Isaiah 44:20
New International Version
Such a person feeds on ashes; a deluded heart misleads him; he cannot save himself, or say, “Is not this thing in my right hand a lie?”

New Living Translation
The poor, deluded fool feeds on ashes. He trusts something that can’t help him at all. Yet he cannot bring himself to ask, “Is this idol that I’m holding in my hand a lie?”

English Standard Version
He feeds on ashes; a deluded heart has led him astray, and he cannot deliver himself or say, “Is there not a lie in my right hand?”

Berean Study Bible
He feeds on ashes. His deluded heart has led him astray, and he cannot deliver himself or say, “Is not this thing in my right hand a lie?”

King James Bible
He feedeth on ashes: a deceived heart hath turned him aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, Is there not a lie in my right hand?

New King James Version
He feeds on ashes; A deceived heart has turned him aside; And he cannot deliver his soul, Nor say, “Is there not a lie in my right hand?”

New American Standard Bible
He feeds on ashes; a deceived heart has misled him. And he cannot save himself, nor say, “Is there not a lie in my right hand?”

NASB 1995
He feeds on ashes; a deceived heart has turned him aside. And he cannot deliver himself, nor say, “Is there not a lie in my right hand?”

NASB 1977
He feeds on ashes; a deceived heart has turned him aside. And he cannot deliver himself, nor say, “Is there not a lie in my right hand?”

Amplified Bible
That kind of man (the idolater) feeds on ashes [and is satisfied with ashes]! A deceived mind has led him astray, so that he cannot save himself, or ask, “Is this thing [that I am holding] in my right hand not a lie?”

Christian Standard Bible
He feeds on ashes. His deceived mind has led him astray, and he cannot rescue himself, or say, “Isn’t there a lie in my right hand? ”

Holman Christian Standard Bible
He feeds on ashes. His deceived mind has led him astray, and he cannot deliver himself, or say, “Isn’t there a lie in my right hand?”

American Standard Version
He feedeth on ashes; a deceived heart hath turned him aside; and he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, Is there not a lie in my right hand?

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Their heart is feeding on ashes and straying, it is going astray, and they are not saving their soul and they are not saying: "Our right hand has wrought falsehood!"

Brenton Septuagint Translation
Know thou that their heart is ashes, and they err, and no one is able to deliver his soul: see, ye will not say, There is a lie in my right hand.

Contemporary English Version
How can anyone be stupid enough to trust something that can be burned to ashes? No one can save themselves like that. Don't they realize that the idols they hold in their hands are not really gods?

Douay-Rheims Bible
Part thereof is ashes: his foolish heart adoreth it, and he will not save his soul, nor say: Perhaps there is a lie in my right hand.

English Revised Version
He feedeth on ashes: a deceived heart hath turned him aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, Is there not a lie in my right hand?

Good News Translation
It makes as much sense as eating ashes. His foolish ideas have so misled him that he is beyond help. He won't admit to himself that the idol he holds in his hand is not a god at all.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
They eat ashes because they are deceived. Their own misguided minds lead them astray. They can't rescue themselves or ask themselves, "Isn't what I hold in my right hand a false god?"

International Standard Version
He tends ashes. A deceived mind has lead him astray. It cannot be his life, nor can he say, "There's a lie in my right hand."

JPS Tanakh 1917
He striveth after ashes, A deceived heart hath turned him aside, That he cannot deliver his soul, nor say: 'Is there not a lie in my right hand?'

Literal Standard Version
Feeding on ashes, the heart is deceived, It has turned him aside, And he does not deliver his soul, nor says: “Is there not a lie in my right hand?”

NET Bible
He feeds on ashes; his deceived mind misleads him. He cannot rescue himself, nor does he say, 'Is this not a false god I hold in my right hand?'

New Heart English Bible
He feeds on ashes. A deceived heart has turned him aside; and he can't deliver his soul, nor say, "Isn't there a lie in my right hand?"

World English Bible
He feeds on ashes. A deceived heart has turned him aside; and he can't deliver his soul, nor say, "Isn't there a lie in my right hand?"

Young's Literal Translation
Feeding on ashes, the heart is deceived, It hath turned him aside, And he delivereth not his soul, nor saith: 'Is there not a lie in my right hand?'

Additional Translations ...
Context
The LORD has Chosen Israel
19And no one considers in his heart, no one has the knowledge or insight to say, “I burned half of it in the fire, and I baked bread on its coals; I roasted meat and I ate. Shall I make something detestable with the rest of it? Shall I bow down to a block of wood?” 20He feeds on ashes. His deluded heart has led him astray, and he cannot deliver himself or say, “Is not this thing in my right hand a lie?”

Cross References
Romans 1:21
For although they knew God, they neither glorified Him as God nor gave thanks to Him, but they became futile in their thinking and darkened in their foolish hearts.

Romans 1:22
Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools,

Romans 1:25
They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is forever worthy of praise! Amen.

2 Thessalonians 2:11
For this reason God will send them a powerful delusion so that they believe the lie,

2 Timothy 3:13
while evil men and imposters go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.

Job 15:31
Let him not deceive himself with trust in emptiness, for emptiness will be his reward.

