Notes for Isa 36:1LEB

The verb that introduces this verse serves as a discourse particle and is untranslated; see note on "in the future" in Isa 2:2LEB.


Notes for Isa 36:2LEB

For a discussion of this title see M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 229-30.


"he"; the referent (the chief adviser) has been specified in the translation for clarity.


"the field of the washer"; traditionally "the fuller’s field" (so KJV, ASV, NAB, NASB, NRSV).


Notes for Isa 36:4LEB

"What is this object of trust in which you are trusting?"


Notes for Isa 36:5LEB

"you say only a word of lips, counsel and might for battle." Sennacherib’s message appears to be in broken Hebrew at this point. The phrase "word of lips" refers to mere or empty talk in Prov 14:23LEB.


Notes for Isa 36:9LEB

"How can you turn back the face of an official [from among] the least of my master’s servants and trust in Egypt for chariots and horsemen?" In vv. 8–9 the chief adviser develops further the argument begun in v. 6. His reasoning seems to be as follows: "In your weakened condition you obviously need military strength. Agree to the king’s terms and I will personally give you more horses than you are capable of outfitting. If I, a mere minor official, am capable of giving you such military might, just think what power the king has. There is no way the Egyptians can match our strength. It makes much better sense to deal with us."


Notes for Isa 36:10LEB

In v. 10 the chief adviser develops further the argument begun in v. 7. He claims that Hezekiah has offended Yahweh and that Yahweh has commissioned Assyria as his instrument of discipline and judgment.


Notes for Isa 36:11LEB

Aramaic was the diplomatic language of the Assyrian empire.


Or "in Hebrew" (NIV, NCV, NLT); NAB, NASB "in Judean."


Notes for Isa 36:12LEB

"To your master and to you did my master send me to speak these words?" The rhetorical question expects a negative answer.


"[Is it] not [also] to the men…?" The rhetorical question expects the answer, "Yes, it is."


The chief adviser alludes to the horrible reality of siege warfare, when the starving people in the besieged city would resort to eating and drinking anything to stay alive.


Notes for Isa 36:13LEB

The Hebrew text includes "and he said."


Notes for Isa 36:16LEB

"make with me a blessing and come out to me."


Notes for Isa 36:18LEB

"Have the gods of the nations rescued, each his land, from the hand of the king of Assyria?" The rhetorical question expects the answer, "Of course not!"


Notes for Isa 36:19LEB

The rhetorical questions in v. 19a suggest the answer, "Nowhere, they seem to have disappeared in the face of Assyria’s might."


"that they rescued Samaria from my hand?" But this gives the impression that the gods of Sepharvaim were responsible for protecting Samaria, which is obviously not the case. The implied subject of the plural verb "rescued" must be the generic "gods of the nations/lands" (vv. 18, 20).


Notes for Isa 36:20LEB

"that Yahweh might rescue Jerusalem from my hand?" The logic runs as follows: Since no god has ever been able to withstand the Assyrian onslaught, how can the people of Jerusalem possibly think Yahweh will rescue them?


Notes for Isa 36:22LEB

"with their clothes torn"; the words "in grief" have been supplied in the translation to indicate that this was done as a sign of grief and mourning.