Isaiah 6:9-13

9 He said, “Go and tell this people: “ ‘Be ever hearing, but never understanding; be ever seeing, but never perceiving.’
10 Make the heart of this people calloused; make their ears dull and close their eyes. [a]Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts, and turn and be healed.”
11 Then I said, “For how long, Lord?” And he answered: “Until the cities lie ruined and without inhabitant, until the houses are left deserted and the fields ruined and ravaged,
12 until the LORD has sent everyone far away and the land is utterly forsaken.
13 And though a tenth remains in the land, it will again be laid waste. But as the terebinth and oak leave stumps when they are cut down, so the holy seed will be the stump in the land.”

Isaiah 6:9-13 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO ISAIAH 6

This chapter contains a vision of the glory and majesty of Christ, the mission and commission of the prophet, and the destruction of the Jews. In the vision may be observed the time of it, and the object seen; who is described by the throne on which he sat, Isa 6:1 and by his ministers about him; and these, by their name, by their situation, by their wings and the use of them, and by their employment, Isa 6:2,3 and by the effects their crying to one another had upon the place where they were, Isa 6:4 and next follows the effect the whole vision had on the prophet, which threw him into great distress of mind; and the relief he had by one of the seraphim, and the manner of it, Isa 6:6,7 upon which a question being put, concerning sending some person, the prophet makes answer, expressing his readiness to go, Isa 6:8 when a commission is given him, and the message he is sent with is declared, Isa 6:9,10 whereupon he asks how long it would be the case of the Jews mentioned in the message he was sent with; and he is told it would continue until the utter destruction of them, Isa 6:11,12 and yet, for the comfort of him and other saints, it is intimated that there would be a remnant among them, according to the election of grace, Isa 6:13.

Isaiah 6:9-13 In-Context

7 With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.”
8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”
9 He said, “Go and tell this people: “ ‘Be ever hearing, but never understanding; be ever seeing, but never perceiving.’
10 Make the heart of this people calloused; make their ears dull and close their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts, and turn and be healed.”
11 Then I said, “For how long, Lord?” And he answered: “Until the cities lie ruined and without inhabitant, until the houses are left deserted and the fields ruined and ravaged,
12 until the LORD has sent everyone far away and the land is utterly forsaken.
13 And though a tenth remains in the land, it will again be laid waste. But as the terebinth and oak leave stumps when they are cut down, so the holy seed will be the stump in the land.”

Cross References 17

  • 1. Ezekiel 3:11; Amos 7:15; Matthew 28:19
  • 2. Jeremiah 5:21; S Matthew 13:15*; Luke 8:10*
  • 3. S Exodus 4:21; Deuteronomy 32:15; Psalms 119:70
  • 4. Isaiah 29:9; Isaiah 42:18-20; Isaiah 43:8; Isaiah 44:18
  • 5. S Deuteronomy 29:4; Ezekiel 12:2; Mark 8:18; Jeremiah 5:21
  • 6. S Deuteronomy 32:39; Matthew 13:13-15; Mark 4:12*; John 12:40*; Acts 28:26-27*
  • 7. Psalms 79:5
  • 8. S Leviticus 26:31; S Jeremiah 4:13
  • 9. S Leviticus 26:43; Isaiah 24:10
  • 10. Psalms 79:1; S Psalms 109:11; Jeremiah 35:17
  • 11. S Deuteronomy 28:64
  • 12. S Isaiah 5:5,9; Isaiah 60:15; Isaiah 62:4; Jeremiah 4:29; Jeremiah 30:17
  • 13. S Isaiah 1:9; Isaiah 10:22
  • 14. S Isaiah 5:6
  • 15. S Job 14:8
  • 16. S Leviticus 27:30; S Deuteronomy 14:2
  • 17. S Job 14:7

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Hebrew; Septuagint "‘You will be ever hearing, but never understanding;" / "you will be ever seeing, but never perceiving.’" / 10"This people’s heart has become calloused;" / "they hardly hear with their ears," / "and they have closed their eyes"