Isaiah 53:7

7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, 1yet he opened not his mouth; 2like a 3lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth.

Isaiah 53:7 Meaning and Commentary

Isaiah 53:7

He was oppressed, and he was afflicted
He was injuriously treated by the Jews; they used him very ill, and handled him very roughly; he was oppressed and afflicted, both in body and mind, with their blows, and with their reproaches; he was afflicted, indeed, both by God and men: or rather it may be rendered, "it was exacted", required, and demanded, "and he answered" F21, or "was afflicted"; justice finding the sins of men on him, laid on him by imputation, and voluntarily received by him, as in the preceding verse, demanded satisfaction of him; and he being the surety of his people, was responsible for them, and did answer, and gave the satisfaction demanded: the debt they owed was required, the payment of it was called for, and he accordingly answered, and paid the whole, every farthing, and cancelled the bond; the punishment of the sins of his people was exacted of him, and he submitted to bear it, and did bear it in his own body on the tree; this clearly expresses the doctrine of Christ's satisfaction:

yet he opened not his mouth;
against the oppressor that did him the injury, nor murmured at the affliction that was heavy upon him: or, "and he opened not his mouth"; against the justice of God, and the demand that was made upon him, as the surety of his people; he owned the obligation he had laid himself under; he paid the debt, and bore the punishment without any dispute or hesitation: "he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb"; or, "as a sheep to the slaughter, and as an ewe before her shearer" F23; these figurative phrases are expressive, not only of the harmlessness and innocence of Christ, as considered in himself, but of his meekness and patience in suffering, and of his readiness and willingness to be sacrificed in the room and stead of his people; he went to the cross without any reluctance, which; when there was any in the sacrifice, it was reckoned a bad omen among the Heathens, yea, such were not admitted to be offered F24; but Christ went as willingly to be sacrificed as a lamb goes to the slaughter house, and was as silent under his sufferings as a sheep while under the hands of its shearers; he was willing to be stripped of all he had, as a shorn sheep, and to be slaughtered and sacrificed as a lamb, for the sins of his people:

so he opened not his mouth:
not against his enemies, by way of threatening or complaint; nor even in his own defence; nor against the justice of God, as bearing hard upon him, not sparing him, but demanding and having full satisfaction; nor against his people and their sins, for whom he suffered; see ( 1 Peter 2:23 ) .


F21 (hnen awhw vgn) "exigebatur, et ipse respondit", Gataker; "exigitur poena, et ipse affligitur", Junius & Tremellius; "quum illa exigebatur, ipse affligebatur", Piscator; "exigebatur, et ipse submittebatur", Cocceius.
F23 (hxrk-hvk) "sicut ovis----sicut ovis foemina", Gataker; "ut agnus----et ut agna", Cocceius; "instar ovis----et ut agna", Vitringa.
F24 Macrob. Satnrnal. I. 3. c. 5. Plin. Nat. Hist. I. 8. c. 45.

Isaiah 53:7 In-Context

5 But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed.
6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned--every one--to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth.
8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away; and as for his generation, who considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living, stricken for the transgression of my people?
9 And they made his grave with the wicked and with a rich man in his death, although he had done no violence, and there was no deceit in his mouth.

Cross References 3

  • 1. Matthew 26:63; Mark 14:61; John 19:9; 1 Peter 2:23
  • 2. Cited Acts 8:32
  • 3. [Jeremiah 11:19]
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.