(1) Yet·now hear . . .—The thoughts of Israel are turned from their own sins to the unchanging love of God, and that is the ground of their hope.
Their delectable things . . .—The generic term used for works of art (Isaiah 2:16), specially for what men delight to worship. (Comp. Isaiah 64:11; Lamentations 1:10.)
They are their own witnesses . . .—Better, their witnesses (i.e., the worshippers who sing their praises) see not and know not.
Let them stand up.—The words gain in vividness when we remember that the challenge is addressed to the guild of idol-makers. They are but men; how can they make a god?
Which he strengtheneth for himself.—Better, fixeth his choice among. The eye travels, it will be noted, backward from the workshop.
Thou shalt not be forgotten of me.—The LXX., Vulg., and some other versions take the verb as middle, thou shalt not forget, but the evidence for the passive sense preponderates, to say nothing of its greater fitness in connection with the next verse, and its bearing upon complaints like those of Isaiah 40:27; Isaiah 49:14.
Ye lower parts of the earth.—These, as in Ephesians 4:9, are equivalent to Sheol, or Hades. Even they, commonly thought of as echoing no song of praise (Psalm 6:5; Psalm 88:12; Isaiah 38:18), are invited to join in the great doxology.
That spreadeth abroad the earth by myself.—The Hebrew written text gives the more emphatic reading: that spreadeth forth the earth; who was with me? (Comp. Isaiah 40:13; Isaiah 63:3; and Job 9:8.)
My shepherd.—As guiding the flock of Jehovah, each to their own pasture.
Thou shalt be built.—Both verbs are better taken as imperatives, Let her be built; Let thy foundations be laid.