Page images

lemnly answers, that even the captive of the mighty shall be taken away, and the prey of thë terrible delivered; for that he will contend with all the enemies of Zion, and save her children; that he will signally avenge her upon her oppressors; and that at length all flesh shall know, that the Lord is the Saviour of Jacob. Boris 1.5 dies 13:

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

The joy and prosperity of the once desolate "church

of Judah at the time of the restoration-The vain gathering together of Antichrist.

Isaiah liv. 1. Sing, o barren, thou that didst not bear; break forth into singing and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith the Lord. 2. Enlarge the place of thy tent; and let them stretch forth the ' curtains of thine habitations: spare not, lengthen thy cords, and strengthen thy.stakes. 3. For thou shalt break forth on the right hand and on the left; and thy seed shall inherit the Gentiles, and they shall cause the desolate cities to be inhabited. 4. Fear not, for thou shalt not be ashamed; and, turn not away thy face for shame, for thou shalt not be abashed: for thou shalt forget the shame of.

. of

of thy youth, and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood any more. 5. For thy Maker is thine husband; the Lord of hosts is his name: and thy Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel; the God of the whole earth shall he be called. 6. For: the Lord bath called thee as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit; and a wife of youth, when thou wast refused, saith thy God. 7. For a small moment have I forsaken thee: but with great mercies will I gather thee. 8. In a little wrath I hid my face from thee for a moment; but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee, saith the Lord thy Redeemer. 9. For this is as the waters of Noah unto me: as I have sworn that the waters of Noah should no inore go over the earth; so have I sworn that I would not be wroth with thee, nor rebuke thee. .:10. For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, saith the Lord that hath mercy on thee. 11. 0 thou afflicted, tossed with tempest, and not comforted ! behold, I will lay thy stones with fair colours, and lay thy foundations with sapphires. 12. . And I will make thy windows of agates, and thy gates of carbuncles, and all thy borders of pleasant stones. 13. And all thy chil.. dren shall be taught of the Lord: and great shall be the peace of thy children. 14. In righteous, ness shalt thou be established : thou shalt be, far

jR4 , . : from

from oppression, for thou shalt not fear; and from terror, for it shall not come near thee. · 15. Behold, they shall surely gather together, but not by me*: whoever shall gather together against thee, shall fall before thee. 16. Behold, I have created the armourer, that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth a weapon by his workmanship; and I have created destruction for a snare f. 17. No weapon, that is formed against thee, shall prosper; and every tongue, that shall rise against thee I in judgment, thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord.

COMMENTARY. - The prophet calls upon the desolate church of

1 * They shall gather together, but not by me.] Compare Rev. xvi. 12–16. xix. 19-21. Bp. Lowth translates the original words league tugether, which greatly heightens the sense, Antichrist is to unite himself, by a federal league, with the false Romish prophet and the tassal kings of the Latin earth, so that they shall jointly form one great conspiracy.

7 I have created destruction for a snare.] I have created the powers of darkness, and for a season suffer them to prevail; but, in the midst of their machinations against others, they shall suddenly fall into a snare themselves. Compare Isaiah xxiv, 16, 17, 18. and Rev. xi. 18.

Every tongue shall rise against thee.] These words' may possibly contain an allusion to the destroying anathema of the bedst and the false prophet, when they shall sanctify war and imprecate the vengeance of heaven upon all their opponents.


Judah to sing aloud for joy, because her restoration draweth nigh. Alienated from God by her obstináte infidelity and infatuated rejection of the Messiah, she had long ceased to bring forth spiritual children: but now she hath need to enlarge her tents, and to extend the limits of her habitation; for her children shall, vie in number even with those of the married wife, that ingrafted olive the church of the Gentiles; and her forsaken cities shall again be inhabited. In order that she may not despair by reason of the depth of her humi- . liation, she is exhorted not to fear: because, rejected as she may be at present from being the mystic, wife of God as she formerly was, and therefore mourning in a state of symbolical widowhood; yet she shall shortly forget the shame of her youth, and the Lord of hosts shall acknowledge himself to be her husband. Though she may, now appear like a woman forsaken and refused, like a deserted wife of a man's youth; God declares, that he hath forsaken her only for a little moment, and swears by an oath as inviolable as that which he swore to Noah, that he will mercifully gather her and establish the covenant of his peace with her. She hath been, during the days of her widowhood, afflicted, tossed with tempests, and not comforted; but her cities shall be rebuilt with increased splendor, her children shall be taught of the Lord, she shall be established in righteousness, and she shall be delivered from fear and oppression.


This incidental mention of her deliverance from the terror of her enemies leads Isaiah, as usual,to predict the downfall of Antichrist ; who in the last days shall gather together his forces against the converted of Judah, and plant the curtains of his pavilions between the seas in the glorious holy mountain. His gathering however is not from the Lord, but from the diabolical influence of Satan; therefore shall he rush forward only to his own de

and shall fall before the returning people of God. Yet, although the sovereign judge of heaven and earth disclaims the impious enterprize of Antichrist; he asserts, that it is he who hath created the armourer to forge weapons of war, and who hath created destruction itself, even destruction personfied in the last great opposer of his purposes, to fall into the snare which he hath prepared for it. Neither the weapons of violence, nor the invectives of his enraged enemy, shall prevail against Judah: he shall alike triumph over both.


The spiritual glory of the millennian churchThe

continental restoration of the ten tribes--The maritime restoration of the converted of Judah.


« EelmineJätka »