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of thanksgiving. Before days, I shall go to the gates of the 17 Behold, || for peace I had great Before 713. grave: I am deprived of the residue bitterness : but + thou hast in love to 713. of my years.
my soul delivered it from the pit of 11 I said, I shall not see the LORD, corruption : for thou hast cast all my peace came even the LORD, in the land of the sins behind thy back. living : I shall behold man no more 18 For the grave cannot praise with the inhabitants of the world. thee, death can not celebrate thee: my soul from
12 Mine age is departed, and is they that go down into the pit cannot removed from me as a shepherd's hope for thy truth.
tent: I have cut off like a weaver my | 19 The living, the living, he shall ! Or, from life: he will cut me off || with pining praise thee, as I do this day : the
sickness: from day even to night wilt father to the children shall make
known thy truth.
days of our life in the house of the
mine eyes fail with looking upward : take a lump of figs, and lay it for a || Or, case me. O LORD, I am oppressed; || under- plaister upon the boil, and he shall take for me.
1 Merodach-baladan, sending to visit Hezeof my spirit: so wilt thou recover me, kiah because of the wonder, hath notice and make me to live.
of his treasures. 3 Isaiah, understanding
men from dayil he breaks, that, known thy true, children
11. I said, I shall not see the Lord, &c.] That is, I especially this life of mine, whereby my breath is still shall no more have the comfortable fruition of God's kept in me, is an immediate work of Thine. Bp. Hall. presence in His house amongst the men that live here 17. Behold, for peace I had great bitterness :) The on earth. Bp. Hall.
words may be translated, “ Behold, my grievous an12. — as a shepherd's tent :) Shepherds do not pitch guish is turned into ease.” W. Lowth, Bp. Lowth. their tents long in one place, but remove for the conve - thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back.] Henience of pasture. W. Lowth.
zekiah's prayer hath no confession of sin, but his - I have cut off like a weaver my life :) My sins thanksgiving afterwards hath a very strong one: “Thou are the cause that the thread of my life is cut off, like hast cast all thy sins behind Thy back.” And therethe thread of a weaver. W. Lowth.
fore, when he pleaded at first, “ Remember, O Lord, I from day even to night wilt thou make an end of beseech Thee, how I have walked before Thee with a me.] I concluded I should die before night. Compare perfect heart, and done that which is good in Thy Job iv. 20. W. Lowth. “In the course of the day sight,” ver. 3, we should understand him to mean, that Thou wilt finish my web.” Bp. Lowth.
as a king he had been zealous for God's true religion, 13. I reckoned till morning, &c.] When night came, to which consequently his life was of importance; not I reckoned I should die before the next morning, my that as a man he had not deserved death, which all men pains were so great, as if the whole frame of my body have. Abp. Secker. were ready to be dissolved. W. Lowth.
20. The Lord was ready to save me : &c.] The case 14.- did I chatter :) The Hebrew word means to of Hezekiah, a person of the highest rank, in the prime chirp or peep in a plaintive tone, like some birds. Park- of life, and the full tide of prosperity, seized with a hurst.
mortal disease, ought strongly to remind the securest 15. What shall I say ? &c.] The suddenness of my of us all, how uncertain our condition is here on earth. deliverance surprises me, so that I want words to ex- By the goodness of God, a Prophet was sent to him, to press my thankfulness : all I can say is, that no sooner admonish him of the preparation that his state required: did God promise to restore my health, but I immedi- and the same goodness hath provided, that we shall all ately found the effects of His goodness. The sense of | be frequently admonished of the same thing by the mithe latter part of the verse, “ I shall go softly" &c. is nisters of His word. The admonition given him was more intelligible in our old translation, which renders the means of prolonging his days in peace and comfort; the words thus, “I will, so long as I live, remember and those given us, if received in a right manner, may, this bitterness of my life;" that is, The remembrance both naturally and providentially, contribute to procure of the misery I endured shall continually excite me to us longer and happier lives in this world; and will cerrenew my thankfulness for this Thy mercy. W. Lowth. tainly lead us to a life of eternal happiness in the next.
