Christian Biblical Reflections.24

((Here are pages (50-79) CBR, Chapter IV, (Christian Biblical Reflections.24, the 3rd submission or installment) of the Prophetic Books of Isaiah & Jeremiah with Lamentations & Ezekiel. This is the Isaiah section. Christian Biblical Reflections. mjmselim. 2018)) (Links to the PDF Vol.1 of CBR. Chapters 1-3 (pages 1-560) & to Chapter 4 of Vol. 2 pages 1-115 : updated, completed, and further edited, corrected, and renumbered):    (p1-25)      (p25-50)


Auchincloss’ Bible Chronology:

“Adam to Seth: 230 yrs, B.C. (5300 – 5071). Adam to Noah’s Flood: 2256 yrs, B.C. (5300 – 3045). Flood to Babel: 412 yrs, B.C. (3045 – 2633). Babel (Peleg’s birth) to Terah’s birth: 521 yrs, B.C. (2633 – 2112). Terah’s birth to Abraham’s Promise: 205 yrs, B.C. (2112 – 1907). Promise to Oppression in Egypt: 430 yrs, B.C. (1907 – 1477). Adam to Egypt = 3824 yrs. Aaron’s birth to Solomon’s Temple: 479 yrs + Solomon’s remaining 37 yrs to the Kingdom’s Division, (4303 yrs from Adam) in (B.C. 961). Rehoboam to Zedekiah, including Jeroboam I to Hoshea, 412 yrs (B.C. 586). Zedekiah to A.D. 1 = 585 yrs, total yrs from Adam are 5300, which 2018 added to this brings them to present total years of 7318, more or less, according to Auchincloss revision. (The little work is instructive & useful; the dates as with all other systems are problematic. He certainly has reconciled & solved a number of dating issues between the Bible, Ussher, Josephus, LXX, & the Assyrian-Babylonian records.)” }}

Old Testament Commentary for English Readers, by Various Writers. v4. Job-Is. Ed, C.J. Ellicott, DD. (1897) (Rev. E.H. Plumptre, D.D. (1897))

{{ Isaiah: Introduction:I.2…”Allusive references to Eden and Noah (chaps, 51:3, 54:9), to Abraham and Sarah (chaps, 41:8, 51:1,2), to Jacob and Moses (chaps, 41:8, 63:11,12), to Sodom and Gomorrah (chaps. 1:9, 13:19), show that these books must have included the substance of Genesis and Exodus. The Book of Judges supplied the memories of the day of Midian (chaps, 9:4, 10:26). The Proverbs of Solomon, then, as always, prominent in Jewish education, furnished him with an ethical and philosophical vocabulary (chaps, 11:1,3, 23:5,6), and with the method of parabolic teaching (chap, 28:23-29), and taught him to lay the foundations of morality in the “fear of the Lord.” As he advanced to manhood, the Book of Job met him, with its bold presentations of the problems of the universe and gave the training which he needed for his work as the great poet-prophet of Israel. (See Cheyne’s “Isaiah,” ii. 226, and essay on “Job and the Second Part of Isaiah,” ii. 243.) (3) The Psalms which were then in use in the Temple supplied emotions, imagery, culture of another kind, which bore fruit in the “songs” or “hymns” which Isaiah actually incorporated in the collection of his writings (chaps, 5:1-7, 12:, 26:1-4), perhaps, also in the Psalms of the sons of Korah, some, at least, of which belong to the same period (Pss. 44-48), and bear traces of parallelism of thought ”
II: (2) “It is tolerably plain, at the outset, that we have three chief divisions. (4) Chaps, 1-36. A collection, not necessarily a complete collection, of prophetic writings from the death of Uzziah to the closing years of Hezekiah. (B) Chaps, 36-39. An historical appendix to that collection, connected with the most memorable passage in Isaiah’s life. (C) Chaps, 40-66. A complete and systematically arranged collection, manifestly having a unity of its own, and having for its central subject the restoration of the Jews from Babylon.”
“(1) The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz….-The term “vision,” as descriptive of a prophet’s work (1 Sam. 3:1), is the correlative of the old term “seer,” as applied to the prophet himself (1st Sam. 9:9). The latter fell into disuse, probably because the pretenders to the clairvoyance which it implied brought it into discredit. The prophet, however, did not cease to be a “seer;” and to see visions was still one of the highest forms of the gift of the spirit of Jehovah (Joel 2:28). It describes the state, more or less ecstatic, in which the prophet sees what others do not see, the things that are yet to come, the unseen working of the eternal laws of God. As compared with “the word of the Lord,” it indicates a higher intensity of the ecstatic state; but the two terms were closely associated, and as in chap. 2:1, a man was said to see “the word of the Lord.” Judah and Jerusalem are named as the centre, though not the limit, of the prophet’s work.” }}

Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel. Synopsis of Bible Old Testament. J.N. Darby. (1850)

{{ Introduction: “Isaiah takes the first place; and in fact, he is the most complete of all the prophets, and perhaps the most rich. The whole circle of God’s thoughts with respect to Israel is more given here. Other prophets are occupied with certain portions only of the history of this people.” “Such is prophecy. It is sorrowful, because it unveils the sin, the ungrateful folly, of God’s people. But it reveals the heart of One who is unwearied in love, who loves this people, who seeks their good, although He feels their sin according to His love. It is the heart of God that speaks. These two characters of prophecy throw light upon the two-fold end it has in view, and help us to understand its bearing. First of all, it addresses itself to the actual state of the people, and shews them their sin; it always therefore supposes the people to be in a fallen condition. When they peacefully enjoy the blessings of God, there is no need of displaying their condition to them. But, in the second place, during the period in which the people are still acknowledged, it speaks of present restoration on their repentance, to encourage them to return to Jehovah; and it proclaims deliverance. And in this, the law and so the blessings connected with it, have their place as that to which they should return. Of this the last prophetic word from God (Mal. 4) is an expressive instance. But God well knew the hearts of His people, and that they would not yield to His call. To sustain the faith of the remnant, faithful amidst this unbelief, and for the instruction of His people at all times, He adds promises which will assuredly be fulfilled by the coming of Messiah. These promises are sometimes connected with the circumstances of a near and partial deliverance, sometimes with the consummation of the people’s iniquity in the rejection of Christ come in humiliation. It is important to be able to distinguish between that part of a passage which refers to those circumstances which were near at hand, and that which speaks of full deliverance shewn in perspective through those circumstances. This is the difficult part of the interpretation of prophecy. ” }}

Biblical Commentary Old Testament. v17.v1. Isaiah. by Keil & Delitzsch. Translated from German, by J. Martin. Introduction, by Driver. (1892). gs.

{{ Introduction: “In the Canon of the Old Testament the prophetico-historical are followed by the prophetico-predictive books. Both together, under the name of (nebiim) form the middle of the three divisions in the collection, the first, in accordance with their position, being designated the ” Former Prophets ” (nebiim rishonim),while the second are named the “Later Prophets” (nebiim ’achronim). In the Masora this middle division is sometimes called (’ashlemt’a) tradition,” because the Torah is regarded as the fundamental revelation of God, and post-Mosaic prophecy as tradition ((qabbalah) for which the Aramaic is (’ashlemt’a), from (’ashlem) tradere [pass down, transmit, trade]) flowing from this original source in a continuous stream; the Former Prophets are then, under the title of (’ashlemt’a qadmoith’a) distinguished from the Later Prophets, which are ca11ed’(’ashlemt’a thinyan’a). It is true that the Torah also is a prophetical work, and is cited as such in Ezra 9:11; for Moses, the mediator of the revelation of law, is, as such, the prophet to whom no other was like, Deut. 34:10; but it was not becoming that the Pentateuch, which is separated from the Book of Joshua under the name of (haTorah (sepher)) should be included in the division of the Canon which is designated “the Prophets;” it is certainly the unique record of the fundamental revelation which has ever conditioned the existence and life of Israel as the nation pre-eminently associated with the history of redemption, and from which, moreover, all prophecy in Israel has been derived. And this holds true, not merely of prophecy, but of all later writings. Not only the prophetic style of writing history, but also the non-prophetic, –i.e. the priestly, the political, the popular styles,– has its model in this Torah. The former follows the Jehovistico-Deuteronomic type, the latter the Elohistic. (*With reference to the Pentateuchal criticism, we purposely remark here, in a conspicuous position, that the acknowledged Isaianic discourses present parallels to all the constituent portions of the Pentateuch “)
[Delitzsch labors with great learning & patience to unravel the nature of the composition of biblical books, especially from Jewish contributions; and with details observed in the Scriptures. His list of the various prophetic utterances & discourses before the Prophetical Books proper of Isaiah to Malachi is quite helpful & instructive; some 20 are found in Kings, some 10 in Chronicles & Judges & Samuel. Compare Oehler’s ‘Old Testament Theology’ in the Mosaic Theocracy in Israel’s National Constitution, carried on or completed in Joshua, but then its Disintegration & the need for the Judges (Shophetim) to preserve the Nation from complete Anarchy; all leading to the Prophetic Institution (Prophetism) from Joshua to Samuel to Malachi. The relation of the Monarchy to the Prophetic Ministry is carefully treated. Oehler’s Sections ‘Prophecy’ 205-216 is most helpful: “Although the ‘natural gifts’ and personal qualifications of one called to the prophetic office formed the individual ‘presupposition’ of his prophetic vocation, and though the ministrations of a prophet were objectively conditioned by the state of affairs, and the testimony of each prophet was connected with all the revealed testimony of his predecessors, still ‘that which made the prophet a prophet was not his natural gift nor his own intention, and that which he proclaimed as the prophetic word was not the mere result of instruction received nor the product of his own reflection The prophet, as such, knows himself to be the organ of Divine revelation, in virtue both of a Divine vocation, capable of being known by him as such, and which came to him with irresistible power, and also of his endowment with the enlightening, sanctifying, and strengthening Spirit of God. Accordingly, a prophet knows the objective reality, as the word of God, of that word which he proclaims’.” Section 215: (Prophetic Peculiarities: “‘The grouping of that which is predicted according to the necessary sequences of its essential elements’ takes the place of chronological statements. And this is effected in the following manner: While heathenism can attain to no knowledge of the issue of its history, it is essential to Old Testament prophecy to be always directed to ‘the consummation of the kingdom of God’, by announcing ‘the ways in which God conducts His purpose of salvation, from the actual present to its appointed end’. In other words, what takes place (be’acharith haiyamim) forms the boundary of the prophetic horizon. This expression does not signify, as it has often been explained,” “in the time to come,” “in the future,” but ((’acharith) signifying, in contrast to (r’ashith), that to which anything runs) “at the end of the days,” i.e. at the close of this dispensation, as correctly rendered by the LXX by (en tais eschatais hëmerais), or (ep’ eschatou (eschatön) tön hëmerön). It is true that the meaning is a ‘relative’ one. In Gen. 49:1, where the expression first occurs, it refers to the time of the settlement of the tribes in the promised land; for the final fulfilment of the Divine promise is thus made the standpoint of Jacob’s blessing. In Deut. 4:30 it denotes the time which forms the turning-point for the restoration of Israel; while in 31:29, on the contrary, the rejection of Israel is itself reckoned to pertain to the (’acharith). But in prophetic diction, properly so called, (’acharith) is as has been said, the time of the consummation of redemption (Hos. 3:5; Isa. 2:3, with Mic. 4:1; Jer. 48:47; Ezek. 38:16). The event next preceding this (’acharith) is judgment, and indeed judgment both upon the rebellious people of God and the sinful world. This judgment is directly connected with the days in which the prophet lives, for these, because of the sins of Israel and the Gentile nations, already bear in their bosom the judgments of God. Thus the matter of prophecy may be defined by its three elements, –’guilt, judgment’ (first upon the house of God, then upon the world), ‘redemption’. The progress of the kingdom of God forms itself, in prophetic vision, into a picture in which judgment generally forms the foreground and redemption the background. In the Book of Isaiah, 40 sqq., on the other hand, redemption occupies the foreground, but still in such wise that its blessings are depicted as not unaccompanied by judgment. The contemplation of impending judgments, then, usually extends to that of the last judgment, as e.g. in the Book of Joel, where the description of the devastation by locusts, with which Judah is chastised, is enlarged into a description of the coming of the last day (the day of the Lord), the final judgment, which, however, on Judah’s repentance, is, though invoked upon her, inflicted upon the secular powers; and as in New Testament prophecy also (Matt. 24), the judgment upon the world is placed in direct connection with that upon Jerusalem. So, too, the contemplation of approaching deliverance is usually extended to take in the consummation of redemption, as e.g. Isa. 7-12 proceeds from an announcement of deliverance from Assyria, to a prophecy of Messianic blessings. Thus prophecy beholds in every event the coming of the Judge and Saviour of the world to set up His kingdom. In this combination of the nearer and more distant future –in this placing of the present government of God’s kingdom in the light of the end– lies what has been called the ‘perspective’ character of prophecy, as Bengel in particular, in his Gnomon on Matt. 24:29, has so aptly designated it (3). This characteristic of prophecy is manifested with especial beauty in the Book of Isaiah, 40-66. The Divine act of delivering the people from the Babylonian captivity, and their restoration to the promised land, form, with the Messianic redemption and the admission of all nations into the kingdom of God, one great connected picture, closing with the creation of the new heavens and the new earth (4). To the prophets themselves, moreover, the time when their predictions should be fulfilled was, as we are told 1st Pet. 1:11, a subject of investigation.”]
(Sect. 1: Time of Prophet):…”The kingdom of the world is the Nimrodic form of the heathen state. Its characteristic feature is the constant endeavour to burst beyond its natural boundaries, not merely for purposes of self-defense or revenge, but for conquest, and to throw itself upon foreign nations like an avalanche, that it may become an ever-growing and world-embracing colossus. Assyria. and Rome are the first and the last members of the world-kingdom that brought enslavement and oppression on Israel throughout her history. The times of Isaiah saw the approach of the calamity. Placed thus on the verge of this new and important change in history, and embracing the whole with his far-seeing eye, Isaiah is, so to speak, the universal prophet of Israel.”…”Isaiah is the Amos of the kingdom or Judah; for, like the latter, he has the dreadful vocation to see and proclaim the fact that the time of forgiveness for Israel as a people and kingdom is gone forever. But he was not likewise the Hosea of the kingdom of Judah, for the dreadful call to accompany the fatal course of his country with the knell of prophetic announcements was not assigned to Isaiah, but to Jeremiah. This is the Hosea of the southern kingdom; for to Isaiah was granted what was refused to his successor Jeremiah, once more to restrain, through the might of his prophetic power, arising from the deep and strong spirit of faith, the coming of the night, which threatened at the time of the Assyrian judgment to engulf his people. The Assyrian oppressions ceased, and, so far as Judah was concerned, were not to be renewed. The view beyond Assyria was clear, and prophecy was about to be concerned with the next world- kingdom, now cautiously approaching. Beyond the noontide of his public ministry there remained the evening of life, which he cannot have idly spent, devoid of word or deed. But though be no longer took part in public affairs, he lived to the beginning of Manasseh’s reign, when, according to credible tradition to which allusion is made in Heb. 11:37 (“they were sawn asunder”), he fell a sacrifice to the heathenism which bad once more become predominant.”
(Sect. 2. Arrangement): “If we take the Book of Isaiah, then, as a whole, in the form in which it lies before us, apart from critical analysis, it falls into two halves, chaps. 1-39, and chaps. 40-66. The former subdivides into seven parts, the latter into three. The first half may be called the ‘Assyrian’, inasmuch as the point at which it aims and in which it terminates is the fall of Assyria; the second may be called the ‘Babylonian’, as its final object is the deliverance from Babylon. The first half is not purely Assyrian, however; but among the Assyrian portions are inserted Babylonian pieces, and generally such as apocalyptically break through the limited horizon of the former. The seven portions of the first half are the following:
1. ‘Prophecies on the growth of obduracy in the mass of the people. (chaps. 2-6). 2. ‘The consolation of Immanuel in the Assyrian oppressions’ (chaps. 7-12). These two portions form a syzygy, ending with a psalm of the redeemed (chap. 12), the last echo of the song at the Red Sea; and are separated by the consecration of the prophet (chap. 6), which looks both backward and forward: the opening discourse (chap. 1), as a kind of prologue, forms the introduction to the whole. 3. ‘Prophecies of judgment and salvation of the heathen’ (chaps. 13-23), chiefly belonging to the period of the judgment on Assyria, but enclosed and intersected by Babylonian pieces. A prophecy concerning Babylon (chap. 13-14:23), the city of the world-power, forms its introduction; while a prophecy concerning Tyre (chap. 13), the city of the world’s commerce, which received its death-blow from the Chaldeans, forms its conclusion; and a second prophecy concerning the desert by the sea, i.e. Babylon (chap. 21: 1-10), forms the centre.
4. Then follows a great apocalyptic ‘prophecy concerning the judgment of the world and the last things’ (chaps. 24-27), affording a grand background to the cycle of prophecies concerning the nations, and with it forming a second syzygy. 5. A third syzygy begins with chaps. 27-33: this cycle of prophecy is historical and treats of the revolt from Assyria and its results. 6. With it is combined a far-reaching eschatological prophecy on the ‘avenging and redemption of the Church’ (chaps. 34,35), in which we already hear, as in a prelude, the keynote of chaps. 40-66. 7. After these three syzygies we are carried back (by chaps. 36-39) in the first two historical accounts to the Assyrian period, while the other two show us, afar off, the entanglement with Babylon, which was then but about to begin. These four historical accounts, with the indications of their chronological order, are peculiarly arranged in such a way that half of them look backwards, half of them forwards; they thus also fasten together the two halves of the whole book. The prophecy in chap. 39: 5-7 stands between the two halves like a signpost, bearing on its arm the inscription “Babylon” (babel). Thither tends the further course of Israel’s history; there is the prophet henceforward buried in spirit with his people; there (in chaps. 40-66) does he proclaim to the mourners of Zion the approaching deliverance. The trilogical arrangement of this book of consolation may be regarded as proved ever since it was first observed and shown by Rückert in 1831. It falls into three sections, containing three times three addresses (chaps. 40-48, 49-57, 58-66), with a kind of refrain at the close.”
(Sect. 3: Critical Questions, after a brief survey)….”Such is the history of the origin of the criticism of Isaiah. Its first attempts were very juvenile. It was Gesenius, but especially Hitzig and Ewald, who first raised it to the eminence of a science.” ….We know of no other prophet belonging to the kingdom of Judah, like Isaiah, who was surrounded by a band of younger prophets, and, so to speak, formed a school viewed in this light, the Book of Isaiah is the work of his creative spirit and the band of followers. These later prophets are Isaian, –they are Isaiah’s disciples; it is his spirit that continues to operate in them, like the spirit of Elijah in Elisha, –nay, we may say, like the spirit of Jesus in the apostles; for the words of Isaiah (8:18), “Behold, I and the children whom God hath given me,” are employed in the Epistle to the Hebrews (2:13) as typical of Jesus Christ. In view of this fact, the whole book rightly bears the name of Isaiah, inasmuch as he is, directly and indirectly, the author or all these prophetic discourses; his name is the correct common-denominator for this collection of prophecies, which, with all their diversity, yet form a unity; and the second half particularly (chaps. 40-66) is the work of a pupil who surpasses the master, though he owes the master every thing Moreover, the influence of criticism on exegesis in the Book of Isaiah amounts to nothing. If anyone cast a reproach on this commentary as uncritical, he will at least be unable to charge it with misinterpretation. Nowhere will it be found that the exposition does violence to the text in favour of a false apologetic design.” [I quote these words & the like, with serious doubts & regret of this low view of inspiration; and though much of what the critics try to discover is really there, hidden, in mystery & ignorance, we must always guard ourselves that our guesses do not deceive us & break scripture.]
(Sect. 4: Modern Exposition:) ….”The era of modern exegesis begins with that destructive theology of the latter half of the eighteenth (18th) century which pulled down but could not build. This destruction, however, was not unproductive of good: the denial of the divine and eternal in Scripture has helped us to recognize its human and temporal aspects, the charm of its poetry, and –what is of still greater consequence– the concrete reality of its history. }}

