them by their names and titles. The glory of this world gives a man no real worth or excellence; it is but hung upon him, and it will soon drop from him. Eliakim was compared to a nail in a sure place; all his family are said to depend upon him. In eastern houses, rows of large spikes were built up in the walls. Upon these the moveables and utensils were hung. Our Lord Jesus is as a nail in a sure place. That soul cannot perish, nor that concern fall to the ground, which is by faith hung upon Christ. He will set before the believer an open door, which no man can shut, and bring both body and soul to eternal glory. But those who neglect so great salvation will find, that when he shutteth none can open, whether it be shutting out from heaven, or shutting up in hell for ever.
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