Psalm 102:9
For I have eaten ashes like bread and mixed my drink with tears


Treasury of Scripture

He feeds on ashes: a deceived heart has turned him aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, Is there not a lie in my right hand?

feedeth

Job 15:2
Should a wise man utter vain knowledge, and fill his belly with the east wind?

Psalm 102:9
For I have eaten ashes like bread, and mingled my drink with weeping,

Proverbs 14:15
The simple believeth every word: but the prudent man looketh well to his going.

a deceived

1 Kings 22:20-23
And the LORD said, Who shall persuade Ahab, that he may go up and fall at Ramothgilead? And one said on this manner, and another said on that manner…

Job 15:31
Let not him that is deceived trust in vanity: for vanity shall be his recompence.

Hosea 4:12
My people ask counsel at their stocks, and their staff declareth unto them: for the spirit of whoredoms hath caused them to err, and they have gone a whoring from under their God.

is there

Isaiah 28:15-17
Because ye have said, We have made a covenant with death, and with hell are we at agreement; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us: for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves: …

Jeremiah 16:19
O LORD, my strength, and my fortress, and my refuge in the day of affliction, the Gentiles shall come unto thee from the ends of the earth, and shall say, Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit.

Habakkuk 2:18
What profiteth the graven image that the maker thereof hath graven it; the molten image, and a teacher of lies, that the maker of his work trusteth therein, to make dumb idols?









(20) He feedeth on ashes.--The verb passes readily through the meanings "feeding," "pasturing," "following after," and the last is commonly accepted. The first, however, has the merit of greater vividness. (Comp. Hosea 12:1.) The "ashes" of the smith's furnace become the symbols of the vanity of his work (Ecclesiastes 7:6), and yet he has not even the germ of truth which lies in the questions of the sceptic.

Verse 20. - He feedeth on ashes; i.e. on vanity - on what can give no support or sustenance (comp. Proverbs 15:14; Hosea 12:1). A deceived heart. Either self-deceived, or imposed upon by illusions from without; e.g. the seeming power of the idols, as seen in the victories and conquests of their worshippers. He cannot deliver his soul. The deceived soul is bound in trammels, which it feels to be irksome, and from which it would fain be free. But it cannot deliver itself. Deliverance must come from some external source; in other words, man needs a Deliverer. Is there not a lie in my right hand? An idol is "a lie." It professes to have power, strength, ability to help and save, whereas it has no power at all. It cannot even save itself. Savages often beat their fetishes. Diagoras of Melos threw an image of Hercules into the fire on which he was cooking his dinner, and bade Hercules make himself of some use by boiling his turnips. The powerlessness of idols even to help themselves is represented with much force in the Book of Baruch (6:12-15, 17-22, 27, 49, etc.).

Parallel Commentaries ...


Hebrew
He feeds on
רֹעֶ֣ה (rō·‘eh)
Verb - Qal - Participle - masculine singular
Strong's 7462: To tend a, flock, pasture it, in, to graze, to rule, to associate with

ashes.
אֵ֔פֶר (’ê·p̄er)
Noun - masculine singular
Strong's 665: Ashes

His deluded
הוּתַ֖ל (hū·ṯal)
Verb - Hofal - Perfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's 2048: To deride, to cheat

heart
לֵ֥ב (lêḇ)
Noun - masculine singular
Strong's 3820: The heart, the feelings, the will, the intellect, centre

has led him astray,
הִטָּ֑הוּ (hiṭ·ṭā·hū)
Verb - Hifil - Perfect - third person masculine singular | third person masculine singular
Strong's 5186: To stretch out, spread out, extend, incline, bend

and he cannot
וְלֹֽא־ (wə·lō-)
Conjunctive waw | Adverb - Negative particle
Strong's 3808: Not, no

deliver
יַצִּ֤יל (yaṣ·ṣîl)
Verb - Hifil - Imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's 5337: To strip, plunder, deliver oneself, be delivered, snatch away, deliver

himself
נַפְשׁוֹ֙ (nap̄·šōw)
Noun - feminine singular construct | third person masculine singular
Strong's 5315: A soul, living being, life, self, person, desire, passion, appetite, emotion

[or]
וְלֹ֣א (wə·lō)
Conjunctive waw | Adverb - Negative particle
Strong's 3808: Not, no

say,
יֹאמַ֔ר (yō·mar)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's 559: To utter, say

“Is not
הֲל֥וֹא (hă·lō·w)
Adverb - Negative particle
Strong's 3808: Not, no

this thing in my right hand
בִּימִינִֽי׃ (bî·mî·nî)
Preposition-b | Noun - feminine singular construct | first person common singular
Strong's 3225: The right hand, side, the south

a lie?”
שֶׁ֖קֶר (še·qer)
Noun - masculine singular
Strong's 8267: Deception, disappointment, falsehood


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OT Prophets: Isaiah 44:20 He feeds on ashes (Isa Isi Is)
Isaiah 44:19
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