lakesmall.gif (2457 bytes)

Home

First
Covenant

Second
Covenant
Topical
Studies

Table of Contents


Hyperlink Hints

ISAIAH
The Gospel To Israel
Book 3

LESSON  THIRTY THREE
Isaiah 63:15 - 65:16


Isaiah 63:15-64:12      Prayer Offered
Isa 63:15 To look down
Isa 63:16 “Our Father”
Isa 63:17 Sin
Isa 63:18,19 Desolation
Isa 64:1-7 To come down
Isa 64:8 “Our Father”
Isa 64:9 Sin
Isa 64:10-12 Desolation
 

Isaiah 63:15
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(15)  Look down from heaven and see, from Your holy and glorious height! Where is Your zeal, Your power? Your yearning and Your love are being withheld from us!

Turn from heaven, and look from thy holy habitation and from thy glory: where is thy zeal and thy strength? Where is the abundance of thy mercy and of thy compassions, that thou hast withholding thyself from us?

Look down from the heavens, and reveal thyself from the habitation of thy holiness and of thy glory; where is thy vengeance and thy might? Shall the multitude of thy goodness’s and the abundance of thy compassion’s be restrained toward us?

From the NKJV
(15)  Look down from heaven, and see from Your habitation, holy and glorious.  Where are Your zeal and Your strength, the yearning of Your heart and Your mercies toward me?  Are they restrained?

The way is prepared for the petitions for redemption which follow,

outwardly by the change in verse 14b,  from a mere description to a direct address.
inwardly by the thought, that Israel is at the present time in such a condition, as to cause it to look back with longing eyes to the time of the Mosaic redemption.

On the relation between hibiyT (OT: 5027) [to look up,  to open the eyes],  and raa'aah (OT: 7200)  [to fix the eye upon a thing].  It is very rarely that we meet with the words in the reverse order, whbyT r'h.
In the second clause of verse 15a,  instead of  misshâmayim  (from heaven) as in the first clause,  we have  mizzebhul (from the dwelling-place of Thy holiness and majesty).

The all-holy and all-glorious One,  who once revealed Himself so gloriously in the history of Israel,  has now withdrawn into His own heaven,  where He is only revealed to the spirits.  The object of the looking and seeing,  as apparent from what follows,  is the present helpless condition of the people in their sufferings,  to which there does not seem likely to be any end.  There are no traces now of the kin'âh (zeal) with which Jehovah used to strive on behalf of His people,   and against their oppressors (Isa 26:11).

It is presupposed that the love of Jehovah urges Him towards His people,  to relieve their misery;  but His compassion and sympathy apparently put constraint upon themselves,  to abstain from working on behalf of Israel.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(15) Look down from heaven, and see from your holy and glorious dwelling. Where are your zeal and your might? The yearning of your heart and your compassion? They are withheld from me.
See Note in lesson 15 on the Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

Isaiah 63:16
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(16)  Surely You are our Father: though Abraham regard us not, and Israel recognize us not, You, O Lord, are our Father; from of old, You name is “Our Redeemer.”

For thou art our Father; for though Abraham knew us not, and Israel did not acknowledge us, yet do thou, O Lord, our Father, deliver us: thy name has been upon us from the beginning.

For thou art he whose compassions towards us are more than those of a father towards his children; for Abraham did not bring us up from Egypt, and Israel wrought no wondrous deeds for us in the wilderness: thou art the Lord whose compassions towards us are greater than those of a father towards his children, our savior from everlasting is thy name.

From the NKJV
(16)   Doubtless You are our Father, though Abraham was ignorant of us, and Israel does not acknowledge us.  You, O LORD, are our Father; Our Redeemer from Everlasting is Your name.

The prayer for help,  and the lamentation over its absence,  are now justified in verse 16.
Jehovah is Israel's Father.  His creative might,  and the gracious counsels of His love,  have called it into being:  'aabiynuw  (OT: 1)  has not yet the deep and unrestricted sense of the New Testament  "Our Father."

The second kii (though) introduces the reason for this confession that Jehovah was Israel's Father,  and could therefore look for paternal care and help from Him alone.  Even the dearest and most honorable men,  the forefathers of the nation,  could not help it.  Abraham and Jacob-Israel had been taken away from this world,  and were unable to interfere on their own account in the history of their people.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Abraham...Israel
It had been the besetting temptation of the Jews to rest on the mere privilege of their descent from faithful Abraham and Jacob (Matthew 3:9; John 8:39; 4:12);  now at last they renounce this,  to trust in God alone as their Father,  notwithstanding all appearances to the contrary.

Matthew 3:7-9
But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, "Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? ... and do not think to say to yourselves, 'We have Abraham as our father.'     (NKJV)
John 8:39
They answered and said to Him, "Abraham is our father."  Jesus said to them, "If you were Abraham's children, you would do the works of Abraham.     (NKJV)
Isaac is not mentioned,  because not all his posterity was admitted to the covenant,  whereas all Jacob's was. Abraham is specified,  because he was the first father of the Jewish race.
(from Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(16)  But you are our father, and Abraham does not know us and Israel has not acknowledged us; you are he, O Lord, our father, our Redeemer from long ago is your name.

Isaiah 63:17
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(17)  Why, Lord, do You make us stray from Your ways, and turn our hearts away from revering You? Relent for the sake of Your servants, the tribes that are Your very own!

Why hast thou caused us to err, O Lord, from thy way? And hast hardened our hearts, that we should not fear thee? Return for thy servants’ sake, for the sake of the tribes of thine inheritance,

Why dost thou cast us off, O Lord, so that we go astray from the ways that are right before thee like the peoples that have no portion in the teaching of thy law? Let not our heart be turned from thy fear; restore thy Shekinah to thy people for the sake of thy righteous servants, unto whom thou did swear by thy Memra that thou would make among them the tribes of thy inheritance.

From the NKJV
(17)   O LORD, why have You made us stray from Your ways, and hardened our heart from Your fear?  Return for Your servants' sake, the tribes of Your inheritance.

But there in the existing state of things there was a contrast which put their faith to a severe test.
When men have scornfully and obstinately rejected the grace of God,  God withdraws it from them judicially,  gives them up to their wanderings,  and makes their heart incapable of faith (hiqshiiach, [She is hardened against],  is here equivalent to hiqshâh [Harden not your heart] in Psalm 95:8; [made his heart obstinate] Deut 2:30).

The history of Israel from chapter 6 onwards has been the history of such a gradual judgment of hardening,  and such a curse,  eating deeper and deeper,  and spreading its influence wider and wider round.  The great mass are lost,  but not without the possibility of deliverance for the better part of the nation,  which now appeals to the mercy of God,  and sighs for deliverance from this ban.
Two reasons are assigned for this petition for the return of the gracious presence of God:

first that there are still  "servants of Jehovah"  to be found,  as this prayer itself actually proves
second that the divine election of grace cannot perish
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(17)  Why, O Lord, do you make us stray from your ways and harden our hearts, so that we do not fear you? Come back for the sake of your servants, for the sake of the tribes that are your heritage.

Isaiah 63:18 & 19
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(18)  Our foes have trampled Your Sanctuary, which Your holy people possessed but a little while.

That we may inherit a small part of thy holy mountain.

It was but a little while that thy holy people possessed it: our enemies have trodden down thy sanctuary.

(19)  We have become as a people You never ruled, to which Your name was never attached.

We are become as at the beginning, when thou did not rule over us, and thy name was not called upon us.

Behold, we are thy people that are of old; thou gavest not thy law to the peoples; thy name was not called over them: not for them did thou bow the heavens, and reveal thyself: from before thee the mountains trembled.

From the NKJV
(18)  Your holy people have possessed it but a little while; our adversaries have trodden down Your sanctuary.    (19)    We have become like those of old, over whom You never ruled, those who were never called by Your name.

The existing condition of Israel looks like a withdrawal of this grace;  and it is impossible that these contrasts should cease,  unless Jehovah comes down from heaven as the deliverer of His people.

But miqdash Jehovah (the sanctuary of Jehovah) is the place of His abode and worship;
and "taking possession of the temple"  is hardly an admissible expression. On the other hand,  yârash hâ'ârets,  to take possession of the (holy) land,  is so common a phrase,  that with the words  "Thy holy people possessed for a little (time)"  we naturally supply the holy land as the object.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

That is,  in respect to the promise, which is perpetual:  even though they had now possessed the land of Canaan for 1400 years:  and thus they lament,  to move God rather to remember his covenant,  than to punish their sins.
(from Geneva Notes, PC Study Bible formatted electronic database Copyright © 2003 Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

The land meaning that the time during which they had enjoyed a peaceable possession of it,  compared with the perpetuity of the promise made,  was short.  But there is considerable variety in the interpretation of the passage among expositors.
Lowth It is little, that they have taken possession of thy holy mountain;  that our enemies have trodden down thy sanctuary.
Jerome It is as nothing (quasi nihilum),  they possess thy holy people; our enemies have trodden down thy sanctuary.
The Septuagint Return on account of thy servants, on account of the tribes of thine inheritance, that we may inherit thy holy mountains for a little time.
The design is to furnish an argument for the divine interposition,  and the meaning of the two verses may be expressed in the following paraphrase:

'We implore thee to return unto us, and to put away thy wrath. As a reason for this, we urge that thy temple thy holy sanctuary-was possessed by thy people but a little time. For a brief period there we offered praise, and met with our God, and enjoyed his favor. Now thine enemies trample it down. They have come up and taken the land, and destroyed thy holy place (Isaiah 64:11).  We plead for thine interposition, because we are thy covenant people. Of old we have been thine. But as for them, they were never thine. They never yielded to thy laws. They were never called by thy name. There is, then, no reason why the temple and the land should be in their possession, and we earnestly pray that it may be restored to the tribes of thine ancient inheritance.'
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Genesis 6:3
And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.     (KJV)
2 Peter 2:20-21
(20)  For if, after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through [the full, personal] knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they again become entangled in them and are overcome, their last condition is worse [for them] than the first.
(21)  For never to have obtained a [full, personal] knowledge of the way of righteousness would have been better for them than, having obtained [such knowledge], to turn back from the holy commandment which was [verbally] delivered to them.      (AMP)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(18)  Your holy people took possession of it for a little while, but now our enemies have trampled down your sanctuary.   (19)   For a long time we have been like those whom you do not rule, like those who are not called by your name.



A  PRAYER  FOR  HELP

Top
Next Section
Previous Section

Isaiah 64:1 & 2
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(1)  If you would but tear open the heavens and come down, so that mountains would quake before you as when fire kindles brushwood, and fire makes water boil – to make Your name known to Your adversaries so that nations will tremble at Your Presence,

If thou would open the heaven, trembling will take hold upon the mountains from thee, and they shall melt,

When thou did send forth thine anger in fire the sea was dissolved, the fire licked up the waters, to make thy name known to the enemies of thy people, before thee did the peoples tremble.

