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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Isaiah 52:14

Just as many were astonished at you, My people, So His appearance was marred more than any man And His form more than the sons of men.

Adam Clarke Commentary

As many were astonished at thee "As many were astonished at him" - For עליך aleicha read עליו alaiv . So the Syriac, Chaldee, and Vulgate in a MS.; and so likewise two ancient MSS.

His visage was so marred more than any man - Most interpreters understand this of the indignities offered to our blessed Lord: but Kimchi gives it another turn, and says, "It means the Jewish people, whom are considered by most nations as having an appearance different from all the people of the earth. "Poor Jews! they have in general a very disagreeable look, partly affected, and partly through neglect of neatness and cleanliness. Most Christians think they carry the impress of their reprobation on every feature of their face. However this may be, it should never be forgotten that the greatest men that ever flourished as kings, judges, magistrates, lawgivers, heroes, and poets, were of Jewish extraction. Isaiah was a Jew; so was Paul, and so was Jesus of Nazareth.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/isaiah-52.html. 1832.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

As many were astonished at thee,.... Not so much at the miracles he wrought, the doctrines he taught, and the work he did; or at his greatness and glory, at his exaltation and dignity, though very wonderful; as at his humiliation, the mean appearance he made, the low estate he was brought into; the sufferings and death which he underwent. These words are placed between the account of his exaltation and humiliation, and may be thought to have respect to both; and indeed it is astonishing that one so great as he was, and is, should become so low as he did; and also that one that was brought so low should be raised so high:

his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men; though fairer than the children of men, as he was the immediate workmanship of the divine Spirit, and without sin; yet, what with his griefs and sorrows he bore, and troubles he met with; what with watchings and fastings, with laborious preaching, and constant travelling about to do good; what with sweat and blood, with buffetings and scourgings, never was any man's face more marred, or his form more altered, than his was.


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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855

Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/isaiah-52.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

As many were astonished at thee; his visage was so o marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men:

(o) In the corrupt judgment of man, Christ in his person was not valued.

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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/isaiah-52.html. 1599-1645.

Preacher's Complete Homiletical Commentary

THE FACE OF JESUS

Isa . As many were astonished at Thee; His visage was so marred, &c.

The personal coming of the Son of God was a great theme of prophecy. Changes of dynasties, national and local calamities, the raising up of heroes, the overthrow of sovereigns and of empires were predicted by the ministers of Jehovah; but the overthrow of the dominion of sin, by that man Jesus Christ, is the sublimest intelligence uttered by prophetic lips. The personal character of Christ is sketched in prophecy. He is to be different from ordinary men—their superior. He is to be open of heart, gentle of hand, sober of mind, consistent in conduct. The personal circumstances of Christ are mentioned. He is to come of royal stock, yet impoverished. Obscurity and lowliness are to be His portion in His domestic life, rejection and contempt in His public career. Yet are men to hear eagerly His words, and He is to be crowned with ultimate glory. The countenance of the Saviour, His personal appearance, is also referred to. These slight sketches were literally fulfilled. How different is the face of the infant from that of the dying man! During the tortuous course of life, the chisel of the energetic sculptor, Time, has been busy cutting deep furrows; the pencils of the twin painters, Sorrow and Care, have left the expression wan and worn.

I. The text is a photograph of the face of Jesus in the hour of His death. Let us meditate upon it. "Love and grief the heart dividing."

1. The face and form are those of a man. There is here flesh and blood; parts and features capable of expressing feeling.

2. Though in these respects a face like ours, yet how different! It is a visage marred; but not by evil life, evil disposition, infirmity, sickness, or age. In the Saviour's face there are,

(1.) Lines which tell of severe hardship. He was made acquainted with hunger, thirst, and fatigue. He lived for others' welfare, comfort, and happiness, forgetting His own.

(2.) Indications of heavy sorrow (Isa ). A world's ingratitude pressed upon His spirit. A world's sin grieved Him.

(3.) Traces of anxious care. He had come as the representative of His Father to men. He had undertaken to represent the case of man before His Father. What responsibility!

(4.) Marks of much suffering. Allusion is made in the text not only to mental, but to physical suffering. Gethsemane's agony; the cruel usage in Herod's hall, where "He gave His back to the smiters, and His cheeks to them that plucked off the hair;" His sufferings under Pilate; the tortures of the crucifixion, remove all room for wonder at the statement of the text. There are actual scars upon His sacred Person; "the print of the nails;" of the thorn crown; the spear-wound.

II. We may reverently muse upon what is here revealed. The face is but the outer mask; the soul is hidden within. The face is an index which reveals and expresses the feelings and experiences of the soul.

1. We learn from the face of Jesus the reality of His life. It is seen to have been intensely real. The visit to earth was no illusive appearance of the Son of God. To Him sin, human guilt, and Divine wrath were real and fearful matters. The features of the grim soldier on the battle-field tell forth unmistakably his earnestness and anxiety; for with him it is a matter of glory or shame, of victory or death.

2. We see the reality of His sympathy. Life is to us a reality. It is a burden, an effort, a struggle. He understands our case. He has undergone all. Behold His face! Think upon His racked nerves, weary limbs, aching head, wounded spirit, broken heart! (Heb .)

