Imágenes de páginas

and moon shall be nothing, compared with the light of God's countenance, and the joy of his salvation : but the Lord shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory; thy charaEter and graces fall shine, and bear

a resemblance of his lustre; or, thy relation to him, and in20 terest in him, will be thy greatest honour. Thy sun, that is,

the presence of God with thee, shall no more go down; neither shall thy moon withdraw itself: for the Lord

shall be thine everlasting light, and the days of thy 21 mourning shall be ended. Thy people also [shall be]

all righteous: they shall inherit the land for ever, the : branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I

may be glorified; they hall be a more pure and holy society

than ever before, and mall ascribe all to God; and he mall 22 be glorified in them. A little one shall become a thou.

sand, and a small one a strong nation : I the Lord will haften it in his time; let not my people he discouraged, because they are weak and feeble; the Lord will support and Spread his gospel, till all these great things are accomplished.

REFLECTION S. 1. THE general lesson here taught, is to adore God

for his gospel, and to encourage our hopes and prayers for its support and spread. Particularly let us thank him that it has been established in the earth; that fo many kings are become christians; that this land, once covered with gross darkness, is made light. Still it shall spread, and have a more glorious triumph, as all those figures, taken from earthly glory and jewish worship, show. Let us long for that day, and in the mean time shine ourselves in all christian graces; and thus show forth the praises of him who hath called us out of darkness into his mar. vellous light.

2. When men become sincere christians, they will readi. ly consecrate their substance to the Lord. It is intimated in several parts of this chapter, that kings and great men, upon embracing the gospel, shall give their wealth to the A a 4

church, y Some understand this of the heavenly world, to which thefe phrases are applied in the book of Revelations.

church, that is, devote it to acts of piety and charity. True religion enlarges the heart, subdues a narrow, selfish spirit; and where men find themselves backward to acts of charity, especially to the souls of men and the support of the golpel, they have great reason to fear that they are yet strangers to the grace of God.

3. Those who have a sense of the favour of God, and enjoy the tokens of his presence, will be but little concern. ed about worldly things. They can be content and thankful without many of those things in which the men of this world place their happiness. The light of the sun and moon are as nothing to them, compared with the presence and love of God; they can walk in his light, and be happy in his love, when all is dark and gloomy around them: and will be completely happy when the sun and moon are no more.

4. God will do every thing great and good for his people in the most convenient season. They are apt to be difcouraged, to doubt, and fear; but whatever difficulties are in the way of the church's continuance, increase and prof. perity, and the happiness of particular souls, God the Lord will effect it, he will do it in his time, which is always the best. Therefore let us trust in him; tho the salvation tarry, wait for it, for at length it will come, and will not tarry. The Lord is a God of judgment; and blessed are all they that wait for him.

CH A P. LXI, LXII. The best interpreter of scripture, that is, Christ, applies the for

Iner part of this chapter to himself, Luke xiv, 18, 21, say

ing, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.' IMT HE Spirit of the LORD God [is] upon me; be

l cause the Lord hath anointed me, hath set me apart to the office, by ihe communications of his spirit, (as kings and priests are by being anointed) to preach good tidings unto the meek, to the poor in Spirit; he hath sent me to bind up the broken hearted, those who


are wounded under a sense of guilt, to proclaim liberty to

the captives of fin, Satan, and death, and the opening of : the prison, or, perfeEt liberty, to [them that are] bound; 2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD; the year

of jubile, which was the Lord's appointment, and very acceptable to the poor, as debts were then cancelled, slaves released, and mortgaged estates restored; (Lev. xxv. 9.) and the day of vengeance of our God, of his righteous judg

ments on the enemies of his gospel; to comfort all that 3 mourn ; To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion

joy and gladness, to give unto them beauty, or, a beautiful crown, for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; ? that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorifiedthe end of all is to promote their righteousness and God's glory.The next verses refer to the return of the jews to their own land in the

latter day, and their prosperity in it. . 4 And they shall build the old wastes, they shall raise

up the former desolations, and they shall repair the 5 waste cities, the desolations of many generations. And

strangers shall stand and feed your flocks, and the sons of the alien [shall be] your ploughmen and your vine

dressers, the gentiles shall love and be ready to serve you : 6 But ye shall be named the Priests of the Lord: [men]

shall call you the Ministers of our God; ye shall become a kingdom of priests, as formerly, and be holy unto the Lord: ye shall eat the riches of the gentiles, and in their glory

shall ye boast yourselves; ye Mall partake of their plenty, 7 and become instruments of their conversion. For your

shame (ye shall have] double, instead of Mame ye hall have double glory; and (for) confusion they shall rejoice in their portion : therefore in their land they shall possess the double: everlasting joy shall be unto them; as the land will long have lain barren, he will repay them by extraordinary fruitfulness, and uninterrupted peace and prosperity.