Christology of the Old Testament Commentary on the Messianic Predictions vol. 2. by E. W. Hengstenberg, Dr. & Prof. Translated from German by Rev. Theod. Meyer, 2nd Ed.

{{ General Preliminary Remarks: “Isaiah is the principal prophetical figure in the first period of canonical prophetism, i.e., the Assyrian period, just as Jeremiah is in the second, i.e., the Babylonian. With Isaiah are connected in the kingdom of Judah: Joel, Obadiah, and Micah; in the kingdom of Israel: Hosea, Amos, and Jonah. The name “Isaiah” signifies the “Salvation of the Lord.” In this name we have the key-note of his prophecies, just as the name Jeremiah: “The Lord casts down,” indicates the nature of his prophecies, in which the prevailing element is entirely of a threatening character. That the proclamation of salvation occupies a very prominent place in Isaiah, was seen even by the Fathers of the Church. Jerome says: “I shall expound Isaiah in such a manner that he shall appear not as a prophet only, but as an Evangelist and an Apostle;” and in another passage: “Isaiah seems to me to have uttered not a prophecy but a Gospel.” And ‘Augustine’ says, ‘De Civ. Dei’ [City of God], bk 18, ch. 29, that, according to the opinion of many, Isaiah, on account of his numerous prophecies of Christ and the Church, deserved the name of an Evangelist rather than that of a Prophet. When, after his conversion, ‘Augustine’ applied to ‘Ambrose’ with the question, which among the Sacred Books he should read in preference to all others, he proposed to him Isaiah, “because before all others it was he who had more openly declared the Gospel and the calling of the Gentiles.” (‘Aug. Confessions’. bk.9. 5.) With the Fathers of the Church ‘Luther’ coincides. He says in commendation of Isaiah: “He is full of loving, comforting, cheering words for all poor consciences, and wretched, afflicted hearts.” Of course, there is in Isaiah no want of severe reproofs and threatenings. If it were otherwise, he would have gone beyond the boundary by which true prophetism is separated from false. “There is in it,” as ‘Luther’ says, “enough of threatenings and terrors against the hardened, haughty, obdurate heads of the wicked, if it might be of some use.” But the threatenings never form the close in Isaiah; they always at last run out into the promise; and while, for example, in the great majority of Jeremiah’s prophecies, the promise, which cannot be wanting in any true prophet, is commonly only short, and hinted at, sometimes consisting only of words which are thrown into the midst of the several threatenings, e. g., 4:27 : “Yet will I not make a full end,” —in Isaiah the stream of consolation flows in the richest fulness. The promise absolutely prevails in the second part, from chap. 40-66. The reason of this peculiarity is to be sought for chiefly in the historical circumstances. Isaiah lived at a time in which, in the kingdom of Judah, the corruption was far from having already reached its greatest height, —in which there still existed, in that kingdom, a numerous “election” which gathered round the prophet as their spiritual centre. With a view to this circle, Isaiah utters the words: “Comfort ye, comfort ye my people.” The contemporary prophets of the kingdom of the ten tribes, which was poisoned in its very first origin, found a different state of things; the field there was already ripe for the harvest of judgment. And at the time of Jeremiah, Judah had become like her apostate sister. All that time it was not so much needed to comfort the miserable, as to terrify sinners in their security. It was only after the wrath of God had manifested itself in deeds, only after the judgment of God had been executed upon Jerusalem, or was immediately at hand, —it was only then that, in Jeremiah, and so in Ezekiel also, the stream of promise broke forth without hinderance. Chronology is, throughout, the principle according to which the Prophecies of Isaiah are arranged. In the first six chapters, we obtain a survey of the Prophet’s ministry under Uzziah and Jotham. Chap. 7 to 10:4 belongs to the time of Ahaz. From chap. 10:4 to the close of chap. 35 everything belongs to the time of the Assyrian invasion in the fourteenth (14th) year of Hezekiah; in the face of which invasion the prophetic gift of Isaiah was displayed as it had never been before. The section, chap. 36—39, furnishes us with the historical commentary on the preceding prophecies from the Assyrian period, and forms, at the same time, the transition to the second part, which still belongs to the same period, and the starting point of which is Judah’s deliverance from Asshur. In this most remarkable year of the Prophet’s life —a year rich in the manifestation of God’s glory in judgment and mercy— his prophecy flowed out in full streams, and spread to every side. Not the destinies of Judah only, but those of the Gentile nations also are drawn within its sphere. The Prophet does not confine himself to the events immediately at hand, but in his ecstatic state, the state of an elevated, and, as it were, armed consciousness, in which he was during this whole period, his eye looks into the farthest distances. He sees, especially, that, at some future period, the Babylonian power, which began, even in his time, to germinate, would take the place of the Assyrian, —that, like it, it would find the field of Judah white for the harvest, —that, for this oppressor of the world, destruction is prepared by ‘Koresh’ (Cyrus), the conqueror from the East, and that he will liberate the people from their exile; and, at the close of the development, he beholds the Saviour of the world, whose image he depicts in the most glowing colours. ….Let us endeavour to form, from the single scattered features which occur in the prophecies of Isaiah, a comprehensive view of his prospects into the future. After the Kingdom of God has, for such protracted periods, been subject to the world’s power, the relation will suddenly be reversed; at the end of the days the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be exalted above all the hills, and all nations shall flow into it, chap. 2:2. This great change shall be accomplished by the Messiah, chaps. 4, 9, 11, 33:17, who proceeds from the house of David, chap. 9:6 (7), 45:3, but only after it has sunk down to the utmost lowliness, chap. 11:1. With the human, He combines the divine nature. This appears not only from the names which are given to Him in chap. 9:5 (6), but also from the works which are assigned to Him, —works by far exceeding human power. He rules over the whole earth, according to chap. 11; He slays, according to 11:4, the wicked with the breath of His mouth (compare chap. 50:11, where likewise He appears as a partaker of the omnipotent punitive power of God); He removes the consequences of sin even from the irrational creation, chap. 11:6-9; by His absolute righteousness He is enabled to become the substitute of the whole human race, and thereby to accomplish their salvation resting on this substitution, chap. 53. The Messiah appears at first in the form of a servant, low and humble, chap. 11:1; 53:2. His ministry is quiet and concealed, chap. 42:2, as that of a Saviour who with tender love applies himself to the miserable, chap. 43:3; 61:1. At first it is limited to Israel, chap. 49:1-6, where it is enjoyed especially by the most degraded of all the parts of the country, viz., that around the sea of Galilee, chap. 8:23 (9:1). Severe sufferings will be inflicted upon Him in carrying out His ministry. These proceed from the same people whom He has come to raise up, and to endow (according to chap. 42:6; 49:8), with the full truth of the covenant into which the Lord has entered with them. The Servant of God bears these sufferings with unbroken courage. They bring about, through His mediation, the punishment of God upon those from whom they proceeded, and become the reason why the salvation passes over to the Gentiles, by whose deferential homage the Servant of God is indemnified for what He has lost in the Jews, chap. 49:1-9; 50:4-11. (The foundation for the detailed announcement in these passages is given already in the sketch in chap. 6, —according to which an election only of the people attain to salvation, while the mass becomes a prey to destruction.) But it is just by these sufferings, which issue at last in a violent death, that the Servant of God reaches the full height of His destination. They possess a vicarious character, and effect the reconciliation of a whole sinful world, chap. 52:13-53:12. Subsequently to the suffering, and on the ground of it, begins the exercise of the Kingly office of Christ, chap. 53:12. He brings law and righteousness to the Gentile world, chap. 42:1; light into their darkness, chap. 42:6. He becomes the centre around which the whole Gentile world gathers, chap. 11:10: “And it shall come to pass in that day the root of Jesse which shall stand for an ensign of the people, to it shall the Gentiles seek, and His rest shall be glory;” comp. chap. 60, where the delighted eye of the Prophet beholds how the crowds of the nations from the whole earth turn to Zion;
chap. 18, where the future reception of the Ethiopians into the Kingdom of God is specially prophesied; chap. 19, according to which Egypt turns to the God of Israel, and by the tie of a common love to Him, is united with Asshur, his rival in the time of the Prophet, and so likewise with Israel, which has so much to suffer from him; chap. 23, according to which, in the time of salvation, Tyre also does homage to the God of Israel. The Servant of God becomes, at the same time, the Witness, and the Prince and Lawgiver of the nations, chap. 45:4. Just as the Spirit of the Lord rests upon Him, chap. 11:2; 42:1; 61:1, so there takes place in His days an outpouring of the Holy Spirit, chap. 32:15; 44:3, comp. with chap. 44:13. Sin is put an end to by Him, chap. 11:9, and an end is put especially to war, chap. 2:4. The Gentiles gathered to the Lord become at last the medium of His salvation for the covenant-people, who at first had rejected it, chap. 11:12; 60:9; 66:20,21. The end is the restoration of the paradisiac condition, chap. 11:6-9; 65:25; the new heavens and the new earth, chap. 65:17; 66:22; but the wicked shall inherit eternal condemnation, chap. 66:24. }}

Prophet Isaiah. Theologically & Homilectically Expounded by Carl W.E. Nägelsbach.
Translated from German by Rev., S.T. Lowrie, D.D., & Rev., D. Moore, D.D. Commentary
Holy Scriptures: Crit, Doct, Homil, etc. John P. Lange, D.D. Translated from German,&
Edited by Philip Schaff, D.D. v11 of OT.

