Isaiah 40:22
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in.

New Living Translation
God sits above the circle of the earth. The people below seem like grasshoppers to him! He spreads out the heavens like a curtain and makes his tent from them.

English Standard Version
It is he who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers; who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them like a tent to dwell in;

New American Standard Bible
It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain And spreads them out like a tent to dwell in.

King James Bible
It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
God is enthroned above the circle of the earth; its inhabitants are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like thin cloth and spreads them out like a tent to live in.

International Standard Version
He's the one who sits above the disk of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers. He's the one who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them like a tent to live in,

NET Bible
He is the one who sits on the earth's horizon; its inhabitants are like grasshoppers before him. He is the one who stretches out the sky like a thin curtain, and spreads it out like a pitched tent.

New Heart English Bible
It is he who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers; who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them out like a tent to dwell in;

GOD'S WORD® Translation
God is enthroned above the earth, and those who live on it are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the sky like a canopy and spreads it out like a tent to live in.

JPS Tanakh 1917
It is He that sitteth above the circle of the earth, And the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; That stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, And spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in;

New American Standard 1977
It is He who sits above the vault of the earth,
            And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers,
            Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain
            And spreads them out like a tent to dwell in.

Jubilee Bible 2000
He is seated upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; he stretches out the heavens as a curtain and spreads them out as a tent to dwell in:

King James 2000 Bible
It is he that sits upon the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are as grasshoppers; that stretches out the heavens as a curtain, and spreads them out as a tent to dwell in:

American King James Version
It is he that sits on the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretches out the heavens as a curtain, and spreads them out as a tent to dwell in:

American Standard Version
It is he that sitteth above the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in;

Douay-Rheims Bible
It is he that sitteth upon the globe of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as locusts: he that stretcheth out the heavens as nothing, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in.

Darby Bible Translation
[It is] he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a gauze curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in;

English Revised Version
It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in:

Webster's Bible Translation
It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in:

World English Bible
It is he who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers; who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them out like a tent to dwell in;

Young's Literal Translation
He who is sitting on the circle of the earth, And its inhabitants are as grasshoppers, He who is stretching out as a thin thing the heavens, And spreadeth them as a tent to dwell in.
Study Bible
Here is Your God!
21Do you not know? Have you not heard? Has it not been declared to you from the beginning? Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth? 22It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain And spreads them out like a tent to dwell in. 23He it is who reduces rulers to nothing, Who makes the judges of the earth meaningless.…
Cross References
Genesis 1:6
Then God said, "Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters."

Numbers 13:33
"There also we saw the Nephilim (the sons of Anak are part of the Nephilim); and we became like grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight."

Job 9:8
Who alone stretches out the heavens And tramples down the waves of the sea;

Job 22:14
'Clouds are a hiding place for Him, so that He cannot see; And He walks on the vault of heaven.'

Job 36:29
"Can anyone understand the spreading of the clouds, The thundering of His pavilion?

Psalm 18:11
He made darkness His hiding place, His canopy around Him, Darkness of waters, thick clouds of the skies.

Psalm 19:4
Their line has gone out through all the earth, And their utterances to the end of the world. In them He has placed a tent for the sun,

Psalm 104:2
Covering Yourself with light as with a cloak, Stretching out heaven like a tent curtain.

Proverbs 8:27
"When He established the heavens, I was there, When He inscribed a circle on the face of the deep,

Isaiah 37:16
"O LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, who is enthroned above the cherubim, You are the God, You alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth.
Treasury of Scripture

It is he that sits on the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretches out the heavens as a curtain, and spreads them out as a tent to dwell in:

it is he that sitteth. or, Him that sitteth

Isaiah 19:1 The burden of Egypt. Behold, the LORD rides on a swift cloud, and …

Isaiah 66:1 Thus said the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my …

Psalm 2:4 He that sits in the heavens shall laugh: the LORD shall have them in derision.

Psalm 29:10 The LORD sits on the flood; yes, the LORD sits King for ever.

Psalm 68:33 To him that rides on the heavens of heavens, which were of old; see, …

the inhabitants

Isaiah 40:15,17 Behold, the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as …

Numbers 13:33 And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the …

stretcheth

Isaiah 42:5 Thus said God the LORD, he that created the heavens, and stretched …

Isaiah 44:24 Thus said the LORD, your redeemer, and he that formed you from the …

Isaiah 51:13 And forget the LORD your maker, that has stretched forth the heavens, …

Job 9:8 Which alone spreads out the heavens, and treads on the waves of the sea.

