Isaiah 21:3
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
For this reason my loins are full of anguish; Pains have seized me like the pains of a woman in labor. I am so bewildered I cannot hear, so terrified I cannot see.

King James Bible
Therefore are my loins filled with pain: pangs have taken hold upon me, as the pangs of a woman that travaileth: I was bowed down at the hearing of it; I was dismayed at the seeing of it.

Darby Bible Translation
Therefore are my loins filled with pain; anguish hath taken hold upon me, as the anguish of a woman in travail: I am bowed down so as not to hear, I am dismayed so as not to see.

World English Bible
Therefore my thighs are filled with anguish. Pains have taken hold on me, like the pains of a woman in labor. I am in so much pain that I can't hear. I so am dismayed that I can't see.

Young's Literal Translation
Therefore filled have been my loins with great pain, Pangs have seized me as pangs of a travailing woman, I have been bent down by hearing, I have been troubled by seeing.

Isaiah 21:3 Parallel
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

Therefore - In this verse, and the following, the prophet represents himself as "in" Babylon, and as a witness of the calamities which would come upon the city. He describes the sympathy which he feels in her sorrows, and represents himself as deeply affected by her calamities. A similar description occurred in the pain which the prophet represents himself as enduring on account of the calamities of Moab (see Isaiah 15:5, note; Isaiah 16:11, note).

My loins - (see the note at Isaiah 16:11).

With pain - The word used here (חלחלה chalchâlâh) denotes properly the pains of parturition, and the whole figure is taken from that. The sense is, that the prophet was filled with the most acute sorrow and anguish, in view of the calamities which were coming on Babylon. That is, the sufferings of Babylon would be indescribably great and dreadful (see Nahum 2:11; Ezekiel 30:4, Ezekiel 30:9).

I was bowed down - Under the grief and sorrow produced by these calamities.

At the hearing it - The Hebrew may have this sense, and mean that these things were made to pass before the eye of the prophet, and that the sight oppressed him, and bowed him down. But more probably the Hebrew letter מ (m) in the word משׁמע mishemoa' is to be taken "privatively," and means, 'I was so bowed down or oppressed that I could not see; I was so dismayed that I could not hear;' that is, all his senses were taken away by the greatness of the calamity, and by his sympathetic sufferings. A similar construction occurs in Psalm 69:23 : 'Let their eyes be darkened that they see not' (מראות mēre'ôth) that is, "from" seeing.

Isaiah 21:3 Parallel Commentaries

Letter Xlii to the Illustrious Youth, Geoffrey De Perrone, and his Comrades.
To the Illustrious Youth, Geoffrey de Perrone, and His Comrades. He pronounces the youths noble because they purpose to lead the religious life, and exhorts them to perseverance. To his beloved sons, Geoffrey and his companions, Bernard, called Abbot of Clairvaux, wishes the spirit of counsel and strength. 1. The news of your conversion that has got abroad is edifying many, nay, is making glad the whole Church of God, so that The heavens rejoice and the earth is glad (Ps. xcvi. 11), and every tongue
Saint Bernard of Clairvaux—Some Letters of Saint Bernard, Abbot of Clairvaux

Cross References
John 16:21
"Whenever a woman is in labor she has pain, because her hour has come; but when she gives birth to the child, she no longer remembers the anguish because of the joy that a child has been born into the world.

1 Thessalonians 5:3
While they are saying, "Peace and safety!" then destruction will come upon them suddenly like labor pains upon a woman with child, and they will not escape.

Psalm 48:6
Panic seized them there, Anguish, as of a woman in childbirth.

Isaiah 13:8
They will be terrified, Pains and anguish will take hold of them; They will writhe like a woman in labor, They will look at one another in astonishment, Their faces aflame.

Isaiah 16:11
Therefore my heart intones like a harp for Moab And my inward feelings for Kir-hareseth.

Isaiah 26:17
As the pregnant woman approaches the time to give birth, She writhes and cries out in her labor pains, Thus were we before You, O LORD.

Jeremiah 4:19
My soul, my soul! I am in anguish! Oh, my heart! My heart is pounding in me; I cannot be silent, Because you have heard, O my soul, The sound of the trumpet, The alarm of war.

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