(2)  When You did wonders we dared not hope for, You came down and mountains quaked before You.

as wax melts before the fire; and fire shall burn up the enemies, and thy name shall be manifest among the adversaries: at thy presence the nations shall be troubled,

When thou did wondrous things which we looked not for thou did reveal thyself; from before thee the mountain trembled.

From the NKJV
(1)  Oh, that You would rend the heavens! That You would come down! That the mountains might shake at Your presence —  (2)   as fire burns brushwood, as fire causes water to boil — to make Your name known to Your adversaries, that the nations may tremble at Your presence!

Oh, &c. Figure of Speech called Euche; or, Prayer.  An expression of feeling by way of prayer, curse, or imprecation.
Chapter 64 is joined to chapter 63 by the Massoretic pointing.
The reference is to Sinai in these verses. Compare Psalm 68:7, 8. Judges 5:4, 5.
At Your presence.  Note the Figure of Speech called Epistrophe; used here for great emphasis.

Rend the heavens
That is,  in view of the considerations urged in the previous chapter. In view of the fact that

the temple is burned up (Isaiah 64:11)
the city is desolate
the land lies waste
the people are carried captive to a distant land
The phrase 'rend the heavens,'  implies a sudden and sublime descent of Yahweh to execute vengeance on his foes,  as if his heart was full of vengeance,  and the firmament were violently rent asunder at his sudden appearance.
It is language properly expressive of a purpose to
execute wrath on his foes,
rather than to confer blessings on his people.  The latter is more appropriately expressed by the heavens being gently opened to make way for the descending blessings.
The word rendered here 'rend' (qaara`),  means properly to tear asunder, as
the garments in grief Genesis 37:29 (Then Reuben returned to the pit...and he tore his clothes)
2 Samuel 13:31 (So the king arose and tore his garments)
or as a wild beast Hosea 13:8  I will meet them like a bear deprived of her cubs; I will tear open their rib cage.
The Septuagint,  however,  render it by a milder word - anoixees - `If thou wouldst open the heavens,' etc. So the Syriac renders it by  'O that thou wouldst open,'  using a word that is usually applied to the opening of a door.  God is often represented as coming down from heaven in a sublime manner amidst tempests,  fire,   and storms,  to take vengeance on his foes.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Mountains shake - as fire burns
The idea here is, that the presence of Yahweh would be like an intense burning heat,  so that the mountains would melt and flow away.
The presence of Yahweh would cause the mountains to melt, as a fire consumes light and dry brushwood or stubble.
The comparison is a very vivid one, as it is in the view given above - that the presence of Yahweh would set on fire the mountains,  and cause them to flow down as under the operation of an intense heat. I do not know that there is reason to suppose that the prophet had any reference to a volcanic eruption, or that he was acquainted with such a phenomenon - though Syria and Palestine abounded in volcanic appearances,  and the country around the Dead Sea is evidently volcanic (see Lyell's Geology, i. 299);  but the following description may furnish an illustration of what would be exhibited by the flowing down of the mountains at the presence of Yahweh,  and may serve to show the force of the language which the prophet employs in these verses.  It is a description of an eruption of Vesuvius in 1779,  by Sir William Hamilton.

'Jets of liquid lava, mixed with stones and scoriae,  were thrown up to the height of at least 10,000 feet,  having the appearance of a column of fire.
   The falling matter being nearly as vividly inflamed as that which was continually issuing forth from the crater,  formed with it one complete body of fire,  which could not be less than two miles and a half in breadth,  and of the extraordinary height above mentioned,  casting a heat to the distance of at least six miles around it.  At the point where it issued from an arched chasm in the side of the mountain,  the vivid torrent rushed with the velocity of a flood.  It was in perfect fusion,  unattended with any scoriae on its surface,  or any gross material not in a state of complete solution.  It flowed with the translucency of honey,  in regular channels,  cut finer than art can imitate,  and glowing with all the splendor of the sun'   (Lyell's Geology, i. 316).
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

The petition is that God would appear wonderfully for them now
They desire that God would in his providence manifest himself both to them and for them.
When God works some extraordinary deliverance for his people he is said
to shine forth,
to show himself strong;
so,  here,  they pray that he would rend the heavens and come down,  as when he delivered David he is said to bow the heavens,  and come down (Psalms 18:9),  to display his power,  and justice,  and goodness,  in an extraordinary manner,  so that all may take notice of them and acknowledge them.
This God's people desire and pray for,  that they themselves having the satisfaction of seeing him though his way be in the sea,  others may be made to see him when his way is in the clouds.
This is applicable to the second coming of Christ,  when the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout.  Come,  Lord Jesus,  come quickly.
They desire that he would vanquish all opposition and that it might be made to give way before him:
That the mountains might flow down at thy presence,  that the fire of thy wrath may burn so fiercely against thy enemies as even to dissolve the rockiest mountains and melt them down before it, as metal in the furnace, which is made liquid and cast into what shape the operator pleases; so the melting fire burns.
Let things be put into a ferment,  in order to a glorious revolution in favor of the church: As the fire causes the waters to boil. There is an allusion here, some think, to the volcanoes, or burning mountains, which sometimes send forth such sulphureous streams as make the adjacent rivers and seas to boil, which, perhaps, are left as sensible intimations of the power of God's wrath and warning-pieces of the final conflagration.
They desire that this may tend very much to the glory and honor of God
Make his name known,
not only to his friends (they knew it before, and trusted in his power),
but to his adversaries likewise,
that they may know it and tremble at his presence,  and may say,  with the men of Bethshemesh,
Who is able to stand before this holy Lord God?
Who knows the power of his anger?
Note, Sooner or later God will make his name known to his adversaries and force those to tremble at his presence that would not come and worship in his presence.
God's name,
if it be not a stronghold for us,  into which we may run and be safe,
will be a strong-hold against us,  out of the reach of which we cannot run and be safe.
The day will come when nations shall be made to tremble at the presence of God, though they be ever so numerous and strong.
(from Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible: New Modern Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright © 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(1)  O that you would tear open the heavens and come down, so that the mountains would quake at your presence –    (2)    as when fire kindles brushwood and the fire causes water to boil – to your adversaries to make known your name, to your adversaries before you, so that the nations might quake at your presence!
Note: Chapter 63. 1Q1sa: all; 1Q1sa (b): 63:1-19.
Chapter 64. 1Q1sa: all; 1Q1sa (b): 64:1, 6-8 [Hebrew 63:19, 64:5-7]; 4Q1sa (b): 64:5-11 [Hebrew 64:4-10].

Isaiah 64:3
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(3)  Such things had never been heard or noted. No eye has seen [them], O God, but you, who act for those who trust in You.

Whenever thou shalt work gloriously; trembling from thee shall take hold upon the mountains.

Yea, from of old ear hath not heard the voice of might, nor hearkened to the speech of trembling; eye hath not seen what thy people have seen, even the Shekinah of thy glory, O Lord: for there is none beside thee, who art about to work for thy people, even the righteous, who wait for thy salvation.

From the NKJV
(3 ) When You did awesome things for which we did not look, You came down, the mountains shook at Your presence.

The justification of this wish, which is forced from them by the existing misery,  is found in the incomparable acts of Jehovah for the good of His own people,  which are to be seen in a long series of historical events.

Repeated from Isaiah 64:1;  they pray God to do the very same things for Israel now as in former ages.
(from Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

The reference is to the manifestations of smoke and fire when Yahweh descended on Mount Sinai (see Exodus 19:18).
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Exodus 19:18
Now Mount Sinai was completely in smoke, because the LORD descended upon it in fire. Its smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked greatly.     (NKJV)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(3)  When you did awesome deeds that we looked for, you came down, the mountains quaked before you.

Isaiah 64:4
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(4)  Yet you have struck him who would gladly do justice, and remember you in You in Your ways. It is because You are angry that we have sinned;  We have been steeped in them from of old, and can we be saved?

From of old we have not heard, neither have our eyes seen a God beside thee, and thy works which thou wilt perform to them that wait for mercy.

Set before thee are the deeds of our righteous fathers who rejoiced to do thy will in truth and in righteousness; in the way of thy goodness and thy mercy they were ever mindful of thy fear, yea, Whensoever there was anger from before thee against us in that we transgressed, by the deeds of our righteous fathers who are from of old were we delivered.

From the NKJV
(4)  For since the beginning of the world men have not heard nor perceived by the ear, nor has the eye seen any God besides You,  Who acts for the one who waits for Him.

Olâm (OT:5769) [time out of mind (past or future)] [since the beginning] is used in other instances in these prophecies to denote the long continuance of the sate of punishment (see Isa 42:14),  since it appeared to the exiles as an eternity (a whole aeon),  and what lay beyond it as but a little while (mits'âr, Isa 63:18).

No ear,  no eye has ever been able to perceive the existence of a God who acted like Jehovah,  i.e.,

really interposed on behalf of those who set their hopes upon Him.
Hearing and seeing God is here equivalent to
recognizing His existence through the perception of His works.
The explanation favored by Rosenmüller and Stier, viz., "And from olden time men have not heard it,   nor perceived with ears,   no eye has seen it,   O God,   beside Thee,   what (this God) doth to him that waited for Him.”

Nor perceived by the ear
Paul (1 Corinthians 2:9) renders this 'nor have entered into the heart of man,'  'which,'  says Lowth,  'is a phrase purely Hebrew,  and which should seem to belong to the prophet.'
The phrase,  'Nor perceived by the ear,'  he says,  is repeated without force or propriety,  and he seems to suppose that this place has been either willfully corrupted by the Jews,  or that Paul made his quotation from some Apocryphal book - either the ascension of Esaiah,  or the Apocalypse of Elias,  in both of which the passage is found as quoted by Paul.  The phrase is wholly omitted by the Septuagint and the Arabic,  but is found in the Vulgate and Syriac.  There is no authority from the Hebrew manuscripts to omit it.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

The thought is the same as in Ps 31:20 (You shall hide them in the secret place of Your presence),  and when so explained it corresponds more exactly to the free quotation in 1 Cor 2:9,  which with our explanation there is no necessity to trace back to a lost book,  as Origen imagined (see Tischendorf ed. vii. of the N.T. on this passage).  Another proof that Paul had no other passage than this in his mind,  is the fact that the same quotation is met with in Clements Epistle to the Corinthians (ch. 34), where, instead of "those that love Him," we have "those that wait for Him.”

Nor has the eye seen
Lowth renders it,  'Nor hath the eye seen a God beside thee,  which doeth such things for those that trust in him.'
In a similar manner,  the Septuagint translates it,  'Neither have our eyes seen a God beside thee (oude hoi ofthalmoi heemoon eidon Theon pleen sou),  and thy works which thou hast done for those who wait for mercy.'
The sense is,  no eye had ever seen such a God as Yahweh;  one who so richly rewarded those who put their trust in him.
In the Hebrew,  the word rendered 'O God,'  may be either in the accusative or vocative case,  and the sense is,  that

Yahweh was a more glorious rewarder and protector than any of the gods which had ever been worshipped by the nations.