& For 3. Here is a reference to the manner of mourning among the jews; they put on fackcloth, or coarse garments, and spread duft or alhes on their heads, instead of oil, (ree 2 Sam. xiv. 2.) On the contrary, splendid clothing and ointment poured on the head were signs of joy,

8 For I the Lord love judgment, I hate robbery for burnt

offering; and I will direct their work in truth, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them; the reason why I rejeEled them was their wickedness, which was as hateful to me, as if a man should steal a beast, and then

come and offer it; but now they fall serve me in spirit and 9 truth, and be restored to my covenant. And their feed shall

be known among the gentiles, and their offspring among the people; they and their descendants mall become illustrious and remarkable, and be known as God's antient people, to whom the promises originally belonged: all that see them shall acknowledge them, that they (are] the feed (which] the Lord hath blessed; such piety Mall appear in then, that all ball say they are worthy favourites of the Lord. The

church is then represented as breaking out into a fong of 10 praise. I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul

Thall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, with salvation, as a gar. ment, and righteousness, as a robe; as a bridegroom deck

eth (himself) with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth - 11 [herself) with her jewels. For as the earth bringeth

forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations; as feeds and plants in a garden seem to lie dead in winter, but in the spring revive and grow, fo God will make his gospel spread, and the jewish church remarkable thro the world.

CHAP. LXII. Encouraged by the promises in the fore- · going chapter, the prophet, in the name of all God's people, I declares, For Zion's lake will I not hold my peace, and

for Jerusalem's sake I will not reft, until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness, and the salvation thereof as a lamp [that] burneth; until its deliverance

and righteousness become illustrious in the eyes of all the 2. world. And God answers, the gentiles shall see thy

righteousness, and all kings thy glory: and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the LORD Thall name; Some say, the christian name; but it rather

... . refers

[ocr errors]

3 refers to a new and better state. Thou shalt also be a

crown of glory in the hand of the LORD, and a royal

diadem in the hand of thy God; thou halt be precious i and honourable to him, and his perfections shall be displayed

4 and glorified in thee. Thou Thalt no more be termed · Forsaken; neither shall thy land any more be termed

Desolate : but thou shalt be called Hephzibah, the objeet of my delight, and thy land Beulah, the wedded

matron : for the Lord delighteth in thee, and thy land · 5 shall be married. For [as] a young man marrieth a

virgin, [fo] shall thy fons marry thee: and [as] the bridegroom rejoiceth over the bride, [fo] shall thy God

rejoice over thee; thou shalt live in harmony and love, and - be no more separated. 6 I have set watchmen upon thy walls; O Jerusalem,

(which] shall never hold their peace day nor night; ministers ball take pains to promote in their people, a devout

Spirit: ye that make mention of the LORD, or, ye that 7 are the Lord's remembrancers, keep not filence, And

give him no rest, till he establish, and till he make

Jerusalem a praise in the earth. 8 The LORD hath sworn by his right hand, and by the

arm of his strength, Surely I will no more give thy corn [to be meat for thine enemies; and the sons of

the stranger shall not drink thy wire, for the which 9 thou hast laboured : But they that have gathered it

shall eat it, and praise the LORD; and they that have brought it together shall drink it in the courts of my holiness.

The a The jewish church is here represented as married to the Lord, and, for its unbelief, divorced; but hereafter it shall be taken into favour again, and shall be as much delighted with returning to its own country and living in it, as a bridegroom is with his bride.

Þ It was customary in the east for youths that were never mar. ried always to marry virgins, and widowers, however young, to marry widows. See Harmer's Observations, in loc.

c The prophet here speaks of God after the manner of men, as overcome by importunity.

• This must' refer to something future; for it is not applicable to the state of the jews in any past period. There is probably a reference to Deut. xii.

« AnteriorContinuar »