Isaiah 66:3
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
"But he who kills an ox is like one who slays a man; He who sacrifices a lamb is like the one who breaks a dog's neck; He who offers a grain offering is like one who offers swine's blood; He who burns incense is like the one who blesses an idol. As they have chosen their own ways, And their soul delights in their abominations,

King James Bible
He that killeth an ox is as if he slew a man; he that sacrificeth a lamb, as if he cut off a dog's neck; he that offereth an oblation, as if he offered swine's blood; he that burneth incense, as if he blessed an idol. Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delighteth in their abominations.

Darby Bible Translation
He that slaughtereth an ox, smiteth a man; he that sacrificeth a lamb, breaketh a dog's neck; he that offereth an oblation, it is as swine's blood; he that presenteth a memorial of incense, is as he that blesseth an idol. As they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delighteth in their abominations,

World English Bible
He who kills an ox is as he who kills a man; he who sacrifices a lamb, as he who breaks a dog's neck; he who offers an offering, [as he who offers] pig's blood; he who burns frankincense, as he who blesses an idol. Yes, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delights in their abominations:

Young's Literal Translation
Whoso slaughtereth the ox smiteth a man, Whoso sacrificeth the lamb beheadeth a dog, Whoso is bringing up a present -- The blood of a sow, Whoso is making mention of frankincense, Is blessing iniquity. Yea, they have fixed on their own ways, And in their abominations their soul hath delighted.

Isaiah 66:3 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

He that killeth an ox is as if he slew a man - Lowth and Noyes render this, 'He that slayeth an ox, killeth a man.' This is a literal translation of the Hebrew. Jerome renders it, 'He who sacrifices an ox is as if (quasi) he slew a man.' The Septuagint, in a very free translation - such as is common in their version of Isaiah - render it, 'The wicked man who sacrifices a calf, is as he who kills a dog; and he who offers to me fine flour, it is as the blood of swine.' Lowth supposes the sense to be, that the most flagitious crimes were united with hypocrisy, and that they who were guilty of the most extreme acts of wickedness at the same time affected great strictness in the performance of all the external duties of religion. An instance of this, he says, is referred to by Ezekiel, where he says, 'When they had slain their children to their idols, then they came the same day into my sanctuary to profane it' Ezekiel 23:39.

There can be no doubt that such offences were often committed by those who were very strict and zealous in their religious services (compare Isaiah 1:11-14, with Isaiah 66:21-23. But the generality of interpreters have supposed that a different sense was to be affixed to this passage. According to their views, the particles as if are to be supplied; and the sense is, not that the mere killing of an ox is as sinful in the sight of God as deliberate murder, but that he who did it in the circumstances, and with the spirit referred to, evinced a spirit as odious in his sight as though he had slain a man. So the Septuagint, Vulgate, Chaldee, Symmachus, and Theodotion, Junius, and Tremellius, Grotius, and Rosenmuller, understand it. There is probably an allusion to the fact that human victims were offered by the pagan; and the sense is, that the sacrifices here referred to were no more acceptable in the sight of God than they were.

The prophet here refers, probably, first, to the spirit with which this was done. Their sacrifices were offered with a temper of mind as offensive to God as if a man had been slain, and they had been guilty of murder. They were proud, vain, and hypocritical. 'They had forgotten the true nature and design of sacrifice, and such worship could not but be an abhorrence in the sight of God. Secondly, It may also be implied here, that the period was coming when all sacrifices would be unacceptable to God. When the Messiah should have come; when he should have made by one offering a sufficent atonement for the sins of the whole world; then all bloody sacrifices would be needless, and would be offensive in the sight of God. The sacrifice of an ox would be no more acceptable than the sacrifice of a man; and all offerings with a view to propitiate the divine favor, or that implied that there was a deficiency in the merit of the one great atoning sacrifice, would be odious to God.

He that sacrificeth a lamb - Margin, 'Kid' The Hebrew word (שׂה s'eh) may refer to one of a flock, either of sheep or goats Genesis 22:7-8; Genesis 30:32. Where the species is to be distinguished, it is usually specified, as, e. g., Deuteronomy 14:4, כשׂבים שׂה עזים ושׂה ves'ēh ‛ı̂zzym s'ēh kı̂s'âbı̂ym (one of the sheep and one of the goats). Both were used in sacrifice.

As if he cut off a dog's neck - That is, as if he had cut off a dog's neck for sacrifice. To offer a dog in sacrifice would have been abominable in the view of a Jew. Even the price for which he was sold was not permitted to be brought into the house of God for a vow (Deuteronomy 23:18; compare 1 Samuel 17:43; 1 Samuel 24:14). The dog was held in veneration by many of the pagan, and was even offered in sacrifice; and it was, doubtless, partly in view of this fact, and especially of the fact that such veneration was shown for it in Egypt, that it was an object of such detestation among the Jews. Thus Juvenal, Sat. xiv. says:

Oppida tota canem venerantur, nemo Dianam.

