9:16 The leaders of this nation were misleading people,
and the people being led were destroyed. 1
I am tired of trying to hold it in.”
The Lord answered, 3
“Vent it, then, 4 on the children who play in the street
and on the young men who are gathered together.
Husbands and wives are to be included, 5
as well as the old and those who are advanced in years.
It has entered into our fortified houses.
It has taken away our children who play in the streets.
It has taken away our young men who gather in the city squares.’
[9:16] 1 tn Heb “and the ones being led were swallowed up.” Instead of taking מְבֻלָּעִים (mÿbulla’im) from בָּלַע (bala’, “to swallow”), HALOT 134 s.v. בלע proposes a rare homonymic root בלע (“confuse”) here.
[9:21] 6 sn Here Death is personified (treated as though it were a person). Some have seen as possible background to this lament an allusion to Mesopotamian mythology where the demon Lamastu climbs in through the windows of houses and over their walls to kill children and babies.