Isaiah 28:4
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
And the fading flower of its glorious beauty, Which is at the head of the fertile valley, Will be like the first-ripe fig prior to summer, Which one sees, And as soon as it is in his hand, He swallows it.

King James Bible
And the glorious beauty, which is on the head of the fat valley, shall be a fading flower, and as the hasty fruit before the summer; which when he that looketh upon it seeth, while it is yet in his hand he eateth it up.

Darby Bible Translation
and the fading flower of his glorious adornment which is on the head of the fat valley shall be like an early fig before the summer: as soon as he that seeth it perceiveth it, scarcely is it in his hand, he swalloweth it down.

World English Bible
The fading flower of his glorious beauty, which is on the head of the fertile valley, shall be like the first-ripe fig before the summer; which someone picks and eats as soon as he sees it.

Young's Literal Translation
And the fading flower of the beauty of his glory That is on the head of the fat valley, Hath been as its first-fruit before summer, That its beholder seeth, While it is yet in his hand he swalloweth it.

Isaiah 28:4 Parallel
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

As the hasty fruit before the summer - The word rendered 'hasty fruit' (בכוּרה bikûrâh); in Arabic, bokkore; in Spanish, albacore), denotes the "early fig." this ripens in June; the common fig does not ripen until August. Shaw, in his "Travels," p. 370, says: 'No sooner does the "boccore" (the early fig) draw near to perfection in the middle or latter end of June, than the "kermez" or summer fig begins to be formed, though it rarely ripens before August, about which time the same tree frequently throws out a third crop, or the winter fig, as we may call it. This is usually of a much longer shape and darker complexion than the kermez, hanging and ripening on the tree after the leaves are shed; and provided the winter be mild and temperate it is gathered as a delicious morsel in the spring.' Robinson (George), ("Travels in Palestine and Syria," vol. i. p. 354), says, 'The fig tree, which delights in a rocky and parched soil, and is therefore often found in barren spots where nothing else will grow, is very common in Palestine and the East. The fruit is of two kinds, the "boccore" and the "kermouse." The black and white boccore, or early fig, is produced in May; but the kermouse, or the fig properly so called, which is preserved and exported to Europe, is rarely ripe before September.' Compare Hosea 9:10. The phrase 'before the summer' means before the heat of the summer, when the common fig was usually ripe. The idea here is this, the early fig would be plucked and eaten with great greediness. So the city of Samaria would be seized upon and destroyed by its enemies.

Which when he that looketh upon it seeth ... - That is, as soon as he sees it he plucks it, and eats it at once. He does not lay it up for future use, but as soon as he has it in his hand he devours it. So soon as the Assyrian should see Samaria he would rush upon it, and destroy it. It was usual for conquerors to preserve the cities which they took in war for future use, and to make them a part of the strength or ornament of their kingdom. But Samaria was to be at once destroyed. Its inhabitants were to be carried away, and it would be demolished as greedily as a hungry man plucks and eats the first fig that ripens on the tree.

Isaiah 28:4 Parallel Commentaries

God's Strange Work
'That He may do His work, His strange work; and bring to pass His act, His strange act.'--ISAIAH xxviii. 21. How the great events of one generation fall dead to another! There is something very pathetic in the oblivion that swallows up world- resounding deeds. Here the prophet selects two instances which to him are solemn and singular examples of divine judgment, and we have difficulty in finding out to what he refers. To him they seemed the most luminous illustrations he could find of the principle
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The Husbandman and his Operations
'Give ye ear, and hear my voice; hearken, and hear my speech. 24. Doth the plowman plow all day to sow? doth he open and break the clods of his ground! 25. When lie hath made plain the face thereof, doth he not cast abroad the fitches, and scatter the cummin, and cast in the principal wheat and the appointed barley and the rie in their place? 26. For his God doth instruct him to discretion, and doth teach him. 27. For the fitches are not threshed with a threshing instrument, neither is a cart wheel
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

How to Make Use of Christ for Steadfastness, in a Time when Truth is Oppressed and Borne Down.
When enemies are prevailing, and the way of truth is evil spoken of, many faint, and many turn aside, and do not plead for truth, nor stand up for the interest of Christ, in their hour and power of darkness: many are overcome with base fear, and either side with the workers of iniquity, or are not valiant for the truth, but being faint-hearted, turn back. Now the thoughts of this may put some who desire to stand fast, and to own him and his cause in a day of trial, to enquire how they shall make
John Brown (of Wamphray)—Christ The Way, The Truth, and The Life

Of Orders.
Of this sacrament the Church of Christ knows nothing; it was invented by the church of the Pope. It not only has no promise of grace, anywhere declared, but not a word is said about it in the whole of the New Testament. Now it is ridiculous to set up as a sacrament of God that which can nowhere be proved to have been instituted by God. Not that I consider that a rite practised for so many ages is to be condemned; but I would not have human inventions established in sacred things, nor should it be
Martin Luther—First Principles of the Reformation

Cross References
Hosea 9:10
I found Israel like grapes in the wilderness; I saw your forefathers as the earliest fruit on the fig tree in its first season. But they came to Baal-peor and devoted themselves to shame, And they became as detestable as that which they loved.

Micah 7:1
Woe is me! For I am Like the fruit pickers, like the grape gatherers. There is not a cluster of grapes to eat, Or a first-ripe fig which I crave.

Nahum 3:12
All your fortifications are fig trees with ripe fruit-- When shaken, they fall into the eater's mouth.

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