This verse is quoted,  though not literally,  by the apostle Paul,  as illustrating the effects of the gospel in producing happiness and salvation (1 Corinthians 2:9).

1 Corinthians 2:9-10
But as it is written:
"Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him."
But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit.    (NKJV)
The meaning here is,  that nowhere else among people had there been such blessings imparted,  and such happiness enjoyed;  or so many proofs of love and protection,  as among those who were the people of God,  and who feared him.

The idea in the Hebrew is, 'For him who waits (limchakeeh) for Yahweh,'  that is,  who feels his helplessness,  and relies on him to interpose and save him.  Piety is often represented as an attitude of waiting on God (Psalms 27:14; 37:9; 130:5).  The sense of the whole verse is,  that God in his past dealings had given manifestations of his existence, power, and goodness, to those who were his friends, which had been furnished nowhere else.

Psalms 27:14
Wait on the LORD; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; wait, I say, on the LORD!
Psalms 130:5-8
I wait for the LORD, my soul waits, and in His word I do hope.   My soul waits for the Lord more than those who watch for the morning — yes, more than those who watch for the morning.   O Israel, hope in the LORD; for with the LORD there is mercy, and with Him is abundant redemption.  And He shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Elohim zuulâthekhâ (God beside Thee) preceded by a negation anywhere in ch. 40-66 without receiving at once the impression,  that they affirm the sole deity of Jehovah  (comp. Isa 45:5,21).  The meaning therefore is,  "No other God beside Jehovah has ever been heard or seen, who acted for (ageret pro) those who waited for Him."
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(4)  Since Ancient times no one has heard and no ear has perceived, and no eye has seen any God besides you, who acts on behalf of those who wait for him.

Isaiah 64:5
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(5)  We have all become like an unclean thing, and all our virtues like a filthy rag. We are all withering like leaves, and our iniquities, like a wind, carry us off.

For these blessings shall happen to them that work righteousness, and they shall remember thy ways: behold, thou wast angry and we have sinned; therefore we have erred,

Yet were we all as one that is unclean, and all our righteousnesses as a cast off garment, and we did all fade as a leaf fadeth, and because of our transgressions we were carried away as by a wind.

From the NKJV
(5)  You meet him who rejoices and does righteousness, who remembers You in Your ways.  You are indeed angry, for we have sinned — in these ways we continue; and we need to be saved.

The people who ask the question in verse 5 do not regard themselves as worthy of redemption, as their self-righteousness has been so thoroughly put to shame.
The whole nation is like one whom the law pronounces unclean, like a leper, who has to cry [unclean, unclean] "tâmee', tâmee' " as he goes along,  that men may get out of his way (Lev 13:45).

On pâga',  "to come to meet,"  in the sense of  "coming to the help of,"  it is here significantly interchanged with the minor clause,  "who remembers You in Your ways."  Doing right in all its manifold forms (Tsedâqooth, like Isa 33:15,  used elsewhere of the manifestations of divine righteousness),  which once made Israel well-pleasing to God, has disappeared  (Isa 1:21) and become like a garment stained with menstruous discharge (cf., Ezek 36:17).

Ezekiel 36:17
Son of man, when the house of Israel dwelt in their own land, they defiled it by their own ways and deeds; to Me their way was like the uncleanness of a woman in her customary impurity.     (NKJV)

The idea suggested by such expressions as these is no doubt that of plurality (here a plurality of manifestations of wrath and of sins),  but one which vanishes into the neuter idea of totality.  Now we do justice both to the clause without a verb,  and also to 'oolâm,  which is the accusative of duration,  when we explain the sentence as meaning,  "In this state we are and have been for a long time."

The following word wanecheTaa' (OT: 2398) [for we have sinned] cannot mean "and we have sinned,"  but is a fut. consec. and therefore must mean at least, "then we have sinned" (the sin inferred from the punishment). It is more correct,  however,  to take it,  as in Gen 43:9,  in the sense of,  "Then we stand as sinners, as guilty persons:"  the punishment has exhibited Israel before the world,  and before itself,  as what it really is.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

In Isaiah  64:1-5 we find

verses 1, 2 The petition is that God would appear wonderfully for them now
1. They desire that God would in his providence manifest himself both to them and for them.
2. They desire that he would vanquish all opposition and that it might be made to give way before him.
3. They desire that this may tend very much to the glory and honor of God,  may make his name known,  not only to his friends (they knew it before, and trusted in his power),  but to his adversaries likewise,  that they may know it and tremble at his presence,  and may say,  with the men of Bethshemesh, "Who is able to stand before this holy Lord God? Who knows the power of his anger?"
verse 3-5 The plea is that God had appeared wonderfully for his people formerly;  and thou hast,  therefore thou wilt,  is good arguing at the throne of grace
1. They plead what he had done for his people Israel in particular when he brought them out of Egypt (v. 3).
2. They plead what God had been used to do, and had declared his gracious purpose to do, for his people in general.
3. It is very rich (v. 4).  Men have not heard nor seen what God has prepared for those that wait for him.
Observe the character of God's people
they are such as wait for him in the way of duty, wait for the salvation he has promised and designed for them.
Observe where the happiness of this people is bound up
it is what God has prepared for them, what he has designed for them in his counsel and is in his providence and grace preparing for them and preparing them for, what he has done or will do.
4. It cannot be fully comprehended by the human understanding, no, not when it is revealed;
it is spiritual, and refined from those ideas which our minds are most apt to receive in this world of sense; it is very great, and will far outdo the utmost of our expectations. Even the present peace of believers, much more their future bliss, is such as surpasses all conception and expression. None can comprehend it but God himself, whose understanding is infinite.
5.  It is very ready (v. 5):  See here what communion there is between a gracious God and a gracious soul.
1. What God expects from us, in order to our having communion with him.
First - We must make conscience of doing our duty in every thing,  we must work righteousness,  must do that which is good and which the Lord our God requires of us,  and must do it well.
Secondly - We must be cheerful in doing our duty, we must rejoice and work righteousness,  must delight ourselves in God and in his law,  must be cheerful in his service and sing at our work. We must serve the Lord with gladness.
Thirdly - We must conform ourselves to all the methods of his providence concerning us and be suitably affected with them,  must remember him in his ways,  in all the ways wherein he walks,  whether he walks towards us or walks contrary to us.  We must mind him and make mention of him with thanksgiving when his ways are ways of mercy (in a day of prosperity be joyful), with patience and submission when he contends with us.
2. We are here told what we may expect from God if we thus attend him in the way of duty:
This intimates the friendship, fellowship, and familiarity to which God admits his people; he meets them, to converse with them, to manifest himself to them, and to receive their addresses.
It likewise intimates his freeness and forwardness in doing them good; he will anticipate them with the blessings of his goodness, will rejoice to do good to those that rejoice in working righteousness, and wait to be gracious to those that wait for him.  He meets his penitent people with a pardon, as the father of the prodigal met his returning son, Luke 15:20. He meets his praying people with an answer of peace, while they are yet speaking, Isaiah 65:24.
6. They plead the unchangeableness of God's favor and the stability of his promise, notwithstanding the sins of his people and his displeasure against them for their sins.
This agrees with the tenor of God's covenant,  that,  if we forsake the law,  he will visit our transgression with a rod,  but his lovingkindness he will not utterly take away.
(from Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible: New Modern Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright © 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(5)  You meet those who gladly do right, those who remember you in your ways. See, you were angry, and we sinned against them for a long time, but we will be saved.

Isaiah 64:6
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(6)  Yet no one invokes Your name, rouses himself to cling to You. For You have hidden Your face from us, and made us melt because of our iniquities.

And we are all become as unclean, and all our righteousness as a filthy rag: and we have fallen as leaves because of our iniquities; thus the wind shall carry us away.

And there was none that prayed in thy name willing to lay hold of thy fear; for thou had removed the presence of thy Shekinah from us, and had delivered us into the hand of our transgressions.

From the NKJV
(6)  But we are all like an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags; we all fade as a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

Universal forgetfulness of God was the consequence of this self-instigated departure from God.
There was no one (see Isa 59:16) who had risen up in prayer and intercession out of this deep fall, or had shaken himself out of the sleep of security and lethargy of insensibility, to lay firm hold of Jehovah, i.e., not to let Him go till He blessed him and his people again.  The curse of God pressed every one down; God had withdrawn His grace from them, and given them up to the consequences of their sins. But the "hand" of the transgressions is their destructive and damning power.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Unclean thing
The word used here Taamee' (OT:2931),  means properly that which is polluted and defiled in a Levitical sense;  that is, which was regarded as polluted and abominable by the law of Moses, and may refer to animals, people, or things; also in a moral sense.
The sense is, that they regarded themselves as wholly polluted and depraved.

All our righteousnesses
The plural form is used to denote the deeds which they had performed - meaning that pollution extended to every individual thing of the numerous acts which they had done.
The sense is, that

all their prayers,
all their sacrifices,
all their alms,
all their praises,
were mingled with pollution, and were worthy only of deep detestation and abhorrence.

Filthy rags
No language could convey deeper abhorrence of their deeds of righteousness than this reference - as it is undoubtedly - to the vestis menstruis polluta.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

It refers to the menstrual fluid and the rags used by women in their monthly periods.

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(6)  All of us have become like one who is unclean; all, all our righteous acts are like a polluted cloth. And we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our iniquities Sweep us away.

Isaiah 64:7 & 8
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(7)  But now, O Lord, You are our Father; we are the clay, and You are the potter, we are all the work of Your hands.

And there is none that calls upon thy name, or that remembers to take hold on thee: for thou hast turned thy face away from us, and hast delivered us up because of our sins.

But now, O Lord, thou whose mercies towards us are greater than those of a father towards his children, we are the clay and thou art our maker, and we are all the work of thy might.

(8)  Be not implacably angry, O Lord, do not remember iniquity forever.  Oh, look down to Your people, to us all!

And now, O Lord, thou art our Father, and we are clay, all of us the work of thine hands.

Let there not be exceeding wrath from before thee, O Lord, against us; neither remember transgressions for ever: behold it is revealed before thee that we are all thy people.

From the NKJV
(7)  And there is no one who calls on Your name, who stirs himself up to take hold of You; for You have hidden Your face from us, and have consumed us because of our iniquities.    (8)    But now, O LORD, You are our Father; we are the clay, and You our potter; and all we are the work of Your hand.

