Isaiah 59:13
In transgressing and lying against the LORD, and departing away from our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(13) In transgressing . . .—The clauses point respectively (1) to false and hypocritical worship; (2) to open apostacy; (3) to sins against man, and these subdivided into (a) sins against truth, and (b) sins against justice.

59:9-15 If we shut our eyes against the light of Divine truth, it is just with God to hide from our eyes the things that belong to our peace. The sins of those who profess themselves God's people, are worse than the sins of others. And the sins of a nation bring public judgments, when not restrained by public justice. Men may murmur under calamities, but nothing will truly profit while they reject Christ and his gospel.In transgressing - That is, we have been guilty of this as a continuous act.

And lying against the Lord - We have proved false to Yahweh. Though we have been professedly his people, yet we have been secretly attached to idols, and have in our hearts been devoted to the service of false gods.

And departing away from our God - By the worship of idols, and by the violation of his law.

Speaking oppression and revolt - Forming plans to see how we might best take advantage of the poor and the defenseless, and to mature our plans of revolt against God.

Conceiving and uttering from the heart - (See the notes at Isaiah 59:4). The idea is, that they had formed in their hearts schemes of deception, and that in their conversation and their lives they had given utterance to them. All this is the language of genuine contrition, where there is a consciousness of deep guilt in the sight of God. There is an overpowering sense of the evil of sin. and a willingness to make the most full and ample acknowledgment, however mortifying it may be, of the errors and follies of the life.

13. The particulars of the sins generally confessed in Isa 59:12 (Isa 48:8; Jer 2:19, 20). The act, the word, and the thought of apostasy, are all here marked: transgression and departing, &c.; lying (compare Isa 59:4), and speaking, &c.; conceiving and uttering from the heart. He now enumerates some of those particular sins they profess themselves to be convinced of, whereby he doth not mean the sins of some particular persons, or some slight sins, but a general defection and corruption of the whole body.

In transgressing: properly, we rebel against God, so the word is Isaiah 1:2, and have persisted in our rebellion.

Lying; being true to none of their engagements, vows, and promises. Some make transgressing here and lying to be one and the same thing, inasmuch as in their transgressing of the law of God they did break their solemn engagement to God upon Mount Sinai, Exodus 19:8 24:3, and elsewhere frequently, which is a downright lying against God; for wherein do we more lie to God than in a perfidious withdrawing from him? So that by transgressing here he doth mean not a breach of One or another of the laws of God, but their being as it were fugitives, that would be under no yoke.

Departing, i.e. turning from God to idols.

Speaking; as it were talking of little else one among another but how to oppress their neighbours, and apostatize from God.

Conceiving and uttering, i.e. first contriving and forging in their heart false accusations to the ruin of their neighbour, and false worship to the dishonour of God, laying the contrivance so that it might be effectual; and then uttering it, or venting themselves one to another in their discourses, thereby encouraging each other in their perverse ways; see Isaiah 59:3; and whereas it is said

from the heart, it notes a resoluteness in their wickedness, being a great deal worse than now and then to deal falsely upon some occasion or temptation.

From the heart words of falsehood: they are called words of falsehood, both with reference to men, and so signify slanders and false accusations; as also to God, and so signify their dealing falsely with God, as an adulteress doth with her husband: hence idolaters are called the seed of falsehood, Isaiah 57:3-5; and it is said from the heart, to show that when they dealt with men in ways of fraud, it was from the heart, but when they spake with God, it was but from the lip. In transgressing and lying against the Lord,.... The word of the Lord, as the Targum; they transgress the doctrine of Christ, as well as the law of God, and deny him the only Lord God, even our Lord Jesus Christ, his proper deity, his righteousness, and satisfaction, which is notorious in our days; so the Syriac version renders it,

we have denied the Lord; the Lord that bought them: this is the case of many under a profession of Christ:

and departing away from our God: from following him, from walking in his ways, from attending his worship, word, and ordinances; so the Targum,

"from the worship of our God;''

from Immanuel, God with us, God in our nature; from him the living God, as every degree of unbelief is a departing from him; and especially he is departed from when his divine Person is denied; when neglected as the Saviour; his Gospel corrupted; his ordinances perverted, and his worship, or the assembly of the saints, forsaken:

speaking oppression and revolt: such who are in public office, speakers in the church of God; these speak what is oppressive and burdensome to the minds and consciences of those who are truly gracious; make their hearts sad, whom God would not have made sad, by their false doctrines; and which have a tendency to cause men to revolt from the Lord, and turn their backs on him: or "speak calumny and defection" (e), as some render it; calumniate, reproach, and revile the few faithful ones, and draw off many from the truths of the Gospel, and a profession of them. The Targum renders it, "falsehood and apostasy"; false doctrine, which leads to apostasy from Christ; with which the next clause agrees:

conceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood; false doctrines; such as agree not with, but are contrary to, the word of God; these are of their own conceiving and contriving; the produce of their own brains; the fruit of their own fancy and imaginations; and which, out of the abundance of their hearts, they utter, even premeditated falsehoods, studied lies, as in Isaiah 59:3; see Gill on Isaiah 59:3.

(e) "calumniam et perversitatem", Pagninus; "calumniam et defectionem", Montanus; "calumniam et transgressionem", V. L.

In transgressing and lying against the LORD, and departing away from our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart words of {l} falsehood.

(l) That is, against our neighbours.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
13. The sins referred to in Isaiah 59:12 are enumerated in a series of infinitives (cf. Isaiah 59:4), which should be construed as in apposition to the terms “sin,” “iniquities,” &c. employed in the general confession of Isaiah 59:12.

Rebellion and denial of Jehovah,

and turning back from after our God, etc.

It is doubtful if there is any reference here to the sin of idolatry; the charge of apostasy is perhaps rather to be understood of offences against social morality, which amounted to a renunciation of the authority of Jehovah.

The last two lines deal with sins of speech, committed against men.

revolt is literally “defection,” and appears to be used in the same general sense as Deuteronomy 19:16 of declension from truth and right.

uttering from the heart] The verb here is identical in form with that rendered “mutter” in Isaiah 59:3 and “mourn” in Isaiah 59:11. The vocalisation of both the verbs in this clause is anomalous, and should probably be changed (read hârô, hâgô).Verse 13. - An enumeration of special sins. First, sins of the heart. Transgressing and lying against the Lord; or rather, treason and unfaithfulness to Jehovah (Cheyne); followed by departing away from God, or the secret act of apostasy. Next, sins of the tongue: Speaking oppression and revolt; or, oppression and wrong - the "wrong," probably, of false accusation (comp. Deuteronomy 19:16); and, lastly, conceiving and uttering · . . words of falsehood generally. This evil doing of theirs rises even to hatred, the very opposite of that love which is well-pleasing to God. "Their feet run to evil, and make haste to shed innocent blood: their thoughts are thoughts of wickedness; wasting and destruction are in their paths." Paul has interwoven this passage into his description of the universal corruption of morals, in Romans 3:15-17. The comparison of life to a road, and of a man's conduct to walking, is very common in proverbial sayings. The prophet has here taken from them both his simile and his expressions. We may see from Isaiah 59:7, that during the captivity the true believers were persecuted even to death by their countrymen, who had forgotten God. The verbs ירוּצוּ and וימהרוּ (the proper reading, with metheg, not munach, under the מ) depict the pleasure taken in wickedness, when the conscience is thoroughly lulled to sleep.
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