16. O Lord, by these things men live, &c.] O Lord, Abp. Secker. by those words and powerful acts, that proceed from Thee, is the life of man both had and maintained : and! Chap. XXXIX. See the notes on 2 Kings xx. 12–
Before CHRIST about 712.
d the spices, ancile
and the of Babylon.. the palace of the king
The Babylonian captivity foretold. CHAP. XXXIX, XL. The promulgation of the Gospel. Before thereof, foretelleth the Babylonian capti- | that is in thine house, and that which Before
thy fathers have laid up in store until 712. A T a that time Merodach-baladan, this day, shall be carried to Babylon: A the son of Baladan, king of nothing shall be left, saith the LORD. Babylon, sent letters and a present to 7 And of thy sons that shall issue Hezekiah : for he had heard that he from thee, which thou shalt beget, had been sick, and was recovered. shall they take away; and they shall
2 And Hezekiah was glad of them, be eunuchs in the palace of the king
and shewed them the house of his of Babylon. Or, spicery. || precious things, the silver, and the 8 Then said Hezekiah to Isaiah,
gold, and the spices, and the precious Good is the word of the LORD which
ointment, and all the house of his thou hast spoken. He said moreover, Or, jewels. Il f armour, and all that was found in For there shall be peace and truth in ressels, or, his treasures: there was nothing in my days. **. his house, nor in all his dominion,
CHAP. XL. that Hezekiah shewed them not. 712. 3 4 Then came Isaiah the prophet
1 The promulgation of the gospel. 3 The
preaching of John Baptist. 9 The preachunto king Hezekiah, and said unto
ing of the apostles. 12 The prophet by the him, What said these men ? and from omnipotency of God, 18 and his incomwhence came they unto thee? And parableness, 26 comforteth the people. Hezekiah said, They are come from NOMFORT ye, comfort ye my about 712. a far country unto me, even from U people, saith your God. Babylon.
2 Speak ye + comfortably to Jeru- ^ Heb. to the 4 Then said he, What have they salem, and cry unto her, that her " seen in thine house? And Hezekiah an- | || warfare is accomplished, that her 1 Or, appointswered, All that is in mine house have iniquity is pardoned: for she hath they seen: there is nothing among received of the Lord's hand double my treasures that I have not shewed for all her sins. them.
1 3 9 a The voice of him that crieth a Matt. 3. 3. 5 Then said Isaiah to Hezekiah, in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way Luke 3. 4. Hear the word of the Lord of hosts: of the Lord, make straight in the Joh
6 Behold, the days come, that all desert a highway for our God.
Mark 1. 3.
John 1. 23.
19. The nature of Hezekiah's crime, and his humilia. is so apparent, and stands forth in so strong a light, tion on the message of God to him by the Prophet, is that some interpreters cannot see that it has any other, more expressly declared by the author of the book of and will not allow the prophecy to have any relation at Chronicles, 2 Chron. xxxii. 25, 26, 30, 31. Bp. Lowth. all to the return from the captivity of Babylon. This
| literal sense however seems obvious and plain; and, Chap. XL. The course of prophecies, which follow for the spiritual, we have the irrefragable authority of from hence to the end of the book, and which, taken John the Baptist, and of our blessed Saviour Himself, together, constitute the most elegant part of the sacred as recorded by all the Evangelists, for applying this writings of the Old Testament, interspersed also with beginning of the prophecy to the opening of the Gospel many passages of the highest sublimity, was probably by the preaching of John, and the introducing of the delivered in the latter part of the reign of Hezekiah. kingdom of the Messiah. Bp. Lowth. The Prophet in the foregoing chapter had delivered a Ver. 1. Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your very explicit declaration of the impending dissolution God.) The Prophet declares at once God's command of the kingdom, and of the captivity under the kings of to His messengers, (His Prophets, as the Chaldee Babylon. As the subject of his subsequent prophecies rightly explains it,) to comfort His people in captivity, was to be chiefly of the consolatory kind, he opens them to impart to them the joyful tidings, that their punishwith giving a promise of a restoration, and the return ment has satisfied the Divine justice, and the time of of the people from that captivity, by the merciful inter- reconciliation and favour is at hand. Bp. Lowth. position of God in their favour. But the views of the 2. - she hath received of the Lord's hand double for Prophet are not confined to this event: the redemption all her sins.] Double in proportion to God's usual from Babylon is clearly foretold; and at the same time severity in punishing men's sins; see Jer. xvi. 18; Dan. is employed as an image, to shadow out a redemption ix. 12: or some take the word "sins” for the punishof an infinitely higher and more important nature--the ments due to sin, (as it is often used,) and understand deliverance of the people of God, Gentiles as well as this as a promise of ample recompence for the effects of Jews, from the captivity of sin, and the dominion of past displeasure, on the reconciliation of God to His death. The Prophet connects these two events toge- returning people. Compare chap. lxi. 7; Job xlii, 10. ther, and hardly ever treats of the former without throw. W. Lowth, Bp. Lowth. ing in some intimations of the latter; sometimes he is 3. The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Preso fully possessed with the glories of the future king- pare ye the way of the Lord, &c.] “The voice of him dom of the Messiah, that he seems to leave the more that crieth in the wilderness," the Baptist applies to immediate subject of his commission almost out of the himself; as describing a preacher faithfully delivering question. Indeed this evangelical sense of the prophecy | the word of God in a desert and uncultivated place,
good tidings to Jerusalem,
the strong. - d Chap. 62.