{{ Preface: “Dr. Nägelsbach’s Commentary on Isaiah, the Evangelist among the Hebrew prophets, appeared, as the concluding volume of Dr. ‘Lange’s’ ‘Bibelwerk’, in 1877, just twenty years after the publication of its first volume on Matthew (1857). The author says in his preface (dated July 26th, 1877) that the “nonum prematur in annum” [“let it be kept back from publication until the ninth year” (Horace) ] was literally fulfilled, since he has been engaged on it nine years It is doubtful whether any editor or publisher would have ventured on a commentary of twenty four large and closely printed volumes, could he have foreseen the difficulties and risks connected with it; and yet it has proved successful beyond all expectation. May ‘Lange’s’ Bible-work long continue to be an aid and comfort to pastors and theological students for whose special benefit it was prepared.” –Philip Schaff, New York, October 31st, 1878.

Introduction: § 2. Person & Prophetic Labors of Isaiah: “I never could comprehend how anyone could regard it as a postulate and promotive of scientific knowledge to explain the world without the personal God. Cancel Him, and then riddles and miracles fairly begin, and impossibilities are exacted of our faith. If one would require us to believe that some work of art came into being, not by an artist, but by abstract art, wisdom, power, we would declare such a one to be fit for the insane asylum. And yet men would have us believe that there is an abstract thinking and willing! They hold personality to be a limiting, and therefore an impersonal God to be something unlimited, therefore something higher. But as soon as the limits of personality are broken away, one comes into the region of merely subjective representations; and the philosophers had better look to their aristocratic abstractions and see whether they possess the property of real, objective existence. If they lack this, then the philosophers have perhaps wrought for the study, but not for real life. It is both insanity and idolatry to wish to put abstract ideal philosophy in the place of the concrete, vitalizing Christian religion. Moreover personality is not limitation in the negative sense. It is merely concentration, and thereby the condition of orderly and really effective being. Personality is, however, at the same time, the condition of an entire and full existence, ‘i.e.’, it is not mere thinking and willing, but also sensibility. In other words: only personality can have a heart and love. To be sure, we touch here on the proper pith of the controversy. Not all men wish to be loved by God, still less to love Him in return. Humanity entire divides into two parts, one of which presses toward God, the other away from God. For the former, nothing is more precious than nearness to God; the latter feel easy only at a distance from Him. And now-a-days those are esteemed as the lords of science and as benefactors to mankind who do their best to “free (us) from the Creator,” as ‘David Strauss’ says! But here the criterion is not objective, impartial, scientific interest, but the interest of the heart self-determined in this or that way toward God. For under all circumstances our relation to God is a concern of the heart. One must either love Him or hate Him, be for Him or against Him (Luke 11:23). Neutral no one can be. Consciously or unconsciously every man must feel himself attracted by God or repelled from Him, according as, in his secret heart, that which is kindred to God or that which is inimical to God has the upper hand. For there is no man in which both are not present. Take the hermeneutics that is founded on the assumption that there is no personal God, and that the world is founded on abstractions, in whose real existence one must believe, much as that contradicts all reason and experience; shall such hermeneutics be more entitled to consideration than that which rests on the fundamental view that there is a personal God, to whom we are related, who loves us and guides our fortune with paternal wisdom? This question can ‘never’ be objectively decided here below, because for each individual the subjective attitude of his own heart is the criterion. But at least let no one despise those who see in the Scriptures the revelation of a personal God. And above all things, one must not explain the writings of the prophets of the Old Testament on the assumption that they did not ‘bona fide’ regard themselves as organs of the living, personal God that governs the world. One may say: they fancied themselves inspired. Very well –then let such point out the illusions that entangled them, and expose their enthusiasms. Or one may say: they were impostors. Then let such unmask them. But let no one put upon their words a sense that they themselves did not intend, because they just believed in a living personal God, and were convinced that they stood under the direct influence of His Spirit. Let no one empty their words of sense –let no one deny that they meant to prophesy because one does not himself believe in any prophecy. Let no one (as e.g. .Knobel does) make out of the prophecy a marvelous masked representation of events that had already taken place. I willingly confess that the representatives of the divine origin of prophecy have been faulty in many respects. It has been often overlooked that not everything can be prophesied at any time; that therefore each prophecy must have its historical reason and ground, and that the form and contents of the prophecy must be in harmony with these. It has been further overlooked that prophesying is a seeing from a distance. From a distance one may very well observe a city, mountain and the like, in general outlines. But particulars one does not see. For this reason genuine prophecy in general will never meddle with special prediction. Where, however, the latter takes place, either the special trait contemplated is no subordinate individual thing, or it justifies the suspicion that it is false. These and like mistakes have been committed. But this does not hinder me from maintaining the divine origin of prophecy in general, and from claiming a scientific title for any construction of Isaiah’s prophecy.”

I. Threefold Introduction: a. 1st Introduction (chap. 1). b. 2nd Introduction (chap. 2-5). c. 3rd Introduction (chap. 6).
II. Part 1st: Chapters: 7-39.
1: 1st Subdivision (Chaps. 7-12): Israel’s relation to Assyria, representative of world-power in general, described in its ruinous beginning & its blessed end.
A: Prophetic perspective of time of Ahaz, (chap. 7:1-9:6). 1. Prophecy of Immanuel Son of Virgin, (chap. 7:1-25). 2. Isaiah giving whole nation a Sign by birth of his son Maher-shalal-hashbas, (chap. 8:1-4). 3. Additions: a. Despisers of Siloah shall be punished by waters of Euphrates, (chap. 8:5-8). b. Threatening call to those that conspire against Judah, & to those that fear conspirators, (chap. 8:9-15).
c. Testament of Prophet to his disciples, (chap. 8:16-9:6).
B: Threatening of judgment to be accomplished by Assyria, directed against Israel of Ten Tribes, (chap. 9:7-10:4).

C: Assyria’s destruction, Israel’s salvation, (chap. 10:5-12:6). 1. Woe against Assyria, (chap. 10:5-19).
2. Israel’s redemption from Assyria, (chap. 10:20-34). 3. Israel’s redemption in relation to Messiah, (chap. 11:1-12:6).
2: 2nd Subdivision (Chaps. 13-27): Prophecies against foreign nations.
A: Discourses against individual nations, (chaps. 13-23).
1. 1st prophecy against Babylon, (chap. 13:1-14:23).
2. Prophecy against Assyria, (chap. 14:24-27).
3. Against Philistia, (chap. 14:28-32).
4. Against Moab, chaps. 15, 16.
5. Against & for Damascus & Ephraim, (chap. 17).
6. Ethiopia now & then again, (chap. 18).
7. Egypt now & then again, (chaps. 19, 20).
8. ‘Libellus Emblematicus’ [Emblematic Booklet], containing 2nd prophecy against Babylon, then prophecies against Edom, Arabia, Jerusalem & chamberlain Shebna, (chaps. 21, 22).
9. Prophecy against & for Tyre, (chap. 23).
B. ‘Finale’ of prophecies against nations: ‘Libellus Apocalypticus'[Apocalyptic Booklet], (chps 24-27).
3: 3rd Subdivision (Chaps. 28-33): Relation of Israel to Assyria in time of king Hezekiah.
4: 4th Subdivision (Chaps. 34-35): ‘Finale’ of part 1st.
5: 5th Subdivision (Chaps. 36-39): Historical pieces, containing conclusion of Assyrian & preparation for Babylon period.
III. Part 2nd: Chapters: 40-66. Entire future of Salvation, beginning with Redemption from Babylonian Exile, concluding with Creation of New Heaven & New Earth.
A: Cyrus, (chaps.:40-48).
1. ‘1st Discourse’. Prologue, objective & subjective basis of redemption, (chap. 40).
2. ‘2nd Discourse’. 1st appearance of Redeemer from East, & of Servant of Jehovah, & also 1st & 2nd use of prophecy relating to this in proof of divinity of Jehovah, (chap. 41).
3. ‘3rd Discourse’. 3rd chief figure: Personal Servant of Jehovah in contrasted features of his appearance, (chap. 42).
4. ‘4th Discourse’. Redemption or Salvation in its entire compass, (chap. 43:1-44:5).
5. ‘5th Discourse’. Prophecy as proof of divinity comes to front & culminates in name of Cyrus, (chap. 44:6-28).
6. ‘6th Discourse’. Culminating point of prophecy: Cyrus, & effect of his appearance, (chap. 45).
7. ‘7th Discourse’. Fall of Babylonian Gods, & gain to Israel’s knowledge of God that will be derived therefrom, (chap. 46).
8. ‘8th Discourse’. Well-deserved & inevitable overthrow of Babylon, (chap. 47).
9. ‘9th Discourse’. Recapitulation & conclusion, (chap. 48).
B: Personal Servant of Jehovah, (Chaps. 49-57).
1. ‘1st Discourse’. Parallel between Servant of Jehovah & Zion. Both have small beginning & great end, (chap. 49).
2. ‘2nd Discourse’. Connection between Guilt of Israel & Sufferings of Servant, & Liberation of Former through Faith in the Latter, (chap. 50).
3. ‘3rd Discourse’. Final Redemption of Israel. Dialogue between Servant of Jehovah who enters, as if veiled, Israel, Jehovah Himself; & Prophet, (chap. 51).
4. ‘4th Discourse’. Restoration of City of Jerusalem, (chap. 52:1-12).
5. ‘5th Discourse’. Golgotha & Scheblimini (sit Thou on My right Hand), (chap. 52:18-53:12).
6. ‘6th Discourse’. New Salvation, (chap. 54).
7. ‘7th Discourse’. New Way of Appropriating Salvation, (chap. 55).
8. ‘8th Discourse’. Moral, Social & Physical fruits of New Way of salvation, (chap. 56:1-9).9. ‘9th Discourse’. Look at Mournful Present, which will not, however, hinder Coming of Glorious Future, (chap. 56:10-57:21).
C: New Creature [Creation], (Chaps. 58-66).
1. ‘1st Discourse’. Bridge: Present to Future; from preaching Repentance to preaching Glory, (chaps. 58,59).
2. ‘2nd Discourse’. Rising of Heavenly Sun of life upon Jerusalem, & new personal & natural life conditioned thereby, (chap. 60).
3. ‘3rd Discourse’. Personal Centre of Revelation of Salvation, (chap. 61-63:1-6).
4. ‘4th Discourse’. Prophet in Spirit puts himself in place of Exiled Church, & bears its cause in prayer before the LORD, (chap. 63:7-64:11).
5. ‘5th Discourse’. Death & Life Bringing End-Period, (chaps. 65,66). }}

Holy Bible Old Testament in the Authorized Version, vol. 5, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, & Ezekiel, by Christopher Wordsworth, D.D., Bishop of Lincoln. (1871).as

{{ Chronological Order of Prophets:
Some of the Prophets, e.g. Hosea & Isaiah, prophesied during a much longer time than others; and therefore some of their prophecies may be later in date than some of the prophecies or Prophets who began to prophesy after them. Their dates for the most part cannot be precisely determined. It is probable that the books of most of the Prophets contain the substance and pith of prophecies delivered by them at intervals on several occasions. In the following Table, some modifications have been adopted of that order which is exhibited in the Table prefixed to Isaiah.

