Isaiah 26:8
Yes, in the way of your judgments, O LORD, have we waited for you; the desire of our soul is to your name, and to the remembrance of you.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(8) To thy name, and to the remembrance of thee . . .—The “name” of God is, as always, that which reveals His character and will. Those who have waited for Him in the path of His judgments long for a fuller manifestation of that character. Comp. the prayer, “Father, glorify thy Name,” in John 12:28. In the next verse the prophet identifies himself in spirit with the longing expectation of the time that precedes the final manifestation.

Isaiah 26:8-9. Yea, in the way of thy judgments, O Lord — That is, as some understand it, of thine ordinances and commandments, in which we carefully and conscientiously walk; or, in the way of thy chastisements. As we, thy people, have loved and served thee, when thou didst make our way smooth and pleasant before us, so we have not forsaken thee, but waited upon thee, when thou didst see fit, for our trial, to make it difficult and troublesome. We have possessed our souls in patience under thy chastisements, and have waited thy time for our deliverance. The desire of our soul is to thy name — Hebrew, to thy name and thy memory; that is, to the remembrance of thy nature and attributes, according as thou hast made thyself known by thy word and works. And so the sense of this clause is, our affections are not alienated from thee by thy judgments, but we still continue to desire thy presence and favour, and we support and comfort ourselves with the remembrance of what thou art, and what thou hast done, and what thou hast promised to be to, and do for, thy people. With my soul — Sincerely and most affectionately; have I desired thee — The prophet speaks this in the name of all God’s people; in the night — In the time of affliction, often termed night, or darkness; or, rather, in the night, properly so called, as appears from the next clause, wherein early, or in the morning, is opposed to it. When others are sleeping, my thoughts and desires are working toward thee. Yea, with my spirit within me — By fervent and importunate prayer for thy loving-kindness; will I seek thee early — Betimes in the morning. For when thy judgments are in the earth — And good reason it is that we should thus desire and seek thee in the way of thy judgments, because this is the very design of thy judgments, that men should thereby be awakened to learn and return to their duty; and this is a common effect of them, that those who have been careless in prosperity are made wiser and better by afflictions.26:5-11 The way of the just is evenness, a steady course of obedience and holy conversation. And it is their happiness that God makes their way plain and easy. It is our duty, and will be our comfort, to wait for God, to keep up holy desires toward him in the darkest and most discouraging times. Our troubles must never turn us from God; and in the darkest, longest night of affliction, with our souls must we desire him; and this we must wait and pray to him for. We make nothing of our religion, whatever our profession may be, if we do not make heart-work of it. Though we come ever so early, we shall find God ready to receive us. The intention of afflictions is to teach righteousness: blessed is the man whom the Lord thus teaches. But sinners walk contrary to him. They will go on in their evil ways, because they will not consider what a God he is whose laws they persist in despising. Scorners and the secure will shortly feel, what now they will not believe, that it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. They will not see the evil of sin; but they shall see. Oh that they would abandon their sins, and turn to the Lord, that he may have mercy upon them.Yea, in the way of thy judgements - The word 'judgments' often refers to the statutes or laws of God. But it may also refer to the afflictions and trials with which he visits or judges people; the punishments which they endure for their sins. In which sense the word is used here it is not easy to determine. Lowth understands it of the 'laws' of Yahweh. So Kimchi, who says that the sense is, that during their captivity and trials, they had not remitted anything of their love and piety toward God. I am inclined to the belief that this is the true interpretation, because in the corresponding member of the parallelism they are represented as saying that the desire of their soul was to God, and to the remembrance of him, implying that they sought by an observance of his laws to please him, and to secure his favor.

The desire of our soul is to thy name - The word 'name' is used here, as it is often, to denote God himself. They desired that he would come and deliver them; they earnestly wished that he would manifest himself to them as their friend.

And to the remembrance of thee - The word 'remembrance' (זכר zēker) is often equivalent to name, appellation, or that by which anyone is remembered, or known. Thus Exodus 3:15 :

This is my name for ever;

And this is my memorial זכרי zikeriy unto all generations.

So Psalm 30:4 :

Sing unto Yahweh, O ye saints of his;

And give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness;

That is, at his holy memorial (Margin,) or name. In the place before us it seems to be used in the sense of name or appellation; that is, that by which God would be remembered or known.