The preaching of John Baptist. ISAIAH
The preaching of the apostles. 4 Every valley shall be exalted, mountain; || O Jerusalem, that bring- Before about 712. and every mountain and hill shall be est good tidings, lift up thy voice about 712.
made low: and the crooked shall be with strength; lift it up, be not afraid; ce made || straight, and the rough places say unto the cities of Judah, Behold that tellest
your God! *5 And the glory of the LORD shall 10 Behold, the Lord God will be revealed, and all flesh shall see it come || with strong hand, and his arm . Or, against together: for the mouth of the LORD shall rule for him: behold, « his re- a Chap362. hath spoken it.
ward is with him, and || his work for, 6 The voice said, Cry. And he before him. b Job 14.2. said, What shall I cry? 5 All flesh is 11 He shall e feed his flock like a e Ezek. 34. & 103. 15. grass, and all the goodliness thereof is shepherd: he shall gather the lambs John 10. 11. as the flower of the field :
with his arm, and carry them in his
in the hollow of his hand, and meted 8 The grass withereth, the flower out heaven with the span, and com© John 12. 34. fadeth : but the word of our God prehended the dust of the earth in ta + Heb. i Or, 0 thou shall stand for ever.
measure, and weighed the mountains o ne 9 || 0 Zion, that bringest good in scales, and the hills in a balance? Wis. 9. 13.
tidings, get thee up into the high 13 *Who hath directed the Spirit 1 Cor. 2. 16.
recompence for his work.
Ps. 102. 11.
Jam. 1. 10.
that tellest good tidings to Zion.
Rom. 11. 34.
that is, among a people barren and unfruitful in good pensation? You may be ready to conclude, (the Prophet works. The message follows, ver. 3, 4, where, under may be supposed to say,) by the introduction to my disthe allusion of mending or levelling the roads for the course, that my commission is only to comfort you with progress of great princes, that alteration is suggested, a promise of the restoration of your religion and polity, which should be made in the minds and dispositions of of Jerusalem, of the temple, and its services and wor. men, in order to qualify them to receive the benefit of ship in all its ancient splendour; these are earthly, shathe Gospel : the roughness of their tempers, and crook-dowy, fading things, which shall soon pass away, and edness of their wills, to be rectified and made straight, be destroyed for ever; these are not worthy to engage in order to bring them to that meek and humble spirit your attention in comparison of the greater blessings, which God has promised to “guide in judgment," and the spiritual redemption, the eternal inheritance, covered instruct in “His way,” Ps. xxv. 9. Dr. Berriman. The under the vail of the former, which I have it in charge idea is taken from the practice of Eastern monarchs, to unfold unto you. This appears to be agreeable to who, whenever they entered upon an expedition, or St. Peter's interpretation of this passage, quoted by him, took a journey, especially through desert and unprac- as the margin refers. Bp. Lowth. tised countries, sent harbingers before them to prepare 9. O Zion, that bringest good tidings, &c.] The marall things for their passage, and pioneers to open the ginal reading gives a much better sense; compare also passes, to level the ways, and to remove all impedi- chap. xli. 27 ; lii. 7. W. Lowth. The Hebrew participle, ments. Bp. Lowth. See note at Matt. iii. 3; and com- rendered “thou that tellest,” is in the feminine gender ; pare Baruch v. 7.
and the office of announcing and celebrating such glad - our God.] This being spoken of Him, of whom tidings, as are here spoken of, belonged peculiarly to John the Baptist was to be the forerunner; and the women; Exod. xv. 20, 21; Judg. xi. 34; 1 Sam. xviii. application having been afterwards expressly made by \ 6,7. Bp. Lowth. See note at Ps. lxviii. 11. the Baptist to our Lord Jesus; (see John i. 23;) it is 10, 11. Behold, the Lord God will come with strong evident that He is the Person to whom the Prophet at- hand, &c.) This is to be understood of Christ. The tributes the incommunicable name of Jehovah, and words, “ His reward is with Him," compared with Rev. styles Him “our God.” Wogan.