I: These Prophets prophesied between B.C. (810-710) or (710-610):
Hosea: In days of Jeroboam II, King of Israel, & Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, & Hezekiah, Kings of Judah.
Isaiah: In days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, & Hezekiah, Kings of Judah.
Joel: Probably in days of Uzziah, King of Judah.
Amos: In days of Jeroboam II, King of Israel, & Uzziah, King of Judah.
Obadiah: Probably in days of Uzziah.
Jonah: Probably in days of Uzziah.
Micah: In days of Jotham, Ahaz, & Hezekiah, Kings of Judah. Cp. Jer. 26:18. II: These Prophets prophesied between B.C. (710-625) or (610-525):
Nahum: Probably in reign of Hezekiah, King of Judah.
Habakkuk: Probably in reign of Manasseh or Josiah, Kings of Judah.
Zephaniah: In days of Josiah, King of Judah.
III: This Prophet prophesied between B.C. (629-580) or (529-480):
Jeremiah: From 13th year of Josiah, & in reigns of Jehoahaz (Shallum), Jehoiakim, Jehoiachin (Jeconiah, or Coniah), & Zedekiah, Kings of Judah, & after Destruction of Jerusalem.
IV: This Prophet prophesied between B.C. (595-573):
Ezekiel: From 5th year of Jehoiachin’s captivity, & in reign of Zedekiah, & after Destruction of Jerusalem. V: These last Prophets prophesied in years B.C. (603-400) or (503-400):
Daniel: In days of Nebuchadnezzar, Belshazzar, Darius, & Cyrus. (603-534)
Haggai: In 2nd year of Darius Hystaspes. (519) Zechariah: Associated with Haggai. (519-487) Malachi: “The Seal of the Prophets”. (430-400)

Isaiah & Deuteronomy.
Ch. I.] This chapter to v. 27 was appointed by the ancient Hebrew Church to be read in the synagogues as the ‘Haphtarah’ or prophetical proper lesson, together with the beginning of Deuteronomy (Deut. 1:1-3:22); also all the ‘Haphtarahs’, or prophetical Proper Lessons appointed to be read together with Deuteronomy, to the end of the thirtieth chapter of that Book, are taken from Isaiah. This is remarkable. It declared the sense of the ancient Hebrew Church, that ‘Isaiah’ stands in an intimate relation to ‘Deuteronomy’. Indeed, the opening words of Isaiah’s prophecies, “Hear, heavens, and give ear, O earth,” are an echo of those of Moses in his prophetic song, in Deuteronomy (32:1; cp. 31:28,29). Isaiah was filled with the Spirit which animated Moses, and, like him, he appeals to the heavens and the earth, which were created by Jehovah, the God of Israel, and which faithfully observed the laws imposed upon them by their Creator, and which were witnesses of the giving of the Law at Sinai, and which had seen the unthankfulness and apostasy of Israel, and which would be witnesses also of the fulfilment of his prophecies in future ages and at the Great Day. This connexion of Isaiah with Deuteronomy in spirit and language, which produced the juxtaposition of the one with the other in the ancient Hebrew Calendar, supplies a strong argument for the genuineness of Deuteronomy, and affords a refutation of the strange theory of some in modern times assigning its composition to Jeremiah. See above, ‘Introd’. to Deuteronomy, pp.195-208; cp. ‘Delitzsch’ here on v. 2. These first five chapters of ‘Isaiah’ form an ‘Introductory’ and compendious ‘Prophecy’ concerning Jerusalem and the ‘Church’, from the days of Isaiah to those of Christ, and even to His ‘Second Coming’. These first five chapters are like a ‘Prophetical Prologue’ to the whole book; and they are like a ‘Prophetical Summary’ of it. They foretell the taking of Jerusalem by the Chaldean armies, and the captivity of its people for their sins (v.13-30), and the later destruction of the City by the Romans, and the merciful alleviation of that judgment, by the blessings consequent on Christ’s first coming; the going forth of the Gospel from Zion to all the world (2:3), and the extensions of the Church, which had its origin in Jerusalem, unto all Nations of the World, and the Second Coming of Christ. See 2:12-22. Therefore with great propriety has the Church of England appointed these first two chapters of Isaiah to be read as Proper Lessons on ‘Advent Sunday’, and the fifth chapter to be read on the Second Sunday in Advent.
1. ‘The vision—which he saw’] These words give the clue to the right interpretation of what follows. The description which we are about to read of the moral and religious state of Judah and Jerusalem is a very unfavourable one; and yet it was written during the time of Uzziah (see below, 6:1), who was one of the best of the kings of Judah (see 2nd Kings 15:1-3), at least as long as he listened to Zechariah, “who had understanding in the visions of God” (2nd Chron. 26:5). But Isaiah was enabled to see the moral corruption which was lurking beneath the fair surface of external forms and specious shows of religion; and he was also enabled to foresee the results of it in the future outbursts of open rebellion against God, and in the pouring out of His wrath and indignation on the people in the Babylonish captivity, and even (as St Cyril and St Jerome observe) in the Roman siege and destruction of Jerusalem, and in the scattering of its inhabitants over the face of the earth; and also to foretell the gracious visitations which awaited the faithful in Christ. See vv. 26,27, “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. Zion shall be redeemed with judgment, and her converts with righteousness.” This could only be said of the Zion of Christ, and of the Apostles. See below, 2:2,3. The Expositors, who have neglected this clue, have placed the composition of this chapter in the days of Ahaz, in the time of the invasion of the Syrians and Israelites (‘Gesenius, Rosenmüller, Maurer, Movers, Knobel, Hävernick’); and others have brought it down to the time of the Assyrian Invasion in the reign of Hezekiah (‘Hitzig, Umhreit, Drechsler’; see ‘Delitzsch’ on v. 31); and much confusion has thus been introduced into the order of Isaiah’s prophecies. The word ‘vision’ solves the difficulties which these Expositors have found in the language of this chapter. The whole Book is well called a ‘vision’, Hebr. ‘chazon’, connected with the words ‘chazah’, to ‘see’ (cp. Amos 1:1. Mic. 1:1. Hab. 1:1), and with the word ‘chozeh’, a ‘seer’; see 2nd Sam. 24:11. 2nd
Kings 17:13; and rendered ‘prophet’ below, 30:10. It reveals the far-off future as ‘present’ to the ‘sight’. The unfavourable picture drawn by Isaiah in this and other parts of his prophecies (see chapters 29; 48:1-8; 53:1; 48:1-13; 59:1-14; 65:1-7; 66:1-4), and the contrast which he presents of the obstinacy and unbelief of the Jews to the docihty [docity, teachableness, obedience] and faith of the Gentiles receiving the Gospel, are strong evidences of Isaiah’s courage, and also of the ‘inspiration’ of his prophecies. The Jews would never have received and read in their synagogues such a censure on themselves, and such a eulogy on the Gentiles, if they had not been convinced that it was from GOD.” }}

Chaldee Paraphrase on Prophet Isaiah. Jonathan benUziel. Translated (from Aramaic-Syriac) by Rev., C.W.H. Pauli, Presbyter. (1871).gs

{{ Preface: Jonathan Ben Uziel, the author of the Chaldee [Aramaic-Syriac] Paraphrases on the major and minor Prophets lived thirty years before the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. He was a disciple of Hillel. (* Vide Succah, f . 28; Baba Bathra, f. 134; Zemach David I., f. 17; Col. 2-18; Col. 3 et 35; Shalsheleth Hakkabala, p. 20; Geschichte der Israeliten, Dr. J. M. Jost, 4. Theil, p. 114; Salomo Duitsch, 3. Deel, de Verloasing, p. 116.) We have to distinguish our author from the Pseudo Jonathan Ben Uziel, who wrote a Chaldee Paraphrase on the Pentateuch and the hagiographical books. This author is held by the Jews in the highest esteem. His paraphrases are considered by the Synagogue as inspired. The Synagogue maintains, that the Prophets Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi gave Jonathan Ben Uziel the Paraphrase written upon a roll spread over his head. (Shalsheleth Hakkabala, p. 20.) These paraphrases contain the doctrines of Christianity, expressed and enforced in the plainest language.
There are many more fabulous legends preserved by the Synagogue respecting this Jewish Church father. To mention but one. We read in the Talmud: (Succah, p. 28, f. 1.) “Jo. Ben Uziel was worthy of the Shekina (the Holy Spirit (* Shekina expresses also sometimes the Messiah.)) which rested upon him, as he did upon our teacher Moses. He was such a holy man, that when he studied in the law, the birds flying over him were burnt to death.” (Tract. Megilla, cap. iii. col. 1.) [The ‘birds’ are the demons & evil spirits opposing the Word.] Such legends, fabulous as they are, express the high veneration in which this writer is held, and his authority in matters of faith. His paraphrases shew us, that the ancient Jewish Church believed in the Divinity of the Messiah then to come, and that Messiah was to bring in everlasting righteousness by his fulfilling the law, by which righteousness all Israel shall be justified. (Isa. 9:5, Engl. 9:6; 45:25.)
The unprejudiced Jew by reading this Paraphrase will see, that we Christians believe in no other salvation, than that which their fathers expected the Messiah should bring. If the doctrines of Jonathan Ben Uziel are considered by the Synagogue to be inspired, it follows that the present Jewish faith cannot be the faith of their fathers. We beg every Israelite to emancipate himself from all imbibed prejudices, and to search the Scriptures with the paraphrases of Jonathan Ben Uziel in his hands, that he may see whether our Christian faith is not the faith of their fathers, before it degenerated through the traditions of the elders. I have followed the text of the Biblia Magna Hebraica (qchilth mshch), the authorized and accepted text of the Synagogue, though I prefer the text of the Royal Polyglot, and that of Buxtorff, as given in Bishop Walton’s Polyglot. Any objection which the Jews would have brought against me, if I had translated from a ‘Christian’ text, must therefore fall to the ground. The Biblical and the theological student will find in this Paraphrase a welcome help in many difficult passages in this Evangelical Prophet; and for the study of the New Testament, this, as well as all other paraphrases of Jonathan Ben Uziel, are invaluable. I have followed the English Authorized Version of the Hebrew text, wherever it was possible. I have investigated and compared the best Christian and Jewish editions of this Paraphrase. I give the most important various readings met with in the different copies, with critical and analytical notes. I also give the various interpolations in the Jewish editions. (* It is a lamentable fact, that the modern rabbis hesitated not to interpolate even those books which are considered by them to be an infallible authority in matters of faith. In their bigotry against Jesus of Nazareth they scrupled not to interpolate the Sohar (Zohar), called by them “the holy Sohar,” (see the last Amsterdam edition, vol. iii., p. 282.) The rabbies in Frankfort-on-the-Maine, who reprinted this edition, were ashamed of this blasphemous interpolation, and omitted it.)
When I resided in Oxford, I intended publishing this work in 1839, expressly for the learned world. I had collected a variety of exegetical and analytical notes, with various quotations, from ancient poetical Chaldee poetry, which I omit for the present, as the only object in this edition is to convince the upright Israelite that the Christian Church interprets the Messianic prophecies in no other sense than the ancient Synagogue did before the coming of Jesus of Nazareth. I beg the reader will bear in mind, that the uncreated and essential Word (St John 1:1, &c, &c.) is written with capitals, to distinguish it from a created word. Jonathan Ben Uziel ‘seldom’ uses (Memra’), but (pithbam) for the latter. I take this opportunity to thank my highly esteemed and learned friend, the Rev. W. Ayerst, M.A., for his very valuable assistance in carrying this work through the press. C. W. H. Pauli. Episcopal Mission Church, Amsterdam, 1871.

1st Index: Passages in which Essential Word , (Memra’ Dyy), (Ho Logos) is mentioned: Chapters:
1:2, 14, 16, 20; 5:24; 6:8; 8:5, 14; 9:7; 10:17, 20; 12:2; 17:7, 10; 21:10, 17; 22:25; 24:14; 25:8,9; 26:3,4,
13; 27:3; 28:21; 29:19; 30:1,2, 30,31, 33; 31:1; 32:5; 33:2; 34:16,17; 36:; 37:29, 32, 35; 40:5, 13, 24;
41:13,14, 16; 42:1; 43:2, 27; 44:24; 45:2, 12, 17, 22, 23; 46:4, 12; 48:1, 3, 11,12, 15,16; 49:1, 5, 15; 50:2;
51:1, 4,5, 7; 52:6; 54:9; 55:2; 57:6, 13; 59:13, 16, 19; 61:10; 62:2; 63:1, 5, 8, 10, 14; 65:1; 65:3; 66:24.
Total 90 times.

2nd Index: Passages in which Shekina (Shekhinah) occurs: Expressing sometimes the Holy Spirit (Ruach haqQodesh), & sometimes Messiah (Meshiach). Chapters:
1:15; 2:3; 4:5; 5:5; 6:3, 5,6; 8:17,18; 12:6; 14:2; 17:2; 18:7; 26:21; 28:10; 30:20; 32:15; 33:5, 11, 14, 17,
24; 37:16; 38:11, 14; 40:22; 45:15; 49:14; 52:8; 54:6; 56:5; 57:17; 59:2; 60:2, 13; 63:17; 64:5,6; 65:1.
Total 39 times.

3rd Index: Passages in which Messiah (Meshiach) occurs. Chapters:
4:2; 9:6; 10:27; 11:1, 6; 14:29; 16:1, 5; 28:5; 42:1; 43:10; 52:13; 53:2. Total 13 times.

