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18 Look, I and the sons whom the Lord has given me[a] are reminders and object lessons[b] in Israel, sent from the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, who lives on Mount Zion.

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  1. Isaiah 8:18 sn This refers to Shear Jashub (7:3) and Maher Shalal Hash Baz (8:1, 3).
  2. Isaiah 8:18 tn Or “signs and portents” (NAB, NRSV). The names of all three individuals has symbolic value. Isaiah’s name (which meant “the Lord delivers”) was a reminder that the Lord was the nation’s only source of protection; Shear Jashub’s name was meant, at least originally, to encourage Ahaz (see the note at 7:3), and Maher Shalal Hash Baz’s name was a guarantee that God would defeat Israel and Syria (see the note at 8:4). The word מוֹפֶת (mofet, “portent”) can often refer to some miraculous event, but in 20:3 it is used, along with its synonym אוֹת (ʾot, “sign”) of Isaiah’s walking around half-naked as an object lesson of what would soon happen to the Egyptians.

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