“Lick Up the Dust”

K. Douglas Bassett

(Isa. 49:23; Gen. 42:6; 1 Sam. 24:8, Ps. 72:8–11; 2 Ne. 6:13; Mosiah 4:1–2; refer in this text to 2 Ne. 8:23)

In the ancient Near East, these actions were signs of submission to a king or ruler (Gen. 42:6; 1 Sam. 24:8; Ps. 72:8–11; 2 Ne. 6:13). In times past, Israel was repeatedly conquered and forced to submit to the kings of the earth. But in the last days kings and queens will bow in obeisance and submission to the children of Israel.

(Donald W. Parry, Jay A. Parry, and Tina M. Peterson, Understanding Isaiah [Salt lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1998], 436.)

Proskynesis was the falling to the earth, literally, ‘kissing the ground,’ in the presence of the king… . A flat prostration upon the earth was the proper act of obeisance in the presence of the ruler.

(Hugh Nibley, An Approach to the Book of Mormon [Salt Lake City: Deseret News Press, 1957], 264.)

Commentaries on Isaiah: In the Book or Mormon