Selections from Isaiah Chaldee Paraphrase:
1:2-3: Hear, O heavens, which trembled when I gave my law to my people [I refrain from changing the references to Deity in this Selection, which I would properly edit: My, Me, Who, etc.], and give ear, O earth, which was agitated on account of my words, for the Lord has spoken. My people, the house of Israel, whom I called sons, I loved them, I made them glorious; but they have rebelled against my Word. The ox knoweth his purchaser, and the ass his master’s crib; but Israel has not learned to know my fear, my people doth not consider to return to my law.
1:14-16: Your new moons and your appointed feasts my Word hates; they are an abomination before me. I have often forgiven you (* Literally, “multiplied pardoning.”) . When your priests are spreading out their hands to pray for you, I shall make to ascend (*’i.e., “take away.”) the presence (* Literally, “faces”) of my Shekinah from you; and when you are multiplying prayer, it is not my pleasure to accept your prayer at your hands, they being full of the blood of the innocent. Return to the law; make you clean from your sins; put away the evil of your doings from before the presence of my Word; cease to do evil;…
2:3: And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the house of the Sanctuary of the Lord, to the House of the Shekinah (* Literally, “dwelling” or “presence.” By the “Shekinah” the ancient Jewish doctors meant sometimes the Messiah and sometimes the Holy Spirit.) of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, which are right before Him, and we will walk in the instruction of His law; for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the instruction of the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.
2:21: To go into the caves of the rocks, and into the holes of the rocks, for the fear of the Lord and for the brightness of His glory, when He shall be revealed to destroy (* Literally, “break.”) the wicked of the earth.
3:1: For, behold, the Lord of the world, the Lord of hosts, doth take away from Jerusalem and from Judah the stay and the staff, the whole stay of food, and the whole stay of water.
4:2-3: At that time shall the Messiah of the Lord be for joy and for glory to those that are escaped, and those that keep the law shall be for greatness and for praise. And it shall come to pass, that he that shall return to Zion, and he that is doing the law, shall be established in Jerusalem, he shall be called holy; every one that is written for eternal life shall see the consolation of Jerusalem.
4:5: And the Lord will create upon every holy place of the mountain of Zion, and upon the place of the house of His Shekinah a cloud of glory; which shall be shadowing over it by day, and a thick cloud and a brightness as of flaming fire by night; because of the excellency of the glory which He has promised to bring upon it, the Shekinah shall be protecting it with a protection.
9:6-7: The prophet said to the house of David, For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given, and He has taken the law upon Himself to keep it. (St. Matt. 5:17.) His name is called from eternity, Wonderful, The Mighty God, who liveth to eternity, The Messiah, whose peace shall be great upon us in His days. The greatness of those who do the law shall be magnified, and to those, that preserve peace. There shall be no end to the throne of David, and of his kingdom, to establish it and to build it in judgment and in righteousness from henceforth, even for ever. By the Word of the Lord of hosts this shall be done.
11:1-2: And a King shall come forth from the sons of Jesse, and from his children’s children the Messiah shall be anointed. (* Or “exalted.”) And there shall dwell upon Him the Spirit of prophecy from before the Lord: the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord.
11:4: But with righteousness shall He judge the poor, and reprove with faithfulness the needy of the earth; and He shall smite the sinners of the earth with the word of His mouth, and with the speech of His lips He shall slay the wicked. (* I have followed here again the text of the Royal Polyglot. In “Walton’s, Buxtorf’s, in Bibl. Magna, and in all the later Jewish editions, we have another interpolation, they add (’Armilom) “Armillus,” by whom the rabbins mean him whom the New Testament calls ” the Antichrist,” who, as they dream, shall slay their expected suffering Messiah, the son of Joseph; but after that, the Messiah, the Son of David, shall slay this Antichrist. (Shir-hashirim Baba, fol. 22, 3. Midrash Ruth, fol. 33,
2. Yalkut Simoni, 2 fol. 66, 4.)
11:6: In the days of the Messiah of Israel peace shall be multiplied in the earth. The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall dwell with the kid; and the calf, and the lion, and the fatling together; and a little sucking child shall be leading them.
(Isaiah 40 & 53, in the Paraphrase, does not offer strong or unique support to the NT, which is surprising.) }}

Commentary on Book of Prophet Isaiah vol. 1, chap. 1-16. John (Jean) Calvin. Translated from Original Latin & compared with French, by Rev. William Pringle. (1852).as.

{{ Preface (by John Calvin): It is customary to make a great number of statements and dissertations about the office of the Prophets. But, in my opinion, the shortest way of treating this subject is to trace the Prophets to the Law, from which they derived their doctrine, like streams from a fountain; for they placed it before them as their rule, so that they may be justly held and declared to be its interpreters, who utter nothing but what is connected with the Law. Now, the Law consists chiefly of three parts: first, the doctrine of life; secondly, threatenings and promises; thirdly, the covenant of grace, which, being founded on Christ, contains within itself all the special promises. As to ceremonies, they were religious exercises which strengthened the attachment of the people to the worship of God and to godliness, and consequently were added to the First Table. The Prophets, therefore, enter more largely into the illustration of doctrine, and explain more fully what is briefly stated in the Two Tables, and lay down what the Lord chiefly requires from us. Next, the threatenings and promises, which Moses had proclaimed in general terms, are applied by them to their own time and minutely described. Lastly, they express more clearly what Moses says more obscurely about Christ and His grace, and bring forward more copious and more abundant proofs of the free Covenant.
To make this matter still more clear, we must go a little farther back, to the Law itself, which the Lord prescribed as a perpetual rule for the Church, to be always in the hands of men, and to be observed by every succeeding age. Perceiving that there was danger lest an ignorant and undisciplined nation should need something more than the doctrine delivered by Moses, and that the nation could scarcely be restrained without the use of a tighter rein, God forbids them to consult magicians or soothsayers, augurs or diviners; enjoins them to be satisfied with His doctrine alone; but at the same time He likewise adds that He will take care that there shall never be wanting a Prophet in Israel. He does this purposely, with the view of meeting an objection which the people might have brought forward, that their condition would be worse than that of the infidels, all of whom had their priests of various orders, their soothsayers, augurs, astrologers, Chaldeans, and such like, whom they had it in their power to visit and consult, but that they would have no one to aid them by his advice in intricate and difficult matters. In order, therefore, to deprive them of every pretence, and to hinder them from polluting themselves by the abominable practices of the Gentiles, God promises that ‘He will raise up Prophets’ (Deut. 18:15), by whom He will make known His will, and who shall faithfully convey the message which He has entrusted to them; so that in future there will be no reason to complain that they are in want of anything. There is an exchange (heterösis) of the plural for the singular number, when he uses the word ‘Prophet’; for although, as it is expressly interpreted by Peter, (Acts 3:22) that passage relates literally and chiefly to Christ, (because He is the Head of the Prophets, and all of them depend on Him for their doctrine, and with one consent point to Him,) yet it relates also to the rest of the Prophets, and includes them under a collective name. When He promised to give them Prophets, by whom He would make known His will and purpose, the Lord commanded the people to rely on their interpretations and doctrine. And yet it was not intended to make any addition to the Law, but to interpret it faithfully, and to sanction its authority. Hence also, when ‘Malachi’ exhorts the people to adhere to the purity of faith and to be steadfast in the doctrine of religion, he says, ‘Remember the law of Moses My servant, which I commanded him in Horeb, for all Israel’ (Mal. 4:3). He reminds them of the Law of God alone, and enjoins them to be satisfied with it. Does Malachi therefore mean that Prophecies should be despised? By no means; but as the Prophecies are appendages of the Law, and are all briefly summed up in the Law, that exhortation was sufficient; for they who understand that summary of doctrine, and its leading points, and carefully observe them, assuredly will not neglect the Prophecies. It would be absurd to boast of attending to the Word, were we to disregard the Divine Interpretations of it; as many persons at the present day impudently boast of attending to the Word, while they cannot at all endure the godly admonitions and reproofs which proceed from the Doctrine of the Word.
Thus when the Prophets inculcate moral duties, they bring forward nothing new, but only explain those parts of the Law which had been misunderstood. For instance, the people thought that they had discharged their duty admirably, when they offered sacrifices and performed the outward services of religion; for the world measures God by its own standard, and renders to Him a carnal and counterfeited worship. The Prophets sharply reprove this, and show that all ceremonies are of no avail, when sincerity of heart is wanting, and that God is worshipped by believing on Him, and by actually calling on His name. This had indeed been plainly enough declared by the Law; but it was necessary that it should be earnestly inculcated and frequently brought to their remembrance, and likewise that there should be an exposure of that hypocrisy with which men cloak themselves under the guise of ceremonies. As to the Second Table, the Prophets drew their exhortations from it, for the purpose of showing that men ought to refrain from all in justice, violence, and deceit. All that they do, therefore, is nothing else than keeping up the people’s obedience to the Law. In threatenings and promises, the Prophets have something peculiar; for what Moses had stated in general terms they minutely describe. They have likewise visions which peculiarly belong to them, by which the Lord revealed future events, in order to apply the promises and threatenings to the use of the people, and to declare more fully the will of God. Moses threatens, “God will pursue thee in battle; thou shalt be harassed by enemies abroad and by internal quarrels at home. Thy life shall hang as it were on a thread; thou shalt ‘tremble at the rustling of a leaf’,” (Lev. 26:86) and such like. On the other hand, the Prophets say, “God will arm the Assyrians against thee, He will call for the Egyptians by a hiss, He will raise up the Chaldeans, Israel shall be carried into captivity, the kingdom of Israel shall be destroyed, the enemy shall lay waste Jerusalem and burn the temple.” Similar observations might be made about the promises. Moses says, “If thou keep the commandments, the Lord will bless thee;” and then gives a general description of blessings. But the Prophets enter into detail. “This is the blessing which the Lord will bestow upon thee.” Again, by Moses the Lord promises in this manner, –”Though thou be scattered and driven to the utmost parts of the world, yet will I bring thee, back.” (Deut. 30:4.) But by the Prophets he says, “Though I drive thee into Babylon, yet after seventy years (70) will I restore thee.”
(*In this comprehensive view of the ‘writings of Moses, as compared with those of the later Prophets, our author (Calvin) does not quote the exact words of the sacred writers. More than one phrase shows that he had chiefly in his eye the promises and threatenings detailed in Lev. 26 and Deut. 28.–Ed.)
As to the free Covenant which God established with the Patriarchs in ancient times, the Prophets are much more distinct, and contribute more to strengthen the people’s attachment to it; for when they wish to comfort the godly, they always remind them of that covenant, and represent to them the coming of Christ, who was both the Foundation of the covenant and the Bond of the mutual relation between God and the people, and to whom therefore the whole extent of the promises must be understood to refer. Whoever understands this will easily learn what we ought to seek in the Prophets, and what is the purpose of their writings; and this is all that seemed necessary to be stated here on that subject. Hence we may learn in what manner the Doctrine of the Word should be handled, and that we ought to imitate the Prophets, who conveyed the Doctrine of the Law in such a manner as to draw from it advices, reproofs, threatenings, and consolations, which they applied to the present condition of the people. For although we do not daily receive a revelation of what we are to utter as a prediction, yet it is of high importance to us to compare the behaviour of the men of our own age with the behaviour of that ancient people; and from their histories and examples we ought to make known the judgments of God; such as, that what He formerly punished He will also punish with equal severity in our own day, for He is always like Himself. Such wisdom let godly teachers acquire, if they would wish to handle the Doctrine of the Prophets with any good result. So much for the Prophets in general. To come to the Prophet Isaiah, the inscription plainly shows who he was, and at what time he uttered those prophecies; for it mentions the name of his father, Amoz, who is supposed to have been the brother of Azariah (Uzziah), king of Judah. Hence it is evident that Isaiah was of royal descent, and on this point all the ancients are agreed; and yet neither his birth nor his near relationship to the king, (for the Jews assert that he was the father-in-law of Manasseh,) could prevent him from being slain through dislike of the word; and no greater regard was paid to him than if he had been a person of humble rank, or had belonged to the lowest condition of society. The time when he prophesied is here pointed out by mentioning the names of the kings. Some think that he began to prophesy towards the end of the reign of King Uzziah. They found their conjecture on the vision related in the sixth chapter, by which, Isaiah tells us, he was confirmed in his office. But that conjecture rests on very slight grounds, as will be shown at the proper place. From this description it plainly appears that he prophesied during the reign of Uzziah; and on that point I cannot entertain any doubt. However this may be, it is evident that, at the very least, he prophesied more than sixty-four (64) years; for Jotham reigned sixteen years (16), (2nd Kings 15:33 😉 Ahaz as many (16) (2nd Kings 16:3), Hezekiah twenty-nine (29), (2nd Kings 18:2). This amounts to sixty-one (61) years. Add the years that he prophesied during the reign of Uzziah, and afterwards during the reign of Manasseh, by whom he was put to death; and there will be, at least, sixty-four (64) years during which Isaiah continued, without interruption, to discharge the office of a Prophet. There is indeed a highly probable conjecture, amounting almost to certainty, that he prophesied ten (10+) years beyond the period which has now been stated; but as this does not clearly rest on historical proof, I shall not debate the matter any farther…… A question may arise, Was it Isaiah himself, or some other person, that wrote this inscription to his Prophecy? Not one of the commentators whose writings I have hitherto perused answers this question. For my own part, though I cannot fully satisfy my mind, yet I shall tell what I think. The Prophets, after having publicly addressed the people, drew up a brief abstract of their discourse, and placed it on the gates of the Temple, that all might see and become more fully acquainted with the prophecy. When it had been exposed for a sufficient number of days, it was removed by the ministers of the Temple, and placed in the Treasury, that it might remain as a permanent record. In this way, it is probable, the books of the Prophets were compiled; and this may be inferred from the second chapter of the book of Habakkuk, if it be properly examined, and likewise from the eighth chapter of this Prophecy (Hab. 2:2; Is. 8:1). Those who have carefully and judiciously perused the Prophets will agree with me in thinking that their discourses have not always been arranged in a regular order, but that the roll was made up as occasion served. That these writings have come down to us through the agency of the Priests, whose duty it was to transmit the prophecies to posterity, (though the Priests were often the bitterest enemies of the Prophets,) is a remarkable instance of the providence of God.
(*In this comprehensive view of the `writings of Moses’, as compared with those of the later Prophets, our author (Calvin) does not quote the exact words of the sacred writers. More than one phrase shows that he had chiefly in his eye the promises and threatenings detailed in Lev. 26 and Deut. 28.–Ed.) [We might also remark that Calvin appears as he aged to become more scholarly & academic in his commentaries; becoming, as well, more proficient in Hebrew as he already was in Greek & Latin.]

