Isaiah 8:21
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Distressed and hungry, they will roam through the land; when they are famished, they will become enraged and, looking upward, will curse their king and their God.

King James Bible
And they shall pass through it, hardly bestead and hungry: and it shall come to pass, that when they shall be hungry, they shall fret themselves, and curse their king and their God, and look upward.

Darby Bible Translation
And they shall pass through it, hard pressed and hungry; and it shall come to pass when they are hungry, they will fret themselves, and curse their king and their God, and will gaze upward:

World English Bible
They will pass through it, very distressed and hungry; and it will happen that when they are hungry, they will worry, and curse by their king and by their God. They will turn their faces upward,

Young's Literal Translation
-- And it hath passed over into it, hardened and hungry, And it hath come to pass, That it is hungry, and hath been wroth, And made light of its king, and of its God, And hath looked upwards.

Isaiah 8:21 Parallel
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

Hardly bestead "Distressed" - Instead of נקשה niksheh, distressed, the Vulgate, Chaldee, and Symmachus manifestly read נכשל nichshal, stumbling, tottering through weakness, ready to fall; a sense which suits very well with the place.

And look upward "And he shall cast his eyes upward" - The learned professor Michaelis, treating of this place (Not. in de Sacr. Poes. Hebr. Prael. ix.) refers to a passage in the Koran which is similar to it. As it is a very celebrated passage, and on many accounts remarkable, I shall give it here at large, with the same author's farther remarks upon it in another place of his writings. It must be noted here that the learned professor renders נבט nibbat, הביט hibbit, in this and the parallel place, Isaiah 5:30, which I translate he looketh by it thundereth, from Schultens, Orig. Ling. Hebr. Lib. 1 cap. 2, of the justness of which rendering I much doubt.

This brings the image of Isaiah more near in one circumstance to that of Mohammed than it appears to be in my translation: -

"Labid, contemporary with Mohammed, the last of the seven Arabian poets who had the honor of having their poems, one of each, hung up in the entrance of the temple of Mecca, struck with the sublimity of a passage in the Koran, became a convert to Mohammedism; for he concluded that no man could write in such a manner unless he were Divinely inspired.

"One must have a curiosity to examine a passage which had so great an effect upon Labid. It is, I must own, the finest that I know in the whole Koran: but I do not think it will have a second time the like effect, so as to tempt any one of my readers to submit to circumcision. It is in the second chapter, where he is speaking of certain apostates from the faith. 'They are like,' saith he, 'to a man who kindles a light. As soon as it begins to shine, God takes from them the light, and leaves them in darkness that they see nothing. They are deaf, dumb, and blind; and return not into the right way. Or they fare as when a cloud, full of darkness, thunder, and lightning, covers the heaven. When it bursteth, they stop their ears with their fingers, with deadly fear; and God hath the unbelievers in his power. The lightning almost robbeth them of their eyes: as often as it flasheth they go on by its light; and when it vanisheth in darkness, they stand still. If God pleased, they would retain neither hearing nor sight.' That the thought is beautiful, no one will deny; and Labid, who had probably a mind to flatter Mohammed, was lucky in finding a passage in the Koran so little abounding in poetical beauties, to which his conversion might with any propriety be ascribed. It was well that he went no farther; otherwise his taste for poetry might have made him again an infidel." Michaelis, Erpenii Arabische Grammatik abgekurzt, Vorrede, s. 32.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge


Isaiah 8:7,8 Now therefore, behold, the Lord brings up on them the waters of the river, strong and many, even the king of Assyria, and all his glory...

hardly bestead

Isaiah 9:20 And he shall snatch on the right hand, and be hungry; and he shall eat on the left hand, and they shall not be satisfied...

Deuteronomy 28:33,34,53-57 The fruit of your land, and all your labors, shall a nation which you know not eat up...

2 Kings 25:3 And on the ninth day of the fourth month the famine prevailed in the city, and there was no bread for the people of the land.

Jeremiah 14:18 If I go forth into the field, then behold the slain with the sword! and if I enter into the city...

Jeremiah 52:6 And in the fourth month, in the ninth day of the month, the famine was sore in the city...

Lamentations 4:4,5,9,10 The tongue of the sucking child sticks to the roof of his mouth for thirst: the young children ask bread, and no man breaks it to them...

they shall fret

Proverbs 19:3 The foolishness of man perverts his way: and his heart frets against the LORD.


