View Isaiah 59 in the note window.
Sin separates between God and us, ver. 1, 2.
Murder, theft, falsehood, injustice, cruelty, ver. 3 - 8.
Calamity for sin, ver. 9 - 15.
Salvation only of God, ver. 16 - 19.
The covenant of the redeemer, ver. 20, 21
3: Perverseness - Perverse words are such as are contrary to God's
word. Words every way contrary to God's will.
4: None - None seek to redress these wrongs, and violences; they
commit all rapines, and frauds with impunity. Bring forth - These two
words of conceiving, and bringing forth, denote their whole
contrivance, and perfecting their wickedness.
5: Cockatrice eggs - One kind put for any venomous creature, a
proverbial speech signifying by these eggs mischievous designs, and
by hatching them, their putting them in practice. Web - Another
proverbial speech whereby is taught, both how by their plots they
weave nets, lay snares industriously with great pains and artifice.
And also how their designs will come to nothing, as the spider's web
is soon swept away.
6: Webs - Their contrivances shall not be able to cover or defend
7: Wasting - They meditate on little or nothing else. Paths - In
what way or work soever they are engaged, it all tends to ruin and
8: The way of peace - They live in continual contentions, and
discords. Judgment - No justice, equity, faith, or integrity.
9: Justice - Judgment, and so justice is here taken for
deliverance. God doth not defend our right, nor revenge our wrong,
because of these outrages, and acts of violence, injustice, and oppression.
10: As dead men - He compares their captivity to men dead without
hope of recovery.
11: Mourn - Their oppressing governors made the wicked roar like
bears, and the good mourn like doves.
12: Transgressions - The word here signifies sins of an high nature,
such as wherein there is much of man's will against light: rebellious sins.
Multiplied - They admit of no excuse; for they are acted before thee, and
multiplied against thee, whereby thou art justly provoked to deny us all
help. Testify - As so many witnesses produced proves our guilt.
Are with us - Are still unforgiven. We know - We are convinced of them.
13: Lying - Transgressing here, and lying, seem to be one and
the same thing, inasmuch as in their transgressing the law of God,
they broke their solemn engagement to God upon mount Sinai.
Departing - Turning from God to idols. Speaking - As it were, talking
of little else one among another, but how to oppress their neighbours,
and apostatize from God. Uttering - That is, first contriving in their
heart false accusations, false worship to the dishonour of God; laying
the contrivances and uttering them. From the heart - And when they
dealt with men in ways of fraud, it was from the heart, but when they
spake with God it was but from the lip.
14: Judgment - He speaks here of the sentences in courts of
judicature. Truth - Truth is cast to the ground, and justice trampled
under foot, even in publick. Equity - No such thing will be admitted
in their courts.
15: Faileth - All things are amiss, neither judgment or justice,
or truth, is to be found among us. A prey - Or, as some render it,
is accounted mad, is laughed at. Josephus tells us, that immediately
before the destruction of Jerusalem, it was matter of scorn to be
religions. The translators reach the meaning of the word by prey:
the wicked, like wild beasts, endeavouring to devour such as are not
as bad as themselves: where wickedness rules, innocency is oppressed.
16: No man - To appear in the behalf of equity. His arm - He would
do his work without help from any other. Righteousness - His justice;
seeing there could be no justice found among them, he would avenge
the innocent himself.
17: For - God, resolving to appear as a man of war, puts on his arms;
he calls righteousness his breast - plate, to shew the justness of his
cause, as also his faithfulness in making good his promises.
Vengeance - Or garments made of vengeance: as God is said to put on the
former for their sakes, whom he would preserve, so he puts on these for
their sakes, whom he will destroy, namely, his peoples enemies.
Zeal - For his own honour, and for his own people. The sum of all these
expressions is, to describe both the cause and effect together; the
cause was righteousness and zeal in God, the effect, salvation to
his people, and vengeance on his enemies.
18: Deeds - Heb. recompences or deserts. That is, he will
recompence his adversaries with those effects of his fury that they
have deserved. Islands - To those remoter nations under the king of
Babylon, that thought themselves secure.
19: Fear - Worship the Lord. The west - The western part of the
world. His glory - The glorious God. The rising of the sun - The
eastern parts. When - At what time soever the devil, or his
instruments shall make violent irruptions upon the church.
A standard - God shall make known himself to take their part and
defend them, by his spirit alone.
20: The Redeemer - Christ, of whom the apostle expounds it,(Ro 11:26), the prophets usually concluding their promises of temporal
deliverances with the promises of spiritual, especially such, of which
the temporal were evident types.
21: My covenant - What I have promised, to them that turn from their
iniquity. My words - Which thou hast uttered by virtue of my spirit.
Of thy seed - A promise of the perpetual presence of his word and spirit
with the prophets, apostles, and teachers of the church to all ages.