Chapter 1: (English & Latin)
1. The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz, which he saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem, in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah.
1. Visio Isaise filii Amoz, quam vidit super ludam et lerusalem in diebus Usie, loiham, Achaz, Ezechiae, regum luda.

2. Hear, O heavens; and give ear, 0 earth : for the Lord hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me.
2. Audite caeli, et ausculta terra; quia sic Dominus loquitur, Filios educavi et sustuli, ipsi tamen scelerate egerunt in me, (‘vel, rebelldnmt [rebellerunt] contra me’.)

1. ‘The vision of Isaiah’. The Hebrew word (chzon), (‘chazon’) though it is derived from (chzh), (‘chazah’) ‘he saw’, and literally is ‘a vision’, yet commonly signifies ‘a prophecy’. For when the Scripture makes mention of special ‘visions’ which were exhibited to the prophets in a symbolical manner, when it was the will of God that some extraordinary event should receive confirmation, in such cases the word

(mr’h), (‘mar-eh’) ‘vision’, is employed. Not to multiply quotations, in a passage which relates ‘to prophecy’ in general the writer says, that ‘the Word of God was precious, because (chzon), (‘chazon’) vision, was of rare occurrence’ (1st Sam. 3:1). A little afterwards, the word (mr’h) (‘mar-ah’) is employed to denote the ‘vision’ by which God revealed Himself to Samuel (1st Sam. 3:15). In distinguishing between two ordinary methods of revelation, ‘a vision’ and ‘a dream’, Moses speaks of ‘a vision’ (mr’h) as the special method (Numb. 12:6). It is evident, however, that ‘the seer’, (hr’h) (‘haroeh’), was the name formerly given to prophets (1st Sam. 9:9), but by way of excellence, because God revealed to them His counsel in a familiar manner. ‘Concerning Judah’. Were we to render it ‘to Judah’, it would make little difference, for the preposition (‘l) (‘al’) has both significations, and the meaning will still be, that everything contained in this book belongs strictly to ‘Judah and Jerusalem.’ For though many things are scattered through it which relate to Babylon, Egypt, Tyre, and other cities and countries, yet it was not necessary that those places should be expressly enumerated in the title; for nothing more was required than to announce the principal subject, and to explain to whom Isaiah was chiefly sent, that is, ‘to Jerusalem and the Jews’. Everything else that is contained in his prophecies may be said to have been accidental and foreign to the subject…… ‘Judah and Jerusalem’. He takes ‘Judah’ for the whole nation, and ‘Jerusalem’ for the chief city in the kingdom; for he does not make a distinction between ‘Jerusalem’ and ‘the Jews’, but mentions it, by way of eminence (kat exochën), as the metropolis, just as if a prophet of the present day were to address the kingdom of France, and Paris, which is the metropolis of the nation. And this was of great importance, that the inhabitants of Jerusalem might not hold themselves exempted, as if they were free from all blame, or placed above the laws on account of their high rank, and thus might send the meaner sort of people to be instructed by homely prophets. It is a mistake, however, to suppose that ‘Jerusalem’ is mentioned separately, on account of its being situated in the tribe of Benjamin; for the half of that tribe, which was subject to the posterity of David, is included under the name of ‘Judah’.
2. ‘Hear, 0 heavens’. Isaiah has here imitated Moses, as all the prophets are accustomed to do; and there cannot be a doubt that he alludes to that illustrious Song of Moses, in which, at the very commencement, he calls ‘heaven and earth’ to witness against the people : ‘Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the words of my mouth’.(Deut. 32:1.) This is unquestionably a very severe protestation; for it conveys this meaning, that both turn to the elements which are dumb and devoid of feeling, because men have now no ears, or are bereft of all their senses. The Prophet, therefore, speaks of it as an extraordinary and monstrous thing, which ought to strike even the senseless elements with amazement. For what could be more shocking than that the Israelites should revolt from God, who had bestowed on them so many benefits? Those who think that by ‘heaven’ are meant angels, and by ‘earth’ men, weaken too much the import of those words, and thus destroy all their force and majesty. Almost all the commentators consider the clause to end with the words, ‘for the Lord hath spoken’; as if the Prophet had intimated, that as soon as the Lord opens His sacred mouth, all ought to be attentive to hear His voice. And certainly this meaning has the appearance of being more full; but the context demands that we connect the words in a different manner, so as to make the word ‘hear’ to refer, not in a general manner to any discourse whatever, but only to the expostulation which immediately follows. The meaning therefore is, Hear the complaint which the Lord brings forward, ‘I have nourished and brought up children’, &c. For He relates a prodigy, which fills Him with such horror that He is compelled to summon dead creatures as witnesses, contrary to nature. }}

Earlier Prophecies of Isaiah, (Chaps. 1-39). Joseph A. Alexander, D.D., Prof. Theol. Sem., Princeton, NJ. (1846).gs. (See also the other editions before his death in 1860 & editions afterwards, 3rd edition in 1868 & 1870. I regret not finding his work on the Psalms in my previous Chapter III.).gs.

{{ Preface: “to avoid the presumption of knowing everything as well as the disgrace of knowing nothing.” “‘prophecy’…the essential idea, running through the whole Hebrew usage of the verb and noun, is that of (‘speaking by’) ‘inspiration’…’not prediction'”. Introduction: “This naturally leads us from the theoretical idea of a prophet as a person “speaking by divine authority and inspiration, to the practical consideration of the end or purpose aimed at in the whole prophetic institution. This was not merely the relief of private doubts, much less the gratification of private curiosity. The gift of prophecy was closely connected with the general design of the old economy. The foundation of the system was the Law, as recorded in the five books of Moses. In that, as an epitome, the rest of the Old Testament is contained, at least as to its seminal principles. The single book of Deuteronomy, and that the very one with which critical caprice in modern times has taken the most liberties, exhibits specimens of every style employed by the sacred writers elsewhere. Still more remarkably is this true of the whole Pentateuch, in reference not merely to its manner but its matter, as comprising virtually all that is developed and applied in the revelations of the later books. To make this development and application was the business of the prophets. The necessity of such an institution was no afterthought. The law itself provides for it. The promise of a prophet like unto Moses, in the eighteenth (18th) of Deuteronomy, according to one of its most plausible interpretations, comprehends the promise of a constant succession of inspired men, so far as this should be required by the circumstances of the people, of which succession Christ himself was to be the greatest A kindred question, but distinct from this, is
that respecting the mental and bodily condition of the prophet, under the influence of inspiration. Whatever we imagine to have been the mode of the communication, whether visual or verbal, in the general or in any given case, it may still be made a question whether the prophet, in receiving such communications, was as fully in possession of his faculties, and in the exercise of self-control, as at any other time; or whether, on the contrary, he was in what the Greeks called (ekstasis), a state of passive subjection to a higher power, holding his own faculties in temporary but complete abeyance. It is well known that the prophets and diviners of the heathen world, during their seasons of pretended inspiration, exhibited the outward signs of violent excitement often amounting to insanity. That this was not regarded as an accidental circumstance, but as a natural and necessary sign of inspiration, may be gathered from the etymological affinity between the Greek words (mantis) and (mania) or (mainomai). The early Fathers uniformly speak of this maniacal excitement as characteristic of the heathen inspiration, whether real or pretended, and describe the inspiration of the Hebrew prophets as distinguished by the opposite peculiarities of calmness, self-possession, and active intelligence. This is distinctly and repeatedly asserted by Chrysostom, Augustin, and Jerome, who ascribes the contrary opinion to Montanus and his followers. In our own day it has been revived, not only by Gesenius and others, who deny the real inspiration of the prophets, but by Hengstenberg, who steadfastly maintains it. In the first part of his Christology, he undertakes to explain the disregard of chronological relations by the prophets, and their fragmentary manner of exhibiting a subject, from the ecstatic state in which they uttered their predictions. This opinion has not only been attacked and ridiculed by later writers of a very different school, but disavowed by others of the same school, especially by Hävernick, who in his Introduction to the Old Testament (§ 199) argues at length in favour of the doctrine that the mental condition of the prophets in receiving their divine communications cannot have been a morbid one. The most serious objections to the theory of Hengstenberg, besides its opposition to the common judgment of the church in every age, and its apparent derogation from the dignity of the prophetic character, are, the want of any clear support in Scripture, and the inutility of such a supposition to attain the end at which he aims, and which may just as well be answered by supposing that the peculiarities ascribed to the extraordinary state of the inspired writers, were directly produced by something negative or positive in the divine communication itself. If they bring remote events into juxtaposition, the simplest explanation of the fact is, not that they were in a state which rendered them incapable of estimating chronological distinctions, but that these distinctions were withheld from them, or that although acquainted with them they intentionally overlooked them and combined the objects in another mode and on another principle. This view of the matter is entirely sufficient to explain what Peter says (1st Pet. 1:12) without resorting to a supposition which, unless absolutely necessary, is to be avoided as of doubtful tendency (after a long review of textual criticism before the 18th century he comes to Lowth’s influence) This momentous change was undesignedly promoted by Lowth’s ingenious and successful effort to direct attention to Isaiah’s character and value as a poet. Believing justly that the exposition of the Prophet’s writings had been hindered and perplexed by a failure to appreciate the figurative dress in which his thoughts were clothed, the learned and accomplished prelate undertook to remedy the evil by presenting, in the strongest light and in extreme relief, this single aspect of Isaiah’s writings. In attempting this, he was unconsciously led to overcolour and exaggerate the real points of difference between the ordinary prose of history or legislation and the lively elevated prose of prophecy, applying to the latter all the distinctive terms which immemorial usage had appropriated to the strictly metrical productions of the Greek and Roman poets. This error led to several unfortunate results, some of which will be considered in another place. The only one that need be mentioned here is the apparent countenance afforded by Lowth’s theories and phraseology to the contemporary efforts of the earlier neologists in Germany to blot out the distinction between poetry and prophecy, between the ideal inspiration of the Muses and the real inspiration of the Holy Ghost. This was the more to be regretted, as there does not seem to be the slightest reason for suspecting that the Bishop had departed in the least from the established doctrine of his own church and of every other, with respect to the divine authority and origin of this or of the other sacred books. That Lowth, by his unwarrantable changes of the text, and his exclusive disproportionate protrusion of the mere poetical element in scripture, gave an impulse to a spirit of more daring innovation in succeeding writers, is not more certain than the fact, that this abuse of his hypotheses, or rather this legitimate deduction of their more remote but unavoidable results, was altogether unforeseen. In ably and honestly attempting to correct a real error, and to make good an injurious defect, in the theory and practice of interpretation, he unwittingly afforded a new instance of the maxim, that the remedy may possibly be worse than the disease. By the German writers, these new notions were soon pushed to an extreme. Besides the total change of phraseology already mentioned, some went so far as to set down the most express predictions as mere poetical descriptions of events already past. From this extreme position, occupied by Eichhorn and some others, DeWette and Gesenius receded, as they did from the critical extravagance of multiplying authors and reducing the ancient prophecies to fragments…. The successive writers of this modern school, however they may differ as to minor points among themselves, prove their identity of principle by holding that ‘there cannot be distinct prophetic foresight of the distant future’. This doctrine is avowed more explicitly by some (as by Hitzig and Knobel) than by others (as Gesenius and Ewald); but it is really the (proton pseudos [false premise, 1st lie in logic]) of the whole school, and the only bond of unity between them. There is also a difference in the application of the general rule to specific cases. Where the obvious exposition of a passage would convert it into a distinct prediction, Gesenius and Hitzig usually try to show that the words really relate to something near at hand, and within the reach of a sagacious human foresight, while Ewald and Umbreit in the same case choose rather to convert it into a vague anticipation. But they all agree in this, that where the prophecy can be explained away in neither of these methods, it must be regarded as a certain proof of later date. This is the real ground, on which ch. 40-66 are referred to the period of the exile, when the conquests of Cyrus and the fall of Babylon might be foreseen without a special revelation. This is the fundamental doctrine of the modern neological interpreters, the ‘foregone conclusion’, to which all exegetical results must yield or be accommodated, and in support of which the arbitrary processes before described must be employed for the discovery of arguments, philological, historical, rhetorical and moral, against the genuineness of the passage, which might just as easily be used in other cases, where they are dispensed with, simply because they are not needed for the purpose of destroying an explicit proof of inspiration. From this description of the neological interpretation there are two important practical deductions. The first and clearest is, that all conclusions founded, or necessarily depending, on this false assumption, must of course go for nothing with those who do not hold it, and especially with those who are convinced that it is false. Whoever is persuaded, independently of these disputed questions, that there may be such a thing as a prophetic inspiration, including the gift of prescience and prediction, must of course be unaffected by objections to its exercise in certain cases, resting on the general negation of that which he knows to be true. The other inference, less obvious but for that very reason more important, is that the false assumption now in question must exert and does exert an influence extending far beyond the conclusions directly and avowedly drawn from it. He who rejects a given passage of Isaiah, because it contains definite predictions of a future too remote from the times in which he lived to be the object of ordinary human foresight, will of course be led to justify this condemnation by specific proofs drawn from the diction, style, or idiom of the passage, its historical or archaeological allusions, its rhetorical character, its moral tone, or its religious spirit. On the discovery and presentation of such proofs, the previous assumption, which they are intended to sustain, cannot fail to have a warping influence. The writer cannot but be tempted to give prominence to trifles, to extenuate difficulties, and to violate consistency by making that a proof in one case, which he overlooks in others, or positively sets aside as inadmissible or inconclusive. This course of things is not only natural but real; it may not only be expected ‘a priori’, but established ‘ex eventu’, as will be apparent from a multitude of cases in the course of the ensuing exposition. All that need here be added is the general conclusion, that the indirect effects of such a principle are more to be suspected than its immediate and avowed results, and that there cannot be a graver practical error than the one already mentioned of obsequiously following these writers as authoritative guides, except when they explicitly apply their (proton pseudos) as a test of truth. The only safe and wise course is to treat them, not as judges, but as witnesses, or advocates, and even special pleaders; to weigh their dicta carefully, and always with a due regard to what is known to be the unsound basis of their criticism and exegesis. That this discretion may be vigilantly exercised, without foregoing the advantages arising from the modern philological improvements, is attested by the actual example of such men as Hengstenberg and Havernick and others, trained in the modern German school of philology, and fully able to avail themselves of its advantages, while at the same time they repudiate its arbitrary principles in favour of those held by older writers, which may now be considered as more sure than ever, because founded on a broader scientific basis, and because their strength has been attested by resistance to assaults as subtle and as violent as they can ever be expected to encounter. Some of the critical and hermeneutical principles thus established may be here exhibited, as furnishing the basis upon which the following exposition of Isaiah is constructed }}

[Alexander’s entire work is helpful & instructional; he surveys the entire field of the critics, & he shows the traditions, myths, & theories, old & new in light of their relations to Scripture; carefully & clearly viewing those which find some inference & suggestion or possibility from the Text, in contrast to those that are mere fiction, fabrications, & malicious subversions; & all this with precise logic. The Reader who values Scripture as truth will be rewarded in reading it.]

