Isaiah 59:4

None calleth for justice, nor any pleadeth for truth: they trust in vanity, and speak lies; they conceive mischief, and bring forth iniquity.

None calleth for justice,.... Or, "righteousness"; not for civil justice in courts of judicature, as if there were no advocates for it there; or that put those in mind of it, to whom the administration of it belongs; or that see to put the laws against sin in execution, and to relieve those that are oppressed; though of this there may be just cause of complaint in some places: but there are none or few that call for evangelical righteousness, either that preach it, proclaim and publish it to others; even the righteousness of Christ, the grand doctrine of the Gospel, which is therein revealed from faith to faith; so the Syriac version, "there is none that preacheth righteously"; or "in", or "of righteousness" {t}; and the Septuagint version, "no one speaks righteous things"; the words and doctrines of righteousness and truth: or, "no one calls for righteousness"; desires to hear this doctrine, and have it preached to him; hungers and thirsts after it; but chooses the doctrine of justification by works. The Targum refers it to prayer, paraphrasing it thus,

"there is none that prays in truth;''

in sincerity and uprightness, in faith and with fervour; but in a cold, formal, and hypocritical way:

nor any pleadeth for truth: for the truth of the Gospel, particularly for the principal one, the justification of a sinner by the righteousness of Christ alone; few or none contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints; they are not valiant for the truth, nor stand fast in it, but drop or conceal it, or deny it: or, "none is judged by", or "according to truth" {u}; by the Scriptures of truth, but by carnal reason; or by forms and rules of man's devising, and so are condemned; as Gospel ministers and professors of it are:

they trust in vanity; in nothing, as the Vulgate Latin; that is worth nothing; in their own strength, wisdom, riches, righteousness, especially the latter:

and speak lies; or "vanity"; vain things, false doctrines, as before:

they conceive mischief, and bring forth iniquity; they "conceive" and contrive "mischief" in their minds against those that differ in doctrine and practice from them: "and bring forth iniquity": do that which is criminal and sinful, by words and actions, by calumnies and reproaches, by violence and persecution. The Targum is,

"they hasten and bring out of their hearts words of violence.''

{t} qdub "in justitia", Montanus, Tigurine version; "sive de justitia".
{u} hnwmab jpvn Nya "nemo judicatur scundum veritatem", Munster; "non judicatur in veritate", Montanus.