Isaiah 11:3

And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:

And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the Lord,.... Or "cause him to smell the fear of the Lord" {w}; that is, to discern in whom it was: this is one effect of the Spirit's resting upon him, and particularly as the spirit of understanding, and of the fear of the Lord, whereby he has a quick and sharp discerning of it; not merely of the grace of fear, so as to know what that is, and what the exercise of it; or so as to make it the rule of his actions, though all this is true; but so as to discern where and in whom it was, and was not; he could distinguish between him that feared God and him that feared him not; he knew Nathanael to be an Israelite indeed, in whom there was no guile, John 1:47 and the Scribes and Pharisees to be hypocrites, Matthew 22:18. As the Jews {x} understand this passage of the Messiah, and of his quick smell, as the word used signifies, or of his discerning of good and bad men, they make this to be a rule of judging the Messiah by; and accordingly made use of it with one that set up himself for the Messiah, and took the name of Barcochab, the son of a star, referring to Numbers 24:17 and tried him whether he could discern a good man from a bad man; and because he could not, they rejected him as a false Messiah, and called him Barcoziba, the son of a lie {y}: compare with this Luke 7:39 where it may be seen the same notion obtained among the Jews in Christ's time:

and, he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes; or according to the outward appearance, the external guise of sanctity and religion men might put on; as the Scribes and Pharisees were outwardly righteous before men, but not to Christ, who knew their hearts; they seemed to be somewhat to others, but nothing to him, because he judged not by appearances to the eyes:

neither reprove after the hearing of his ears; he needed no testimony of men, for he knew what was in men; nor did he regard the words of men, the boastings of a Pharisee, any more than his outward actions; nor would he reprove or condemn, nor will he, upon a human testimony.

{w} hwhy taryb wxyrhw "et faciet odorari eum timorem Jehovae", Munster, Vatablus; "et odorabitur timorem Jehovae", Cocceius.
{x} Zohar in Exod. fol. 31. 3. & 86. 1. Tzeror Hammor, fol. 62. 3.
{y} T. Bab. Sanhedrin. fol. 93. 2.