Job 37:18 Have you with him spread out the sky, which is strong, and as a molten …

Job 38:4-9 Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, …

Psalm 102:25,26 Of old have you laid the foundation of the earth: and the heavens …

Psalm 104:2 Who cover yourself with light as with a garment: who stretch out …

Jeremiah 10:12 He has made the earth by his power, he has established the world …

Zechariah 12:1 The burden of the word of the LORD for Israel, said the LORD, which …

Hebrews 1:10-12 And, You, Lord, in the beginning have laid the foundation of the …

as a curtain. Or, as a thin veil, as Bp. Lowth renders: which he illustrates by the following passage from Dr. Shaw. It is usual in the summer season, and upon all occasions when a large company is to be received, to have the court sheltered from heat or inclemency of the weather by a velum, umbrella, or veil, as I shall call it; which, being expanded on ropes from one end of the parapet to the other, may be folded or unfolded at pleasure. The Psalmist seems to allude to some covering of this kind, in that beautiful expression of spreading out the heavens as a curtain.

(22) The circle of the earth--i.e., the vault of heaven over-arching the earth (Job 22:14; Proverbs 8:27).

As grasshoppers.--The word indicates some insect of the locust tribe. The comparison may have been suggested by Numbers 13:33.

That stretcheth out the heavens.--A favourite phrase of 2 Isaiah (Isaiah 42:5, Isaiah 44:24, et al.), taken probably from Psalm 104:2.

As a curtain . . . as a tent.--The words indicate a clearer perception of space than the older Hebrew word for the "firmament" of Genesis 1:7. The visible heavens are thought of as a thin, filmy veil of gauze, the curtains of the tent of God.

Verse 22. - It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth; rather, above the vault of the earth; above the vault of sky which seems to arch over the earth. As grasshoppers; i.e. minute, scarcely visible (comp. Numbers 13:33). That stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain. So in Psalm 104:2, only that here the "curtain" is represented as one of thin gauze. The idea is common to Isaiah with Job (Job 9:8), Jeremiah (Jeremiah 10:12; Jeremiah 51:15), and Zechariah (Zechariah 12:1), and is a favourite one in these later chapters (comp. Isaiah 42:5; Isaiah 44:24; Isaiah 45:12; Isaiah 51:13). As a tent (comp. Psalm 19:4, where God is said to have set in the heavens a "tabernacle" - 'ohel, the word used here - for the sun). It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth,.... Or, "the globe (z)" of it; for the earth is spherical or globular: not a flat plain, but round, hung as a ball in the air; here Jehovah sits as the Lord and Sovereign; being the Maker of it, he is above it, orders and directs its motion, and governs all things in it: Kimchi rightly observes, that the heavens are the circle of the earth, which is the centre of them, and around which they are; and so it signifies, that the Lord sits or dwells in the heavens, from whence he beholds the children of men:

and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; or "locusts (a)"; as one upon a very great eminence looking down beholds creatures as exceeding small and little; and if the Israelites were to the "anakim" or giants as grasshoppers, Numbers 13:33, much more must puny mortals be such in the sight of God, and in comparison of him; and this may denote, not only the minuteness of men, but what weak, impotent, useless, worthless, and short lived creatures men are:

that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain; alluding to the firmament or expanse made at the creation, and still continued; which is as a curtain to himself, which he draws around himself, he dwelling in the highest heavens, and in light inaccessible to mortals; and which he stretches out as a canopy around this earth, for the use of the inhabitants of it: or, "as a little thing"; or, as a little skin (b); and which he stretches out as easily as a man can stretch out that:

and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in it; for himself to dwell in, and so stretches out the heavens like curtains about him; tents being made of such, and often of skins.

(z) "super sphaeram", Pagninus; "globum", Montanus Vatablus; "super orbem telluris", Vitringa. (a) "ut locustae", Pagninus, Montanus, Cocceius, Vitringa; "tanquam locustae", Munster; "velut locustae", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator. (b) "velut tenue", Montanus; "tenuissimum", Vatablus; "pellem." Munster; so some in Vatablus; "pellculam", Gataker. 22. It is he—rather, connected with last verse, "Have ye not known?"—have ye not understood Him that sitteth …? (Isa 40:26) [Maurer].

circle—applicable to the globular form of the earth, above which, and the vault of sky around it, He sits. For "upon" translate "above."

as grasshoppers—or locusts in His sight (Nu 13:33), as He looks down from on high (Ps 33:13, 14; 113:4-6).

curtain—referring to the awning which the Orientals draw over the open court in the center of their houses as a shelter in rain or hot weather.40:18-26 Whatever we esteem or love, fear or hope in, more than God, that creature we make equal with God, though we do not make images or worship them. He that is so poor, that he has scarcely a sacrifice to offer, yet will not be without a god of his own. They spared no cost upon their idols; we grudge what is spent in the service of our God. To prove the greatness of God, the prophet appeals to all ages and nations. Those who are ignorant of this, are willingly ignorant. God has the command of all creatures, and of all created things. The prophet directs us to use our reason as well as our senses; to consider who created the hosts of heaven, and to pay our homage to Him. Not one fails to fulfil his will. And let us not forget, that He spake all the promises, and engaged to perform them.
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