Isaiah 1:8 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Isaiah 1:8, NIV: Daughter Zion is left like a shelter in a vineyard, like a hut in a cucumber field, like a city under siege.

Isaiah 1:8, ESV: And the daughter of Zion is left like a booth in a vineyard, like a lodge in a cucumber field, like a besieged city.

Isaiah 1:8, KJV: And the daughter of Zion is left as a cottage in a vineyard, as a lodge in a garden of cucumbers, as a besieged city.

Isaiah 1:8, NASB: The daughter of Zion is left like a shelter in a vineyard, Like a watchman’s hut in a cucumber field, like a city under watch.

Isaiah 1:8, NLT: Beautiful Jerusalem stands abandoned like a watchman's shelter in a vineyard, like a lean-to in a cucumber field after the harvest, like a helpless city under siege.

Isaiah 1:8, CSB: Daughter Zion is abandoned like a shelter in a vineyard, like a shack in a cucumber field, like a besieged city.

What does Isaiah 1:8 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The Lord is describing the spiritual condition of the hearts of His people with a series of vivid word pictures. He has described the nation as a human body (Isaiah 1:5—6), sick and covered in open wounds, although the person walks around as if well. He has also described Israel's spiritual state as a land desolated by foreign invaders (Isaiah 1:7), with fields devoured and cities burned to the ground.

Now the Lord uses a name for His people, calling her the daughter of Zion. He pictures her spiritual condition as that of a booth or shack in a vineyard or cucumber field. This is the temporary shelter which Israelites would set up during the harvest time. Instead of returning home to the city each night during harvest, families would camp out in the fields so they could spend all the daylight hours gathering in the crops.

These booths or shacks in the fields would not be safe places when invaders came to conquer a city. They were not even meant to last the winter. They were far outside the walls of the city and could be easily knocked down. The Lord pictures Israel as one of these booths instead of as the mighty Zion, Jerusalem, sitting on a hill surrounded by massive walls.

As a result of Israel's sinful rebellion against the Lord, her protector, the nation is vulnerable to attack. She is weak, though she appears to be strong. Israel's spiritual condition means that she will be easily defeated by enemies in the physical world, as she was later. (2 Kings 23—25)