Isaiah 49:2

Hebrew Bible

1 Listen to me, you coastlands! Pay attention, you people who live far away! The Lord summoned me from birth; he commissioned me when my mother brought me into the world. 2 He made my mouth like a sharp sword, he hid me in the hollow of his hand; he made me like a sharpened arrow, he hid me in his quiver. 3 He said to me, “You are my servant, Israel, through whom I will reveal my splendor.” 4 But I thought, “I have worked in vain; I have expended my energy for absolutely nothing.” But the Lord will vindicate me; my God will reward me.

4 Ezra 13:26

2 Esdras

24 You may be assured that those who survive are more highly blessed than those who die. 25 ‘This is what the vision means: 26 The man you saw rising from the depths of the sea is he whom the Most High has held in readiness through many ages; he will himself deliver the world he has made, and determine the lot of those who survive. 27 As for the breath, fire, and storm which you saw pouring from the mouth of the man, 28 so that without a spear or any weapon in his hand he destroyed the hordes advancing to wage war against him, this is the meaning:

 Notes and References

"... In 4 Ezra the Latin 'my son' as a messianic title may reflect Greek pais, which in turn may mean servant rather than son, and the messiah is also called 'my servant' in 2 Baruch 70:9. In none of these cases does the term servant imply suffering. Second, modern scholarship distinguishes four 'servant songs' in Deutero-Isaiah, 42:1-7; 49:1-7; 50:4-9; and 52:13-53:12. These passages were not grouped to­gether in antiquity. Consequently, allusions to the other 'servant songs' do not necessarily imply the kind of suffering described in Isaiah 53. The Son of Man fig­ure in the Similitudes of Enoch, who will concern us in a later chapter, is called 'the light of the nations' in 1 Enoch 48:4. The same phrase is used of the servant of the Lord in Isaiah 42:6; 49:6. The Son of Man is also hidden like the servant (1 Enoch 48:6, compare Isaiah 49:2). But the Son of Man is not a suffering figure, and carries no allusions to the notion of vicarious suffering as found in Isaiah 53. Third, in the late-first-century CE apocalypses of 4 Ezra and 2 Baruch, the messiah dies. His death, however, does not involve suffering and has no atoning significance. In 4 Ezra 7:29-30 the death of the messiah marks the end of a four-hundred-year reign and is the prelude to seven days of primeval silence, followed by resurrection. In 2 Baruch 30:1, 'when the time of the appearance of the messiah has been fulfilled' he 'returns in glory, and then all who sleep in hope of him rise.' Neither scenario bears any similarity to Isaiah 53 ..."

Collins, John J. The Scepter and the Star: Messianism in Light of the Dead Sea Scrolls (p. 143) William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2010

 User Comments

Do you have questions or comments about these texts? Please submit them here.