Didn't Isaiah say Damascus would forever be desolate?
Question: Isaiah 17:1 says that Damascus will be completely destroyed and no longer be inhabited. But Damascus is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities and was never completely destroyed.
Response: Isaiah 17:1 (NIV) says: An oracle concerning Damascus: "See, Damascus will no longer be a city but will become a heap of ruins.
It is not unreasonable for someone to see a city in ruins and then proclaim that this is "heap of ruins" is "no longer" a city. That, however, is not to say that the city would always be a heap of rubble. And I don't think that Isaiah 17 is making that claim, either. In fact, it seems clear that Isaiah 17:1-14 is strictly a prophecy about temporary desolation, given the fact that most of it is actually about Israel, which Isaiah often prophesied would eventually be restored from desolation. And nowhere in Isaiah 17 does it ever say that Damascus would never again be inhabited.