Isaiah 1:15 MEANING

Isaiah 1:15
(15) When ye spread forth your hands.--The words point to the attitude of one who prays, as was the manner of Jews, Greeks, and Romans ("tenditque ad sidera palmas," Virg., 'n., xii. 196), standing, and with hands stretched out toward heaven. (Comp. Luke 18:11-13.)

When ye make many prayers.--The Pentateuch contains no directions for the use of forms of prayer beyond the benediction of Numbers 6:23-26, and two forms connected with the Passover in Deuteronomy 26:5-10; Deuteronomy 26:13-15. The "eighteen prayers" for daily use belong to the later Rabbinic stage of Judaism. It lies in the nature of the case, however, that first a real, and then an ostentatious devotion would show itself in the use of such forms, possibly, as in Psalm 119:164, "seven times a day." In Proverbs 27:14; Proverbs 28:9, which belong to the reign of Hezekiah, and may, therefore, indirectly represent Isaiah's teaching, we have the warnings of the wise as to the right use of such forms.

Your hands are full of blood.--Literally, bloods, as implying many murderous acts. The words point to the guilt of judges and princes, such as that described in Hosea 4:2. Life was sacrificed to greed of gain, or lust, or vindictiveness. To the prophet's eye those hands, stretched upwards in the Temple by some, at least, of the king's ministers and judges, were red with the blood of the slain. (Comp. Isaiah 59:3.)

Verse 15. - I will hide mine eyes, etc. A time comes when the wicked are alarmed, and seek to turn to God; but it is too late. "Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me" (Proverbs 1:28). When ye make many prayers; literally, multiply prayer. Full of blood (comp. ver. 21). Actual bloodshed may be pointed at, as the murder of Zechariah (2 Chronicles 24:21), and the fate which befell Isaiah himself, according to the tradition, would seem to show. But cruelty and oppression, producing poverty and wretchedness, and tending to shorten life, are no doubt also included (comp. Micah 3:10, 11). These were the special sins of the time (see vers. 17, 23).

1:10-15 Judea was desolate, and their cities burned. This awakened them to bring sacrifices and offerings, as if they would bribe God to remove the punishment, and give them leave to go on in their sin. Many who will readily part with their sacrifices, will not be persuaded to part with their sins. They relied on the mere form as a service deserving a reward. The most costly devotions of wicked people, without thorough reformation of heart and life, cannot be acceptable to God. He not only did not accept them, but he abhorred them. All this shows that sin is very hateful to God. If we allow ourselves in secret sin, or forbidden indulgences; if we reject the salvation of Christ, our very prayers will become abomination.And when ye spread forth your hands,.... That is, in prayer, this being a prayer gesture: hence the Targum paraphrases it,

"and when the priests spread out their hands to pray for you.''

I will hide mine eyes from you; will not look upon them, nor regard their prayer; see Lamentations 3:42.

yea, when ye make many prayers; as the Scribes and Pharisees did in Christ's time, and thought to be heard for their much speaking, like the Gentiles, Matthew 6:7.

I will not hear; so as to give an answer, or fulfil their requests: the reason follows,

your hands are full of blood; of the prophets of the Lord, of Christ and his followers, whom they put to death.

Courtesy of Open Bible