1:1 The a vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz, which he saw b
concerning Judah and Jerusalem in the days of c Uzziah,
Jotham, Ahaz, [and] Hezekiah, kings of Judah.
The Argument - God, according to his promise in (De 18:15)
that he would never leave his Church destitute of a prophet,
has from time to time accomplished the same: whose office
was not only to declare to the people the things to come, of
which they had a special revelation, but also to interpret
and declare the law, and to apply particularly the doctrine
contained briefly in it, for the use and profit of those to
whom they thought it chiefly to belong, and as the time and
state of things required. Principally in the declaration of
the law, they had respect to three things which were the
ground of their doctrine: first, to the doctrine contained
briefly in the two tables: secondly to the promises and
threatenings of the law: and thirdly to the covenant of
grace and reconciliation grounded on our Saviour Jesus
Christ, who is the end of the law. To which they neither
added nor diminished, but faithfully expounded the sense and
meaning of it. As God gave them understanding of things,
they applied the promises particularly for the comfort of the
Church and the members of it, and also denounced the menaces
against the enemies of the same: not for any care or regard
to the enemies, but to assure the Church of their safeguard
by the destruction of their enemies. Concerning the doctrine
of reconciliation, they have more clearly entreated it than
Moses, and set forth more lively Jesus Christ, in whom this
covenant of reconciliation was made. In all these things
Isaiah surpassed all the prophets, and was diligent to set
out the same, with vehement admonitions, reprehensions, and
consolations: ever applying the doctrine as he saw that the
disease of the people required. He declares also many
notable prophecies which he had received from God,
concerning the promise of the Messiah, his office and
kingdom, the favour of God toward his Church, the calling of
the Gentiles and their union with the Jews. Which are
principal points contained in this book, and a gathering of
his sermons that he preached. Which after certain days that
they had stood upon the temple door (for the manner of the
prophets was to post the sum of their doctrine for certain
days, that the people might the better mark it as in
(Isa 8:1, Hab 2:2)) the priests took it down and
reserved it among their registers. By God's providence these
books were preserved as a monument to the Church forever.
Concerning his person and time he was of the king's stock
(for Amos his father was brother to Azariah king of Judah,
as the best writers agree) and prophesied more than 64
years, from the time of Uzziah to the reign of Manasseh who
was his son-in-law (as the Hebrews write) and by whom he was
put to death. In reading of the prophets, this one thing
among others is to be observed, that they speak of things to
come as though they were now past because of the certainty
of it, and that they could not but come to pass, because God
had ordained them in his secret counsel and so revealed them
to his prophets.
(a) That is, a revelation or prophecy, which was one of the
two means by which God declared himself to his servants
in old times, as in (Nu 12:6) and therefore the
prophets were called seers, (1Sa 9:9).
(b) Isaiah was chiefly sent to Judah and Jerusalem, but not
only: for in this book are prophecies concerning other
(c) Called also Azariah, (2Ki 15:1) of these kings read
(2Ki 14:1-21:1, 2Ch 25:1-33:1).
1:2 Hear, O d heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the LORD
hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up e children,
and they have rebelled against me.
(d) Because men were obstinate and insensible, he calls to
the dumb creatures, who were more prompt to obey God's
word, as in (De 32:1).
(e) He declares his great mercy toward the Jews as he chose
them above all other nations to be his people and
children as in (De 10:15).
1:3 The f ox knoweth his owner, and the donkey his master's
crib: [but] Israel doth not know, my people doth not
(f) The most dull and brute beasts acknowledge their duty
more toward their masters, than my people do toward me,
of whom they have received benefits without comparison.
1:4 Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a g seed
of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have
forsaken the LORD, they have provoked the h Holy One of
Israel to anger, they are gone away backward.
(g) They were not only wicked as were their fathers, but
utterly corrupt and by their evil example infected
(h) That is, him that sanctifies Israel.
1:5 Why should ye be i stricken any more? ye will revolt more
and more: the whole k head is sick, and the whole heart
(i) What good is it to seek to mend you by punishment,
seeing that the more I correct you, the more you rebel?
(k) By naming the chief parts of the body, he signifies that
there was no part of the whole body of the Jews free
from his rods.
1:6 From the l sole of the foot even to the head [there is] no
soundness in it; [but] wounds, and bruises, and putrifying
sores: they have not been closed, m neither bound up,
neither mollified with ointment.
(l) Every part of the body, the least as well as the
chiefest was plagued.
(m) Their plagues were so grievous that they were incurable,
and yet they would not repent.
1:7 Your country [is] desolate, your cities [are] burned with
fire: your land, foreigners devour it in your presence, and
[it is] desolate, as overthrown by n foreigners.
(n) Meaning, of them who dwell far off, who because they
look for no advantage of that which remains destroy all
1:8 And the daughter of o Zion is left as a booth in a
vineyard, as a lodge in a garden of cucumbers, as a besieged
(o) That is, Jerusalem.
