Isaiah 1:28
And the destruction of the transgressors and of the sinners shall be together, and they that forsake the LORD shall be consumed.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(28) Of the transgressors and of the sinners.—The first of the two words presents evil in its aspect of apostasy, the second in that of the open sin which may accompany the apostasy or exist without it.

1:21-31 Neither holy cities nor royal ones are faithful to their trust, if religion does not dwell in them. Dross may shine like silver, and the wine that is mixed with water may still have the colour of wine. Those have a great deal to answer for, who do not help the oppressed, but oppress them. Men may do much by outward restraints; but only God works effectually by the influences of his Spirit, as a Spirit of Judgment. Sin is the worst captivity, the worst slavery. The redemption of the spiritual Zion, by the righteousness and death of Christ, and by his powerful grace, most fully accord with what is here meant. Utter ruin is threatened. The Jews should become as a tree when blasted by heat; as a garden without water, which in those hot countries would soon be burned up. Thus shall they be that trust in idols, or in an arm of flesh. Even the strong man shall be as tow; not only soon broken, and pulled to pieces, but easily catching fire. When the sinner has made himself as tow and stubble, and God makes himself as a consuming fire, what can prevent the utter ruin of the sinner?And the destruction - Hebrew שׁבר sheber - the breaking, or crushing, that is, the punishment which was about to come upon them; compare Lamentations 2:11; Lamentations 3:47; Proverbs 16:18.

Of the transgressors - "Revolters," or those that rebel against God.

And of the sinners - Of all the sinners in the nation, of all kinds and degrees.

Together - At the same time with the redemption of Zion.

Shall be consumed - יכלוּ yı̂kelû, from כלה kâlâh, to be completed, or finished; to be consumed, wasted away; to vanish, or disappear. It denotes complete and entire extinction; or the completing of anything. It is applied to a cloud of smoke, that entirely dissolves and disappears:

As the cloud is consumed and vanisheth away:

So he that goeth down to the grave shall come up no more,

28. destruction—literally, "breaking into shivers" (Re 2:27). The prophets hasten forward to the final extinction of the ungodly (Ps 37:20; Re 19:20; 20:15); of which antecedent judgments are types. And; or rather, but, as that particle is oft used; for here is a manifest opposition.

The destruction of the transgressors and of the sinners shall be together; though I will deliver my people from the Babylonish captivity, yet those of them who shall still go on in their wickedness shall not have the benefit of that mercy, but are reserved for a more dreadful and total destruction. And the destruction of the transgressors and of the sinners shall be together,.... Of the beast and false prophet, of the followers of antichrist, the man of sin, who are transgressors of the law of God, and sinners against the Lord; the destruction of these, or the breaking of them into shivers, as the word (o) signifies, see Revelation 2:27 will be at the time of Zion's redemption, and make a part of it; and it shall be all at once and together; these sinners will be all together consumed out of the earth, and these wicked antichristian ones will be no more in it, Psalm 104:35.

and they that forsake the Lord; his word, his worship and ordinances; as the Papists have manifestly done, by setting up their own unwritten traditions against the word of God, by adulterating his ordinances, and introducing new ones, and by worshipping images of gold, silver, brass, and wood;

wherefore they shall be consumed; with the breath of Christ's mouth, and with the brightness of his coming, 2 Thessalonians 2:8.

(o) "contritio sive confractio", Syr.

And the {n} destruction of the transgressors and of the sinners shall be together, and they that forsake the LORD shall be consumed.

(n) The wicked will not be partakers of God's promise, Ps 92:9.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
28. And the destruction … together] Better as an exclamation: But destruction of rebels and sinners together! Rebels, sinners, forsakers of Jehovah, as in Isaiah 1:2-4.Verse 28. - Transgressors... sinners... they that forsake the Lord (comp. vers. 2 and 4). These are scarcely distinct classes - rather different names for the ungodly. All of them, by whatever name they were called, would perish "together." The complaint now turns from the city generally to the authorities, and first of all figuratively. "Thy silver has become dross, thy drink mutilated with water." It is upon this passage that the figurative language of Jeremiah 6:27. and Ezekiel 22:18-22 is founded. Silver is here a figurative representation of the princes and lords, with special reference to the nobility of character naturally associated with nobility of birth and rank; for silver - refined silver - is an image of all that is noble and pure, light in all its purity being reflected by it (Bhr, Symbolik, i. 284). The princes and lords had once possessed all the virtues which the Latins called unitedly Candor animi, viz., the virtues of magnanimity, affability, impartiality, and superiority to bribes. This silver had now become l'sigim, dross, or base metal separated (thrown off) from silver in the process of refining (sig, pl. sigim, siggim from sug, recedere, refuse left in smelting, or dross: cf., Proverbs 25:4; Proverbs 26:23). A second figure compares the leading men of the older Jerusalem to good wine, such as drinkers like. The word employed here (sobe) must have been used in this sense by the more cultivated classes in Isaiah's time (cf., Nahum 1:10). This pure, strong, and costly wine was now adulterated with water (lit. castratum, according to Pliny's expression in the Natural History: compare the Horatian phrase, jugulare Falernum), and therefore its strength and odour were weakened, and its worth was diminished. The present was nothing but the dross and shadow of the past.
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