xxii. 12; and “He shall feed His flock like a shepherd," 5. And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all compared with the passage of St. John referred to in flesh shall see it together :) Here it is most evident that the margin, are sufficient indications of the Person the Prince, whose way is to be prepared, can be no intended. Dr. Waterland. other than the Messiah, that great Prince or Potentate With ver. 10, we may compare also Matt. xvi. 27. who is the general subject of all the Prophets : “the The expressions in ver. il, eminently belong to Christ, glory of the Lord” foretold in future times to be mani. and represent the gentleness He shall use to the weak fested to the Gentiles, or to “all flesh,” can point out | ones of His flock, giving them instruction as they are nothing but His glorious days, which are elsewhere able to bear it, and taking all possible care to bring drawn out under the like stupendous characters. Bp. back stragglers to His fold: as appears by the many Lowth, Dr. Berriman.
allusions in the New Testament to this and similar pasThe Prophet then introduces a voice, commanding sages in the Old. W. Lowth. him to make a solemn proclamation, ver. 6–8. The 12. Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his import of it is, that the people, the flesh, is of a vain hand, &c.] Here begins a lofty description of God's Altemporary nature; that all its glory fadeth, and is soon mighty power, shewing that He is great above all His gone : but that the word of the Lord endureth for ever.works, and able to do beyond what we can think or What is this, but a plain opposition of the flesh to the conceive; the design of it is, to persuade the people to spirit; of the carnal Israel to the spiritual ; of the tem- put their whole trust in Him, to rest assured that He is porary Mosaick economy to the eternal Christian dis-'able to perform who promises, and withal to arm them
CHRIST about 712.
of his counsel,
CHAP. XL, XLI. The prophet comforteth the people. Beforer of the Lord, or being this counseller nothing; he maketh the judges of the Before about 712. hath taught him?
earth as vanity 14 With whom took he counsel, 24 Yea, they shall not be planted; + Heb. man, and who tinstructed him, and taught yea, they shall not be sown: yea, Heb. made him in the path of judgment, and their stock shall not take root in the
dete taught him knowledge, and shewed to earth : and he shall also blow upon + Heb. under. him the way of funderstanding? them, and they shall wither, and the
15 Behold, the nations are as a whirlwind shall take them away as
that bringeth out their host by num17 All nations before him are as ber : he calleth them all by names by & Dan. 4. 35. & nothing; and they are counted to the greatness of his might, for that he
him less than nothing, and vanity. I is strong in power; not one faileth.
God? or what likeness will ye com- speakest, O Israel, My way is hid
from the Lord, and my judgment is
God, the Lord, the Creator of the
Lord shall + renew their strength ; + Heb.
thereof are as grashoppers ; that weary; and they shall walk, and not i Ps. 104. 2. istretcheth out the heavens as a cur- | faint. tain, and spreadeth them out as a tent
CHAP. XLI. to dwell in :
1 God expostulateth with his people, about Ps. 107. 40. 23 That bringeth the princes to his mercies to the church, 10 about his
+ Heb. is poor of oblation.
k Job 12. 21.
against idolatry, ver. 18, &c. W. Lowth. The work of And so in chap. xliv. 10: “ Who hath formed a god, creation is the favourite topick which God is pleased to and overspread a graven image” (of wood, see ver. insist upon most, whenever He would distinguish His 13–17, and Jer. x. 3, 4,) “that is profitable for noown peculiar majesty and power above and beyond all thing ?" The noun, rendered “molten image,” strictly the gods of the nations, or excite in His people the and properly means the “ metalline case or covering highest idea possible suitable to His transcendent ex- spread over the carved wood, Isai. xlviii. 5; Jer. x. 14. cellency: see ver. 26. Many texts to the same purpose The metalline case is often joined with the carved might be cited from the following chapters, from the wooden image which it covered : see Deut. xxvii. 15; Psalms, and from the Old Testament in general. Dr. Judg. xvii. 3, 4; xviii. 14 ; 2 Chron. xxxiv. 3. SoloWaterland.
mon's cherubim were images of this kind, made of olive 16. - Lebanon is not sufficient] This image is beau- wood, and overlaid with gold, 1 Kings vi. 23, 28. Parktiful and uncommon: it is imitated, Judith xvi. 16. hurst. Bp. Lowth.
22. - stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain,) See 19. The workman melteth a graven image, &c.] The note on Gen. i. 6. passage may be translated thus: “ The workman over- 31.- as eagles :) See note at Ps. ciii. 5. spreads the graven image,” (of wood namely, mentioned in the next verse,) “even the refiner, or goldsmith, Chap. XLI. In this and the following chapters, God spreadeth it over with gold, and casteth sheets of silver." is introduced as pleading His own cause against the
CHRIST about 712.
