He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.
He was taken from prison, and from judgment,.... After he had suffered and died, and made satisfaction to divine justice; or after he had been arrested by the justice of God, and was laid in prison, and under a sentence of condemnation, had judgment passed upon him, and that executed too; He was taken in a very little time from the prison of the grave where he lay, and from the state of condemnation into which he was brought, and was acquitted, justified, and declared righteous, and his people in him; a messenger was sent from heaven to roll away the stone, and set him free: though some render it,
He was taken by distress and judgment; that is, his life was taken away in a violent manner, under a pretence of justice; whereas the utmost injustice was done him; a wrong charge was brought against him, false witnesses were suborned, and his life was taken away with wicked hands; which sense seems to be favoured by the quotation in Acts 8:32 "in his humiliation his judgment was taken away": he had not common justice done him:
and who shall declare his generation? which is not to be understood of his divine generation, as the Son of God, which is in a way ineffable and inconceivable; nor of his human generation, as the Son of Man, which is unaccountable, being born of a virgin; nor of the duration of his life after his resurrection, he dying no more, but living for ever, which is more probable; nor of the vast number of his spiritual offspring, the fruit of his sufferings, death, and resurrection; but of the age, and men of it, in which he lived, whose barbarity to him, and wickedness they were guilty of, were such as could not be declared by the mouth, or described by the pen of man. The Targum is,
"and the wonderful things which shall be done for us in his days, who can declare?''
for he was cut off out of the land of the living; was not suffered to live, was taken off by a violent death; he was cut off in a judiciary way, as if he had been a malefactor; though lest it should be thought it was for his own sins he was cut off, which is denied, Daniel 9:26 it is added,
for the transgression of my people was he stricken; that is, either through the malice and wickedness of the people of the Jews, whom the prophet calls his people, he was stricken, not only with the scourges of the whip, but with death itself, as the efficient cause thereof; or rather because of the transgressions of God's elect, in order to make satisfaction for them, he was stricken by divine justice, and put to death, as the meritorious cause thereof; and so they are the words of God the Father; and this, with the preceding clause, give a reason, showing both why He was taken from the prison of the grave, acquitted, and exalted, and why the wickedness of his age could not be declared; he being stricken and cut off in such a manner, when he was an innocent person; and since it was only for the transgressions of others, even of God's covenant people, the people he chose, and gave to Christ, Matthew 1:21.