Isaiah 5:8
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
Woe to you who add house to house and join field to field till no space is left and you live alone in the land.

New Living Translation
What sorrow for you who buy up house after house and field after field, until everyone is evicted and you live alone in the land.

English Standard Version
Woe to those who join house to house, who add field to field, until there is no more room, and you are made to dwell alone in the midst of the land.

New American Standard Bible
Woe to those who add house to house and join field to field, Until there is no more room, So that you have to live alone in the midst of the land!

King James Bible
Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place, that they may be placed alone in the midst of the earth!

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Woe to those who add house to house and join field to field until there is no more room and you alone are left in the land.

International Standard Version
"How terrible it will be for you who join house to house, who add field to field, until there is no more room, and you have settled yourselves alone in the middle of the land!"

NET Bible
Those who accumulate houses are as good as dead, those who also accumulate landed property until there is no land left, and you are the only landowners remaining within the land.

New Heart English Bible
Woe to those who join house to house, who lay field to field, until there is no room, and you are made to dwell alone in the midst of the land.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
How horrible it will be for you who acquire house after house and buy field after field until there's nothing left and you have to live by yourself in the land.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Woe unto them that join house to house, That lay field to field, Till there be no room, and ye be made to dwell Alone in the midst of the land!

New American Standard 1977
Woe to those who add house to house and join field to field,
            Until there is no more room,
            So that you have to live alone in the midst of the land!

Jubilee Bible 2000
Woe unto those that join house to house, that lay field to field, until they have done away with the borders! Will ye dwell alone in the midst of the earth?

King James 2000 Bible
Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place, that they may dwell alone in the midst of the earth!

American King James Version
Woe to them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place, that they may be placed alone in the middle of the earth!

American Standard Version
Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no room, and ye be made to dwell alone in the midst of the land!

Douay-Rheims Bible
Woe to you that join house to house and lay field to field, even to the end of the place: shall you alone dwell in the midst of the earth?

Darby Bible Translation
Woe unto them that add house to house, that join field to field, until there is no more room, and that ye dwell yourselves alone in the midst of the land!

English Revised Version
Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no room, and ye be made to dwell alone in the midst of the land!

Webster's Bible Translation
Woe to them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there is no place, that they may be placed alone in the midst of the earth!

World English Bible
Woe to those who join house to house, who lay field to field, until there is no room, and you are made to dwell alone in the midst of the land!

Young's Literal Translation
Woe to those joining house to house, Field to field they bring near, till there is no place, And ye have been settled by yourselves In the midst of the land!
Study Bible
Woes to the Wicked
7For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel And the men of Judah His delightful plant. Thus He looked for justice, but behold, bloodshed; For righteousness, but behold, a cry of distress. 8Woe to those who add house to house and join field to field, Until there is no more room, So that you have to live alone in the midst of the land! 9In my ears the LORD of hosts has sworn, "Surely, many houses shall become desolate, Even great and fine ones, without occupants.…
Cross References
Job 15:28
"He has lived in desolate cities, In houses no one would inhabit, Which are destined to become ruins.

Jeremiah 22:13
"Woe to him who builds his house without righteousness And his upper rooms without justice, Who uses his neighbor's services without pay And does not give him his wages,

Jeremiah 22:14
Who says, 'I will build myself a roomy house With spacious upper rooms, And cut out its windows, Paneling it with cedar and painting it bright red.'

Amos 1:13
Thus says the LORD, "For three transgressions of the sons of Ammon and for four I will not revoke its punishment, Because they ripped open the pregnant women of Gilead In order to enlarge their borders.

Micah 2:2
They covet fields and then seize them, And houses, and take them away. They rob a man and his house, A man and his inheritance.

Habakkuk 2:9
"Woe to him who gets evil gain for his house To put his nest on high, To be delivered from the hand of calamity!
Treasury of Scripture

Woe to them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place, that they may be placed alone in the middle of the earth!

them

Jeremiah 22:13-17 Woe to him that builds his house by unrighteousness, and his chambers …

Micah 2:2 And they covet fields, and take them by violence; and houses, and …

Habakkuk 2:9-12 Woe to him that covets an evil covetousness to his house, that he …

Matthew 23:14 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you devour widows' …

Luke 12:16-24 And he spoke a parable to them, saying, The ground of a certain rich …

field

1 Kings 21:16-20 And it came to pass, when Ahab heard that Naboth was dead, that Ahab …

they. Heb. ye placed

Ezekiel 11:15 Son of man, your brothers, even your brothers, the men of your kindred, …

