Isaiah 24 – “The Land Punishes Its People”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
The land will punish the people for their sins, the survivors will praise God, and God will punish the earthly kings and the divine beings.

II. Photo
The earth will quake: “The earth is breaking, breaking! The earth is crumbling, crumbling! The earth is tottering, tottering! The earth is swaying like a drunkard!” (vv. 19-20a)

III. Important Verses
1-3: Behold, The LORD will strip the earth bare, And lay it waste, And twist its surface, And scatter its inhabitants. Layman and priest shall fare alike, Slave and master, Handmaid and mistress, Buyer and seller, Lender and borrower, Creditor and debtor. The earth shall be bare, bare; It shall be plundered, plundered; For it is the LORD who spoke this word.
4-6: The earth is withered, sear; The world languishes, it is sear; The most exalted people of the earth languish. For the earth was defiled Under its inhabitants; Because they transgressed teachings, Violated laws, Broke the ancient covenant. That is why a curse consumes the earth, And its inhabitants pay the penalty; That is why earth’s dwellers have dwindled, And but few men are left.
13: For thus shall it be among the peoples In the midst of the earth: As when the olive tree is beaten out, Like gleanings when the vintage is over.
14: These shall lift up their voices, Exult in the majesty of the LORD. They shall shout from the sea:
19-20: The earth is breaking, breaking; The earth is crumbling, crumbling. The earth is tottering, tottering; The earth is swaying like a drunkard; It is rocking to and fro like a hut. Its iniquity shall weigh it down, And it shall fall, to rise no more.

IV. Outline
1-3. God will destroy the land
4-6. The people have defiled the earth and will be punished
7-12. Wine will not bring joy
13. The earth will shake off its inhabitants like olives from a tree
14-16a. The survivors will praise God from the sea
16b-20. The land will destroy its people
21-23. God will reign and punish the earthly and divine beings

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Blenkinsopp, Joseph. “Isaiah 1-39” The Anchor Bible vol. 19 (New York: Doubleday, 2000).
Collins, John J. “Introduction to the Hebrew Bible,” (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2004).
Sweeney, Marvin A. “Isaiah 1-39 with an Introduction to Prophetic Literature” The Forms of Old Testament Literature vol. 16 (Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmans, 1996).
Photo taken from