This was the case when the measure of Israel's sins had become full.
They were carried into exile,  where they sank deeper and deeper.  The great mass of the people proved themselves to be really beyond hope, and perished among the heathen.  But there were some,  though a vanishing small number,  who humbled themselves under the mighty hand of God,  and,  when redemption could not be far off,  wrestled in such prayers as these,  that the nation might share it in its entirety,   and if possible not one be left behind.

With wŞ`ataah (OT:6258) [But now (vs.8)] the existing state of sin and punishment is placed among the things of the past,  and the petition presented that the present moment of prayer may have all the significance of a turning-point in their history.

The state of things must change at last;  for Israel is an image made by Jehovah;  yea,  more than this,  Jehovah is the begetter of Israel,  and loves Israel not merely as a sculptor,  but as a father (compare Isa 45:9-10,  and the unquestionable passage of Isaiah in Isa 29:16).
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Let Him then not be angry `ad-mŞ'od, "to the utmost measure" (cf., Ps 119:8 - "I will keep Your statutes;  Oh,  do not forsake me utterly!"),  or if we paraphrase it according to the radical meaning of  m'd,  "till the weight becomes intolerable."  Let Him not keep in mind the guilt for ever,  to punish it;  but,  in consideration of the fact that Israel is the nation of His choice,  let mercy take the place of justice.

Eightfold confession of Israel:

1. Isa 64:5 God is just and meets him that rejoices, works righteousness, and remembers the Lord in his ways
2. Isa 64:5 God is angry because we have sinned and still continue in sin
3. Isa 64:6 We are all as an unclean thing
4. Isa 64:6 All our righteousnesses are as filthy rags
5. Isa 64:6 We fade like a leaf, and our iniquities take us away like the wind
6. Isa 64:7 There is none that calls upon God's name and stirs himself up to take hold of God
7. Isa 64:7 God has hid His face from us and destroyed us because of sin
8. Isa 64:8 But now we turn to God who is our Father and will mold us like the potter does the clay
(Dake's Annotated Reverence Bible, Finis Jennings Dake, Dake Publishing, Lawrenceville, GA)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(7)  There is no one who calls on your name or strives to take hold of you; for you have hidden you face from us, and have given us into the hand of our iniquity.   (8)   But as for you, we are clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hands.

Isaiah 64:9-12
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(9) ...see the end of verse 8 in the Tanakh...
Your holy cities have become a desert: Zion has become a desert, Jerusalem desolation.

Be not very wroth with us, and remember not our sins for ever;  but now look on us, for we are all thy people.

Thy holy cities have become a wilderness, Zion has become a wilderness, and Jerusalem is desolate.

(10)  Our holy temple, our pride, where our fathers praised You, has been consumed by fire: and all that was dear to us is ruined.

The city of thy holiness has become desolate; Sion has become as a wilderness, Jerusalem a curse.

Our holy and beautiful house, the place where our fathers worshipped before thee, has become burnt with fire, and all our precious things have become a waste.

(11)  At such things will You restrain Yourself, O Lord, will You stand idly by and let us suffer so heavily?

The house, our sanctuary, and the glory which our fathers blessed, has been burnt with fire: and all our glorious things have gone to ruin.

Wilt thou restrain thyself O Lord for these things, seeing that thou gavest respite to the wicked, and to them that oppress us very sore?

(12)

And for all these things thou, O Lord, hast with holden thyself, and been silent, and hast brought us very low.

 

From the NKJV
(9)  Do not be furious, O LORD, nor remember iniquity forever; indeed, please look — we all are your people!    (10)    Your holy cities are a wilderness, Zion is a wilderness, Jerusalem a desolation.    (11)    Our holy and beautiful temple, Where our fathers praised You, Is burned up with fire; and all our pleasant things are laid waste.    (12)    Will You restrain Yourself because of these things, O LORD? Will You hold Your peace, and afflict us very severely?

Heen  [behold - please look]  (OT: 2005)  strengthens the petition in its own way,   just as naa'  [I beseech] (OT: 4994) does;  and hibiyT  [behold, consider]  (OT: 5027)  signifies here,  as elsewhere,  to fix the eye upon anything.  The object,  in this instance,  is the existing fact expressed in "we are all Youe people."
Hitzig is correct in regarding the repetition of  "all of us"  in this prayer as significant.  The object throughout is to entreat that the whole nation may participate in the inheritance of the coming salvation,  in order that the exodus from Babylonia may resemble the exodus from Egypt.

Desolation
Referring to the time of Matthew 23:38; 24:2.
The Prophet of Israel speaks = Jesus Christ
Matthew 23:38
Behold, your house is forsaken and desolate (abandoned and left destitute of God's help). [1 Kings 9:7; Jer 22:5.]    (AMP)
Matthew 24:2
But He answered them, Do you see all these? Truly I tell you, there will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down.    (AMP)

That neither did any other city ever suffer such miseries,  nor did any age ever breed a generation more fruitful in wickedness that this was,  from the beginning of the world.’  The wars of the Jews Page 720 #5 (442).
This was written by a Jew called Josephus.  It’s a book worth reading. Paul the Learner.

Is burned up with fire
This prayer is prolepsis; [in anticipation] and is said now by anticipation of the then (and still future) day of Israel’s repentance and return to Jehovah.

The re-erection of the ruins of the Promised Land requires the zeal of every one,  and this state of ruin must not continue.  It calls out the love and faithfulness of Jehovah.

Jerusalem by itself could not possibly be called "cities" ('âree),  say with reference to the upper and lower cities (Vitringa).  It is merely mentioned by name as the most prominent of the many cities which were all  "holy cities,"  inasmuch as the whole of Canaan was the land of Jehovah (Isa 14:25),  and His holy territory (Ps 78:54).

Psalms 78:54-55
And He brought them to His holy border, this mountain which His right hand had acquired.  He also drove out the nations before them, allotted them an inheritance by survey, and made the tribes of Israel dwell in their tents.     (NKJV)

Holy cities are a wilderness, Zion is a wilderness
The word midbâr (wilderness) is repeated,  for the purpose of showing that the same fate had fallen upon Zion-Jerusalem as upon the rest of the cities of the land.  The climax of the terrible calamity was the fact,  that the temple had also fallen a prey to the burning of the fire (compare for the fact, Jer 52:13).

Jeremiah 52:13-14
He burned the house of the LORD and the king's house; all the houses of Jerusalem, that is, all the houses of the great, he burned with fire.  And all the army of the Chaldeans who were with the captain of the guard broke down all the walls of Jerusalem all around.     (NKJV)

The people call it "house of our holiness and of our glory."
Jehovah,  as it were,  transplanted heaven to earth in the temple (compare Isa 63:15 with ch. 60:7);  and this earthly dwelling-place of God is Israel's possession,  and therefore Israel's.  The relative clause describes what sublime historical reminiscences are attached to the temple.

Machamaddeenuu (our pleasant things) may possibly include favorite places,  ornamental buildings,  and pleasure grounds;  but the parallel leads us rather to think primarily of things associated with the worship of God,  in which the people found a holy delight.

The suffering would indeed increase `ad-mŞ'od (severely),  if it caused the destruction of Israel,  or should not be followed at last by Israel's restoration.  Jehovah's compassion cannot any longer thus forcibly restrain itself;  it must break forth,  like Joseph's tears in the recognition scene (Gen 45:1  Then Joseph could not restrain himself before all those who stood by him, and he cried out, "Make everyone go out from me!" So no one stood with him while Joseph made himself known to his brothers.).
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(9)  Do not be angry beyond measure, O Lord, and do not remember our iniquity for a long time.  Please look now, we are all your people.   (10)    Your holy cities have become a wilderness; Zion has become like a wilderness, Jerusalem a desolation.   (11)   Our holy temple and our splendor, where our ancestors praised you, have become a conflagration of fire, and all our dearest places have become Ruins.   (12)   After all this, can you hold yourself back, O Lord? Will you keep silent, and punish us so severely?



Isaiah 65:1-66:24     Answer Given
Isa 65:1-7 Contrasted characters
Isa 65:8-10 Seed promised
Isa 65:11-16 Threatening
Isa 65:17-25 New heavens and new earth
Isa 66:1-6 Contrasted characters
Isa 66:7-14 Seed brought forth
Isa 66:15-18- Threatening
Isa 66:-18-24 New heavens and new earth

Isaiah Chapter 65
Eighth Prophecy
Jehovah's Answer to the Church's Prayer

THE  RIGHTEOUSNESS  OF  GOD'S  JUDGMENT

Top
Next Section
Previous Section

Isaiah 65:1 & 2
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(1)  I responded to those who did not ask, I was at hand to those who did not seek Me; I said, “Here I am, here I am,” to a nation that did not invoke My name.

I became manifest to them that asked not for me; I was found of them that sought me not: I said, Behold, I am here, to a nation, who called not on my name.

I let myself be entreated through my Memra by them that inquired not of me: I sought for the teaching of my law from them that sought not for my fear: I said, Behold, I let myself be entreated continually all the day by a people that prayed not in my name.

(2)  I constantly spread out My hands to a disloyal people, who walk the way that is not good, following their own designs;

I have stretched forth my hands all day to a disobedient and gainsaying people, to them that walked in a way that was not good, but after their sins.

I sent my prophets all the day unto a rebellious people, that walketh in a way which is not right after their own thoughts:

From the NKJV
(1)  I was sought by those who did not ask for Me; I was found by those who did not seek Me. I said, 'Here I am, here I am,' to a nation that was not called by My name.    (2)    I have stretched out My hands all day long to a rebellious people, who walk in a way that is not good, according to their own thoughts;

After the people have poured out their heart before Jehovah,  He announces what they may expect from Him.  But instead of commencing with a promise,  as we might anticipate after the foregoing prayer,  He begins with reproach and threatening;  for although the penitential portion of the community had included the whole nation in their prayer,  it was destruction,  and not deliverance,  which awaited one portion of the nation and that portion,  was the greater one.

The LXX (A) render verse 1 a, "I was found by those who did not seek me, I became manifest to those who did not ask for me" (B reverses the order); and in Romans 10:20-21, Paul refers verse 1 to the Gentiles,  and verse 2 to Israel.

Romans 10:20-21
(20)  Then Isaiah is so bold as to say, I have been found by those who did not seek Me; I have shown (revealed) Myself to those who did not [consciously] ask for Me. [Isa 65:1.]
(21)  But of Israel he says, All day long I have stretched out My hands to a people unyielding and disobedient and self-willed [to a faultfinding, contrary, and contradicting people]. [Isa 65:2.]     (AMP)
The former (the Gentiles),  to whom He has hitherto been strange,  enter into fellowship with Him;
whilst the latter (Israel),  to which He has constantly offered Himself,  thrust Him away,  and lose His fellowship.

