42:11 Let the desert and its cities shout out,
the towns where the nomads of Kedar live!
Let the residents of Sela shout joyfully;
let them shout loudly from the mountaintops.
let them praise his deeds in the coastlands. 2
42:13 The Lord emerges like a hero,
like a warrior he inspires himself for battle; 3
he shouts, yes, he yells,
he shows his enemies his power. 4
I kept quiet and held back.
Like a woman in labor I groan;
I pant and gasp. 6
I will dry up all their vegetation.
I will turn streams into islands, 8
and dry up pools of water. 9
I will guide them down paths they have never traveled. 11
I will turn the darkness in front of them into light,
and level out the rough ground. 12
This is what I will do for them.
I will not abandon them.
42:17 Those who trust in idols
will turn back and be utterly humiliated, 13
those who say to metal images, ‘You are our gods.’”
[42:15] 7 tn Heb “I will dry up the mountains and hills.” The “mountains and hills” stand by synecdoche for the trees that grow on them. Some prefer to derive the verb from a homonymic root and translate, “I will lay waste.”
[42:15] 8 tc The Hebrew text reads, “I will turn streams into coastlands [or “islands”].” Scholars who believe that this reading makes little sense have proposed an emendation of אִיִּים (’iyyim, “islands”) to צִיּוֹת (tsiyyot, “dry places”; cf. NCV, NLT, TEV). However, since all the versions support the MT reading, there is insufficient grounds for an emendation here. Although the imagery of changing rivers into islands is somewhat strange, J. N. Oswalt describes this imagery against the backdrop of rivers of the Near East. The receding of these rivers at times occasioned the appearance of previously submerged islands (Isaiah [NICOT], 2:126).