Isaiah 14:30

ESV And the firstborn of the poor will graze, and the needy lie down in safety; but I will kill your root with famine, and your remnant it will slay.
NIV The poorest of the poor will find pasture, and the needy will lie down in safety. But your root I will destroy by famine; it will slay your survivors.
NASB Those who are most helpless will eat, And the poor will lie down in security; I will kill your root with famine, And it will kill your survivors.
CSB Then the firstborn of the poor will be well fed, and the impoverished will lie down in safety, but I will kill your root with hunger, and your remnant will be slain.
NLT I will feed the poor in my pasture; the needy will lie down in peace. But as for you, I will wipe you out with famine and destroy the few who remain.
KJV And the firstborn of the poor shall feed, and the needy shall lie down in safety: and I will kill thy root with famine, and he shall slay thy remnant.

What does Isaiah 14:30 mean?

The prediction speaking doom about the Philistines continues (Isaiah 14:28–29). Using heavy and dramatic symbolism, Isaiah seems to have warned the Philistines not to rejoice about a temporary victory over the Assyrians around 715 BC (Isaiah 14:28–29). The Assyrian "serpent" will grow strong again and return more venomous than ever. Indeed, history shows that four years after Isaiah wrote this prophecy, in 711 BC, Assyria's Sargon II defeated the Philistine city of Ashdod. This defeat made Philistia into an official province of Assyria.

Now Isaiah acknowledges that the Philistines may thrive for a few years. Comparing them to sheep, he writes that the firstborn of those in poverty will find food to eat. Even the neediest will be able to sleep at night in safety. It won't last, however. When the Assyrians arrive and lay siege to the city, the Lord will kill the root of the Philistines with a famine. This famine will be so severe that it will wipe out the remaining Philistine survivors there.

Some commentators suggest an alternative reading. These scholars say that Isaiah is referring to the people of Judah as "sheep sleeping in safety." This being because Judah is protected by the Lord, while the Philistines are starved to death by the Assyrians.

A study of all the symbolism and connected history points to the Assyrians as the ones who will defeat the Philistines. Still, Isaiah's prophecy makes it clear: it is the Lord who is ultimately responsible for this judgment on Philistia. He is the one who will use the Assyrians to punish Israel's ancient enemy.
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