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Volume 34 - Page 96 of 261 Index | Zoom | |
"Wherefore God hath highly exalted Him" (52: 13).
pp. 227 - 229
"Behold My Servant shall deal prudently, He shall be exalted and extolled and be very high."
With these words, the great sacrificial chapter of Isaiah opens. Not with sorrow or
grief, not with humiliation, not with references to death and the grave, but with
exaltation, with being extolled, and with being very high. In earlier chapters we have
read of this Servant of the Lord (Isa. 42: 1, 19; 49: 3, 6), and the prophecies have
gathered strength and clarity as this climax drew near. Our attention is drawn first to
what this Servant of the Lord does, "He shall deal prudently", and then what shall be
done to Him "He shall be exalted". The word translated "deal prudently" is given in the
A.V. margin an alternative meaning "prosper". This, however, must not be understood in
the same sense as the word "prosper" in Isa. 53: 10 where a different Hebrew word is
employed. Sakal, is rendered in most of its occurrences by the words "wise" or
"understanding" but in the Hiphel or causative, it is translated eight times "prosper".
Jeremiah uses this word in a prophetic utterance that looks to the same glorious day of the
Messiah as does Isa. 52: 13.
"Behold the days come saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch,
and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.
In His days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely; and this is His name
whereby He shall be called `THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS'." (Jer. 23: 5, 6).
It is moreover written of both Joshua and Hoshea (names that foreshadowed the
"Saviour" "Jesus") that they "prospered" (Josh. 1: 7; II Kings 18: 7). He Who is the
Wisdom of God is also the Power of God (I Cor. 1: 24), His Wisdom is dynamic, it
"prospers" and prevails.
So Isa. 52: 13 opens "My Servant shall prosper", and the seal was set upon His
glorious "success" (as this word is translated in Josh. 1: 8) by His resurrection and
"He shall be exalted, and extolled and be very high."
The Prophet has no intention here of making three different phases in this exaltation, it
is the overflowing joy of the prophetic vision, using a well known figure of speech
Anabasis or "gradual ascent" whereby an increase of emphasis is made by a rising series
of successive words, phrases and sentences. We must nevertheless acquaint ourselves
with all three words, in order that the Divine intention in their use may be perceived.
"Exalted", Hebrew Rum. It will be remembered that Abraham before his name was
changed (Gen. 17: 5), was Abram made up of Ab "Father" and Rum or Ram "High" and
"Exalted". So also the place names, Ramah and Ramoth "A lofty place" (I Sam. 19: 18;