1. For—continuation of Isa 2:22.
Lord of hosts—therefore able to do as
doth—present for future, so certain is
stay … staff—the same
Hebrew word, the one masculine, the other feminine, an
Arabic idiom for all kinds of support. What a change from
the previous luxuries (Isa 2:7)!
Fulfilled in the siege by Nebuchadnezzar and afterwards by Titus (Jer 37:21;
2. Fulfilled (2Ki 24:14).
prudent—the Hebrew often means
a "soothsayer" (De 18:10-14); thus it will mean, the diviners, on
whom they rely, shall in that day fail. It is found in a good sense
16:10), from which passage
the Jews interpret it a king; "without" whom Israel long has
ancient—old and experienced (1Ki 12:6-8).
3. captain of fifty—not only captains of
thousands, and centurions of a hundred, but even semi-centurions of
fifty, shall fail.
honourable—literally, "of dignified
cunning—skilful. The mechanic's
business will come to a standstill in the siege and subsequent
desolation of the state; artisans are no mean "stay" among a nation's
eloquent orator—rather, as
Vulgate, "skilled in whispering," that is, incantation (Ps 58:5). See Isa 8:19, below; and on "prudent," see on Isa 3:2.
4. children—in ability for governing;
antithesis to the "ancient" (see Isa 3:12; Ec 10:16).
babes—in warlike might; antithesis to
"the mighty" and "man of war."
5. The anarchy resulting under such imbecile
3:4); unjust exactions
mutually; the forms of respect violated (Le 19:32).
base—low-born. Compare the marks of
"the last days" (2Ti 3:2).
6. Such will be the want of men of wealth and
ability, that they will "take hold of" (Isa 4:1) the first man whom they meet, having
any property, to make him "ruler."
brother—one having no better
hereditary claim to be ruler than the "man" supplicating him.
Thou hast clothing—which none of us
has. Changes of raiment are wealth in the East (2Ki 5:5).
ruin—Let our ruined affairs be
committed to thee to retrieve.
7. swear—literally, "lift up," namely,
his hand; the gesture used in solemn attestation. Or, his voice, that
is, answer; so Vulgate.
healer—of the body politic, incurably
diseased (Isa 1:6).
neither … clothing—so as to
relieve the people and maintain a ruler's dignity. A nation's state
must be bad indeed, when none among men, naturally ambitious, is
willing to accept office.
8. Reason given by the prophet, why all shrink
from the government.
eyes of his glory—to provoke His
"glorious" Majesty before His "eyes" (compare Isa 49:5; Hab
1:13). The Syriac and
Lowth, by a slight change of the
Hebrew, translate, "the cloud of His glory," the
9. show—The Hebrew means, "that
which may be known by their countenances" [Gesenius and Weiss].
But Maurer translates, "Their respect
for person"; so Syriac and Chaldee. But the parallel word
"declare" favors the other view. Kimchi,
from the Arabic, translates "their hardness" (Job 19:3, Margin), or impudence of
countenance (Jer 3:3). They
have lost not only the substance of virtue, but its color.
witness—literally, "corresponds" to
them; their look answers to their inner character (Ho 5:5).
declare—(Jude 13). "Foaming out their own shame";
so far from making it a secret, "glorying" in it (Php 3:19).
unto themselves—Compare "in
themselves" (Pr 1:31; 8:36; Jer 2:19; Ro 1:27).
10. The faithlessness of many is no proof that
all are faithless. Though nothing but croaking of frogs is heard
on the surface of the pool, we are not to infer there are no fish
beneath [Bengel]. (See Isa 1:19, 20).
fruit of doings—(Pr 1:31) in a good sense (Ga 6:8; Re
22:14). Not salvation by
works, but by fruit-bearing faith (Isa 45:24; Jer 23:6). Gesenius and Weiss
translate, Declare as to the righteous that, &c. Maurer, "Say that the righteous is
11. ill—antithesis to "well" (Isa 3:10); emphatic ellipsis of the words
hands—his conduct; "hands" being the
instrument of acts (Ec 8:12, 13).
12. (See Isa 3:4).
oppressors—literally, "exactors," that
is, exacting princes (Isa 60:17).
They who ought to be protectors are exactors; as
unqualified for rule as "children," as effeminate as "women." Perhaps
it is also implied that they were under the influence of their harem,
the women of their court.
lead—Hebrew, "call thee
blessed"; namely, the false prophets, who flatter the people
with promises of safety in sin; as the political "rulers" are meant in
the first clause.
way of thy paths—(Jer 6:16). The right way set forth in the law.
