Isaiah 44:28
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
who says of Cyrus, 'He is my shepherd and will accomplish all that I please; he will say of Jerusalem, "Let it be rebuilt," and of the temple, "Let its foundations be laid."'

New Living Translation
When I say of Cyrus, 'He is my shepherd,' he will certainly do as I say. He will command, 'Rebuild Jerusalem'; he will say, 'Restore the Temple.'"

English Standard Version
who says of Cyrus, ‘He is my shepherd, and he shall fulfill all my purpose’; saying of Jerusalem, ‘She shall be built,’ and of the temple, ‘Your foundation shall be laid.’”

New American Standard Bible
"It is I who says of Cyrus, 'He is My shepherd! And he will perform all My desire.' And he declares of Jerusalem, 'She will be built,' And of the temple, 'Your foundation will be laid.'"

King James Bible
That saith of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure: even saying to Jerusalem, Thou shalt be built; and to the temple, Thy foundation shall be laid.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
who says to Cyrus, "My shepherd, he will fulfill all My pleasure" and says to Jerusalem, "She will be rebuilt," and of the temple, "Its foundation will be laid."

International Standard Version
who says about Cyrus, "He's my shepherd, and he'll carry out everything that I please: He'll say of Jerusalem, 'Let it be rebuilt,' and of my Temple, 'Let its foundations be laid again.'"'"

NET Bible
who commissions Cyrus, the one I appointed as shepherd to carry out all my wishes and to decree concerning Jerusalem, 'She will be rebuilt,' and concerning the temple, 'It will be reconstructed.'"

New Heart English Bible
Who says of Cyrus, 'He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure,' even saying of Jerusalem, 'She will be built;' and of the temple, 'Your foundation will be laid.'"

GOD'S WORD® Translation
He says about Cyrus, "He is my shepherd. He will do everything I want him to do." He says about Jerusalem, "It will be rebuilt." He says about the temple, "Your foundation will be laid."

JPS Tanakh 1917
That saith of Cyrus: 'He is My shepherd, And shall perform all My pleasure'; Even saying of Jerusalem: 'She shall be built'; And to the temple: 'My foundation shall be laid.'

New American Standard 1977
It is I who says of Cyrus, ‘He is My shepherd!
            And he will perform all My desire.’
            And he declares of Jerusalem, ‘She will be built,’
            And of the temple, ‘Your foundation will be laid.’”



Jubilee Bible 2000
that calls Cyrus, my shepherd, and all that I desire, he shall fulfil, by saying to Jerusalem, Thou shalt be built and to the temple, Thy foundation shall be laid.

King James 2000 Bible
That says of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure: even saying to Jerusalem, You shall be built; and to the temple, Your foundation shall be laid.

American King James Version
That said of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure: even saying to Jerusalem, You shall be built; and to the temple, Your foundation shall be laid.

American Standard Version
That saith of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure, even saying of Jerusalem, She shall be built; and of the temple, Thy foundation shall be laid.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Who say to Cyrus: Thou art my shepherd, and thou shalt perform all my pleasure. Who say to Jerusalem: Thou shalt be built: and to the temple: Thy foundations shall be laid.

Darby Bible Translation
that saith of Cyrus, [He is] my shepherd, and he shall perform all my pleasure; even saying to Jerusalem, Thou shalt be built; and to the temple, Thy foundation shall be laid.

English Revised Version
That saith of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure: even saying of Jerusalem, She shall be built; and to the temple, Thy foundation shall be laid.

Webster's Bible Translation
That saith of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and he shall perform all my pleasure: even saying to Jerusalem, Thou shalt be built; and to the temple, Thy foundation shall be laid.

World English Bible
Who says of Cyrus, 'He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure,' even saying of Jerusalem, 'She will be built;' and of the temple, 'Your foundation will be laid.'"

Young's Literal Translation
Who is saying of Cyrus, My shepherd, And all my delight He doth perfect, So as to say of Jerusalem, Thou art built, And of the temple, Thou art founded.

