Studying the Dead Sea Scrolls (without learning Hebrew)

by xcrawford

Isaiah 9:6 - The Great Isaiah Scroll

Isaiah 9:6 – The Great Isaiah Scroll

Isaiah 9:6 – The Great Isaiah Scroll from The Dead Sea Scrolls collection.

Literally, the translation is “For a child is born unto us, a son is given unto us; and the government is upon his shoulder; and his name is called Pele-joez-el-gibbor-Abi-ad-sar-shalom;” (Kiy-yeled yuLad-länû Bën niTan-länû waT’hiy haMis’räh al-shikh’mô waYiq’rä sh’mô Pele yôëtz ël GiBôr áviyad sar-shälôm).
This passage is most familiar to us as “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” KJV translation
The entire Great Scroll of Isaiah can be found at
Even if you don’t know Hebrew, you can still check it out- click on the pic on the Great Isaiah Scroll website, and a window will pop up. Next to the Magnifying Glass icon, there is a “Jump To” icon that looks like 3 lines. Click on that icon and enter a chapter and verse, and the passage will be highlighted by a red box. Click on that box for a literal English translation -there are some slight textual variations in this manuscript from the one the canonical OT came from- Close the translation box and put your cursor over a different section of the scroll and click to read.

If you have any questions, or would like to share any interesting textual variations that you found, then please leave a comment below.