Luther accordingly adopts this rendering:
"I shall be sought by those who did not ask for me, I shall be found by those who did not seek me. And to the heathen who did not call upon my name, I say, Here am I, here am I."
Zwingli, again, observes on verse 1, "This is an irresistible testimony to the adoption of the Gentiles."
Calvin also follows the apostle's exposition,  and observes,  that
"Paul argues boldly for the calling of the Gentiles on the ground of this passage,  and says that Isaiah dared to proclaim and assert that the Gentiles had been called by God,  because he announced a greater thing,  and announced it more clearly than the reason of those times would bear."

Kiel & Delitzsch do not interpret verse 1 as speaking of the Gentiles
The possibility of interpreting Isa 65:1-2,  in harmony with the context both before and after, if verse 1 be taken as referring to the Gentiles, on the supposition that Jehovah is here contrasting His success with the Gentiles and His failure with Israel: all these certainly throw weight into the scale. He displayed to Israel the fullness of His nature and the possibility of His fellowship, although they did not bestir themselves or trouble themselves in the least about Him-a view which is confirmed by the fact that v. 1 b merely refers to offers made to them, and not to results of any kind.

Israel was estranged from Him, just like the heathen; but He still turned towards them with infinite patience, and (as is added in v. 2) with ever open arms of love. He spread out His hands (as a man does to draw another towards him to embrace him) all the day (i.e., continually, cf., Isa 28:24) towards an obstinate people, who walked in the way that was not good (cf., Ps 36:5; Prov 16:29; here with the article, which could not be repeated with the adjective, because of the lo' [before or else] (OT: 3808)), behind their own thoughts.

That which led them, and which they followed, was not the will of God, but selfish views and purposes, according to their won hearts' lusts; and yet Jehovah did not let them alone, but they were the constant thought and object of His love, which was ever seeking, alluring, and longing for their salvation.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Note:
So again we come up with two different ideals on the same Scripture.  Well preachers differ as well as Jewish teachers on the meaning of Scriptures,  thus it will be until Jesus comes back to take us home and we are given insight into just what the Scripture mean,  for we will no longer just know in part as well as seeing in part.
Paul the Learner

65:1 a nation that was not called by My name.  Ref. To the Pent. (Deuteronomy 32:21),  and to the Dispensation of the book of Acts.  We are going now to “the Song of Moses.”  This will give you some insight into the dispensation of Israel throughout our history.

Deuteronomy 32:1-43
1-6 Call to hear: and the reason.
The publishing of Jehovah’s name: His perfect work and righteous ways.
 
7-14 The goodness and bounty of Jehovah to Israel. (Period of the Pentateuch.)
15-19 Israel’s evil return for that goodness.
Their pride: forsaking of God; despising the Rock of their Salvation;  moving Him to anger.
(Period, past history. The Historical books.)
20 Divine reflections on the period while Israel is “Lo Ammi” (not my people). (Period of Minor Prophets, especially Hosea.)
21 Jehovah’s provocation of Israel. (Period of Acts and present Dispensation.)
22-25 Jehovah’s threatening of judgment on Israel in the great tribulation.  
26-33 Divine reflections on the period while Israel is scattered. (Period of Hosea)
34-38 Israel’s evil return for Jehovah’s goodness.
Their helpless condition moving Him to pity.
He not forsaking them. Their rock useless.
(Period of present history.)
39-42 The judgments of Jehovah. (The period of the book of Revelation)
43 Call to rejoice: and the reason.
The publishing of Jehovah’s Kingdom. Vengeance on Israel’s enemies.
Mercy for His “Land” and for His “People.”
(Fulfillment of all prophecy.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(1)  I let myself be sought out by those who did not ask me,  be found by those who did not seek me. I said, “Here I am, here I am,” to a nation that did not call on my name.   (2)    I held out my hands all day long to a disobedient people, who walk in a way that is not good, pursuing their own inclinations;
Note: Chapter 65. 1Q1sa: all; 4Q1sa (b): 65:1; 1Q1sa (b): 65:17-25/

Isaiah 65:3-5
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(3)  The people who provoke My anger, who continually, to My very face, sacrifice in gardens and burn incense on tiles;

This is the people that provokes me continually in my presence; they offer sacrifices in gardens, and burn incense on bricks to devils, which exist not.

A people that provoke to anger against my Memra before me continually, sacrificing in the gardens of the idols, and offering spices upon bricks:

(4)  who sit inside tombs and pass the night in secret places; who eat the flesh of swine, with broth of unclean things in their bowls;

They lie down to sleep in the tombs and in the caves for the sake of dreams, even they that eat swine’s flesh, and the broth of their sacrifices: all their vessels are defiled;

who sit in houses which they build from the dust of graves, and dwell with the corpses of men; they eat swine’s flesh, and the broth of abominable things is in their vessels:

(5)  who say, “Keep your distance! Don’t come closer!  For I would render you consecrated.” such things make My anger rage, like fire blazing all day long.

who say, Depart from me, draw not nigh to me, for I am pure. This is the smoke of my wrath, a fire burns with it continually.

who say, Stand away, come not near me, for I am purer than thou; as for these, their anger is as a smoke before me, their punishment shall be in Gehenna where the fire burneth all the day.

From the NKJV
(3)  A people who provoke Me to anger continually to My face; who sacrifice in gardens, and burn incense on altars of brick;    (4)    who sit among the graves, and spend the night in the tombs; who eat swine's flesh, and the broth of abominable things is in their vessels;    (5)    who say, 'Keep to yourself, do not come near me, for I am holier than you!'   These are smoke in My nostrils, a fire that burns all the day.

65:4 eat swine’s flesh.  Ref. To Pent. where this was forbidden (Lev. 11:7. Deut. 14:8).

Leviticus 11:7-8
and the swine, though it divides the hoof, having cloven hooves, yet does not chew the cud, is unclean to you.   Their flesh you shall not eat, and their carcasses you shall not touch. They are unclean to you.
Deuteronomy 14:8
Also the swine is unclean for you, because it has cloven hooves, yet does not chew the cud; you shall not eat their flesh or touch their dead carcasses.
Bones of swine were found at Gezer.

But through this obstinate and unyielding rejection of His love they have excited wrath,  which,  though long and patiently suppressed,  now bursts forth with irresistible violence.

'Eeleh (OT:428) (these) in verse 5 b is retrospective,  summing up the subject as described in vv. 3-5 a,  and what follows in v. 5 b contains the predicate.
The heathenish practices of the exiles are here depicted,  and in verse 7 they are expressly distinguished from those of their fathers.  Hence there is something so peculiar in the description,  which we look in vain for parallels among those connected with the idolatry of the Israelites before the time of the captivity..
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Sacrifice in gardens
The pagan worshipped their idols in groves;  whereas God,  in opposition to this species of idolatry,  commanded his people,  when they should come into the promised land,  to destroy all the places wherein the Canaanites had served their gods,  and in particular to burn their groves with fire, Deuteronomy 12:2-3.
(from Adam Clarke's Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright © 1996, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Deuteronomy 12:2-5
You shall utterly destroy all the places where the nations which you shall dispossess served their gods, on the high mountains and on the hills and under every green tree.   And you shall destroy their altars, break their sacred pillars, and burn their wooden images with fire; you shall cut down the carved images of their gods and destroy their names from that place.   You shall not worship the LORD your God with such things.
But you shall seek the place where the LORD your God chooses, out of all your tribes, to put His name for His dwelling place; and there you shall go.      (NKJV)

Altars of Brick
"Burning incense upon the bricks"  carries us to Babylonia. The torah only mentions lebheeniim in connection with Babylonian and Egyptian buildings. The only altars that it allows are altars of earth thrown up,  or of unhewn stones and wooden beams with a brazen covering.

These apostate Jews sacrificed upon altars built of bricks; in opposition to the command of God in regard to his altar, which was to be of unhewn stone, Exodus 20:25.
(from Adam Clarke's Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright © 1996, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Exodus 20:25
And if you make Me an altar of stone, you shall not build it of hewn stone; for if you use your tool on it, you have profaned it.      (NKJV)

But the pagan had altars of a different description,  and the Jews had sacrificed on those altars.
Some have supposed that this means that they sacrificed on the roofs of their houses,  which were flat,  and paved with brick,  or tile,  or plaster.  That altars were constructed sometimes on the roofs of their houses,  we know from 2 Kings 23:12,  where Josiah is said to have beaten down the 'altars that were on the top of the upper chamber of Ahaz, which the king of Judah had made.'
But it is not necessary to suppose that such sacrifices are referred to here.  They had disobeyed the command of God,  which required that the altars should be made only of unhewn stone.  They had built other altars,  and had joined with the pagan in offering sacrifices thereon.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Graves...Tombs
"They who sit in the graves," according to Vitringa,  are they who sacrifice to the dead.
He refers to the Greek and Roman expiations for the dead,  as probably originating in the East.  Sacrifices for the dead were offered,  in fact,  not only in India and Persia,  but also in Hither Asia among the Sabeans,  and therefore probably in ancient Mesopotamia and Babylonia.  But were they offered in the graves themselves,  as we must assume from baqŞbaariym [a sepulchre or burying place] (OT: 6913).

Jerome explains it. "In the temples of idols,"  he says,  "where they were accustomed to lie upon the skins of the victims stretched upon the ground,  to gather future events from their dreams."
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Eat swine's flesh...abominable things
We may infer that the Babylonians offered swine in sacrifice,  if not as a common thing,  yet like the Egyptians and other heathen,  and ate their flesh ("the flesh taken from the sacrifice," 2 Macc. 6:21);  whereas among the later Sabeans (Harranians) the swine was not regarded as either edible or fit for sacrifice.

A decoction,  or broth made either of such kinds of flesh or such parts of the body as were forbidden by the law.  The context also points to such heathen sacrifices and sacrificial meals as were altogether at variance with the Mosaic Law.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

The broth so called from the 'pieces' (margin) or fragments of bread over which the broth was poured (Gesenius):  such broth,  made of swine's flesh,  offered in sacrifice,  was thought to be especially acceptable,  to the idol,  and was used in magic rites.  Or, 'fragments (pieces) of abominable foods,'  etc.
(from Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

I am holier than you
For the five words proceed from the mouths of persons who fancy that they have derived a high degree of sanctity either from the mysteries,  or from their participation in rites of peculiar sacredness,  so that to every one who abstains from such rites,  or does not enter so deeply into them as they do themselves,  they call out,  keep near to thyself, i.e., stay where you are, like the Arabic idhab ileikago away to thyself, for take thyself off.

