Isaiah 40:14
With whom took he counsel, and who instructed him, and taught him in the path of judgment, and taught him knowledge, and showed to him the way of understanding?
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(14) Counsel . . . judgment.—The cluster of words belonging to the sapiential vocabulary of the Book of Proverbs is to be noted as parallel with Proverbs 11:23, Isaiah 33:15.

40:12-17 All created beings shrink to nothing in comparison with the Creator. When the Lord, by his Spirit, made the world, none directed his Spirit, or gave advice what to do, or how to do it. The nations, in comparison of him, are as a drop which remains in the bucket, compared with the vast ocean; or as the small dust in the balance, which does not turn it, compared with all the earth. This magnifies God's love to the world, that, though it is of such small account and value with him, yet, for the redemption of it, he gave his only-begotten Son, Joh 3:16. The services of the church can make no addition to him. Our souls must have perished for ever, if the only Son of the Father had not given himself for us.With whom took he counsel - The sentiment of the former verse is repeated here, in order, probably, to make it more emphatic.

In the path of judgment - The way of judging correctly and wisely; or the way of administering justice. It denotes here his boundless wisdom as it is seen in the various arrangements of his creation and providence, by which all things keep their places, and accomplish his vast designs.

14. path of judgment—His wisdom, whereby He so beautifully adjusts the places and proportions of all created things. Taught him in the path of judgment; how to walk and manage all his affairs with good judgment and discretion. With whom took he counsel, and who instructed him,.... This is the same as before, only repeated in other words, the more strongly to deny that any mere creature counselled, taught, and instructed the Spirit of Christ, in the ordering and managing the works of creation:

and taught him in the path of judgment, and taught him knowledge, and showed to him the way of understanding? or gave him that judgment, knowledge, and understanding in framing the world, and all things in it, in that beautiful and regular manner that it is; which shows it to be a work of wisdom, more than human or angelical, and to be purely divine; no one, angel or man, could have struck out such a path of judgment, such a way of understanding, or showed such exquisite skill and knowledge, as appear in the works of creation; see Psalm 104:24.

With whom took he counsel, and who instructed him, and taught him in the path of judgment, and taught him knowledge, and shewed to him the way of understanding?
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
14. and who instructed] Or, so that he instructed.

path of judgment] path of right (mishpâṭ). See ch. Isaiah 28:26, where the word means orderly procedure; here the reference is to the order of nature, or else the transition is already made from creation to providence (Isaiah 40:15).

way of understanding] Or, way of insight. The intermediate clause and taught him knowledge is omitted by the LXX., and since it disturbs the parallelism, and repeats the verb just used, it may be a gloss.The prophet now hears a second voice, and then a third, entering into conversation with it. "Hark, one speaking, Cry! And he answers, What shall I cry? All flesh is grass, and all its beauty as the flower of the field. Grass is withered, flower faded: for the breath of Jehovah has blown upon it. Surely grass is the people; grass withereth, flower fadeth: yet the word of our God will stand for ever." A second voice celebrates the divine word of promise in the face of the approaching fulfilment, and appoints a preacher of its eternal duration. The verb is not ואמר (et dixi, lxx, Vulg.), but ואמר; so that the person asking the question is not the prophet himself, but an ideal person, whom he has before him in visionary objectiveness. The appointed theme of his proclamation is the perishable nature of all flesh (Isaiah 40:5 πᾶσα σάρξ, here πᾶσα ἡ σάρξ), and, on the other hand, the imperishable nature of the word of God. Men living in the flesh are universally impotent, perishing, limited; God, on the contrary (Isaiah 31:3), is the omnipotent, eternal, all-determining; and like Himself, so is His word, which, regarded as the vehicle and utterance of His willing and thinking, is not something separate from Himself, and therefore is the same as He. Chasdō is the charm or gracefulness of the outward appearance (lxx; 1 Peter 1:24, δόξα: see Schott on the passage, James 1:11, εὐπρέπεια). The comparison instituted with grass and flower recals Isaiah 37:27 and Job 8:12, and still more Psalm 90:5-6, and Job 14:2. Isaiah 40:7 describes what happens to the grass and flower. The preterites, like the Greek aoristus gnomicus (cf., Isaiah 26:10), express a fact of experience sustained by innumerable examples: exaruit gramen, emarcuit flos;

(Note: נבל has munach here and in Isaiah 40:8 attached to the penultimate in all correct texts (hence milel, on account of the monosyllable which follows), and mehteg on the tzere to sustain the lengthening.)

consequently the כּי which follows is not hypothetical (granting that), but explanatory of the reason, viz., "because rūăch Jehovah hath blown upon it," i.e., the "breath" of God the Creator, which pervades the creation, generating life, sustaining life, and destroying life, and whose most characteristic elementary manifestation is the wind. Every breath of wind is a drawing of the breath of the whole life of nature, the active indwelling principle of whose existence is the rūăch of God. A fresh v. ought to commence now with אכן. The clause העם חציר אכן is genuine, and thoroughly in Isaiah's style, notwithstanding the lxx, which Gesenius and Hitzig follow. עכן is not equivalent to a comparative כן (Ewald, 105, a), but is assuring, as in Isaiah 45:15; Isaiah 49:4; Isaiah 53:4; and hâ‛âm (the people) refers to men generally, as in Isaiah 42:5. The order of thought is in the form of a triolet. The explanation of the striking simile commences with 'âkhēn (surely); and then in the repetition of the words, "grass withereth, flower fadeth," the men are intended, resemble the grass and the flower. Surely grass is the human race; such grass withereth and such flower fadeth, but the word of our God (Jehovah, the God of His people and of sacred history) yâqūm le‛ōlâm, i.e., it rises up without withering or fading, and endures for ever, fulfilling and verifying itself through all times. This general truth refers, in the preset instance, to the word of promise uttered by the voice in the desert. If the word of God generally has an eternal duration, more especially is this the case with the word of the parousia of God the Redeemer, the word in which all the words of God are yea and amen. The imperishable nature of this word, however, has for its dark foil the perishable nature of all flesh, and all the beauty thereof. The oppressors of Israel are mortal, and their chesed with which they impose and bribe is perishable; but the word of God, with which Israel can console itself, preserves the fields, and ensures it a glorious end to its history. Thus the seal, which the first crier set upon the promise of Jehovah's speedy coming, is inviolable; and the comfort which the prophets of God are to bring to His people, who have now been suffering so long, is infallibly sure.

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