Exodus 22:28 You shall not revile the gods, nor curse the ruler of your people.

2 Kings 6:33 And while he yet talked with them, behold, the messenger came down to him: and he said, Behold, this evil is of the LORD...

Job 1:11 But put forth your hand now, and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face.

Job 2:5,9 But put forth your hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse you to your face...

Revelation 9:20,21 And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands...

Revelation 16:9-11 And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which has power over these plagues...

Shiloah and Euphrates
Forasmuch as this people refuseth the waters of Shiloah that go softly ... the Lord bringeth up upon them the waters of the river, strong and many.' ISAIAH viii. 6, 7. The kingdom of Judah was threatened with a great danger in an alliance between Israel and Damascus. The cowardly King Ahaz, instead of listening to Isaiah's strong assurances and relying on the help of God, made what he thought a master-stroke of policy in invoking the help of the formidable Assyrian power. That ambitious military
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Prefatory Scripture Passages.
To the Law and to the Testimony; if they speak not according to this Word, it is because there is no light in them.-- Isa. viii. 20. Thus saith the Lord; Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls.--Jer. vi. 16. That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive. But
G. H. Gerberding—The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church

The Universality of Actual Grace
The gratuity of grace does not conflict with its universality. Though God distributes His graces freely, He grants them to all men without exception, because He wills all to be saved. This divine "will to save" (voluntas Dei salvifica) may be regarded in relation either to the wayfaring state or to the status termini. Regarded from the first-mentioned point of view it is a merciful will (voluntas misericordiae) and is generally called first or antecedent will (voluntas prima s. antecedens)
Joseph Pohle—Grace, Actual and Habitual

Jesus' Temporary Residence at Capernaum.
^A Matt. IV. 13-16. ^a 13 And leaving Nazareth [This expression means that Jesus now ceased to make Nazareth his home. For description of Nazareth, see page 60], he came and dwelt in Capernaum [See page 119. Capernaum means city of Nahum, or village of consolation. Its modern name, "Tel-Hum," means hill of Nahum. The word "dwelt" means that Jesus made this town his headquarters. He owned no house there (Matt. viii. 20). He may have dwelt with some of his disciples--for instance, Simon Peter--Matt.
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel

Cross References
Leviticus 24:11
The son of the Israelite woman blasphemed the Name with a curse; so they brought him to Moses. (His mother's name was Shelomith, the daughter of Dibri the Danite.)

1 Samuel 8:18
When that day comes, you will cry out for relief from the king you have chosen, but the LORD will not answer you in that day."

2 Kings 6:33
While he was still talking to them, the messenger came down to him. The king said, "This disaster is from the LORD. Why should I wait for the LORD any longer?"

Job 18:12
Calamity is hungry for him; disaster is ready for him when he falls.

Proverbs 19:3
A person's own folly leads to their ruin, yet their heart rages against the LORD.

Isaiah 9:20
On the right they will devour, but still be hungry; on the left they will eat, but not be satisfied. Each will feed on the flesh of their own offspring:

Isaiah 9:21
Manasseh will feed on Ephraim, and Ephraim on Manasseh; together they will turn against Judah. Yet for all this, his anger is not turned away, his hand is still upraised.

Jump to Previous
Angry Bitter Curse Cursing Distressed Enraged Eyes Face Faces Famished Food Fret Hard Hardly Hard-Pressed Heaven High Hungry Need Pressed Roam Sore Themselves Trouble Turn Turned Unable Upward Way Whether Worry
Jump to Next
Angry Bitter Curse Cursing Distressed Enraged Eyes Face Faces Famished Food Fret Hard Hardly Hard-Pressed Heaven High Hungry Need Pressed Roam Sore Themselves Trouble Turn Turned Unable Upward Way Whether Worry
Isaiah 8:21 NIV
Isaiah 8:21 NLT
Isaiah 8:21 ESV
Isaiah 8:21 NASB
Isaiah 8:21 KJV

Isaiah 8:21 Bible Apps
Isaiah 8:21 Biblia Paralela
Isaiah 8:21 Chinese Bible
Isaiah 8:21 French Bible
Isaiah 8:21 German Bible

Isaiah 8:21 Commentaries

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica®.

Bible Hub
Isaiah 8:20
Top of Page
Top of Page