What does Isaiah 5:8 mean?
ESV: Woe to those who join house to house, who add field to field, until there is no more room, and you are made to dwell alone in the midst of the land.
NIV: Woe to you who add house to house and join field to field till no space is left and you live alone in the land.
NASB: Woe to those who attach house to house and join field to field, Until there is no more room, And you alone are a landowner in the midst of the land!
CSB: Woe to those who add house to house and join field to field until there is no more room and you alone are left in the land.
NLT: What sorrow for you who buy up house after house and field after field, until everyone is evicted and you live alone in the land.
KJV: Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place, that they may be placed alone in the midst of the earth!
NKJV: Woe to those who join house to house; They add field to field, Till there is no place Where they may dwell alone in the midst of the land!
Verse Commentary:
Beginning with this verse, Isaiah describes some of the sour grapes (Isaiah 5:2) the Israelites have produced instead of bearing the good fruit the Lord wants to see from them. He officially declares the Lord's "woe" upon the greediness of the wealthy in Judah.

They were buying up the houses and land of their neighbors. These were not merely properties their neighbors could no longer afford. Rather, these were properties which had been in their families for generations, passed down from father to son. The rich among them were only too happy to snap up their farms and houses when the poor were forced to sell. Although technically legal, this amassing of land by some over others was not God's intention for His people. The Lord built provisions into the Law so properties could stay in families for generations. This went as far as the Year of Jubilee where the Lord built in a schedule where all property was returned to its original owners. (Leviticus 25:23–28; Ezekiel 46:16–18).

One result of buying up of houses and land was that one person or one family would be left alone and isolated from others in the middle of their land. It was never the Lord's intention that we live in isolation. They occupied great houses and many acres all alone while the poor were left to make do in in cramped quarters. The result of this wealth was not the useful fruit which the Lord had intended for his people.
Verse Context:
Isaiah 5:8–30 contains Isaiah's dire predictions about the upcoming judgment of Israel. The first "woes" are to the greedy and the pleasure-seeking drinkers. They will go into exile and to the grave for refusing to acknowledge God. The Lord then will be exalted for restoring justice and righteousness. The next woes are to those who embrace sin and mock the coming judgment. These are also those people who have mixed evil and good and believe they know better than God. The final listed woes are those who make it a point of pride how much alcohol they can drink, as well as how they can work the system with bribes. The Lord will summon the armies of the nations to bring judgment on His people.
Chapter Summary:
Isaiah 5 begins with a parable about a farmer who builds a vineyard that produces sour grapes. The owner says he will lay waste to the vineyard. Isaiah reveals the owner to be the Lord and the vineyard to be Israel. Israel's bad fruit includes the greed of the wealthy and the hedonism of the people. They will go hungry and thirsty, into exile, and the grave. The Lord will be exalted for His righteousness. Isaiah pronounces woe on the sinners, the mockers, and the unjust rulers. The Lord will summon the nations to judge His people.
Chapter Context:
Early chapters (Isaiah 1—4) established a prophetic message given to the people of Israel. Isaiah 5 begins a new section with a parable about a vineyard that produces wild grapes despite all the work the owner has done. The vineyard is Israel, and the owner is the Lord. He will lay waste to the vineyard for the greed and drunkenness of the people. They will go into exile and the grave. The Lord will be exalted, but woe to those who embrace sin, and mock God's judgment. As well as those who take bribes against the poor. He has summoned the nations. Judgment is coming. The next chapter includes one of the Bible's most famous visions (Isaiah 6).
Book Summary:
Isaiah is among the most important prophetic books in the entire Bible. The first segment details God's impending judgment against ancient peoples for sin and idolatry (Isaiah 1—35). The second part of Isaiah briefly explains a failed assault on Jerusalem during the rule of Hezekiah (Isaiah 36—39). The final chapters predict Israel's rescue from Babylonian captivity (Isaiah 40—48), the promised Messiah (Isaiah 49—57), and the final glory of Jerusalem and God's people (Isaiah 58—66).
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