Study Bible
Jerusalem to Be Restored
27"It is I who says to the depth of the sea, 'Be dried up!' And I will make your rivers dry. 28"It is I who says of Cyrus, 'He is My shepherd! And he will perform all My desire.' And he declares of Jerusalem, She will be built,' And of the temple, Your foundation will be laid.'"
Cross References
2 Chronicles 36:22
Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia-- in order to fulfill the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah-- the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he sent a proclamation throughout his kingdom, and also put it in writing, saying,

2 Chronicles 36:23
"Thus says Cyrus king of Persia, 'The LORD, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and He has appointed me to build Him a house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Whoever there is among you of all His people, may the LORD his God be with him, and let him go up!'"

Ezra 1:1
Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, in order to fulfill the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he sent a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and also put it in writing, saying:

Ezra 1:2
"Thus says Cyrus king of Persia, 'The LORD, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth and He has appointed me to build Him a house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah.

Isaiah 14:32
"How then will one answer the messengers of the nation? That the LORD has founded Zion, And the afflicted of His people will seek refuge in it."

Isaiah 41:27
"Formerly I said to Zion, 'Behold, here they are.' And to Jerusalem, 'I will give a messenger of good news.'

Isaiah 45:1
Thus says the LORD to Cyrus His anointed, Whom I have taken by the right hand, To subdue nations before him And to loose the loins of kings; To open doors before him so that gates will not be shut:

Isaiah 45:13
"I have aroused him in righteousness And I will make all his ways smooth; He will build My city and will let My exiles go free, Without any payment or reward," says the LORD of hosts.

Isaiah 54:11
"O afflicted one, storm-tossed, and not comforted, Behold, I will set your stones in antimony, And your foundations I will lay in sapphires.

Isaiah 58:12
"Those from among you will rebuild the ancient ruins; You will raise up the age-old foundations; And you will be called the repairer of the breach, The restorer of the streets in which to dwell.
Treasury of Scripture

That said of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure: even saying to Jerusalem, You shall be built; and to the temple, Your foundation shall be laid.

Cyrus

Isaiah 42:15 I will make waste mountains and hills, and dry up all their herbs; …

Isaiah 45:1,3 Thus said the LORD to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I …

Isaiah 46:11 Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executes my counsel …

Isaiah 48:14,15 All you, assemble yourselves, and hear; which among them has declared …

Daniel 10:1 In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a thing was revealed to …

my shepherd

Isaiah 63:11 Then he remembered the days of old, Moses, and his people, saying…

Psalm 78:71,72 From following the ewes great with young he brought him to feed Jacob …

saying

Isaiah 45:13 I have raised him up in righteousness, and I will direct all his …

2 Chronicles 36:22,23 Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the …

Ezra 1:1-3 Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the …

Ezra 6:3 In the first year of Cyrus the king the same Cyrus the king made …

(28) That saith of Cyrus.--The Hebrew form is Koresh, answering to the Kur'us of the inscription of the king's tomb in the Murghab valley. The prediction of the name of the future deliverer has its only parallel in that of Josiah (1Kings 13:2). Such a phenomenon admits of three possible explanations:--(1) That it is a prophecy after the event--i.e., that the whole of Isaiah, or this part of it, was written at the close of the exile. (2) That the name was revealed to the prophet in a way altogether supernatural. (3) That the name came within the horizon of the prophet's vision from his natural stand-point, the supernatural element being found in the facts which he is led to connect with it. Of these, (3) seems to commend itself as most analogous with the methods of prophetic teaching. The main facts in the case are these--(1) Events had made Isaiah acquainted with the name of the Medes, and with a people bearing the name (Elam), afterwards given by the Jews to the Persians of the Greeks (Isaiah 11:1; Isaiah 13:7; Isaiah 21:2; 2Kings 17:6; 2Kings 18:11). (2) Koresh or Kyros was the name of a river in that region, and the conqueror is said to have changed his previous name (Agradates) for it (Strab. Xv. 3, 6). (3) The name has been said to mean "the sun" (Plutarch, Ctesias), and this, though not accepted by many modern scholars as philologically accurate, at least indicates that the Greeks assigned that meaning to it. It would be a natural name for one who, as a worshipper of Ormuzd, saw in the sun the supreme symbol of the God of heaven. (4) The grandfather of the great Cyrus is said to have borne the same name (Herod. i. 111). (5) The facts point to the conclusion that the name Kursus; if not a titular epithet, like the Pharaoh of Egypt, may yet have had the prestige of antiquity and dignity, historical or mythical. (6) Is it altogether impossible that the prophecy, circulating among the Babylonian exiles, helped to bring about its own fulfilment, and that Agradates may have been led to take the name of Kur'us because he found his work described in connection with it (Josh. Ant., xii. 1, 2)?

