Isaiah 39:7 Commentaries: And some of your sons who will issue from you, whom you will beget, will be taken away, and they will become officials in the palace of the king of Babylon.'"
Isaiah 39:7
And of your sons that shall issue from you, which you shall beget, shall they take away; and they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
39:1-8 This chapter is the same as 2Ki 20:12-19.And of that sons - Thy posterity (see the note at Matthew 1:1).

That shall issue from thee - Of the royal family. The captivity at Babylon occurred more than a hundred years after this, and of course those who were carried there were somewhat remote descendants of Hezekiah.

And they shall be eunuchs - The word used here (סריסים sâriysiym) denotes properly and strictly eunuchs, or such persons as were accustomed to attend on the harems of Oriental monarchs Esther 2:3, Esther 2:14-15. These persons were also employed often in various offices of the court Esther 1:10, Esther 1:12, Esther 1:15, and hence, the word often means a minister of court, a court-officer, though not literally an eunuch Genesis 37:6; Genesis 39:1. It is not easy, however, to tell when the word is to be understood literally, and when not. The Targum understands it of those who should be nurtured, or become great in the kingdom of Babylon. That the Jews were advanced to some offices of trust and power in Babylon, is evident from the case of Daniel Dan 1:2-7. It is by no means improbable, also, that the king of Babylon would have a pride in having among the attendants at his court, or even over the harem, the descendants of the once magnificent monarchs of the Jews.

7. sons … from thee—The sons which Hezekiah (as Josephus tells us) wished to have (see on [777]Isa 28:3, on "wept sore") will be among the foremost in suffering.

eunuchs—fulfilled (Da 1:2, 3, 7).

No text from Poole on this verse. And of thy sons that shall issue from thee, which thou shalt beget, shall they take away,.... Manasseh his immediate son was taken and carried to Babylon, though afterwards released; nor does it appear that he was made a eunuch or an officer there; this had its fulfilment in Jeconiah and his children, and in others that were of the seed royal, as Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, to whom the Jewish commentators apply this; this is expressed in different words, signifying much the same, to affect the mind of Hezekiah the more:

and they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon; or "chamberlains"; and who very often were castrated for that purpose, though it does not necessarily signify such, being used of officers in general. The Targum renders it "princes" (f); and such an one was Daniel in the court of the king of Babylon; and his three companions were also promoted, Daniel 2:48.

(f) So Kimchi and Ben Melech interpret it princes and governors.

And of thy sons that shall issue from thee, which thou shalt beget, shall they take away; and they shall be {f} eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.

(f) That is, officers and servants.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
7. The words which thou shalt beget seem, according to usage, to imply that the calamity would fall on Hezekiah’s own children.Verse 7. - Of thy sons that shall issue from thee. Hezekiah had at the time, probably, no son, since Manasseh, who succeeded him upon the throne, was not born till two years later. Besides Manasseh, he appears to have had a son, Amariah, who was an ancestor of the Prophet Zephaniah (Zephaniah 1:1). He may, of course, have also had others. His descendants, rather than his actual sons, seem to be here intended; and the fulfilment of the prophecy is to be found in Daniel 1:3, where certain "of the king's seed" are mentioned among the Israelites who served as eunuchs in the palace of Nebuchadnezzar. From this point onwards the text of the book of Kings (2 Kings 20:12-19, cf., 2 Chronicles 32:24-31) runs parallel to the text before us. Babylonian ambassadors have an interview with the convalescent king of Judah. "At that time Merodach Bal'adan (K. Berodach Bal'adan), son of Bal'adan king of Babel, sent writings and a present to Hizkiyahu, and heard (K. for he had heard) that he (K. Hizkiyahu) had been sick, and was restored again." The two texts here share the original text between them. Instead of the unnatural ויּשׁמע (which would link the cause on to the effect, as in 2 Samuel 14:5), we should read שׁמע כּי, whereas ויּחזק in our text appears to be the genuine word out of which חזקיהו in the other text has sprung, although it is not indispensable, as חלה has a pluperfect sense. In a similar manner the name of the king of Babylon is given here correctly as מראדך (Nissel, מרדך without א, as in Jeremiah 50:2), whilst the book of Kings has בּראד (according to the Masora with א), probably occasioned by the other name Bal'ădân, which begins with Beth. It cannot be maintained that the words ben Bal'ădân are a mistake; at the same time, Bal'ădân (Jos. Baladas) evidently cannot be a name by itself if Merō'dakh Bal'ădân signifies "Merodach (the Babylonian Bel or Jupiter)

(Note: Rawlinson, Monarchies, i.169.)

filium dedit."

