Isaiah 40:15
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
Behold, the nations are like a drop from a bucket, and are accounted as the dust on the scales; behold, he takes up the coastlands like fine dust.

King James Bible
Behold, the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the small dust of the balance: behold, he taketh up the isles as a very little thing.

American Standard Version
Behold, the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are accounted as the small dust of the balance: Behold, he taketh up the isles as a very little thing.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Behold the Gentiles are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the smallest grain of a balance: behold the islands are as a little dust.

English Revised Version
Behold, the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the small dust of the balance: behold, he taketh up the isles as a very little thing.

Webster's Bible Translation
Behold, the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the small dust of the balance: behold, he taketh up the isles as a very little thing.

Isaiah 40:15 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

The prophet accordingly now takes, as his standpoint, the time when Jehovah will already have come. "Upon a high mountain get thee up, O evangelistess Zion; lift up they voice with strength, evangelistess Jerusalem: lift up, be not afraid; say to the cities of Judah, Behold your God." Knobel and others follow the lxx and Targum, and regard Zion and Jerusalem as accusatives of the object, viz., "preacher of salvation (i.e., a chorus of preachers) to Zion-Jerusalem;" but such parallels as Isaiah 52:7 and Isaiah 62:11 are misleading here. The words are in apposition (A. S. Th. εὐαγγελιζομένη Σιών). Zion-Jerusalem herself is called an evangelistess: the personification as a female renders this probable at the outset, and it is placed beyond all doubt by the fact, that it is the cities of Judah (the daughters of Zion-Jerusalem) that are to be evangelized. The prophet's standpoint here is in the very midst of the parousia. When Jerusalem shall have her God in the midst of her once more, after He has broken up His home there for so long a time; she is then, as the restored mother-community, to ascend a high mountain, and raising her voice with fearless strength, to bring to her daughters the joyful news of the appearance of their God. The verb bissēr signifies literally to smooth, to unfold, then to make glad, more especially with joyful news.

(Note: The verb bissēr signifies primarily to stroke, rub, shave, or scratch the surface of anything; then to stroke off or rub off the surface, or anything which covers it; then, suggested by the idea of "rubbing smooth" (glatt), "to smooth a person" (jemanden gltten; compare the English, to gladden a person), i.e., vultum ejus diducere, to make him friendly and cheerful, or "to look smoothly upon a person," i.e., to show him a friendly face; and also as an intransitive, "to be glad," to be friendly and cheerful; and lastly, in a general sense, aliquid attingere, tractare, attrectare, to grasp or handle a thing (from which comes bâsâr, the flesh, as something tangible or material). In harmony with the Hebrew bissēr (Jeremiah 20:15), they say in Arabic basarahu (or intensive, bassarahu) bi-maulûdin, he has gladdened him with the news of the birth of a son.)

It lies at the root of the New Testament εὐαγγελίζειν (evangelize), and is a favourite word of the author of chapters 40-66, that Old Testament evangelist, though it is no disproof of Isaiah's authorship (cf., Nahum 2:1). Hitherto Jerusalem has been in despair, bowed down under the weight of the punishment of her sins, and standing in need of consolation. But now that she has Jehovah with her again, she is to lift up her voice with the most joyful confidence, without further anxiety, and to become, according to her true vocation, the messenger of good tidings to all Judaea.

Isaiah 40:15 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

the nations

Isaiah 38:22 Hezekiah also had said, What is the sign that I shall go up to the house of the LORD?

Job 34:14,15 If he set his heart on man, if he gather to himself his spirit and his breath...

Jeremiah 10:10 But the LORD is the true God, he is the living God, and an everlasting king: at his wrath the earth shall tremble...

the isles

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 41:5 The isles saw it, and feared; the ends of the earth were afraid, drew near, and came.

Isaiah 59:18 According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, fury to his adversaries, recompense to his enemies...

Isaiah 66:19 And I will set a sign among them, and I will send those that escape of them to the nations, to Tarshish, Pul, and Lud...

Genesis 10:5 By these were the isles of the Gentiles divided in their lands; every one after his tongue, after their families, in their nations.

Daniel 11:18 After this shall he turn his face to the isles, and shall take many...

Zephaniah 2:11 The LORD will be terrible to them: for he will famish all the gods of the earth; and men shall worship him, every one from his place...

Cross References
Psalm 62:9
Those of low estate are but a breath; those of high estate are a delusion; in the balances they go up; they are together lighter than a breath.

Isaiah 2:22
Stop regarding man in whose nostrils is breath, for of what account is he?

Isaiah 17:13
The nations roar like the roaring of many waters, but he will rebuke them, and they will flee far away, chased like chaff on the mountains before the wind and whirling dust before the storm.

Isaiah 29:5
But the multitude of your foreign foes shall be like small dust, and the multitude of the ruthless like passing chaff. And in an instant, suddenly,

Jeremiah 10:10
But the LORD is the true God; he is the living God and the everlasting King. At his wrath the earth quakes, and the nations cannot endure his indignation.

Daniel 4:35
all the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, and he does according to his will among the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand or say to him, "What have you done?"

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ESV Text Edition: 2016. The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
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