Ezekiel 28:3 New International Version

Are you wiser than Daniel? Is no secret hidden from you?

English Standard Version

you are indeed wiser than Daniel; no secret is hidden from you;

Which version is better?

  • The ESV/NIV remove the word "Hineh" (Behold) from the beginning of Ezekiel 28:3. - The NIV is the closest translation of הִנֵּ֥ה חָכָ֛ם אַתָּ֖ה מִדָּֽנִאֵ֑ל כָּל־סָת֖וּם לֹ֥א עֲמָמֽוּךָ ( Behold, are you wiser than Daniel, that no secret is hidden from you? ) Jun 1, 2021 at 13:29
  • Please expand a little into an answer. I'll +1. I usually do this just to encourage people to answer my questions.
    – user35953
    Jun 1, 2021 at 13:33
  • We see this repeated as Hebrew idiom - asking a question to make an affirmation.
    – Dottard
    Jun 1, 2021 at 21:04

1 Answer 1


According to the Keil & Delitzsch Old Testament Commentary, the affirmative form used by ESV is better:

The words, “behold, thou art wiser,” etc. (Ezekiel 28:3), are not to be taken as a question, “art thou indeed wiser?” as they have been by the lxx, Syriac, and others; nor are they ironical, as Hävernick supposes; but they are to be taken literally, namely, inasmuch as the prince of Tyre was serious in attributing to himself supernatural and divine wisdom. Thou art, i.e., thou regardest thyself as being, wiser than Daniel. No hidden thing is obscure to thee ( עמם , a later word akin to the Aramaean, “to be obscure”). The comparison with Daniel refers to the fact that Daniel surpassed all the magi and wise men of Babylon in wisdom through his ability to interpret dreams, since God gave him an insight into the nature and development of the power of the world, such as no human sagacity could have secured. The wisdom of the prince of Tyre, on the other hand, consisted in the cleverness of the children of this world, which knows how to get possession of all the good things of the earth. Through such wisdom as this had the Tyrian prince acquired power and riches.

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