"Destroy"—Hebrew, "Swallow up," that is, cause so utterly
to disappear that not a vestige of it is left.
13. standeth up—no longer sitting
plead—indignant against a wicked
people (Isa 66:16; Eze 20:35).
14. ancients—Hence they are spoken of as
"taken away" (Isa 3:1, 2).
vineyard—the Jewish theocracy (Isa
5:1-7; Ps 80:9-13).
eaten up—"burnt"; namely, by
"oppressive exactions" (Isa 3:12).
Type of the crowning guilt of the husbandmen in the days of Jesus
Christ (Mt 21:34-41).
spoil … houses—(Mt 23:14).
15. What right have ye to beat, &c. (Ps 94:5;
Mic 3:2, 3).
grind—by exactions, so as to leave
faces—persons; with the additional
idea of it being openly and palpably done. "Presence,"
equivalent to "face" (Hebrew).
16. Because the daughters of Zion are haughty,
&c.—Luxury had become great in Uzziah's prosperous reign
stretched forth—proudly elevated
wanton—rather, "making the eyes to
glance about," namely, wantonly (Pr 6:13) [Maurer]. But Lowth,
"falsely setting off the eyes with paint." Women's eyelids in the East
are often colored with stibium, or powder of lead (see on Job 42:14; Jer 4:30,
mincing—tripping with short steps.
tinkling—with their ankle-rings on
both feet, joined by small chains, which sound as they walk, and compel
them to take short steps; sometimes little bells were attached (Isa 3:18,
17. smite with a scab—literally, "make
bald," namely, by disease.
discover—cause them to suffer the
greatest indignity that can befall female captives, namely to be
stripped naked, and have their persons exposed (Isa 47:3; compare with Isa 20:4).
18. bravery—the finery.
tinkling—(See Isa 3:16).
cauls—network for the head. Or else,
from an Arabic root, "little suns," answering to the "tires" or
neck-ornaments, "like the moon" (Jud 8:21). The chumarah or crescent is
also worn in front of the headdress in West Asia.
19. chains—rather, pendants, hanging
about the neck, and dropping on the breast.
mufflers—veils covering the face, with
apertures for the eyes, close above and loosely flowing below. The word
radically means "tremulous," referring to the changing effect of the
spangles on the veil.
ornaments of the legs—the short
stepping-chains from one foot to another, to give a measured gait;
attached to the "tinkling ornaments" (Isa 3:16).
tablets—rather, "houses of the
breath," that is, smelling boxes [Vulgate].
earrings—rather, amulets suspended
from the neck or ears, with magic formulæ inscribed; the root
means to "whisper" or "conjure."
21. nose jewels—The cartilage between
the nostrils was bored to receive them; they usually hung from the left
22. Here begin entire articles of
apparel. Those before were single ornaments.
changeable—from a root, "to put off";
not worn commonly; put on and off on special occasions. So,
dress-clothes (Zec 3:4).
mantles—fuller tunics with sleeves,
worn over the common one, reaching down to the feet.
wimples—that is, mufflers, or hoods.
3:15, "veils"; perhaps here,
a broad cloak, or shawl, thrown over the head and body.
crisping pins—rather, money bags
23. glasses—mirrors of polished metal
38:8). But the
Septuagint, a transparent, gauze-like, garment.
hoods—miters, or diadems (Isa 62:3; Zec
veils—large enough to cover the head
and person. Distinct from the smaller veils ("mufflers") above (Ge 24:65). Token of woman's subjection
24. stink—arising from ulcers (Zec 14:12).
girdle—to gird up the loose Eastern
garments, when the person walked.
rent—the Septuagint, better, a
"rope," an emblem of poverty; the poor have nothing else to gird up
their clothes with.
well-set hair—(1Pe 3:3, 4).
stomacher—a broad plaited girdle.
burning—a sunburnt countenance, owing
to their hoods and veils being stripped off, while they had to work as
captives under a scorching sun (So 1:6).
25. Thy men—of Jerusalem.
26. gates—The place of concourse
personified is represented mourning for the loss of those multitudes
which once frequented it.
desolate … sit upon …
ground—the very figure under which Judea was represented on
medals after the destruction by Titus: a female sitting under a
palm tree in a posture of grief; the motto, Judæa capta
(Job 2:13; La 2:10, where, as here primarily, the
destruction by Nebuchadnezzar is alluded to).