3. We understand the reality of His work. God might have left us to our fate; but where would then have been the glory of His grace? He might have forgiven us and saved us with a word; but where then would have been the purity of His holiness, justice, and truth? "It behoved Christ to suffer."

4. We have now evidence of the reality of His love (Joh ; Joh 15:13; Eph 3:19; 1Jn 3:16).

(5.) We cannot now doubt the reality of His Divinity. The weakness of His humanity having endured the long trial of anxiety, pain, and sorrow, and having ultimately and perfectly triumphed, proves to us the fact and the glory of His Divinity.

III. Let us make application of this subject to ourselves. We look at Christ to learn of Him.

1. Is there not here matter for wonder? "As many were astonished at Thee." They said: "It is impossible, incredible, that this humble, patient sufferer can be the Christ" (Isa ). We wonder, not to doubt, but to adore.

2. Here is reason for admiration and love. What has the Lord endured for our eternal salvation?

3. We must remember to expect an experience very similar to that of our Lord.

4. We have here an example worthy of imitation. How patiently He endures all! (Heb .)

5. Does not this revelation of the nature, character, and work of Christ afford us ground for trust? Saints may be assured of His sympathy. Sinners may see in His substitutionary suffering their salvation.—Robert S. Latimer: Study and Homiletic Monthly, New Series, vol. iii. pp. 164-166.


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Bibliography
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". Preacher's Complete Homiletical Commentary. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/phc/isaiah-52.html. Funk & Wagnalls Company, 1892.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

As many were astonied at thee; his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men:

Astonished — At his humiliation.

Thee — At thee, O my servant.

His form — Christ, in respect of his birth, breeding, and manner of life, was most obscure and contemptible. His countenance also was so marred with frequent watchings, and fastings, and troubles, that he was thought to be near fifty years old when he was but about thirty, John 8:57, and was farther spoiled with buffetings, and crowning with thorns, and other cruel and despiteful usages.


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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/isaiah-52.html. 1765.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

14.As many. He makes use of an anticipation; for the exalted state of Christ was not visible at first sight, and on this pretense it might be rejected. On this account, he informs them that Christ must first be rejected and humbled, and anticipates that doubt which might have arisen from his singularly debased and unseemly condition. As if he had said, “There is no reason why men should be shocked at that unseemliness and disgrace which will be speedily followed by eternal happiness.”

So marred by men. I have translated כן (ken) as meaning so; for it is a mistake to suppose that it opens the second part of the comparison. (48) I consider מאיש (meish) to mean “by men;” for I do not consider מ (mem) to be a particle denoting comparison, as others explain it; that is “more than” men, or “beyond” what is usually found among men; but I adopt a simpler meaning, which is, that Christ was disfigured among men, or that his beauty was defaced by the perverse judgment of men.

Were amazed. (49) This “amazement” is considered by some commentators to denote the astonishment with which men were seized on account of the miracles performed by Christ, and next, that, when he must come to the cross, he was immediately rejected by them. But they have not caught the Prophet’s meaning; for he says that Christ will be such that all men will be shocked at him. He came into the world so as to be everywhere despised; his glory lay hid under the humble form of the flesh; for though a majesty worthy of “the only­begotten Son of God” (John 1:14) shone forth in him, yet the greater part of men did not see it, but, on the contrary, they despised that deep abasement which was the veil or covering of his glory.

The cause of their astonishment was this, that he dwelt among men without any outward show; and the Jews did not think that the Redeemer would come in that condition or attire. When he came to be crucified, their horror was greatly increased. Paul describes this humiliation and subsequent exaltation of Christ, when he says,

“Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to make himself equal to God, but emptied himself, taking upon him the form of a servant, made in the likeness of man, and found in fashion as a man, humbled himself, being made obedient even to death, and the death of the cross. Wherefore also God hath raised him to the highest exaltation, and hath given him a name which is above every name; that at the name of Jesus should bow every knee of those that are in heaven and in earth and in hell; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Philippians 2:6)

It was therefore necessary that Christ should first be humbled and covered with shame, and that exaltation to which he was about to be raised was not all at once visible; but the shame of the cross was followed by a glorious resurrection attended by the highest honor.


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/isaiah-52.html. 1840-57.

Scofield's Reference Notes

so marred

The literal rendering is terrible: "So marred from the form of man was His aspect that His appearance was not that of a son of man"--i.e. not human--the effect of the brutalities described in Matthew 26:67; Matthew 26:68; Matthew 27:27-30.


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These files are considered public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available in the Online Bible Software Library.

Bibliography
Scofield, C. I. "Scofield Reference Notes on Isaiah 52:14". "Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/srn/isaiah-52.html. 1917.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Isaiah 52:14 As many were astonied at thee; his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men:

Ver. 14. As many were astonied at thee,] viz., At thine abasement first, and then at thine advancement thereupon. All things in Christ are admirable; well, therefore, might he be called "Wonderful." [Isaiah 9:6]

His visage was so marred more than any man.] Partly through the anguish of his mind at his Passion and on the cross, and partly also by the misusage of his body, while they made totum pro vulnero corpus, by their scourging, scratching, racking on the tree, piercing, buffeting, &c.

