Thy first father hath sinned
Either Adam, as Kimchi, in whom all have sinned, and from whom all derive a sinful and corrupt nature; or Abraham, as Jarchi, the father of the Jewish nation, of whom they boasted, and in whom they trusted, as being of his seed, and through whose merits and worthiness they expected great things; yet he was but a sinful man, though a good man, and a great believer; of whose infirmity and frailty many instances are on record. Some have thought Terah the father of Abraham is designed, who was an idolater; others think some particular king is meant, the father of his people; Aben Ezra supposes Jeroboam to be intended, the first king of the ten tribes who made Israel to sin; but Kimchi observes, it is better to understand it of Saul, who was the first king over all Israel; others interpret it of Ahaz; and others of Manasseh; Vitringa of Uriah the priest, in the times of Ahaz; but it seems best to take the singular for the plural, as the Arabic version does, which renders it, "your first fathers have sinned"; all their forefathers had sinned, from their coming out of Egypt to that day; and, therefore it was in vain to have respect to them, or plead any worthiness of theirs in their favour; besides, they imitated them in their sins, and were filling up the measure of their iniquities: and thy teachers have transgressed against me;
or "interpreters" F19; of the law to the people, the Priests and Levites, Scribes and Pharisees; such who should have taught the people, and instructed them in the knowledge of divine things, and interceded with God for them; these were transgressors of the law themselves, as well as despisers of the Gospel; these rejected the counsel of God against themselves, disbelieved the Messiah, and dissuaded the people from receiving him; they were "orators" F20, as the word is by some rendered; and they used all the oratory they were masters of against Christ, and to persuade the people into an ill opinion of him, and at last to insist upon his crucifixion.
F19 (Kyuylm) "interpretes tui", V. L. Pagninus, Montanus, Vatablus.
F20 "Oratores", Cocceius; "interpretes, [seu] oratores tui", Piscator; "oratores, intercessores tui", Vitringa.