(Note: Oppert, Expdition, ii.355.)

In the Canon Ptol. Mardokempados is preceded by a Jugaeus; and the inscriptions, according to G. Rawlinson, Mon. ii. 395, indicate Merodach-Baladan as the "son of Yakin." They relate that the latter acknowledged Tiglath-pileser as his feudal lord; that, after reigning twelve years as a vassal, he rose in rebellion against Sargon in league with the Susanians and the Aramaean tribes above Babylonia, and lost everything except his life; that he afterwards rebelled against Sennacherib in conjunction with a Chaldean prince named Susub, just after Sennacherib had returned from his first

(Note: The inscription is mention two campaigns.)

Judaean campaign to Nineveh; and that having been utterly defeated, he took refuge in an island of the Persian Gulf. He does not make his appearance any more; but Susub escaped from his place of concealment, and being supported by the Susanians and certain Aramaean tribes, fought a long and bloody battle with Sennacherib on the Lower Tigris. this battle he lost, and Nebo-som-iskun, a son of Merodach Baladan, fell into the hands of the conqueror. In the midst of these details, as given by the inscriptions, the statement of the Can. Ptol. may still be maintained, according to which the twelve years of Mardokempados (a contraction, as Ewald supposes, of Mardokempalados) commence with the year 721. From this point onwards the biblical and extra-biblical accounts dovetail together; whereas in Polyhistor (Eus. chron. arm.) the following Babylonian rulers are mentioned: "a brother of Sennacherib, Acises, who reigned hardly a month; Merodach Baladan, six months; Elibus into the third year; Asordan, Sennacherib's son, who was made king after the defeat of Elibus." Now, as the Can. Ptolem. also gives a Belibos with a three years' reign, the identity of Mardokempados and Marodach Baladan is indisputable. The Can. Ptol. seems only to take into account his legitimate reign as a vassal, and Polyhistor (from Berosus) only his last act of rebellion. At the same time, this is very far from removing all the difficulties that lie in the way of a reconciliation, more especially the chronological difficulties. Rawlinson, who places the commencement of the (second) Judaean campaign in the year 698, and therefore transfers it to the end of the twenty-ninth year of Hezekiah's reign instead of the middle, sets himself in opposition not only to Isaiah 36:1, but also to Isaiah 38:5 and 2 Kings 18:2. According to the biblical accounts, as compared with the Can. Ptol., the embassy must have been sent by Merodach Baladan during the period of his reign as vassal, which commenced in the year 721. Apparently it had only the harmless object of congratulating the king upon his recovery (and also, according to 2 Chronicles 32:31, of making some inquiry, in the interests of Chaldean astrology, into the mōphēth connected with the sun-dial); but it certainly had also the secret political object of making common cause with Hezekiah to throw off the Assyrian yoke. All that can be maintained with certainty beside this is, that the embassy cannot have been sent before the fourteenth year of Hezekiah's reign; for as he reigned twenty-nine years, his illness must have occurred, according to Isaiah 38:5, in the fourteenth year itself, i.e., the seventh year of Mardokempados. Such questions as whether the embassy came before or after the Assyrian catastrophe, which was till in the future at the time referred to in Isaiah 38:4-6, or whether it came before or after the payment of the compensation money to Sennacherib (2 Kings 18:14-16), are open to dispute. In all probability it took place immediately before the Assyrian campaign,

(Note: A reviewer in the Theol. L. Bl. 1857, p. 12, inquires: "How could the prophet have known that all that Hezekiah showed to the Babylonian ambassador would one day be brought to Babylon, when in a very short time these treasures would all have been given by Hezekiah to the king of Assyria?" Answer: The prophecy is so expressed in Isaiah 39:6-7, that this intervening occurrence does not prejudice its truth at all.)

as Hezekiah was still able to show off the abundance of his riches to the Babylonian ambassadors.

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