My shepherd.--As guiding the flock of Jehovah, each to their own pasture.

Thou shalt be built.--Both verbs are better taken as imperatives, Let her be built; Let thy foundations be laid.

Verse 28. - That saith of Cyrus. The mention of Cyrus by name, here and again in Isaiah 45:1, has no doubt been one of the main grounds on which has been set up the theory of two Isaiahs. It has been thought incredible, or at any rate contrary to the analogy of prophetical revelation, that so minute a matter as the name of a man should have been announced in prophecy more than a century before his birth. There is, however, the parallel case of Josiah, who, according to the author of the Books of Kings, was announced by name more than three centuries before his birth (1 Kings 13:2). And there are the extremely minute facts noted in Daniel 11, which were prophetically de-dared from two centuries to three centuries and a half before they happened. It is, perhaps, assuming that we know more than we really do know about the object and laws of prophetic utterance, to lay it down that there can be no minute prophecy except when the prophet is living in the midst of the events. It is certainly a very marvellous thing that Isaiah, living at the close of the eighth and the beginning of the seventh century B.C., should -mention a king by name who did not ascend the throne till the middle of the sixth; but no one can suppose that God could not have made such a revelation to him if he pleased. An attempt to minimize the marvel, without postulating two Isaiahs, has been made by the supposition that "Cyrus" was not really a proper name, but an old title of the Persian (Achaemenian) kings, signifying" the sun," and that Isaiah, therefore, only meant to point out Persia as the power which would destroy Babylon, which he had already done in effect in Isaiah 21:2. But, in reality, there is no sufficient ground for either of the two statements

(1) that Cyrus meant "the sun," and

(2) that it was an old titular name of all the Persian kings.

That "Cyrus" meant "the sun," rests upon the weak authorities of Plutarch and Ctesias, and has been disproved by Sir H. Rawlinson ('Cuneiform Inscriptions,' vol. 2, p. 112). That it was an old titular name of all the Persian kings is directly contrary to the evidence. Out of fourteen Achaemenian kings, two only bore the name; and they bore it as their one and only personal appellation. It was also borne by an Achaemenian prince who had no other name. It is as purely a proper name as Cambyses, or Xerxes, or Darius. The theory of Dean Plumptre ('Biblical Studies,' p. 195) must therefore be set aside as untenable, and we must face the fact that the great Cyrus, who reigned from B.C. 559 to B.C. 529, is mentioned in prophecies attributed to a writer whose death cannot be placed much later than B.C. 700. The name which the Greeks expressed by Κύρος and the Romans by "Cyrus," is in the original Persian Kurush, in the old Babylonian Kuras, and in the Hebrew Koresh. He is my shepherd; i.e. not a mere ordinary king, who was often called "the shepherd of his people (ποιμὴν λαῶν)," but "my shepherd" - the shepherd of my people, who will tend them and care for them. And shall perform (literally, accomplish) all my pleasure. Cyrus is said by Josephus to have had ibis prophecy pointed out to him on his conquest of Babylon, and to have thereupon determined to fulfil what was written ('Ant. Jud.,' 12:1, § 2). His edict, reported by Ezra (Ezra 1:2-4), contained a statement that "Jehovah had charged him to build him a house at Jerusalem." It is difficult to see any sufficient political object for his restoration of the Jews to their country. Thou shalt be built; rather, it shall be built. Thy foundation shall be laid; literally, it shall be founded. The decree of Cyrus found by Darius at Ecbatana required that "the foundations of the house should be strongly laid" (Ezra 6:3), and prescribed its dimensions and materials. (On the actual laying of the foundations, see Ezra 3:8-13.)