8. way of thy judgments—We have waited for Thy proceeding to punish the enemy (Isa 26:9, 10) [Maurer]. Horsley translates Isa 26:7, 8, "The path of the Just One is perfectly even; an even road Thou wilt level for the Just One, even the path of Thy laws, O Jehovah. We have expected Thee."

name … remembrance—the manifested character of God by which He would be remembered (Isa 64:5; Ex 3:15).

Yea, in the way of thy judgments, O Lord, have we waited for thee: and as we thy people have loved and served thee when thou hast made our way plain and easy for us; so we have not forsaken thee, but waited upon thee, when thou hast made it rugged and troublesome by thy judgments. He speaks of the same just men Isaiah 26:7-9, though it be with a change of the numbers and persons, which is usual in prophetical writings, the just, Isaiah 26:7, we, Isaiah 26:1 26:9.

To thy name, and to the remembrance of thee, Heb. to thy name and thy memory; which by a known figure called hendinduo may be put for the remembrance of thy name. And the name of God is here, as it is in many other places, put for God himself, as he hath made himself known by his word and works. And so the sense of this clause is, Our affections are not alienated from thee by thy judgments, but we still continue to desire thy presence and favour, and we support and comfort ourselves with the remembrance of what thou art, and what thou hast done, and what thou hast promised to be and do to thy people. Yea, in the way of thy judgments, O Lord, have we waited for thee,.... Meaning by "judgments" either the ministration of the word and ordinances, called statutes and judgments, Psalm 147:19 an attendance on which is the right way of waiting upon God, and where it may be expected he will be found and manifest himself, and favour with his gracious presence; or else the corrections and chastisements, which are done in wisdom and with judgment, in measure and in mercy, and in a fatherly way, and for good; and so the sense is, that they had not only followed the Lord in a plain and even way, but even in the more rugged paths of afflictive dispensations; nor did these things at all move them from their duty to him, and worship of him:

the desire of our soul is to thy name, and to the remembrance of thee; to God himself, and to a remembrance of his nature, perfections, and works; to Christ, whose name is as ointment poured forth, and whose person is desirable, because of his glory, beauty, and fulness, because of his offices, and blessings of grace; and to his Gospel, which publishes and proclaims him, his grace, and salvation; and to his ordinances, which refresh the memory of his people concerning him, and his love to them shown in what he has done and suffered for them.

Yea, in the way of thy {g} judgments, O LORD, have we waited for thee; the desire of our soul is to thy name, and to the remembrance of thee.

(g) We have constantly abode in the adversities with which you had afflicted us.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
8. Yea, in the way … for thee] i.e. have stood by the way along which we expected and desired Jehovah to appear—in judgment. The rest of the verse should be translated as in R.V., to thy name and to thy memorial is the desire of [our] soul (or, as Cheyne, “heartfelt desire”). “Name” and “memorial” are synonymous, as in Exodus 3:15; Psalm 135:13; Jehovah’s memorial is that by which He makes Himself to be remembered (see Isaiah 26:13).Verse 8. - Yea, in the way of thy judgments... have we waited for thee; rather, we waited. During the long years of our affliction and persecution in the world, we waited in the constant expectation that "thy judgments" would fall upon our persecutors. We were not impatient. We knew that thou wouldst visit us at the tilting time. The desire of our soul is to thy Name; rather, the desire of our soul was to thy Name. During all the weary time of waiting, we longed for thee, and thy Name, or rather what thy Name indicates, thy own true self. In default of thy actual presence, we desired to have thee ever in remembrance. In Isaiah 26:1 this city is thought of as still empty: for, like paradise, in which man was placed, it is first of all a creation of God; and hence the exclamation in Isaiah 26:2 : "Open ye the gates, that a righteous people may enter, one keeping truthfulness." The cry is a heavenly one; and those who open, if indeed we are at liberty to inquire who they are, must be angels. We recall to mind Psalm 24:1-10, but the scene is a different one. The author of Psalm 118 has given individuality to this passage in Psalm 118:19, Psalm 118:20. Goi tzaddik (a righteous nation) is the church of the righteous, as in Isaiah 24:16. Goi (nation) is used here, as in Isaiah 26:15 and Isaiah 9:2, with reference to Israel, which has now by grace become a righteous nation, and has been established in covenant truth towards God, who keepeth truth ('emunim, from 'ēmūn, Psalm 31:24).
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