'Every city worships the dog; none worship Diana.' Diodorus (B. i.) says, 'Certain animals the Egyptians greatly venerate (σέβονται sebontai), not only when alive, but when they are dead, as cats, ichneumons, mice, and dogs.' Herodotus says also of the Egyptians, 'In some cities, when a cat dies all the inhabitants cut off their eyebrows; when a dog dies, they shave the whole body and the head.' In Samothracia there was a cave in which dogs were sacrificed to Hecate. Plutarch says, that all the Greeks sacrificed the dog. The fact that dogs were offered in sacrifice by the pagan is abundantly proved by Bochart (Hieroz. i. 2. 56). No kind of sacrifice could have been regarded with higher detestation by a pious Jew. But God here says, that the spirit with which they sacrificed a goat or a lamb was as hateful in his sight as would be the sacrifice of a dog: or that the time would come when, the great sacrifice for sin having been made, and the necessity for all other sacrifice having ceased, the offering of a lamb or a goat for the expiation of sin would be as offensive to him as would be the sacrifice of a dog.

He that offereth an oblation - On the word rendered here 'oblation' (מנחה minchāh). See the notes at Isaiah 1:13.

As if he offered swine's blood - The sacrifice of a hog was an abomination in the sight of the Hebrews (see the notes at Isaiah 65:4). Yet here it is said that the offering of the מנחה minchāh, in the spirit in which they would do it, was as offensive to God as would be the pouring out of the blood of the swine on the altar, Nothing could more emphatically express the detestation of God for the spirit with which they would make their offerings, or the fact that the time would come when all such modes of worship would be offensive in his sight.

He that burneth incense - See the word 'incense' explained in the notes at Isaiah 1:13. The margin here is, 'Maketh a memorial of.' Such is the usual meaning of the word used here (זכר zâkar), meaning to remember, and in Hiphil to cause to remember, or to make a memorial. Such is its meaning here. incense was burned as a memorial or a remembrance-offering; that is, to keep up the remembrance of God on the earth by public worship (see the notes at Isaiah 62:6).

As if he blessed an idol - The spirit with which incense would be offered would be as offensive as idolatry. The sentiment in all this is, that the most regular and formal acts of worship where the heart is lacking, may be as offensive to God as the worst forms of crime, or the most gross and debasing idolatry. Such a spirit often characterized the Jewish people, and eminently prevailed at the time when the temple of Herod was nearly completed, and when the Saviour was about to appear.

Isaiah 66:3 Parallel Commentaries

Library
"All Our Righteousnesses are as Filthy Rags, and we all do Fade as a Leaf, and Our Iniquities, Like the Wind, have Taken us Away. "
Isaiah lxiv. 6, 7.--"All our righteousnesses are as filthy rags, and we all do fade as a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away." Not only are the direct breaches of the command uncleanness, and men originally and actually unclean, but even our holy actions, our commanded duties. Take a man's civility, religion, and all his universal inherent righteousness,--all are filthy rags. And here the church confesseth nothing but what God accuseth her of, Isa. lxvi. 8, and chap. i. ver.
Hugh Binning—The Works of the Rev. Hugh Binning

Synagogues: their Origin, Structure and Outward Arrangements
It was a beautiful saying of Rabbi Jochanan (Jer. Ber. v. 1), that he who prays in his house surrounds and fortifies it, so to speak, with a wall of iron. Nevertheless, it seems immediately contradicted by what follows. For it is explained that this only holds good where a man is alone, but that where there is a community prayer should be offered in the synagogue. We can readily understand how, after the destruction of the Temple, and the cessation of its symbolical worship, the excessive value attached
Alfred Edersheim—Sketches of Jewish Social Life

Mr. Bunyan's Last Sermon:
Preached August 19TH, 1688 [ADVERTISEMENT BY THE EDITOR] This sermon, although very short, is peculiarly interesting: how it was preserved we are not told; but it bears strong marks of having been published from notes taken by one of the hearers. There is no proof that any memorandum or notes of this sermon was found in the autograph of the preacher. In the list of Bunyan's works published by Chas. Doe, at the end of the 'Heavenly Footman,' March 1690, it stands No. 44. He professes to give the title-page,
John Bunyan—The Works of John Bunyan Volumes 1-3

"So Then they that are in the Flesh Cannot Please God. "
Rom. viii. 8.--"So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God." It is a kind of happiness to men, to please them upon whom they depend, and upon whose favour their well-being hangs. It is the servant's happiness to please his master, the courtier's to please his prince; and so generally, whosoever they be that are joined in mutual relations, and depend one upon another; that which makes all pleasant, is this, to please one another. Now, certainly, all the dependencies of creatures one upon
Hugh Binning—The Works of the Rev. Hugh Binning

Cross References
Leviticus 2:2
He shall then bring it to Aaron's sons the priests; and shall take from it his handful of its fine flour and of its oil with all of its frankincense. And the priest shall offer it up in smoke as its memorial portion on the altar, an offering by fire of a soothing aroma to the LORD.

Proverbs 21:27
The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination, How much more when he brings it with evil intent!

Isaiah 1:13
"Bring your worthless offerings no longer, Incense is an abomination to Me. New moon and sabbath, the calling of assemblies-- I cannot endure iniquity and the solemn assembly.

Isaiah 44:19
No one recalls, nor is there knowledge or understanding to say, "I have burned half of it in the fire and also have baked bread over its coals. I roast meat and eat it. Then I make the rest of it into an abomination, I fall down before a block of wood!"

Isaiah 57:17
"Because of the iniquity of his unjust gain I was angry and struck him; I hid My face and was angry, And he went on turning away, in the way of his heart.

Isaiah 65:2
"I have spread out My hands all day long to a rebellious people, Who walk in the way which is not good, following their own thoughts,

Isaiah 65:3
A people who continually provoke Me to My face, Offering sacrifices in gardens and burning incense on bricks;

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