Expository Commentary on Book of Isaiah. Work in Progress. James E. Smith. (2005). [Excellent work.] Introduction: “Ten major units ( 10 Books) have been identified in the Book: (*Adapted from B.A. Copass, IPP. (Southern Baptist) [Adapted originally from JB Tidwell, see below.])
1. Book of Mingled Rebukes & Promises (chs 1-6).
2. Book of Immanuel (chs 7-12).
3. Book of Burdens (chs 13-23).
4. First Book of General Judgment (chs 24-27).
5. Book of Woes (chs 28-33).
6. Second Book of General Judgment (chs 34-35).
7. Book of Hezekiah (chs 36-39).
8. Book of Cyrus (chs 40-48).
9. Book of the Suffering Servant (chs 49-57).
10. Book of Future Glory (chs 58-66).

Bible: Book by Book: Manual for Outline Study of Bible by Books. Josiah Blake Tidwell (1916).
I. Discourses Concerning Judah & Israel, (Chs. 1-12).
1. Some Promises & Rebukes, (Chs. 1-6).
2. Book of Immanuel, (Chs. 7-12).
II. Prophesies against Foreign Nations, (Chs. 13-23).
III. Judgment of World & Triumph of God’s People, (Chs. 24-27).
1. Judgments. (Ch. 24).
2. Triumph. (Chs. 25-27).
IV. Judah’s Relation to Egypt & Assyria, (Chs. 28-32).
V. Great Deliverance of Jerusalem, (Chs. 33-39).
VI. Book of Consolation, (Chs. 40-66).
1. God’s Preparation for certain Deliverance, (Chs. 40-48).
2. Jehovah’s Servant, Messiah, will bring this Deliverance. (Chs. 49-57).
3. Restoration of Zion & Messianic Kingdom, & Promises & Warnings for Future. (Chs. 58-66).

Book of Prophet Isaiah Translated from Original Hebrew; Commentary Critical, Philological, Exegetical; Introductory Dissertation, etc. Rev, E. Henderson, D.Ph. (1840).gs.

{{ Preface: On one point, it is necessary specially to bespeak the indulgent consideration of my readers, the position which I have taken respecting the future restoration of the Jews to Palestine. That such a restoration is taught in Scripture, I had been accustomed to regard as more than questionable, how firmly soever I believed in their future conversion to the faith of Jesus. On examining, however, the different prophecies of the Old Testament, which treat of a return of that people, I have had the conviction forced upon my mind, that while the greater number decidedly apply to the restoration which took place on the capture of Babylon by Cyrus, there are others which cannot, without violence, be thus applied; but which, being, upon any just principle of interpretation, equally incapable of application to the affairs of the Gentile church, must be referred to events yet future in Jewish history. In this class I particularly include the last six chapters of Isaiah, which immediately follow the remarkable prediction respecting the future conversion of the Jews, at the close of the fifty-ninth. Not the most distant allusion is made throughout these chapters to any circumstances connected with the deliverance from Babylon; while, on the other hand, they contain a distinct recognition of various things belonging to the New Dispensation, –such as the Divine Mission of the Messiah, the abolition of the Jewish worship, the calling of the Gentiles, the rejection of the Jews, and certain features of their present dispersion. At the same time, there is such a marked distinction uniformly kept up between the persons spoken of and the Gentiles; such an appropriation to their condition of language elsewhere only used of the natural posterity of Abraham; such an obvious description of the desolation of Palestine; and such express mention of a restored land, mountains, vineyards, fields, houses, flocks, &c. which cannot be figuratively understood, that, with no hermeneutical propriety, can the scene be placed in the Gentile world, or regarded as exhibiting the state of Gentile Christianity. That the Jews shall cease to exist as a distinct race on their incorporation into the Christian church, the Bible nowhere teaches; nor is such an event probable in the nature of things. But, if they shall exist as believing Jews, on what principle can it be maintained that they may not live in Palestine, just as believing Britons do in Britain, believing Americans in America, &c.? Christianity does not destroy nationality, nor require an amalgamation of the different races of mankind, however it may insist that, in a spiritual point of view, all its subjects constitute but one nation and one people, holy and peculiar –the sons and daughters of the Lord God Almighty. If the Jews had received the Messiah, when preached to them by the Apostles, there is no reason to suppose, that they would have been expelled from their own land; so that whatever admissions of Gentiles there might have been into their community, it would still, in the main, have been made up of Jews, as in fact, “the churches of God” were, “which in Judea were in Christ Jesus.” Nor is there anything in what I conceive to be the doctrine of Scripture on this subject, at all at variance with its representations respecting the spiritual nature of the kingdom of Christ. The Jews, when converted, will be required to conform, in every point, to the laws of that kingdom, precisely as the Gentiles are on their becoming subject to its Head and Lord. Not the slightest hint is given, that any forms of ecclesiastical polity, or any modes of worship will obtain among the restored Jewish converts, different from those instituted by the Apostles. As to the degree of temporal prosperity promised to them, it appears to have special respect to the long continued circumstances of adversity in which they have lived; and may perhaps, after all, differ but little from that which will be enjoyed by the members of the Divine kingdom generally, during the happy period of the Millennium.”

