New American Standard Bible
"Like a swallow, like a crane, so I twitter; I moan like a dove; My eyes look wistfully to the heights; O Lord, I am oppressed, be my security.
King James Bible
Like a crane or a swallow, so did I chatter: I did mourn as a dove: mine eyes fail with looking upward: O LORD, I am oppressed; undertake for me.
Darby Bible Translation
Like a swallow or a crane, so did I chatter; I mourned as a dove; mine eyes failed with looking upward: Lord, I am oppressed; undertake for me.
World English Bible
I chattered like a swallow or a crane. I moaned like a dove. My eyes weaken looking upward. Lord, I am oppressed. Be my security."
Young's Literal Translation
As a crane -- a swallow -- so I chatter, I mourn as a dove, Drawn up have been mine eyes on high, O Jehovah, oppression is on me, be my surety.
Isaiah 38:14 Parallel
CommentaryBarnes' Notes on the Bible
Like a crane - The word used here (סוּס sûs) usually denotes a horse. The rabbis render it here 'a crane.' Gesenius translates it 'a swallow;' and in his Lexicon interprets the word which is translated 'a swallow' (עגוּר 'āgûr) to mean "circling," making gyrations; and the whole phrase, 'as the circling swallow.' The Syriac renders this, 'As the chattering swallow.' The Vulgate, 'As the young of the swallow.' The Septuagint simply reads: 'As the swallow.' That two birds are intended here, or that some fowl is denoted by the word עגוּר 'āgûr, is manifest from Jeremiah 8:7, where it is mentioned as distinct from the סוּס sûs (the crane) ועגוּר וסוּס vesûs ve‛āgûr. On the meaning of the words Bochart may be consulted (Hieroz. i. 2. p. 602). It is probable that the swallow and the crane are intended. The swallow is well known, and is remarkable for its twittering. The crane is also a well-known bird with long limbs made to go in the water. Its noise may be expressive of grief.
So did I chatter - Peep, or twitter (see the note at Isaiah 8:19). The idea here is doubtless that of pain that was expressed in sounds resembling that made by birds - a broken, unmeaning unintelligible sighing; or quick breathing, and moaning.
I did mourn as a dove - The dove, from its plaintive sound, is an emblem of grief. It is so used in Isaiah 59:11. The idea is that of the lonely or solitary dove that is lamenting or mourning for its companion:
'Just as the lonely dove laments its mate.'
Mine eyes fail - The word used here (דלוּ dâllû) means properly to hang down, to swing like the branches of the willow; then to be languid, feeble, weak. Applied to the eye, it means that it languishes and becomes weak.
With looking upward - To God, for relief and comfort. He had looked so long and so intensely toward heaven for aid, that his eyes became weak and feeble.
O Lord, I am oppressed - This was his language in his affliction. He was so oppressed and borne down, that he cried to God for relief.
Undertake for me - Margin, 'Ease me.' The word (ערב ‛ârab) more properly means, to become surety for him. See it explained in the the note at Isaiah 36:8. Here it means, be surety for my life; give assurance that I shall be restored; take me under thy protection (see Psalm 119:122): 'Be surety for thy servant for good.'
LibraryThe Ambassadors from Babylon
In the midst of his prosperous reign King Hezekiah was suddenly stricken with a fatal malady. "Sick unto death," his case was beyond the power of man to help. And the last vestige of hope seemed removed when the prophet Isaiah appeared before him with the message, "Thus saith the Lord, Set thine house in order: for thou shalt die, and not live." Isaiah 38:1. The outlook seemed utterly dark; yet the king could still pray to the One who had hitherto been his "refuge and strength, a very present help …
Ellen Gould White—The Story of Prophets and Kings
Letter Xliv Concerning the Maccabees but to whom Written is Unknown.
so much the more also Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant.
"Lay down, now, a pledge for me with Yourself; Who is there that will be my guarantor?
"I have become a brother to jackals And a companion of ostriches.
Give heed to me and answer me; I am restless in my complaint and am surely distracted,
I am weary with my crying; my throat is parched; My eyes fail while I wait for my God.
I resemble a pelican of the wilderness; I have become like an owl of the waste places.
My eyes fail with longing for Your word, While I say, "When will You comfort me?"
Jump to PreviousAid Bird Cause Chatter Clamor Crane Cried Cries Crushed Desire Dove Drawn Eyes Fail Failed Grew Grief Heavens Heights Moan Moaned Mourn Mourned Mourning Oppressed Security Sounds Surety Swallow Swift Undertake Upward Weak Weaken Weary
Jump to NextAid Bird Cause Chatter Clamor Crane Cried Cries Crushed Desire Dove Drawn Eyes Fail Failed Grew Grief Heavens Heights Moan Moaned Mourn Mourned Mourning Oppressed Security Sounds Surety Swallow Swift Undertake Upward Weak Weaken Weary
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