1:9 Except the LORD of hosts p had left to us a very small
remnant, we should have been q as Sodom, we should have
been like Gomorrah.
(p) Because he will always have a Church to call on his
(q) That is, all destroyed.
1:10 Hear the word of the LORD, ye r rulers of Sodom; give ear
to the law of our God, ye people of Gomorrah.
(r) You who for your vices deserved to be destroyed, as
they of Sodom, save that God from his mercy reserved a
little number, (La 3:22).
1:11 To what purpose [is] the multitude of your sacrifices to
me? saith the LORD: I am full of the burnt offerings of
rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I s delight not in
the blood of bulls, or of lambs, or of male goats.
(s) Although God commanded these sacrifices for a time, as
aids and exercises of their faith, yet because the
people did not have faith or repentance, God detests
them, (Ps 50:13, Jer 6:20, Am 5:22, Mic 6:7).
1:13t Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination
to me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of
assemblies, I cannot endure; [it is] iniquity, even the
(t) Without faith and repentance.
1:14 Your u new moons and your appointed feasts my soul
hateth: they are a trouble to me; I am weary of bearing
(u) Your sacrifices offered in the new moons and feasts: he
condemns by this hypocrites who think to please God
with ceremonies and they themselves are void of faith
1:15 And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide my eyes
from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear:
your hands are full x of blood.
(x) He shows that where men are given to evil, deceit,
cruelty and extortion, which is meant by blood, there
God will show his anger and not accept them though they
seem holy, as in (Isa 59:3).
1:16y Wash ye, make yourselves clean; put away the evil of
your doings from before my eyes; cease to do evil;
(y) By this outward washing, he means the spiritual:
exhorting the Jews to repent and amend their lives.
1:17 Learn to z do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed,
judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.
(z) This kind of reasoning by the second table, the
scriptures use in many places against the hypocrites
who pretend holiness and religion in word, but when
charity and love for their brethren should appear they
declare that they have neither faith nor religion.
1:18 Come now, a and let us reason together, saith the LORD:
though your sins are as scarlet, they shall be b white as
snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be as
(a) To know if I accuse you without cause.
(b) Lest sinners should pretend any rigour on God's part,
he only wills them to be pure in heart, and he will
forgive all their sins, no matter how many or great.
1:19 If ye c are willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good
of the land:
(c) He shows that whatever adversity man endures, it ought
to be attributed to his own incredulity and
1:21 How is the d faithful city become an harlot! it was full
of judgment; righteousness lodged in it; but now e
(d) That is, Jerusalem, which had promised happiness to me,
as a wife to her husband.
(e) Given to covetousness and extortion, which he
signified before by blood, (Isa 1:15).
1:22 Thy f silver is become dross, thy wine mixed with water:
(f) Whatever was pure in you before, is now corrupt, though
you have an outward show.
1:23 Thy princes [are] rebellious, and companions of g
thieves: every one loveth bribes, and followeth after
rewards: they judge not the fatherless, neither doth the
cause of the widow come to them.
(g) That is, they maintain the wicked and the extortioners:
and not only do not punish them, but are themselves
1:24 Therefore saith the Lord, the LORD of hosts, the h mighty
One of Israel, Ah, I will i rid myself of my adversaries,
and avenge me of my enemies:
(h) When God will show himself merciful to his Church, he
calls himself the Holy one of Israel, but when he has
to do with his enemies, he is called Mighty, as against
whom no power is able to resist.
(i) I will take vengeance of my adversaries the Jews and so
satisfy my desire by punishing them.
1:25 And I will turn my hand upon thee, and thoroughly purge
away thy dross, k and take away all thy tin:
(k) Lest the faithful among them should be overcome with
his threatening he adds this consolation.
1:26l And I will restore thy judges as at the first, and thy
counsellors as at the beginning: afterward thou shalt be
called, The city of righteousness, the faithful city.
(l) It is once the work of God to purify the heart of man,
which he does because of his promise, made concerning
the salvation of his Church.
1:27 Zion shall be redeemed with m judgment, and her converts
(m) By justice is meant God's faithful promise, which is
the reason for the deliverance of his Church.
1:28 And the n destruction of the transgressors and of the
sinners [shall be] together, and they that forsake the LORD
shall be consumed.
(n) The wicked will not be partakers of God's promise,
1:29 For they shall be ashamed of the o oaks which ye have
desired, and ye shall be confounded for the gardens that ye
(o) That is, the trees and pleasant places where you commit
idolatry which was forbidden (De 16:22).
1:31 And the strong shall be as a p wick, and its maker as a
spark, and they shall both burn together, and none shall
(p) The false god's in which you put your confidence will
be consumed as easily as a piece of wick.