Introduction: Section I: Isaiah’s Life & Times: …..”During the space of time occupied by the ministry of the prophet, the Jews were more or less affected by the influence of foreign states, some of which were the most powerful empires of antiquity. In their immediate vicinity were the rival kingdom of Israel, the Syrian and Tyrian powers, the Philistines, Moabites, Edomites, and Arabians, by whose warlike demonstrations, sudden incursions, and victorious enterprises, they were greatly annoyed, and frequently brought to the verge of ruin. In the ancient kingdom of the Pharaohs, at this time successively under the rule of the nineteenth (19th) of Manetho’s dynasties, the Dodecharchy, and the dynasty of Psammeticus, they had a powerful neighbour, to the shield of whose protection they constantly looked for safety when threatened by the most formidable of their assailants –Assyria (*Isa. 30:1-17; 31). This empire, the capital of which was Nineveh, was, so far as Jewish affairs are concerned, not the ancient power of that name, supposed to have been founded by Nimrod, but that founded on the death of Sardanapalus, by Arbaces the Mede, about the seventh year of Uzziah, B.C. 804. The Assyrian monarchs mentioned in Scripture as having invaded Palestine, are Pul, Tiglathpileser, Shalmanezer, Sargon, Sennacherib, and Ezar-haddon. Their sceptre was one of almost unlimited sway, being wielded from Persia to the Mediterranean, and from the Caspian Sea to the Persian Gulf. Yet, not satisfied with this extensive empire, Sargon and Sennacherib projected the conquest of Egypt, the mighty expedition undertaken with a view to effect which occupies a conspicuous place on the pages of our prophet, both on account of its threatening aspect, and the Divine interposition by which it was terminated. The Chaldean power in Babylon, by which, in conjunction with the Medes, the Assyrian empire was overthrown, now began to raise its head, and for a time exerted a mighty influence over the countries of hither Asia, and, among the rest, on Judea. To this empire, however, and to that of Persia, by which, in its turn, it was subverted, no purely historical reference is made by Isaiah, excepting in chap. 23:13. In like manner, Rome, which was founded in his days, is only recognized in the way of prophetical anticipation, in so far as her history was to have a bearing on the church of God; and is presented to our view under the indefinite and general names of “The West,” and “The Maritime Lands” in that direction. From the mount of inspired vision the prophet surveys the surrounding nations; and, like a faithful watchman, gives warning of each, describes some of their more striking characteristics, and predicts their final destruction. Contemporary with Isaiah flourished the prophets Jonah, Hosea, and Micah, between which last and him there are some remarkable points of resemblance.”
Section II: Authenticity & Integrity of Text: …..”It having become fashionable to break up the writings of an ancient author into distinct parts, and to dwell upon the differences in point of style, &c. which appeared to exist between one part and another, the same process was resorted to in the treatment of the Sacred Authors, more especially in that of Isaiah, whose book, being of greater extent, and comprising a greater variety of subjects than that of any other prophet, afforded more enlarged scope for the exercise of critical acumen. To this must be added the skeptical spirit originally generated by Spinoza, and afterwards propagated by our English deists, the influence of which has been extensively felt on the Continent, and nowhere more powerfully than in the land of the Reformation…….. In diametrical opposition to all such statements of speculative critics stands the inspired testimony of the Apostle Peter: (*2nd Epist. 1:21) “’Prophecy came not in old time old by the will of man, but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost’.” It is impossible for words more strongly to deny the origination of the predictions of the Hebrew seers in the simple operation of their mental faculties, or more positively to vindicate for it that supernatural influence by which the Spirit of God revealed to them things to come. They merely gave utterance to what they were borne onward by a Divine impulse to announce. And the same Apostle distinctly recognizes such influence as enabling the prophets to predict the distant sufferings and glory of the Messiah: “Searching what, or what manner of time ‘the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand’ the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow” (*1st Epist 1:11). Our Lord himself likewise declares, that “the prophets” had “’written’ concerning” him’ (*Luke 24:44.) –a declaration which most especially applies to Isaiah, whose writings, according to the same Divine authority, contain express prophecies of Him and His kingdom. But, if these holy men were the subjects of an influence exerted upon their minds by the Omniscient Spirit, to whose eye the whole of the future, in the most minute of its existences and modifications, was equally present with the entire range of then existent being, what incongruity is there in believing, that the passages in our prophet which contain detailed descriptions of events that were to transpire in the history of the Jewish nation long after his time, actually proceeded from his pen? What greater impediment can there be in the way of exercising such belief, than in believing that he “saw the glory of Christ and spake of him?” So long as we confine our ideas of prophecy within the sphere of purely human activity, we must necessarily deny, as contrary to all experience, the ability to descry and predict contingent future events, such as those described in the disputed portions of Isaiah must have been to him and all who lived in his time; but no sooner do we candidly yield our minds to the authoritative claims of the Scripture doctrine of prophetic inspiration, than the absurdity vanishes, and all is plain, consistent with itself, and, in every respect, worthy of God.” It then becomes manifest, that, to announce the conquest of Babylon, and the consequent deliverance of the captive Jews by Cyrus, at a period when the Assyrian power was yet dominant, when the Babylonian state was only in its germ, and the Median empire had no existence; to foretell the destruction of Tyre by Nebuchadnezzar one hundred and fifty years prior to the event; to point out the birth, character, sufferings, death, resurrection, and glorious reign of our Saviour, with the utmost minuteness, seven centuries beforehand; and to describe events which are still future in the history of the Jewish people, were all equally possible and equally easy. In every case the prophet spoke as the Spirit gave him utterance. It deserves special notice, that in the very portion of the book which has been most violently attacked, there occur passages in which the Divine origin of prophecy is the subject of direct and unanswerable appeal ”
Section IV: Principles of Prophetical Interpretations: “It is manifest from the widely different, and even contradictory interpretations which have been, and still are given of the prophetic records, that we are far from having arrived at any settled, solid, or satisfactory principles on which to rest their exegesis. Many causes might doubtless be assigned for this want of agreement, but the following, there is reason to believe, are some of the principal: –First, the want of a familiar acquaintance with the distinctive characteristics of prophetical language. Instead of making proper allowance for the highly poetical character of the tropes and figures with which it abounds, by which objects are frequently magnified or diminished beyond the reality, and carefully endeavouring to ascertain the exact meaning of its symbols, interpreters have too much treated it as if it were plain or ordinary prose composition. Figurative terms and phrases have been taken in their literal import, and applied to the objects which they primarily designate; while others, which are introduced merely for the sake of embellishing the style, vividly delineating the objects, and thus heightening the effect, have had separate and important meanings attached to them, as if each had been designed to convey a distinct portion of prophetical truth. All conceivable aspects of a particular image have been brought out, and invested with a corresponding circumstantial detail of meaning in their supposed bearing upon the subject of the prophecy. And few, even of those who admit the principle, that the writings of the prophets are to be interpreted with due regard to the claims of poetic diction, are found to carry it out with anything like uniform consistency. Another cause of lax and unstable interpretation is a proneness to regard prophecies as strictly parallel in point of subject, in which the same particular terms or modes of expression are employed. Important as verbal parallels must ever be viewed, still it is chiefly with respect to their subserviency to the purposes of philological elucidation that their value is to be appreciated. In innumerable instances the identical words are used, while the subjects treated of have no affinity whatever with each other. To transfer, therefore, what is said in one passage to the matter contained in another, simply on the ground of some degree of verbal identity, without at all inquiring whether there be any real agreement as to persons, nations, events, &c., must necessarily be productive of the grossest perversion of Divine truth. By jumbling prophecies together which ought to have been kept perfectly distinct, the Spirit of God is forced to put a construction upon His own words totally different from that which He intended they should bear. The meaning of prophecy has likewise been greatly obscured, by the propensity of most commentators to indulge in mystical, or spiritual modes of interpretation. Not satisfied with the obvious literal application, they endeavour to elicit more recondite or spiritual senses. To abide by the simple import of a passage, if that import be temporal or earthly in its aspect, is deemed not only meagre and confined, but carnal, and unworthy of the Spirit of inspiration. Accordingly another construction is superinduced upon it, which is supposed to be richer and more dignified in itself, and better fitted to promote edification. If these writers had merely deduced spiritual inferences from such temporal predictions, or made observations upon them for purposes of godly improvement, they would have conferred a benefit upon their readers; but the effect of their applying them in such a way as to convey the idea, that they are giving the mind of the Spirit, is to destroy all certainty of interpretation, to throw open the Scriptures to the inroads of imagination and caprice, and, by invalidating a very considerable portion of the evidence which prophecy furnishes of the Divine authority of the Bible, to pave the way for the spread of skepticism and infidelity. To such a mode of interpretation may justly be applied the admirable remark of Hooker, “There is nothing more dangerous than this licentious and deluding art, which changeth the meaning of words, as alchymy doth or would do the substance of metals, maketh of anything what it listeth, and bringeth in the end all truth to nothing” (* Ecclesiastical Polity, Book v. sect. 59). Nearly allied to this method is the theory of a double sense of prophecy, which has also been very extensively adopted. While it is granted by those who advocate this theory, that many of the predictions of the Hebrew seers have a lower or temporal sense, i.e. that they treat of persons and circumstances in the history of the Jews and the surrounding nations, it is maintained that, over and above this, they were intended to teach certain truths respecting the person, people, kingdom, and enemies of Christ. According to this view of the subject, in interpreting prophecy we are to look for a twofold accomplishment: first, one that is temporal, and then another corresponding to it that is spiritual. We may primarily interpret of the inferior object whatever in the prediction is found susceptible of being applied to it; but having done this, we are, by means of analogy, to find out some higher object which it is supposed to resemble or prefigure, and to this we are to apply it in its secondary and plenary sense. To this theory it may justly be objected, that it is unnecessary, unsatisfactory, and unwarranted…. One additional source of divarication in the interpretation of prophecy to which reference must be made, is the adoption of favourite hypotheses or systems, to which everything is made to bend, how far-fetched soever may be the exposition. Certain aspects of the times; political, ecclesiastical, or party views; peculiar notions respecting the whole scheme of prophecy, or some insulated part of it; in short, any opinions that strongly bias the mind, and lead it to regard all subjects only in the supposed relation in which they stand to them, must necessarily exert a pernicious influence on prophetical exegesis. On the neologian mode of interpretation, which entirely sets aside all prophecy strictly so called, it would be superfluous to remark, since it can only be approved by those whose minds are under the unhappy influence of the same infidel principles by which it is engendered. Examples might have been given in illustration of the different methods just adverted to, but they would occupy more space than can here be afforded. The reader will find them in abundance in almost every commentary, and in other works on prophecy…….. The language of prophecy, being in many respects peculiar, requires to be studied with great care, and to be interpreted with the utmost sobriety and caution. Besides much that is simple and plain, it exhibits most of the characteristics belonging to the highest species of Oriental poetry: abounding in pictorial, figurative, metaphorical, symbolical, and parabolical modes of representation. Its imagery is luxuriant, bold, sublime, glowing, and highly coloured. Its figures are of every variety. Its metaphors, elegant and beautiful, are borrowed from almost every object within the compass of the visible and invisible worlds. Its symbols are splendid, striking, and sometimes terrific. Its personifications are daring and majestic. Its whole strain is admirably adapted to excite attention, create and keep alive an interest in the subjects, and to produce those impressions which are in harmony with its nature and design. It is likewise remarkable for its concinnity, terseness, and brevity, its bold ellipses, and the frequent abrupt changes of person, gender, and tense. With all these particulars, the interpreter must render himself familiar. He must not only investigate the primary and secondary significations of words, determine the meaning of the phrases, the nature of the syntax, and the development of the entire sense, but distinguish between the plain and the figurative in the style, divesting what is figurative of the imagery with which it is adorned, and thus bringing out the simple ideas designed to be conveyed; yet, withal, paying due attention to the emphasis or force given to them by such figurative diction. And, in order that he may do this with the greater certainty, he must take his position in the midst of the same world of poetic images in which the prophets lived, and make himself master of the entire system of prophetic imagery which they have employed……. Much of the obscurity which has been ascribed to prophecy is purely subjective. It exists, not in the predictions themselves, but in those who come to the study of them. If we have not rendered ourselves familiar with the characteristics of the prophetic style, the history of the times, the manners, customs, and modes of thinking of Oriental nations, and a variety of other topics which such study requires, it is vain to expect that all should be perspicuous and plain. Numerous terms, phrases, and allusions, which must have been perfectly intelligible to those whom the prophets addressed, will necessarily appear obscure to us. Nor can it be denied, that such prophecies as still remain to be fulfilled, must, in the nature of things, be more or less indistinct, as it respects the objects of which they treat, how clear or plain soever may be the language in which they are expressed. Take, for instance, the fifty-third (53rd) of Isaiah. To us who have the advantage of studying it by the light of the evangelic pages, all possesses the perspicuity of history; but in the view of those who lived before the birth of our Lord, there must have attached to some parts of it a want of that definiteness of meaning which we so readily discover. Thus also as it regards certain portions of the Apocalypse. How far, or satisfactorily soever we may succeed in determining the import of the language, or however clearly we may perceive the design of the writer, just as we may conclude from the sketch of a drawing, what it is intended to represent, yet the absence of the actual persons or events leaves our minds in uncertainty with respect to the positive application. Let only those persons or events present themselves in the reality of historical existence, and we fully discover the import of the prophecy. Finally: no person should attempt the interpretation of these hallowed records, who is not imbued with a supreme love of truth, and who is not habituated to the exercise of humble dependence upon the promised assistance of the Holy Spirit, whose it is to remove those moral obstacles which prevent the entrance of spiritual light into the mind.”
Chapter 1: 1. “The substantive (chazon), like its cognates….and the Chaldean is derived from the root (chazah), which, in poetic style, is used to denote ‘seeing’ or ‘vision’ generally, but more especially that which is supernatural, or the result of Divine inspiration. It corresponds to the prosaic (ra’ah), which equally denotes both kinds of vision: hence the easy transition from (ro’ah), the name anciently given to the prophets, 1st Sam. 9:9, to (chozah), 1st Chron. 29:29, where both names are evidently synonymous with (nabi’); (chazon), and (mar’eh), the LXX render by (optasia, horama, horasis); and the former by (phrophëteia), 2nd Chron. 32:32; to which correspond (nebu’ah) of the Targum, and a similar rendering in the Syr. Arab. and several modern versions. The Arab. (…) ‘divinavit, hariolatus fuit’, especially by observing the flight of birds, ‘gnarus fuit’ rei, ‘occulta indicavit’, are unquestionably related to the Hebrew, and their significations are probably derived from it; but though they may be applied in illustration, they cannot take precedence of the Hebrew root. Nothing can be more obvious than the reason of the appropriation of such terms in descriptions of supernatural or prophetic revelation. It is founded on the fact, that, in imparting His will to His messengers, Jehovah impressed vividly upon their minds, the images of the things which they were to divulge. Their mental vision had presented to it matters invisible to the eye of sense, but possessing all the reality and distinctness of outward objects. Whether (chazon), is here to be taken strictly in the singular, and limited to the first division or chapter of the book, or, whether it is to be viewed as a collective noun marking the contents of the whole, depends on the light in which we are to regard the entire inscription. Jarchi and Abarbanel, by a forced construction of (’asher) with (Yesha‘Yahu), instead of referring it to (chazon), to which it properly belongs, suppose it to designate only the first chapter; but it is quite incongruous to imagine that so small a portion required the reigns of four kings for its delivery. Vitringa, Eichhorn, Rosenmüller, and Maurer, are of opinion that the original inscription ended with the word (Yershalaim); that it had relation only to the first chapter; that after the death of the prophet, when his oracles were collected, this one was placed first to serve as a title and introduction to the whole book; and that the specification of the kings was then added to complete the inscription, by assigning the period of the prophet’s ministry. This solution Lowth pronounces to be judicious; and Gesenius allows it to be ingenious, though he is not quite satisfied with it. LeClerc, Michaelis, Hitzig, Scholz, and Schroeder, in MS., consider it to be the original inscription to the whole. That it was thus understood by the author of the second book of Chronicles is beyond all doubt. His words are, “Now the rest of the Acts of Hezekiah, and his goodness, behold they are written in the Vision of Isaiah, the son of Amoz,” ch. 32:32, –the identical terms of our text. Rosen., Eichh., and Koppe, endeavour, indeed, to enervate this proof by rendering (bachazon) “’together with’ the vision,” &c., and confining it to the portion contained in ch. 36-39; but Gesenius has shewn, that their argument founded on the use of (‘al) after (kathab) is groundless, since this verb is also frequently construed with (be), and that it is more natural to understand the reference to be to a definite collection of prophecies, in which, as well as in the book of Kings, the accounts of Hezekiah were to be found. I accede, therefore, to the opinion of those interpreters mentioned above, who view the words as the inscription of the whole collection.”

5. (‘al-meh…sarah). Misled by a false construction of the following context, Jerome, Lowth, Gesenius, and many moderns, translate “on what part,” and fortify their rendering by the classical parallels: –’Vix habet in vobis jam nova plaga locum’. Ovid. ‘(gemö kakön dë k’ ouket’ esth’ hope tithë)’. Eurip. But, such construction, however appropriately it may seem to agree with the totally diseased state of the body, spoken of immediately afterwards, ill accords with the introduction of the verb (thosiphu), which requires the repetition of (‘al-meh), of which there is an evident ellipsis. The phrase has doubtless the local meaning, Job 38:6, and 2nd Chron. 32:10; but everywhere else, that of ‘why? wherefore’? The interpretation of Lowth, “on what part will ye smite again; will ye add correction?” –applying the language to the persons who were the instruments of God’s vengeance, is a complete failure, and spoils the force of the original, in which there is a sudden and spirited transition from the third person to the second, for the purpose of producing poignant conviction by a direct address. Nothing, indeed, can be more tame than the introduction of a third party.–(sarah), as a fem. noun, from (sur), occurs in the sense of defection from Jehovah, Deut. 13:6; Jer. 28:16, 29:32; Isa. 31:6, 59:13; in the two last of which passages, the Bishop himself renders it “revolt;” so that his attempt to trace it analogically to (yasar), was unnecessary. Besides, there is no such derivation from this root in Hebrew usage, its only derivative being (musar), which frequently occurs. The address is not without irony; proceeding on the principle, that the Jews had revolted, in order that they might be punished: while it is strongly implied, that their continuance in sin would only increase their punishment. Winer and Hitzig render (kol), distributively, –“’every’ head” and “’every’ heart,”– on the ground that it is anarthrous; but the omission of the article is not unfrequent in poetic and prophetic composition. See Gesen. Lehrg. § 168, 3, a. The (l) in such construction, denotes state or condition. The two noblest parts of the human body are here selected to represent the body politic; and the extreme danger to which it was exposed is significantly set forth under the image of universal sickness and languor. There were no parts which did not suffer from the calamities which sin had entailed. The allegation of this passage, in proof of the doctrine of original sin, or of the total depravity of human nature, is totally unwarranted by any just principle of Biblical interpretation. It does not, as Calvin ably shews, refer to sin at all, but to its punishment. }}

[Henderson’s commentary is learned & excellent; he is very original in observation & profound in review of former works & views. He is worth reading because he is qualified to critique the critics.]

Book of Isaiah in Fifteen Studies by George L. Robinson, Ph.D., Professor Old Testament Lit. & Exegesis McCormick Theological Sem., Chicago. (1910).gs.

{{ Analysis: Book of Isaiah: 6 General Divisions of Book: Chapters:
1. 1-12: Prophecies: Judah & Jerusalem, closing with Promises of Restoration & Psalm of Thanksgiving.
2. 13-23: Oracles of Judgment & Salvation & Foreign Nations whose fortunes affected Judah & Jerusalem.
3. 24-27: Jehovah’s World-Judgment in suing Redemption of Israel.
4. 28-35: Cycle of Prophetic Warnings against Alliance with Egypt: Prophecy of Edom & Promise of Israel’s Ransom.
5. 36-39: History, Prophecy & Song intermingled: Appendix to chaps 1-35, & Introduction to chaps 40-66.
6. 40-66: Prophecies of Comfort, Salvation, & Future Glory awaiting Israel.

1st: Chs 1-12: Ch 1. Jehovah’s Lament over Israel; Introduction striking chief notes of entire Book: (1) Thoughtlessness, vs 2-9; (2) Formalism, vs 10-17; (3) Pardon, vs 18-23; (4) Redemption, vs 24-31.
Chs 2-4: 3 Pictures of Zion: her: (1) Future Exaltation, 2:2-4; (2) Present Idolatry, 2:5-4:1 ; (3) Eventual Purification, 4:2-6. Ch 5: Isaiah’s Arraignment of Judah & Jerusalem: (1) Parable of Vineyard, vs 1-7; (2)

About mjmselim

Male, 68 in Oct., born in Jamaica, USA since 1961, citizen in 2002; cobbler for 40 plus years, retired, Christian since 1969; married to same wife since 1979; 6 daughters and 2 sons, with 8 grandkids. Slowly adapting to the digital world of computers and internet; hobby in digital editing.
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