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2

For he grew up before him like a young plant,

and like a root out of dry ground;

he had no form or majesty that we should look at him,

nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.

3

He was despised and rejected by others;

a man of suffering and acquainted with infirmity;

and as one from whom others hide their faces

he was despised, and we held him of no account.

 

4

Surely he has borne our infirmities

and carried our diseases;

yet we accounted him stricken,

struck down by God, and afflicted.

5

But he was wounded for our transgressions,

crushed for our iniquities;

upon him was the punishment that made us whole,

and by his bruises we are healed.

6

All we like sheep have gone astray;

we have all turned to our own way,

and the Lord has laid on him

the iniquity of us all.

 


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2. tender plant—Messiah grew silently and insensibly, as a sucker from an ancient stock, seemingly dead (namely, the house of David, then in a decayed state) (see on Isa 11:1).

shall grow … hath—rather, "grew up … had."

before him—before Jehovah. Though unknown to the world (Joh 1:11), Messiah was observed by God, who ordered the most minute circumstances attending His growth.

root—that is, sprout from a root.

form—beautiful form: sorrow had marred His once beautiful form.

and when we shall see—rather, joined with the previous words, "Nor comeliness (attractiveness) that we should look (with delight) on Him."

there is—rather, "was." The studied reticence of the New Testament as to His form, stature, color, &c., was designed to prevent our dwelling on the bodily, rather than on His moral beauty, holiness, love, &c., also a providential protest against the making and veneration of images of Him. The letter of P. Lentulus to the emperor Tiberius, describing His person, is spurious; so also the story of His sending His portrait to Abgar, king of Edessa; and the alleged impression of His countenance on the handkerchief of Veronica. The former part of this verse refers to His birth and childhood; the latter to His first public appearance [Vitringa].

3. rejected—"forsaken of men" [Gesenius]. "Most abject of men." Literally, "He who ceases from men," that is, is no longer regarded as a man [Hengstenberg]. (See on Isa 52:14; Isa 49:7).

man of sorrows—that is, whose distinguishing characteristic was sorrows.

acquainted with—familiar by constant contact with.

grief—literally, "disease"; figuratively for all kinds of calamity (Jer 6:14); leprosy especially represented this, being a direct judgment from God. It is remarkable Jesus is not mentioned as having ever suffered under sickness.

and we hid … faces—rather, as one who causes men to hide their faces from Him (in aversion) [Maurer]. Or, "He was as an hiding of the face before it," that is, as a thing before which a man covers his face in disgust [Hengstenberg]. Or, "as one before whom is the covering of the face"; before whom one covers the face in disgust [Gesenius].

we—the prophet identifying himself with the Jews. See Horsley's view (see on Isa 53:1).

esteemed … notnegative contempt; the previous words express positive.

4. Surely … our griefs—literally, "But yet He hath taken (or borne) our sicknesses," that is, they who despised Him because of His human infirmities ought rather to have esteemed Him on account of them; for thereby "Himself took OUR infirmities" (bodily diseases). So Mt 8:17 quotes it. In the Hebrew for "borne," or took, there is probably the double notion, He took on Himself vicariously (so Isa 53:5, 6, 8, 12), and so He took away; His perfect humanity whereby He was bodily afflicted for us, and in all our afflictions (Isa 63:9; Heb 4:15) was the ground on which He cured the sick; so that Matthew's quotation is not a mere accommodation. See Note 42 of Archbishop Magee, Atonement. The Hebrew there may mean to overwhelm with darkness; Messiah's time of darkness was temporary (Mt 27:45), answering to the bruising of His heel; Satan's is to be eternal, answering to the bruising of his head (compare Isa 50:10).

carried … sorrows—The notion of substitution strictly. "Carried," namely, as a burden. "Sorrows," that is, pains of the mind; as "griefs" refer to pains of the body (Ps 32:10; 38:17). Mt 8:17 might seem to oppose this: "And bare our sicknesses." But he uses "sicknesses" figuratively for sins, the cause of them. Christ took on Himself all man's "infirmities;" so as to remove them; the bodily by direct miracle, grounded on His participation in human infirmities; those of the soul by His vicarious suffering, which did away with the source of both. Sin and sickness are ethically connected as cause and effect (Isa 33:24; Ps 103:3; Mt 9:2; Joh 5:14; Jas 5:15).

we did esteem him stricken—judicially [Lowth], namely, for His sins; whereas it was for ours. "We thought Him to be a leper" [Jerome, Vulgate], leprosy being the direct divine judgment for guilt (Le 13:1-59; Nu 12:10, 15; 2Ch 26:18-21).

smitten—by divine judgments.

afflicted—for His sins; this was the point in which they so erred (Lu 23:34; Ac 3:17; 1Co 2:8). He was, it is true, "afflicted," but not for His sins.

5. wounded—a bodily wound; not mere mental sorrow; literally, "pierced"; minutely appropriate to Messiah, whose hands, feet, and side were pierced (Ps 22:16). The Margin, wrongly, from a Hebrew root, translates, "tormented."

for … for—(Ro 4:25; 2Co 5:21; Heb 9:28; 1Pe 2:24; 3:18)—the cause for which He suffered not His own, but our sins.

bruised—crushing inward and outward suffering (see on Isa 53:10).

chastisement—literally, the correction inflicted by a parent on children for their good (Heb 12:5-8, 10, 11). Not punishment strictly; for this can have place only where there is guilt, which He had not; but He took on Himself the chastisement whereby the peace (reconciliation with our Father; Ro 5:1; Eph 2:14, 15, 17) of the children of God was to be effected (Heb 2:14).

upon him—as a burden; parallel to "hath borne" and "carried."

stripes—minutely prophetical of His being scourged (Mt 27:26; 1Pe 2:24).

healed—spiritually (Ps 41:4; Jer 8:22).

6. Penitent confession of believers and of Israel in the last days (Zec 12:10).

sheep … astray—(Ps 119:176; 1Pe 2:25). The antithesis is, "In ourselves we were scattered; in Christ we are collected together; by nature we wander, driven headlong to destruction; in Christ we find the way to the gate of life" [Calvin]. True, also, literally of Israel before its coming restoration (Eze 34:5, 6; Zec 10:2, 6; compare with Eze 34:23, 24; Jer 23:4, 5; also Mt 9:36).

laid—"hath made to light on Him" [Lowth]. Rather, "hath made to rush upon Him" [Maurer].

the iniquity—that is, its penalty; or rather, as in 2Co 5:21; He was not merely a sin offering (which would destroy the antithesis to "righteousness"), but "sin for us"; sin itself vicariously; the representative of the aggregate sin of all mankind; not sins in the plural, for the "sin" of the world is one (Ro 5:16, 17); thus we are made not merely righteous, but righteousness, even "the righteousness of God." The innocent was punished as if guilty, that the guilty might be rewarded as if innocent. This verse could be said of no mere martyr.




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