Bible Commentaries
Isaiah 21

Bell's Commentary on the BibleBell's Commentary

Verses 1-17

  1. Intro:
    1. Intro: What more judgments? What did Habakkuk do with them?
      1. See Hab.3:2(ch.2 was 5 woes - He let them affect himself personally!)
  2. BABYLON! (21)
    1. ​​​​​​​Babylon is Bounced! (1-4)
    2. (1) “Wilderness/desert by the sea” – Babylonian plain by the Tigris & Euphrates rivers.
    3. (2) Elam = Ancient name for Persia.
      1. Medes & Persians would come against Babylon like a storm across the desert(1,2).
    4. (3,4) Isaiah saw this & was filled with horror.
      1. I believe every man has been warned about relating “anything” to child birth! – And I highly respect that!
        1. And I believe Isaiah was not speaking in hyperbole here!
        2. I believe he was in that much trauma over this.
    5. (4) Oh, for one calm evening!
    6. Banqueting Belshazzar! (5-9)
    7. (5) Isaiah has a vision of the sinful Banqueting Belshazzar in Dan.5.
    8. (6) God instructed Isaiah to post a watchman on the city wall to watch for eastern invaders.
    9. (7) The watchman saw the invading forces.
    10. (8) He warns them of attack!
      1. Apply 8b to prayer!
      2. Q: Do you spare time to wait on God?
    11. (9) Then he sees & says, “Babylon is fallen, is fallen!”
      1. Probably speaking both historically & prophetically.
        1. Rev.14:8; 18:2.
    12. Babylon is Threshed! (10)
    13. Not a pretty image!
    14. Edom! (11,12)
    15. Edom – South of the Dead Sea. Edom means “red” signifying the red sandstone of the Edomite desert.
    16. Seir – A synonym for Edom. Means “hairy” & refers to the rugged mountain range rising in Edom.
    17. The question? How long will Edom suffer?
      1. Answer? The deliverance for Israel would come, but Edom would continue to suffer.
      2. (11) – When will the day dawn & the shadows flee away?
      3. The watchman looks for the morning to break but it is just again followed by nightfall(i.e. no change).
        1. Cat Stevens(1972) captured this “new morning” thought when he sang, “Morning has broken like the first morning Blackbird has spoken like the first bird Praise for the singing, praise for the morning Praise for them springing fresh from the word.”
      4. (12) Seems to indicate repentance! – “Return! Come back!”
    18. Arabia! (13-17)
    19. The Assyrians would also inflict punishment on the nomadic Arab tribes of the desert.
    20. (13) Dedanites – came from Abraham & Keturah, who settled in Edom.
    21. (14) Tema – an Oasis on the Arabian Peninsula.
    22. (16) The glory of Kedar – south of Israel & East of Egypt.
      1. They were known for their beautiful black tents.
    23. (17) History records: In 715 Sargon II wrote that he had defeated a number of Arabian tribes & had then deported to Samaria.
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Isaiah 21". "Bell's Commentary". 2017.