According to some MSS with (mercha tifchah),  do not push against me (equivalent to gesh-haalŞ'aah or gŞshaah-lŞkaaget away, make room;  Gen 19:9; Isa 49:20),  for qedashtikhâI am holy to thee, i.e., unapproachable.
After this elaborate picture,  the men who are so degenerate receive their fitting predicate.  They are fuel for the wrath of God,  which manifests itself,  as it were,  in smoking breath.  This does not now need for the first time to seize upon them;  but they are already in the midst of the fire of wrath,  and are burning there in inextinguishable flame.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(3)  A people who continually provoke me to my face, they keep sacrificing in gardens and waving their hands on stone altars;    (4)    who sit inside tombs, and spend the night in secret places; who eat swine’s flesh, with the broth of detestable things in their pots;   (5)    who say, “Keep to yourself; do not touch me, I am too holy for you.” Such people are smoke in my nostrils, a fire that keeps burning all day long.

Isaiah 65:6 & 7
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(6)  See, this is recorded before Me; I will not stand idly by, but will repay, deliver their sins into their bosom,

Behold, it is written before me: I will not be silent until I have recompensed into their bosom,

Behold, it is written before me, I will not give them respite during their life, but I will render to them the punishment of their transgressions, and will deliver their bodies to the second death.

(7)  and the sins of their fathers as well – said the Lord – for they made offerings upon the mountains and affronted Me upon the hills. I will count out their recompense in full, into their bosoms.

their sins and the sins of their fathers, saith the Lord, who have burnt incense on the mountains, and reproached me on the hills: I will recompense their works into their bosom.

Your transgressions and the transgressions of your fathers are revealed before me together, saith the Lord, who offered spices upon the mountains, and blasphemed me on the hills: therefore will I first give the reward of their deeds into their bosom.

From the NKJV
(6)  "Behold, it is written before Me:  I will not keep silence, but will repay — even repay into their bosom —   (7)   your iniquities and the iniquities of your fathers together,"  says the LORD,  "Who have burned incense on the mountains and blasphemed Me on the hills; therefore I will measure their former work into their bosom."

Revelation 21:8
8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.     (KJV)

The justice of God will not rest till it has procured for itself the fullest satisfaction.

The reference really is to their idolatrous conduct and contemptuous defiance of the laws of God.  This is ever before Him,  written in indelible characters,  waiting for the day of vengeance;  for,  according to the figurative language of Scripture,  there are heavenly books,  in which the good and evil works of men are entered.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

That is,  the crimes of which they had been guilty,  or the sentence which would be consequent thereon.
The allusion is to the custom of having the decrees of kings recorded in a volume or on a table,  and kept in their presence,  so that they might be seen and not forgotten.  An allusion to this custom of opening the books containing a record of this kind on trials, occurs in

Daniel 7:10 The judgment was set, and the books were opened.
Revelation 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life, and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
So here. An impartial record had been made, and God would recompense them according to their deeds.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

And this agrees with what follows:  "I will not be silent, without having first repaid," etc.  The original train of thought was,  "I will not keep silence, for I shall first of all keep silence when," etc.

Whether  'asher is to be taken in the sense of qui or quod (that),   it is hardly possible to decide;  but the construction of the sentence favors the latter.  Sacrificing "upon mountains and hills" (and, what is omitted, here, "under every green tree")  is the well-known standing phrase used to describe the idolatry of the times preceding the captivity  (cf., Isa 57:7; Hos 4:13; Ezek 6:13).
Hosea 4:13
They offer sacrifices on the mountaintops, and burn incense on the hills, under oaks, poplars, and terebinths.     (NKJV)
Ezekiel 6:13
Then you shall know that I am the LORD, when their slain are among their idols all around their altars, on every high hill, on all the mountaintops, under every green tree, and under every thick oak, wherever they offered sweet incense to all their idols.     (NKJV)

Consequently ri'shoonâh [there former wages] must be an adverb,  and the meaning evidently is,  that the first thing which Jehovah had to do by virtue of His holiness was to punish the sins of the apostate Israelites;  and He would so punish them that inasmuch as the sins of the children were merely the continuation of the fathers' sins,  the punishment would be measured out according to the desert of both together.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(6)  See, it stands written before me: I will not keep silent, but I will repay; I will indeed repay into their laps   (7)   both your iniquities and your ancestors’ iniquities together, says the Lord; because they offered incense on the mountains and insulted me on hills, I will measure into their laps full payment for their previous actions.

Isaiah 65:8 & 9
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(8)  Thus said the Lord: As, when new wine is present in the cluster, One ways, “Don’t destroy it; there’s good in it,” so will I do for the sake of My servants, and not destroy everything.

Thus saith the Lord, As a grape-stone shall be found in the cluster, and they shall say, destroy it not; for a blessing is in it: so will I do for the sake of him that serves me, for his sake I will not destroy them all.

Thus saith the Lord, As Noah was found righteous in the generation of the flood, and I promised not to destroy him in order to establish the world from him; so will I do for the sake of my righteous servants, that I may not destroy them all.

(9)  I will bring forth offspring from Jacob, from Judah heirs to My Mountains; My chosen ones shall take possession, My servants shall dwell thereon.

And I will lead forth the seed that came of Jacob and of Judah, and they shall inherit my holy mountain: and mine elect and my servants shall inherit it, and shall dwell there.

And I will bring forth a seed out of Jacob and from Judah one to inherit my mountains; and my chosen ones shall possess it, and my righteous servants shall dwell there.

From the NKJV
(8)  Thus says the LORD:   "As the new wine is found in the cluster, and one says, 'Do not destroy it, for a blessing is in it,' so will I do for My servants' sake, that I may not destroy them all.    (9)    I will bring forth descendants from Jacob, and from Judah an heir of My mountains; My elect shall inherit it, and My servants shall dwell there.

Note the frequent occurrence of this expression (Thus says the Lord)  in predicting these new things. The first is found in Isa 42:5.

New wine, the Hebrew word here is Ti rosh, from yârash,  which means to possess = must,  or new wine,  so called because it get possession of the brain.  In Isa 65:8 is a further reference to the new Israel.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

The Hebrews call all things which serve for food bŞraakaah, "a blessing."  On this verse Kimchi remarks: "As the cluster of grapes contains,  besides the juice,  the bark,  and the kernels,  so the Israelites have,  besides the just,  sinners among them.  Now as the cluster must not be destroyed because there is a blessing,  a nutritive part in it;  so Israel shall not be destroyed,  because there are righteous persons in it.  But as the bark and kernels are thrown away,  when the wine is pressed out,  so shall the sinners be purged away from among the just,  and on their return from exile,  shall not be permitted to enter into the land of Israel;"  Ezekiel 20:38.
(from Adam Clarke's Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright © 1996, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Ezekiel 20:38
I will purge the rebels from among you, and those who transgress against Me; I will bring them out of the country where they dwell, but they shall not enter the land of Israel. Then you will know that I am the LORD.     (NKJV)

Descendents - A further reference to the new Israel of Isa 26:2; Matthew 21:43.

Matthew 21:43
Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken from you and given to a nation bearing the fruits of it.     (NKJV)

As the word RI’shoonâh (first of all) has clearly intimated that the work of the future will not all consist in the execution of penal justice,  there is no abruptness in the transition from threatening to promises.

Of the two co-ordinate clauses of the protasis (v. 8 a),  the first contains the necessary condition of the second.

Hattiiroosh The new wine means properly "must" or "new wine" - the Septuagint renders it here, a grain or berry;  meaning probably a good grape.
bâ'eshkool The cluster The mass was corrupt, and was to be cut off. But still a portion should be left.  This is in accordance with the doctrine everywhere occurring in Isaiah and elsewhere in the Scriptures,  that the whole Jewish nation should not be cut off,  but that a remnant should be preserved

As men to not destroy a juicy cluster of grapes, because they would thereby destroy the blessing of God which it contains;  so will Jehovah for His servants' sake not utterly destroy Israel,  but preserve those who are the clusters in the vineyard or upon the vine of Israel. He will not destroy hakkool,  the whole without exception;  that is to say,  keeping to the figure,  not "the juice with the skin and stalk,"  as Knobel and Hahn explain it,  but  "the particular clusters in which juice is contained,  along with the degenerate neglected vineyard or vine,  which bears for the most part only sour grapes or tendrils without fruit.

The servants of Jehovah, who resemble these clusters,  remain preserved.
Jehovah brings out,  causes to go forth,  calls to the light of day (howtsiy' [to go out] (OT:3318);  here,  however,  it is by means of sifting: Ezek 20:34 ff.),

Ezekiel 20:34
I will bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you are scattered, with a mighty hand, with an outstretched arm, and with fury poured out.      (NKJV)
out of Jacob and Judah, i.e., the people of the two captivities (see Isa 56:3), a seed, a family, that takes possession of His mountains, i.e., His holy mountain-land.

As "my mountain" is equivalent in sense to the "land of Israel,"  for which Ezekiel is fond of saying  "the mountains of Israel,"  the promise proceeds still further to say,  "and my chosen ones will take possession thereof" (viz., of the land, Isa 60:21).
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(8)   Thus says the Lord: As when wine is found in the cluster, and people have said,  “Do not destroy it, for there is a gift in it,” so I will do for my servants’ sake, by not destroying them all.   (9)   I will bring forth descendants from Jacob, and from Judah they will inherit my mountains; my chosen people will inherit it, and my servants will settle there.

Isaiah 65:10
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(10)  Sharon shall become a pasture for flocks, and the Valley of Achor a place for cattle to lie down, for My people who seek Me.

And there shall be in the forest folds of flocks, and the valley of Achor shall be for a resting-place of herds for my people, who have sought me.

And Sharon shall be a dwelling-place for the flocks of sheep, and the plain of Achor a place for the herds of oxen to lie down in, for my people that have sought the fear of me.

From the NKJV
(10)  Sharon shall be a fold of flocks, and the Valley of Achor a place for herds to lie down, for My people who have sought Me.

Sharon
Hasshâroon  (Sharon)  is the plain of rich pasture-land which stretches along the coast of the Mediterranean.  Sharon was properly a district south of Mount Carmel,  along the coast of the Mediterranean,  and extending from. Caesarea to Joppa.  In the Scripture,  this is almost a proverbial name to denote extraordinary beauty and fertility.
The following description of Sharon, in the spring of 1824, by Mr. Thompson, an American Missionary, will give an idea of the natural appearance of that part of Palestine. The view taken was from a high tower in Ramla.

'The whole valley of Sharon,  from the mountains of Jerusalem to the sea,  and from the foot of Carmel to the hills of Gaza,  is spread before you like a painted map,  and is extremely beautiful,  especially at evening,  when the last rays of the setting sun gild the distant mountain tops,  the weary farmer returns from his labor,  and the bleating flocks come frisking and joyful to their fold.  At such a time I saw it,  and lingered long in pensive meditation,  until the stars looked out from the sky,  and the cool breezes of evening began to shed soft dews on the feverish land.  What a paradise was here when Solomon reigned in Jerusalem,  and sang of the roses of Sharon!'
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Valley of Achor
'Emeq 'Akhoor  is a valley which became renowned through the stoning of Achan,  in a range of hills running through the plain of Jericho.