That saith of Cyrus, he is my shepherd,.... Or Coresh, as his name in the Hebrew language is; and in the Persian tongue signifies the "sun"; from whence he had his name, as Ctesias (q) and Plutarch (r) say; to which the Hebrew word "cheres", which signifies the "sun", has some affinity; though Joseph Scaliger (s) would have the name of Cyrus to signify "food" in the Persian language, and which answers to his character as a shepherd. The father of this illustrious person was Cambyses, king of Persia; his mother's name was Mandane, daughter of Astyages, king of Media (t). This prophecy, concerning him, was nearly two hundred years before he was born. Josephus says (u), that Cyrus read this prophecy himself, which Isaiah had delivered out two hundred and ten years before; and which is a proof both of God's prescience of future contingencies, and of the truth of divine revelation. The Lord honours him with the title and character of his "shepherd", who was to lead his flock, the people of Israel, out of the Babylonish captivity, and guide them into their own land. It is very usual, both in sacred and profane writings, for kings to be called shepherds; and if Cyrus signifies "food", as before observed, his name and office agree. Justin (w) says, he had this name given him, while he was among the shepherds, by whom he was brought up, having been exposed in his infancy. Cyrus himself compares a king to a shepherd, and observes a likeness between them (x):

and shall perform all my pleasure; concerning the deliverance of the Jews from Babylon, and the encouragement of them to go up to their own land, and rebuild their city and temple; and many other things which he did, agreeably to the secret will of God, though he knew it not; and what he did he did not do in obedience to his will, but as overruled by the power and providence of God:

even saying to Jerusalem, thou shalt be built; these are not the words of the Lord, as before, but of Cyrus, giving orders that Jerusalem should be built:

and to the temple, thy foundation shall be laid; with great propriety this is said, since only the foundation was laid in his time; the Jews being discouraged and hindered by their enemies from going on with the building in his reign, until the times of Darius, king of Persia. See Ezra 1:1.

(q) Excerpta, p. 648. Ed. Gronov. (r) In Vita Artaxerxis, (s) Emendat. Temp. I. 6. (t) Xenophon. Cyropaedia, l. 1. sect. 1.((u) Antiqu. l. 11. c. 1. sect. 2.((w) Hist. ex Trogo l. 1. c. 5. (x) Xenophon, Cyropaedia, l. 8. sect. 18. 28. my shepherd—type of Messiah (Isa 40:11; Ps 23:1; 77:20; Eze 34:23).

all my pleasure—so Messiah (Isa 42:1; 53:10). This is the first time Cyrus is named expressly; and that, a hundred fifty years before the time when in 550 B.C. he began his reign. The name comes from the Persian khorschid, "the sun"; kings often taking their names from the gods; the sun was worshipped as a god in Persia.

saying—rather, "and that saith"; construed with God, not with Cyrus. God's word is instantaneously efficient in accomplishing His will.

to … to—or, "of Jerusalem … of the temple," as previously, the same Hebrew word is translated, "of Cyrus" [Barnes]. English Version is more graphic. Cyrus, according to Josephus, heard of this prophecy of Isaiah delivered so long before; hence he was induced to do that which was so contrary to Oriental policy, to aid in restoring the captive Jews and rebuilding their temple and city. 44:21-28 Return unto me. It is the great concern of those who have backslidden from God, like the Jews of old, to hasten their return to him. The work of redemption wrought for us by Christ, encourages to hope for all blessings from him. Our transgressions and our sins are as a thick cloud between heaven and earth: sins separate between us and God; they threaten a storm of wrath. When God pardons sin, he blots out, he dispels this cloud, this thick cloud, so that the way to heaven is open again. The cloud is scattered by the Sun of righteousness; it is quite gone. The comforts that flow into the soul when sin is pardoned, are like clear shining after clouds and rain. Let not Israel be discouraged; nothing is too hard for God: having made all, he can make what use he pleases of any. Those that learn to know Christ, see all knowledge to be foolishness, in comparison with the knowledge of him. And his enemies will find their counsels turned into foolishness, and themselves taken in their craftiness. The exact fulfilling the prophecies of Scripture confirms the truth of the whole, and proves its Divine origin. The particular favours God designed for his people in captivity, were foretold here, long before they went into captivity. Very great difficulties would be in the way of their deliverance; but it is promised that by Divine power they should all be removed. God knew who should be the Deliverer of his people; and let his church know it, that when they heard such a name talked of, they might know their redemption drew nigh. It is the greatest honour of the greatest men, to be employed as instruments of the Divine favour to his people. In things wherein men serve themselves, and look no further, God makes them do all his pleasure. And a nobler Shepherd than Cyrus does his Father's will, till his work is fully completed.
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