Isaiah 19:18
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
In that day there will be five cities in the land of Egypt that speak the language of Canaan and swear allegiance to the LORD of hosts. One of these will be called the City of Destruction.

King James Bible
In that day shall five cities in the land of Egypt speak the language of Canaan, and swear to the LORD of hosts; one shall be called, The city of destruction.

American Standard Version
In that day there shall be five cities in the land of Egypt that speak the language of Canaan, and swear to Jehovah of hosts; one shall be called The city of destruction.

Douay-Rheims Bible
In that day there shall be five cities in the land of Egypt, speaking the language of Chanaan, and swearing by the Lord of hosts: one shall be called the city of the sun.

English Revised Version
In that day there shall be five cities in the land of Egypt that speak the language of Canaan, and swear to the LORD of hosts; one shall be called The city of destruction.

Webster's Bible Translation
In that day shall five cities in the land of Egypt speak the language of Canaan, and swear to the LORD of hosts; one shall be called, The city of destruction.

Isaiah 19:18 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

The prophet now dwells upon the punishment which falls upon the pillars of the land, and describes it in Isaiah 19:11-13 : "The princes of Zoan become mere fools, the wise counsellors of Pharaoh; readiness in counsel is stupefied. How can ye say to Pharaoh, I am a son of wise men, a son of kings of the olden time? Where are they then, thy wise men? Let them announce to thee, and know what Jehovah of hosts hath determined concerning Egypt. The princes of Zoan have become fools, the princes of Memphis are deceived; and they have led Egypt astray who are the corner-stone of its castes." The two constructives יעצי חכמי do not stand in a subordinate relation, but in a co-ordinate one (see at Psalm 78:9 and Job 20:17; compare also 2 Kings 17:13, Keri), viz., "the wise men, counsellors of Pharaoh,"

(Note: Pharaoh does not mean "the king" (equivalent to the Coptic π-ουρο), but according to Brugsch, "great house" (Upper Egyptian perâa, Lower Egyptian pher-âo; vid., aus dem Orient, i. 36). Lauth refers in confirmation of this to Horapollo, i. 62, ὄφις καὶ οἶκος μέγας ἐν μέσω αὐτοῦ σημαίνει βασιλέα, and explains this Coptic name for a king from that of the Οὐραῖος (βασιλίσκος) upon the head of the king, which was a specifically regal sign.)

so that the second noun is the explanatory permutative of the first. Zoan is the Tanis of primeval times (Numbers 13:22), which was situated on one of the arms through which the Nile flows into the sea (viz., the ostium Taniticum), and was the home from which two dynasties sprang. Noph (per aphaer. equals Menoph, contracted into Moph in Hosea 9:6) is Memphis, probably the seat of the Pharaohs in the time of Joseph, and raised by Psammetichus into the metropolis of the whole kingdom. The village of Mitrahenni still stands upon its ruins, with the Serapeum to the north-west.

(Note: What the lexicons say with reference to Zoan and Noph needs rectifying. Zoan (old Egyptian Zane, with the hieroglyphic of striding legs, Copt. 'Gane) points back to the radical idea of pelli or fugere; and according to the latest researches, to which the Turin papyrus No. 112 has led, it is the same as Αὔαρις (Ἄβαρις), which is said to mean the house of flight (Ha-uare), and was the seat of government under the Hykshōs. But Memphis is not equivalent to Ma-m-ptah, as Champollion assumed (although this city is unquestionably sometimes called Ha-ka-ptah, house of the essential being of Ptah); it is rather equivalent to Men-nefer (with the hieroglyphic of the pyramids), place of the good (see Brugsch, Histoire d'Egypte, i. 17). In the later language it is called pa-nuf or ma-nuf, which has the same meaning (Copt. nufi, good). Hence Moph is the contraction of the name commencing with ma, and Noph the abbreviation of the name commencing with ma or pa by the rejection of the local prefix; for we cannot for a moment think of Nup, which is the second district of Upper Egypt (Brugsch, Geogr. i. 66). Noph is undoubtedly Memphis.)

Consequently princes of Zoan and Memphis are princes of the chief cities of the land, and of the supposed primeval pedigree; probably priest-princes, since the wisdom of the Egyptian priest was of world-wide renown (Herod. ii. 77, 260), and the oldest kings of Egypt sprang from the priestly caste. Even in the time of Hezekiah, when the military caste had long become the ruling one, the priests once more succeeded in raising one of their own number, namely Sethos, to the throne of Sais. These magnates of Egypt, with their wisdom, would be turned into fools by the history of Egypt of the immediate future; and (this is the meaning of the sarcastic "how can ye say") they would no longer trust themselves to boast of their hereditary priestly wisdom, or their royal descent, when giving counsel to Pharaoh. They were the corner-stone of the shebâtim, i.e., of the castes of Egypt (not of the districts or provinces, νομοί); but instead of supporting and defending their people, it is now very evident that they only led them astray. התעוּ, as the Masora on Isaiah 19:15 observes, has no Vav cop.

Isaiah 19:18 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

that day

Isaiah 19:19,21 In that day shall there be an altar to the LORD in the middle of the land of Egypt, and a pillar at the border thereof to the LORD...

Isaiah 2:11 The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down...

Zechariah 2:11 And many nations shall be joined to the LORD in that day, and shall be my people: and I will dwell in the middle of you...

shall five

Isaiah 11:11 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people...

Isaiah 27:13 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the great trumpet shall be blown...

Psalm 68:31 Princes shall come out of Egypt; Ethiopia shall soon stretch out her hands to God.

speak

Zephaniah 3:9 For then will I turn to the people a pure language, that they may all call on the name of the LORD, to serve him with one consent.

language. Heb. lip

Genesis 11:1 And the whole earth was of one language, and of one speech.

and swear

Isaiah 45:23,24 I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That to me every knee shall bow...

Deuteronomy 10:20 You shall fear the LORD your God; him shall you serve, and to him shall you hold, and swear by his name.

Nehemiah 10:29 They joined to their brothers, their nobles, and entered into a curse, and into an oath, to walk in God's law...

Jeremiah 12:16 And it shall come to pass, if they will diligently learn the ways of my people, to swear by my name, The LORD lives...

destruction. Heb. Heres, or, the sun. Instead of heres, 'destruction,' which is also the reading of Aquila, Theodotion, and the Syriac, fifteen MSS. and seven editions have cheres, 'the sun;' agreeable to Symmachus, the Arabic, and Vulagte; while the Chaldee takes in both readings; and the LXX. reads 'the city of righteousness,' a name apparently contrived by the party of Onias, to give credit to his temple. As, however, heres in Arabic signifies a lion, Conrad Ikenius is of opinion that the place here mentioned is not Heliopolis, as is commonly supposed, but Leontopolis in the Heliopolitan name, as it is termed in the letter of Onias to Ptolemy. The whole passage from this verse to the end, contains a general intimation of the propagation of the knowledge of the true God in Egypt and Syria, under the successors of Alexander, and the early reception of the gospel in the same countries.

Cross References
Isaiah 45:23
By myself I have sworn; from my mouth has gone out in righteousness a word that shall not return: 'To me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear allegiance.'

Isaiah 65:16
so that he who blesses himself in the land shall bless himself by the God of truth, and he who takes an oath in the land shall swear by the God of truth; because the former troubles are forgotten and are hidden from my eyes.

Zephaniah 3:9
"For at that time I will change the speech of the peoples to a pure speech, that all of them may call upon the name of the LORD and serve him with one accord.

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