+ Ieb. righteousness.
God expostulateth with his people ISAIAH
about his mercies to the church, promises, 21 and about the vanity of 8 But thou, Israel, art my servant, Before
Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed about 712.
1 islands; and let the people re- 9 Thou whom I have taken from & 10. 15. &
2 Who raised up † the righteous have chosen thee, and not cast thee James 2. 23.
3 He pursued them, and passed thee with the right hand of my righ-
11 Behold, all they that were in-
calling the generations from the be- and confounded: they shall be as no- chap. 60. 12. a Chap: 43... ginning? I the LORD, the a first thing; and + they that strive with 48. 12.***.. and with the last; I am he.
thee shall perish. 5 The isles saw it, and feared; the 12 Thou shalt seek them, and shalt *** ends of the earth were afraid, drew not find them, even + them that con- + IIeb, the near, and came.
tended with thee: † they that war contention. 6 They helped every one his neigh- against thee shall be as nothing, and ;
bour; and every one said to his brother, as a thing of nought. + Heb. Be + Be of good courage.
1 13 For I the LORD thy God will 7 So the carpenter encouraged the hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, || Or, founder. Il goldsmith, and he that smoothed Fear not; I will help thee. ! Or, the with the hammer || him that smote 14 Fear not, thou worm Jacob, and il Or, saying the anvil, saying, || It is ready for the ye || men of Israel; I will help thee, || Or, few men. It is good." sodering: and he fastened it with saith the Lord, and thy redeemer,
nails, that it should not be moved. the Holy One of Israel.
men of thy
false gods of the heathens, and challenging the idols to store the true worship: the characteristicks also here shew such instances of their power and goodness, in used are rather those of a mighty conqueror; and the protecting their votaries, as might be alleged in His similar passages which occur ver. 25, and in succeeding behalf, with respect to His care and providence over the chapters, xlv. 1, 13; xlvi, 11, (applying undoubtedly to Jews : proper instructions to preserve that people from Cyrus,) incline us to think that he may here also be being drawn aside to comply with the Babylonish intended. Vitringa. idolatry. They contain likewise in them a plain pre 4.- I the Lord, the first, and with the last ; I am he.] diction of the calling of the Gentiles, and their turning That is, “ I Jehovah ; " who by the import of My name “ from idols to serve the living and true God,” i Thess. I am the “first," or original of all other beings, and shall i. 9. W. Lowth.
be with the “last,” that is, am “ everlasting.” Dr. Ver. 1. - O islands ;] See notes on chap. xi. 11; Wells. Comparing the passages of our Prophet referred xlii. 4.
to in the margin, we find that the phrase, “ first and - let the people renew their strength :) This seeins last,” expresses the peerless majesty of God, who is He to be a charge to the nations to make use of their utmost the “true God;" His eternity, supreme power, dignity, strength in defending their idolatry in the proposed and glory, and His creation and government of all debate. Vitringa.
things : in those of St. John, from the Revelation, 2. — the righteous man from the east,] Some explain the same Divine title is given to the Son. Dr. Waterthis of Abraham; others of Cyrus. The character of land. “the righteous man" (or “righteousness," as some give 6, 7. They helped every one his neighbour ; &c.] In it) agrees best with Abraham ; he was called out of the these verses, the several artificers concerned in idolEast, and his posterity (who may fairly be taken into making are represented as assisting one another, to the account) were introduced into Canaan, and esta-carry on their common interest ; (see Acts xix. 25;) the blished there, on purpose to stand as a barrier against passage may fitly be applied to the heathen powers comidolatry: Cyrus, though not properly a worshipper of bining together to support their idolatry, and suppress images, had nothing in his character to cause such an | the Christian religion. W. Lowth. alarm among idolaters, as is mentioned ver. 5-7; and 9.- from the ends of the earth,] This probably refers the Prophet, having just touched upon that circum-particularly to Egypt and Chaldea; from the latter, stance, resumes Abraham and the Israelites, ver. 8. the Jews were to be redeemed as they had been from Bp. Lowth. On the other side it may be said, that the former; from thence likewise Abraham was originCyrus did overthrow the Babylonians, the great sup- ally taken. W. Lowth. porters of idolatry, their confederates, and many nations; 14. Fear not, thou worm Jacob, and ye men of Israel; did in consequence liberate the people of God, and re-'Or rather, “few men," as the word signifies in the