And his form more than the sons of men.] Plusquam filii Adae, more than those of the common sort; whereas naturally his body, being of the finest temperament, and no way diseased, could not but be very beautiful. See Psalms 45:2. {See Trapp on "Psalms 45:2"}


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/isaiah-52.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Were astonished; were struck with wonder, either,

1. At his glorious endowments, and the excellency and power of his doctrine, and his miraculous works. Or rather,

2. At his great deformity, and stupendous humiliation and calamity, as may be gathered both from the following words, and from the use of this word in Scripture, which is generally used in a bad sense, or of wondering at some extraordinary evil, as Jeremiah 18:16 19:8, and oft elsewhere; and never in a good sense, or of wondering at any thing which is extraordinarily good.

At thee; at thee, O my servant, to whom he now turneth his speech, and then turneth his speech from him, and speaks of him in the next words; such sudden changes of persons, and speaking of one and the same man sometimes in one person, and then presently in another, being very frequent in the writings of the prophets, as we have already seen in divers instances.

His visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men; he was more deformed or uncomely than any other man; which was undoubtedly verified in Christ, who, in respect of his birth, and breeding, and manner of life, was most obscure and contemptible, and therefore said to be a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people, Psalms 22:6; who was more hated and vilified by the generality of the Jews than any man upon earth, and was accounted and called by them a deceiver, a Samaritan, a blasphemer, and a devil, &c.; whose countenance also was so marred with frequent watchings, and fastings, and troubles, that he was thought to be near fifty years old when he was but about thirty, John 8:57; and was further spoiled with buffetings, and crowning with thorns, and other cruel and despiteful usages from men, and with the deep and continual sense of the burden of men’s sins, and of God’s displeasure due unto them; all which did not only oppress his spirit, but had a great influence upon the very constitution of his body.


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/isaiah-52.html. 1685.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

The Servant would experience the same humiliation and degradation that had marked the Israelites. Rather than appearing to be the strongest and most attractive representative of Yahweh, the Servant would appear extremely weak and unattractive to people. This description probably presents all aspects of His being: physical, mental, social, spiritual, etc. Jesus did not impress people as being the best looking, the most brilliant, the most socially engaging, or the most pious individual they had ever met, according to the Gospels. In His trials and crucifixion, Jesus" underwent beatings that marred His physical appearance, but far more than that is in view in this description of Him. By saying that His appearance was marred more than any man and His form more than the sons of men, Isaiah was saying in a very strong way that His sufferings would be very great.

"Many is a theological term within the Song of Solomon , referring to the whole company for whose benefit the Servant acts (15a, 53:]11c, 53:]12ae). It appears here for the first time and provides a telling contrast "with the one, the solitary ... servant"." [Note: Motyer, p425. His quotation is from J. Muilenberg, Isaiah 40-66 , p617.]


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Bibliography
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/isaiah-52.html. 2012.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Of men, who have disfigured the countenance of our Saviour with buffets, &c. The Jews would not receive him under this abject form, though it had been foretold equally with his elevation. (Calmet)


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/isaiah-52.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

As = According as. This corresponds with the "so" of Isaiah 52:15 (not with the "so" in the next clause, which is parenthetic).

astonied: corresponding with the word rendered "sprinkle" in Isaiah 52:15. From Old English estonner. Nine times so spelled, from Wycliff and Geneva Bible. Chaucer spells it "astoned"; Spenser, "astownd".

so marred: pointing to the depth of the humiliation, as set forth in detail in Isaiah 53:4-10. Compare Matthew 26:67, Matthew 26:68; Matthew 27:27-30.

any man. Hebrew. "ish. Compare Psalms 22:6, "I am a worm, and no man".

men. Hebrew. "adam. App-14.


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/isaiah-52.html. 1909-1922.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(14) As many were astonied . . .—The words point to the correspondence of the supreme exaltation following on the supreme humiliation.

His visage was so marred . . .—The words conflict strangely with the type of pure and holy beauty with which Christian art has made us familiar as its ideal of the Son of Man. It has to be noted, however, that the earlier forms of that art, prior to the time of Constantine, and, in some cases, later, represented the Christ as worn, emaciated, with hardly any touch of earthly comeliness, and that it is at least possible that the beauty may have been of expression rather than of feature or complexion, and that men have said of Him, as of St. Paul, that his “bodily presence was weak” (2 Corinthians 10:10).


Copyright Statement
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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/isaiah-52.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

As many were astonied at thee; his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men:
many
Psalms 71:7; Matthew 7:28; 22:22,23; 27:14; Mark 5:42; 6:51; 7:37; 10:26,32; Luke 2:47; 4:36; 5:26
his visage
50:6; 53:2-5; Psalms 22:6,7,15,17; 102:3-5; Matthew 26:67; 27:29,30; Luke 22:64

Copyright Statement
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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Isaiah 52:14". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/isaiah-52.html.


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Thursday, September 20th, 2018
the Week of Proper 19 / Ordinary 24
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