For I will not contend for ever - The learned have taken a great deal of pains to little purpose on the latter part of this verses which they suppose to be very obscure. After all their labors upon it, I think the best and easiest explication of it is given in the two following elegant passages of the Psalms, which I presume are exactly parallel to it, and very clearly express the same sentiment.
"But he in his tender mercy will forgive their sin
And will not destroy them;
Yea, oftentimes will he turn away his wrath,
And will not rouse up his indignation:
For he remembereth that they are but flesh,
A breath that passeth, and returneth not."
Psalms 78:38, Psalms 78:39.
"He will not always contend
Neither will he for ever hold his wrath:
As a father yearneth towards his children,
So is Jehovah tenderly compassionate towards them
that fear him For he knoweth our frame;
He remembereth that we are but dust."
Psalms 103:9, Psalms 103:13, Psalms 103:14.
In the former of these two passages the second line seems to be defective both in measure and sense. I suppose the word otham , then is lost at the end; which seems to be acknowledged by the Chaldee and Vulgate, who render as if they had read velo yaschith otham . - L.
For the spirit - ruach , the animal life.
And the souls - neshamoth , the immortal spirits. The Targum understands this of the resurrection. I will restore the souls of the dead, i.e., to their bodies.
Other Adam Clarke entries containing Isaiah 57:16:
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