Ezekiel 33:24 Son of man, they that inhabit those wastes of the land of Israel …

(8) Woe unto them that join house to house.--The series of "Woes" which follows has no precedent in the teaching of earlier prophets. The form of Luke 6:24-26 seems based upon it. The general indictment of Isaiah 1 is followed by special counts. That which leads off the list was the destruction of the old village life of Palestine. The original ideal of the nation had been that it should consist of small proprietors; and the Jubilee (Leviticus 25:13; Leviticus 27:24), and the law of the marriage of heiresses (Numbers 27:1-11, Numbers 36, Numbers 33:54) were intended as safeguards for the maintenance of that ideal. In practice it had broken down, and might had taken the place of right. Landmarks were removed (Deuteronomy 19:14; Deuteronomy 27:17; Proverbs 22:28), the owners of small estates forcibly expelled (Micah 2:2) or murdered as Naboth had been (1Kings 21:16); the law of debt pressed against the impoverished debtor (Nehemiah 5:5), and the law of the Jubilee was practically set aside. In place of the small freeholders there rose up a class of large proprietors, often the novi homines of the state (e.g., Shebna in Isaiah 22:16), while the original owners sank into slavery (Nehemiah 5:5) or became tenants at will, paying exorbitant rents in kind or money, and liable at any moment to be evicted. Isaiah's complaint recalls the agrarian laws by which first Licinius and then the Gracchi sought to restrain the extension of the latifundia of the Roman patricians, and Latimer's bold protest against the enclosure of commons in the sixteenth century. The evil had been denounced before by Micah (Micah 2:2), and in a psalm probably contemporary with Isaiah (Psalm 49:11). The fact that the last year of Uzziah coincided with the Jubilee may have given a special point to Isaiah's protest.

Verses 8-24. - THE SIX WOES. After the general warning conveyed to Israel by the parable of the vineyard, six sins are particularized as those which have especially provoked God to give the warning. On each of these woe is denounced. Two have special punishments assigned to them (vers. 8-17); the remainder are joined in one general threat of retribution (vers. 18 - 24). Verse 8. - Woe unto them that join house to house. This is the first woe. It is pronounced on the greed which leads men to continually enlarge their estates, without regard to their neighbors' convenience. Nothing is said of any use of unfair means, much less of violence in dispossessing the former proprietors. What is denounced is the selfishness of vast accumulations of land in single bands, to the detriment of the rest of the community. The Jewish law was peculiarly inimical to this practice (Numbers 27:1-11; Numbers 33:54; 1 Kings 21:4); but perhaps it is not without reason that many writers of our own time object to it on general grounds. Till there be no place; literally, till want of place; i.e. till there is no room for others. A hyperbole, doubtless, but marking a real national inconvenience. That they may be placed alone in the midst of the earth; rather, that ye may dwell by yourselves in the midst of the land. The great landlords wished to isolate themselves; they disliked neighbors; they would fain "dwell by themselves," without neighbors to trouble them. Uzziah seems, by what is said of his possessions (2 Chronicles 26:10), to have been one of the greatest sinners in respect of the accumulation of land. Woe unto them that join house to house,.... Or "O ye that join", &c.; for, as Aben Ezra observes, it signifies calling, as in Isaiah 55:1 though Jarchi takes it to be expressive of crying and groaning, on account of future punishments; and he observes, that as there are twenty two blessings pronounced in the book of Psalms, on those that keep the law, so there are twenty two woes pronounced by Isaiah upon the wicked:

that lay field to field; the sin of covetousness is exposed and condemned in these words; not that it is unlawful in itself for a man that has a house or field of his own to purchase another that is next unto it; but when he is insatiable, and not content with his houses and lands, but is always coveting more, this is his sin, and especially if he seeks to get them by fraud or force:

till there be no place; for others to dwell in and possess; and so the Targum,

"and say, until we possess every place;''

or "unto the end of the place" (x), city, or field; till they have got all the houses in the town or city, and all the pieces of ground in the field, in their own possession:

that they may be placed alone in the midst of the earth, or land; that is, of Judea; wholly inhabit it themselves, and have the sole power and jurisdiction over it. It is in the Hebrew text (y) "that ye may be placed", &c.; the Targum is,

"and they think they shall dwell alone in the midst of the land.''

(x) "usque ad terminum loci", V. L. (y) "constituamini", Vatablus, Forerius, Montanus; "colloeemini", Calvin. Isa 5:8-23. Six Distinct Woes against Crimes.

8. (Le 25:13; Mic 2:2). The jubilee restoration of possessions was intended as a guard against avarice.

till there be no place—left for any one else.

that they may be—rather, and ye be.

the earth—the land.5:8-23 Here is a woe to those who set their hearts on the wealth of the world. Not that it is sinful for those who have a house and a field to purchase another; but the fault is, that they never know when they have enough. Covetousness is idolatry; and while many envy the prosperous, wretched man, the Lord denounces awful woes upon him. How applicable to many among us! God has many ways to empty the most populous cities. Those who set their hearts upon the world, will justly be disappointed. Here is woe to those who dote upon the pleasures and the delights of sense. The use of music is lawful; but when it draws away the heart from God, then it becomes a sin to us. God's judgments have seized them, but they will not disturb themselves in their pleasures. The judgments are declared. Let a man be ever so high, death will bring him low; ever so mean, death will bring him lower. The fruit of these judgments shall be, that God will be glorified as a God of power. Also, as a God that is holy; he shall be owned and declared to be so, in the righteous punishment of proud men. Those are in a woful condition who set up sin, and who exert themselves to gratify their base lusts. They are daring in sin, and walk after their own lusts; it is in scorn that they call God the Holy One of Israel. They confound and overthrow distinctions between good and evil. They prefer their own reasonings to Divine revelations; their own devices to the counsels and commands of God. They deem it prudent and politic to continue profitable sins, and to neglect self-denying duties. Also, how light soever men make of drunkenness, it is a sin which lays open to the wrath and curse of God. Their judges perverted justice. Every sin needs some other to conceal it.
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