This was a valley near to Jericho,  and was distinguished as the place where Achan was put to death by stoning (Joshua 7:24; 15:7; Hosea 2:15).

The word Achor -
means properly  "causing affliction,"  and the name was probably given to that valley from the trouble or affliction which was there caused to the Israelites from the sin of Achan.
The phrase, 'the valley of Achor,' -
would probably thence become a proverbial expression to denote that which caused trouble of any kind.  And the sense here probably is,  that that which had been to the nation a source of calamity should become a source of blessing - as if a place distinguished for causing trouble should become as celebrated for producing happiness.
As that valley had been a source of great trouble on their first entering into the land of Canaan, so it would become a place of great exultation,  peace,  and joy,  on their return from their exile.  They would naturally enter Canaan near to that valley,  and the place which to them had been once the occasion of so much distress,  would be found a quiet and peaceful place where their herds might lie down in safety (compare Hosea 2:15).
Hosea 2:15
I will give her her vineyards from there, and the Valley of Achor as a door of hope; she shall sing there, as in the days of her youth, as in the day when she came up from the land of Egypt.     (NKJV)
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Isaiah 65:8-10  -  Promises of mercy
This is expounded by Paul, Romans 11:1-5,  where,  when,  upon occasion of the rejection of the Jews,  it is asked,  Hath God then cast away his people? he answers, No; for at this time there is a remnant according to the election of grace.
This prophecy has reference to that distinguished remnant.  When that hypocritical nation is to be destroyed God will separate and secure to himself some from among them; some of the Jews shall be brought to embrace the Christian faith,  shall be added to the church,  and so be saved.
And our Savior has told us that for the sake of these elect the days of the destruction of the Jews should be shortened,  and a stop put to the desolation,  which otherwise would have proceeded to such a degree that no flesh should be saved, Matthew 24:22.

Matthew 24:22
And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect's sake those days will be shortened.     (NKJV)
This is illustrated here by a comparison, verse 8.
When a vine is so blasted and withered that there seems to be no sap nor life in it,  and therefore the dresser of the vineyard is inclined to pluck it up or cut it down,  yet,  if ever so little of the juice of the grape,  fit to make new wine,  be found,  though but in one cluster,  a stander-by interposes,  and says, Destroy it not, for a blessing is in it; there is life in the root, and hope that yet it may become good for something.
God's faithful servants,  however they are looked upon,  are the best friends their country has; and those who serve him do therein serve their generation.
A description of those that shall make up this saved saving remnant -
They are such as SERVE God verse 8 So will I do for My servants' sake
  verse 9 And My servants shall dwell there
They are such as SEEK God verse 10 For My people who have sought Me
(from Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible: New Modern Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright © 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(10)  Sharon will become a pasture for flocks, and the Valley of Achor for the resting of herds, for my people who have sought me.

Isaiah 65:11 & 12
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(11)  But as for you who forsake the Lord, who ignore My holy mountain, who set a table for Luck and fill a mixing bowl for Destiny:

But ye are they that have left me, and forget my holy mountain, and prepare a table for the devil, and fill up the drink offering to Fortune.

But ye, O house of Israel, have forsaken the service of the Lord, ye have forgotten the service of my holy mountain, ye who set in order tables for idols, and mix bowls for their gods.

(12)  I will destine you for the sword, you will all kneel down, to be slaughtered – because, when I called, you did not answer, when I spoke, you would not listen. You did what I hold evil, and chose what I do not want.

I will deliver you up to the sword, ye shall all fall by slaughter: for I called you, and ye hearkened not; I spoke, and ye refused to hear; and ye did evil in my sight, and chose the things wherein I delighted not.

Therefore will I deliver you to the sword, and ye shall all be delivered to the slaughter; because I sent my prophets, and ye repented not; they prophesied, and ye hearkened not, but did that which is evil before me, and took pleasure in that in which I delighted not.

From the NKJV
(11)  "But you are those who forsake the LORD, who forget My holy mountain, who prepare a table for Gad, and who furnish a drink offering for Meni.    (12)    Therefore I will number you for the sword, and you shall all bow down to the slaughter; because, when I called, you did not answer; when I spoke, you did not hear, but did evil before My eyes, and chose that in which I do not delight."

The prophecy now turns again to those already indicated and threatened.

Hebrew is Gad, ("that troop" in the KJV)  the well-known Syrian god of “Fate.”
Hebrew meni.  ("that number" in the KJV) Same as the god Manu (=Destiny) of the Assyrian inscriptions.
65:12 number = destroy. Hebrew manithi.  This is a Figure of Speech called Paronomasia;  or,  Rhyming Words.  The repetition of words similar in sound,  but not necessarily in sense.  This is to be used with the name of the god, Meni.

It may be taken for granted as a thing generally admitted,  that verse 11 b refers to two deities,  and to the lectisternia (meals of the gods, cf., Jer 7:18; 51:44) held in their honor.

shulŞchaan [a meal or a table set] (OT: 7979)
`aarakŞ  [to arrange or put in order] (OT: 6186) is the other side of the lectum sternere,  i.e.,  the spreading of the cushions upon which the images of the gods were placed during such meals of the gods as these.  In the passage before us,  at any rate,  the lectus answering to the shulchân  (like the sella used in the case of the goddesses)  is to be taken as a couch for eating,  not for sleeping on.

In the second clause,  therefore,  mimŞcaakŞ  [wine mixed – drink offering] (OT: 4469)
lamŞniy (OT: 4507) wŞhamŞmalŞ'iym [to fill – accomplish] (OT: 4390),
mmck milee' signifies to fill with mixed drink,  i.e.,  with wine mixed with spices,  probably oil of spikenard. milee' (OT:4390) may be connected not only with the accusative of the vessel filled,  but also with that of the thing with which it is filled.

Both names have the article,  like haba`al. hagad is perfectly clear;  if used as an appellative,  it would mean "good fortune."
The word has this meaning in all the three leading Semitic dialects,  and it also occurs in this sense in Gen 30:11.
The primary word is gaadad (OT: 1413) (Arab. 'gadda),  to cut off,  to apportion;  so that Arab. jaddun,  like the synonymous haddun,  signifies that which is appointed,  more especially the good fortune appointed.
There can be no doubt,  therefore,  that Gad,  the god of good fortune,  more especially if the name of the place Baal-gad is to be explained in the same way as Baal-hammân,  is Baal (Bel) as the god of good fortune.

Gecatilia (Mose ha-Cohen) observes that this is the deified planet Jupiter.
This star was called by the Arabs  "the greater luck"  as being the star of good fortune;  and in all probability it is also the rabb-el-bacht  (lord of good fortune)  worshipped by the Sabeans.
It is true that it is only from the passage before us that we learn that it was worshipped by the Babylonians;  for although H. Rawlinson once thought that he had found the names Gad and Meni in certain Babylonian inscriptions (Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, xii. p. 478),  the Babylonian Pantheon in G. Rawlinson's Monarchies contains neither of these names.

With this want of corroborative testimony,  the fact is worthy of notice,  that a Rabbi named 'Ulla, who sprang from Babylon,  explains the drgsh of the Mishna by dgd' `rc' (a sofa dedicated to the god of prosperity,  and often left unused) (b. Nedarim 56 a; cf., Sanhedrin 20 a).

But if Gad is Jupiter,  nothing is more probable than that Meni is Venus;  for the planet Venus is also regarded as a star of prosperity,  and was called by the Arabs "the lesser luck."
Rosenmüller very properly traces back the Sept. rendering to this Egyptian view,  according to which Gad is the sun-god,  and Meni the lunar goddess as the power of fate.
Now it is quite true that the passage before us refers to Babylonian deities,  and not to Egyptian;  at the same time there might be some relation between the two views,  just as in other instances ancient Babylonia and Egypt coincide.

We therefore subscribe to the view propounded by Gesenius,  who adopts the pairing of Jupiter and Venus common among the Arabs,  as the two heavenly bodies that preside over the fortunes of men;  and understands by Meni = Venus,  and by Gad = Jupiter.
There is nothing at variance with this in the fact that 'Ashtoreth  (Ishtar, with 'Asheerâh)  is the name of Venus (the morning star).
Meni is her special name as the bestower of good fortune and the distributor of fate generally;  probably identical with Manât, one of the three leading deities of the prae-Islamitish Arabs.

The address proceeds with umâniithii (and I have measured),  which forms an apodosis and contains a play upon the name of Meni, verse 11 being as it were a protasis indicating the principal reason of their approaching fate.  Because they sued for the favor of the two gods of fortune (the Arabs call them es-sa'dâni,  "the two fortunes")  and put Jehovah into the shade,  Jehovah would assign them to the sword,  and they would all have to bow down (kaara` (OT: 3766) as in Isa 10:4).

Another reason is now assigned for this,  the address thus completing the circle,  viz.,  because when I called ye did not reply, when I spake ye did not hear  (this is expressed in the same paratactic manner as in Isa 5:4; 12:1; 50:2),  and ye have done,  etc.:  an explanatory clause,  consisting of four members,  which is repeated almost word for word in Isa 66:4 (cf., 56:4).
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(11)  But as for you who forsake the Lord, who forget my holy mountain, who spread a table for Fortune and fill drink offerings for Destiny;   (12)   I will destine you for the sword, and all of you will bend down for the slaughter. For I called, but you did not answer; I spoke, but you did not listen – but you did evil in my sight, and chose what I took no pleasure in.

Isaiah 65:13-16
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum

(13)  Assuredly, thus said the Lord God: My servants shall eat, and you shall hunger; My servants shall drink, and you shall thirst; My servants shall rejoice, and you shall be shamed;

Therefore thus saith the Lord, Behold, my servants shall eat, but ye shall hunger: behold, my servants shall drink, but ye shall thirst: behold, my servants shall rejoice, but ye shall be ashamed:

Therefore thus saith the Lord Elohim, Behold, my servants, the righteous, shall eat, but ye, the wicked, shall be hungry: behold, my servants, the righteous, shall drink, but ye, the wicked, shall thirst; behold my servants, the righteous, shall rejoice, but ye shall be ashamed.

(14)  My servants shall shout in gladness, and you shall cry out in anguish, howling in heartbreak.

behold, my servants shall exult with joy, and ye shall cry for the sorrow of your heart, and shall howl for the vexation of your spirit.

Behold my servants, the righteous, shall sing praises for joy of heart, but ye shall cry out for sorrow of heart, and shall howl for vexation of spirit.

(15)  You shall leave behind a name by which My chosen ones shall curse: “So may the Lord God slay you!” But His servants shall be given a different name.

For ye shall leave your name for a loathing to my chosen, and the Lord shall destroy you: but my servants shall be called by a new name,

And ye shall leave your name for a curse unto my chosen, and the Lord Elohim shall kill you with the second death; but his servants, the righteous, shall be called by another name.

