English Standard Version
Your princes are rebels and companions of thieves. Everyone loves a bribe and runs after gifts. They do not bring justice to the fatherless, and the widow’s cause does not come to them.
King James Bible
Thy princes are rebellious, and companions of thieves: every one loveth gifts, and followeth after rewards: they judge not the fatherless, neither doth the cause of the widow come unto them.
American Standard Version
Thy princes are rebellious, and companions of thieves; every one loveth bribes, and followeth after rewards: they judge not the fatherless, neither doth the cause of the widow come unto them.
Thy princes are faithless, companions of thieves: they all love bribes, the run after rewards. They judge not for the fatherless: and the widow's cometh not in to them.
English Revised Version
Thy princes are rebellious, and companions of thieves; every one loveth gifts, and followeth after rewards: they judge not the fatherless, neither doth the cause of the widow come unto them.
Webster's Bible Translation
Thy princes are rebellious, and companions of thieves: every one loveth gifts, and followeth after rewards: they judge not the fatherless, neither doth the cause of the widow come to them.
Isaiah 1:23 Parallel
CommentaryKeil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament
Five admonitions relating to the practice of what is good: "Learn to do good, attend to judgment, set the oppressor right, do justice to the orphan, conduct the cause of the widow." The first admonition lays the foundation for the rest. They were to learn to do good - a difficult art, in which a man does not become proficient merely by good intentions. "Learn to do good:" hetib is the object to limdu (learn), regarded as an accusative; the inf. abs. הרע in Isaiah 1:16 takes the place of the object in just the same manner. The division of this primary admonition into four minor ones relating to the administration of justice, may be explained from the circumstance that no other prophet directs so keen an eye upon the state and its judicial proceedings as Isaiah has done. He differs in this respect from his younger contemporary Micah, whose prophecies are generally more ethical in their nature, whilst those of Isaiah have a political character throughout. Hence the admonitions: "Give diligent attention to judgment" (dârash, to devote one's self to a thing with zeal and assiduity); and "bring the oppressor to the right way." This is the true rendering, as Châmotz (from Châmatz, to be sharp in flavour, glaring in appearance, violent and impetuous in character) cannot well mean "the oppressed," or the man who is deprived of his rights, as most of the early translators have rendered it, since this form of the noun, especially with an immutable kametz like בּגוד בּגודה (cf., נקד נקּדּה), is not used in a passive, but in an active or attributive sense (Ewald, 152, b: vid., at Psalm 137:8): it has therefore the same meaning as Chomeotz in Psalm 71:4, and âshok in Jeremiah 22:3, which is similar in its form. But if Châmotz signifies the oppressive, reckless, churlish man, אשּׁר cannot mean to make happy, or to congratulate, or to set up, or, as in the talmudic rendering, to strengthen (Luzzatto: rianimate chi oppresso); but, as it is also to be rendered in Isaiah 3:12; Isaiah 9:15, to lead to the straight road, or to cause a person to keep the straight course. In the case before us, where the oppressor is spoken of, it means to direct him to the way of justice, to keep him in bounds by severe punishment and discipline.
(Note: The Talmud varies in its explanation of Chamoz: in one instance it is applied to a judge who lets his sentence be thoroughly leavened before pronouncing it; in another the Chamuz is said to signify a person robbed and injured, in opposition to Chomez (b. Sanhedrin 35a). It is an instructive fact in relation to the idea suggested by the word, that, according to Joma 39b, a man who had not only taken possession of his own inheritance, but had seized upon another person's also, bore the nickname of ben chimzon as long as he lived.)
In the same way we find in other passages, such as Isaiah 11:4 and Psalm 72:4, severe conduct towards oppressors mentioned in connection with just treatment of the poor. There follow two admonitions relating to widows and orphans. Widows and orphans, as well as foreigners, were the protgs of God and His law, standing under His especial guardianship and care (see, for example, Exodus 22:22 (21), cf., Exodus 21:21 (20). "Do justice to the orphan" (Shâphat, as in Deuteronomy 25:1, is a contracted expression for shâphat mishpat): for if there is not even a settlement or verdict in their cause, this is the most crying injustice of all, as neither the form nor the appearance of justice is preserved. "Conduct the cause of the widows:" ריב with an accusative, as in Isaiah 51:22, the only other passage in which it occurs, is a contracted form for ריב ריב. Thus all the grounds of self-defence, which existed in the hearts of the accused, are both negatively and positively overthrown. They are thundered down and put to shame. The law (thorah), announced in Isaiah 1:10, has been preached to them. The prophet has cast away the husks of their dead works, and brought out the moral kernel of the law in its universal application.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.
Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
And you shall take no bribe, for a bribe blinds the clear-sighted and subverts the cause of those who are in the right.
Your silver has become dross, your best wine mixed with water.
who acquit the guilty for a bribe, and deprive the innocent of his right!
to turn aside the needy from justice and to rob the poor of my people of their right, that widows may be their spoil, and that they may make the fatherless their prey!
"Ah, stubborn children," declares the LORD, "who carry out a plan, but not mine, and who make an alliance, but not of my Spirit, that they may add sin to sin;
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ESV Text Edition: 2016. The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.