English Standard Version
and the fading flower of its glorious beauty, which is on the head of the rich valley, will be like a first-ripe fig before the summer: when someone sees it, he swallows it as soon as it is in his hand.
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.
American Standard Version
and the fading flower of his glorious beauty, which is on the head of the fat valley, shall be as the first-ripe fig before the summer; which when he that looketh upon it seeth, while it is yet in his hand he eateth it up.
And the fading flower the glory of his joy, who is on the head of the fat valley, shall be as a hasty fruit before the ripeness of autumn: which when he that seeth it shall behold, as soon as he taketh it in his hand, he will eat it up.
English Revised Version
and the fading flower of his glorious beauty, which is on the head of the fat valley, shall be as the firstripe fig before the summer; which when he that looketh upon it seeth, while it is yet in his hand he eateth it up.
Webster's Bible Translation
And the glorious beauty, which is on the head of the rich valley, shall be a fading flower, and as the early fruit before the summer; which, when he that looketh upon it, seeth while it is yet in his hand he eateth it up.
Isaiah 28:4 Parallel
CommentaryKeil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament
The prophet said this from out of the midst of the state of punishment, and was therefore able still further to confirm the fact, that the punishment would cease with the sin, by the punishment which followed the sin. "For the strong city is solitary, a dwelling given up and forsaken like the steppe: there calves feed, and there they lie down, and eat off its branches. When its branches become withered, they are broken: women come, make fires with them; for it is not a people of intelligence: therefore its Creator has no pity upon it, and its Former does not pardon it." The nation without any intelligence (Isaiah 1:3), of which Jehovah was the Creator and Former (Isaiah 22:11), is Israel; and therefore the fortress that has been destroyed is the city of Jerusalem. The standpoint of the prophet must therefore be beyond the destruction of Jerusalem, and in the midst of the captivity. If this appears strange for Isaiah, nearly every separate word in these two vv. rises up as a witness that it is Isaiah, and no other, who is speaking here (compare, as more general proofs, Isaiah 32:13-14, and Isaiah 5:17; and as more specific exemplifications, Isaiah 16:2, Isaiah 16:9; Isaiah 11:7, etc.). The suffix in "her branches" refers to the city, whose ruins were overgrown with bushes. Synonymous with סעפּים, branches (always written with dagesh in distinction from סעפים, clefts, Isaiah 2:21), is kâtzir, cuttings, equivalent to shoots that can be easily cut off. It was a mistake on the part of the early translators to take kâtzir in the sense of "harvest" (Vulg., Symm., Saad., though not the lxx or Luther). As kâtzir is a collective term here, signifying the whole mass of branches, the predicate can be written in the plural, tisshâbarnâh, which is not to be explained as a singular form, as in Isaiah 28:3. אותהּ, in the neuter sense, points back to this: women light it האיר, as in Malachi 1:10), i.e., make with it a lighting flame (אור) and a warming fire (אוּר, Isaiah 54:16). So desolate does Jerusalem lie, that in the very spot which once swarmed with men a calf now quietly eats the green foliage of the bushes that grow between the ruins; and in the place whence hostile armies had formerly been compelled to withdraw without accomplishing their purpose, women now come and supply themselves with wood without the slightest opposition.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
the hasty. 'No sooner,' says Dr. Shaw, 'doth the boccore (or 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 winter fig, as we may call it. This is usually of a much longer shape and darker complexion than the kermez, hanging and ripening upon the tree, even after the leaves are shed; and provided the winter proves mild and temperate, is gathered as a delicious morsel in the spring.'
eateth. Heb. swalloweth
Like grapes in the wilderness, I found Israel. Like the first fruit on the fig tree in its first season, I saw your fathers. But they came to Baal-peor and consecrated themselves to the thing of shame, and became detestable like the thing they loved.
Woe is me! For I have become as when the summer fruit has been gathered, as when the grapes have been gleaned: there is no cluster to eat, no first-ripe fig that my soul desires.
All your fortresses are like fig trees with first-ripe figs-- if shaken they fall into the mouth of the eater.
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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.