(16)  For whoever blesses himself in the land shall bless himself by the true God; and whoever swears in the land shall swear by the true God. The former troubles shall be forgotten, shall be hidden from My eyes.

which shall be blessed on the earth; for they shall bless the true God: and they that swear upon the earth shall swear by the true God; for they shall forget the former affliction, and it shall not come into their mind.

He that blesses in the earth shall bless by the living God, and he that sweareth in the earth shall swear by the living God; because the former afflictions shall be forgotten, and because they shall be hidden from before me.

From the NKJV
(13)  Therefore thus says the Lord GOD:
"Behold, My servants shall eat, but you shall be hungry;  behold, My servants shall drink,  but you shall be thirsty;  behold, My servants shall rejoice, but you shall be ashamed;    (14)    behold, My servants shall sing for joy of heart, but you shall cry for sorrow of heart, and wail for grief of spirit.    (15)    You shall leave your name as a curse to My chosen; for the Lord GOD will slay you, and call His servants by another name;    (16)    so that he who blesses himself in the earth shall bless himself in the God of truth; and he who swears in the earth shall swear by the God of truth;  because the former troubles are forgotten, and because they are hidden from My eyes.

Behold, &c. The Figure of Speech here is called Asterismos,  for emphasis.  Luke 6:25 refers to the period prophesied here.

Luke 6:25
Woe to (alas for) you who are full now (completely filled, luxuriously gorged and satiated), for you shall hunger and suffer want! Woe to (alas for) you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep and wail!    (AMP)

By another name: i.e. Hephzi-bah (verse 15). See Isaiah 62:4.

On the ground of the sin thus referred to again,  the proclamation of punishment is renewed,  and the different fates awaiting the servants of Jehovah and those by whom He is despised are here announced in five distinct theses and antitheses.

LORD GOD - The name Adonai is connected with the name Jehovah for the purpose of affirming that the God of salvation and judgment has the power to carry His promises and threats into execution,  the rebellious ones are left behind in the land of captivity,  whilst the servants of Jehovah enjoy the richest blessings from God in the land of promise (Isa 62:8-9).
The former,  perishing in the land of captivity,  leave their name to the latter as shebhuu'âh,  i.e.,  to serve as a formula by which to swear,  so that men will say,  "Jehovah slay thee, as He slew them."

We may therefore assume,  that the prophet has before his mind the words of this imprecatory formula,  though he does not really express them,  and that he deduces from it the continuation of the threat.  And this explains his passing from the plural to the singular.
Their name will become an execration;  but Jehovah will call His servants by another name (cf., Isa 62:2),  so that henceforth it will be the God of the faithfully fulfilled promise whose name men take into their mouth when they either desire a blessing or wish to give assurance of the truth (hithbâreekh  be,  to bless one's self with any one,  or with the name of any one; Ewald, §133, Anm. 1).

No other name of any god is now heard in the land,  except this gloriously attested name;  for the former troubles,  which included the mixed condition of Israel in exile and the persecution of the worshippers of Jehovah by the despisers of Jehovah,  are now forgotten,  so that they no longer disturb the enjoyment of the present,  and are even hidden from the eyes of God,  so that all thought of ever renewing them is utterly remote from His mind.

The epithet derived from the confirmatory Amen,  which is thus applied to Jehovah,  is similar to the expression in Rev 3:14,  where Jesus is called "the Amen, the faithful and true witness."
The explanatory kii (for) is emphatically repeated in wŞkiy [and (forasmuch, inasmuch)] (OT: 3588).

The inhabitants of the land stand in a close and undisturbed relation to the God who has proved Himself to be true to His promises;

for all the former evils that followed from the sin have entirely passed away.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible

(13)  Therefore thus says the Lord:  See, my servants will eat, but you will go hungry; my servants will drink, but you will go thirsty; my servants will rejoice, but you will be put to shame;   (14)   my servants will sing in gladness of heart, but you will lament from anguish of heart, and will wail from a brokenness of spirit.   (15)   You will leave your name for my chosen ones to use as a curse, and the Lord God will put you to death permanently.   (16)   Then whoever takes an oath by the God of faithfulness, and whoever takes an oath in the land, will swear by the God of faithfulness; for the former troubles are forgotten and are hidden from my eyes.



LESSON  33  FROM  THE  AMPLIFIED  VERSION

Top
Previous Section

Isaiah 63:15 - 65:16  -  from the Amplified Version

63:15       LOOK DOWN from heaven and see from the dwelling place of Your holiness and Your glory. Where are Your zeal and Your jealousy and Your mighty acts [which you formerly did for Your people]? Your yearning pity and the [multitude of] compassions of Your heart are restrained and withheld from me.
(16)  For [surely] You are our Father, even though Abraham [our ancestor] does not know us and Israel (Jacob) does not acknowledge us; You, O Lord, are [still] our Father, our Redeemer from everlasting is Your name.
(17)  O Lord, why have You made us [able] to err from Your ways and hardened our hearts to [reverential] fear of You? Return [to bless us] for Your servants' sake, the tribes of Your heritage.
(18)  Your holy people possessed Your sanctuary but a little while; our adversaries have trodden it down.
(19)  We have become [to You] like those over whom You never exercised rule, like those who were not called by Your name.

64:1       OH, THAT You would rend the heavens and that You would come down, that the mountains might quake and flow down at Your presence —
(2)    As when fire kindles the brushwood and the fire causes the waters to boil — to make Your name known to Your adversaries, that the nations may tremble at Your presence!
(3)     When You did terrible things which we did not expect, You came down; the mountains quaked at Your presence.
(4)    For from of old no one has heard nor perceived by the ear, nor has the eye seen a God besides You, Who works and shows Himself active on behalf of him who [earnestly] waits for Him.
(5)    You meet and spare him who joyfully works righteousness (uprightness and justice), [earnestly] remembering You in Your ways. Behold, You were angry, for we sinned; we have long continued in our sins [prolonging Your anger]. And shall we be saved?
(6)    For we have all become like one who is unclean [ceremonially, like a leper], and all our righteousness (our best deeds of rightness and justice) is like filthy rags or a polluted garment; we all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away [far from God's favor, hurrying us toward destruction]. [Leviticus 13:45,46.]
(7)    And no one calls on Your name and awakens and bestirs himself to take and keep hold of You; for You have hidden Your face from us and have delivered us into the [consuming] power of our iniquities. [Romans 1:21-24.]
(8)    Yet, O Lord, You are our Father; we are the clay, and You our Potter, and we all are the work of Your hand.
(9)    Do not be exceedingly angry, O Lord, or [seriously] remember iniquity forever. Behold, consider, we beseech You, we are all Your people.
(10)  Your holy cities have become a wilderness; Zion has become a wilderness, Jerusalem a desolation.
(11)  Our holy and our beautiful house, [the temple] where our fathers praised You, is burned with fire, and all our pleasant and desirable places are in ruins.
(12)  Considering these [calamities], will You restrain Yourself, O Lord [and not come to our aid]? Will You keep silent and not command our deliverance but humble and afflict us exceedingly?

65:1       I WAS [ready to be] inquired of by those who asked not; I was [ready to be] found by those who sought Me not. I said, Here I am, here I am [says I AM] to a nation [Israel] that has not called on My name. [Exodus 3:14; Isaiah 58:9.]
(2)    I have spread out My hands all the day long to a rebellious people, who walk in a way that is not good, after their own thoughts —
(3)    A people who provoke Me to My face continually, sacrificing [to idols] in gardens and burning incense upon bricks [instead of at God's prescribed altar];
(4)    Who sit among the graves [trying to talk with the dead] and lodge among the secret places [or caves where familiar spirits were thought to dwell]; who eat swine's flesh, and the broth of abominable and loathsome things is in their vessels;
(5)    Who say, Keep to yourself; do not come near me, for I am set apart from you [and lest I sanctify you]! These are smoke in My nostrils, a fire that burns all the day.
(6)    Behold, it is written before Me: I will not keep silence but will repay; yes, I will repay into their bosom
(7)    Both your own iniquities and the iniquities of your fathers, says the Lord. Because they too burned incense upon the mountains and reviled and blasphemed Me upon the hills, therefore will I measure and stretch out their former doings into their own bosom.
(8)    Thus says the Lord: As the juice [of the grape] is found in the cluster, and one says, Do not destroy it, for there is a blessing in it, so will I do for My servants' sake, that I may not destroy them all.
(6)    Behold, it is written before Me: I will not keep silence but will repay; yes, I will repay into their bosom
(7)    Both your own iniquities and the iniquities of your fathers, says the Lord. Because they too burned incense upon the mountains and reviled and blasphemed Me upon the hills, therefore will I measure and stretch out their former doings into their own bosom.
(8)    Thus says the Lord: As the juice [of the grape] is found in the cluster, and one says, Do not destroy it, for there is a blessing in it, so will I do for My servants' sake, that I may not destroy them all.
(9)    And I will bring forth an offspring from Jacob, and from Judah an inheritor of My mountains; My chosen and elect will inherit it, and My servants will dwell there.
(10)  And [the plain of] Sharon shall be a pasture and fold for flocks, and the Valley of Achor a place for herds to lie down, for My people who seek Me, inquire of Me, and require Me [by right of their necessity and by right of My invitation].
(11)  But you who forsake the Lord, who forget and ignore My holy Mount [Zion], who prepare a table for Gad [the Babylonian god of fortune] and who furnish mixed drinks for Meni [the god of destiny] —
(12)  I will destine you [says the Lord] for the sword, and you shall all bow down to the slaughter, because when I called, you did not answer; when I spoke, you did not listen or obey. But you did what was evil in My eyes, and you chose that in which I did not delight.
(13)  Therefore thus says the Lord God: Behold, My servants shall eat, but you shall be hungry; behold, My servants shall drink, but you shall be thirsty; behold, My servants shall rejoice, but you shall be put to shame.
(14)  Behold, My servants shall sing for joy of heart, but you shall cry out for pain and sorrow of heart and shall wail and howl for anguish, vexation, and breaking of spirit.
(15)  And you will leave your name to My chosen [to those who will use it] for a curse; and the Lord God will slay you, but He will call His servants by another name [as much greater than the former name as the name Israel was greater than the name Jacob]. [Genesis 32:28; Jeremiah 29:22.]
(16)  So [it shall be] that he who invokes a blessing on himself in the land shall do so by saying, May the God of truth and fidelity [the Amen] bless me; and he who takes an oath in the land shall swear by the God of truth and faithfulness to His promises [the Amen], because the former troubles are forgotten and because they are hidden from My eyes. [2 Corinthians 1:20; Revelation 3:14.]


(End of  Lesson 33)


 

Bibliography

 


lakesmall.gif (2457 bytes)

Home

First
Covenant

Second
Covenant
Topical
Studies

Table of Contents