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Book of Isaiah
Chapters 40-66 form the crown to the first section of Isaiah (Chapters 1-39) by properly preparing the reader. The three subsections of chapters 40-66 are obvious. The Chapters are evenly split into three sections. These sections are outstanding because of the way they end . . . NOT the way they begin.
Ch.40-48: Isaiah 48:22 There is no peace, saith the LORD, unto the wicked. (KJV)
Ch.49-57: Isaiah 57:21 There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked. (KJV)
Ch.58-66: Isaiah 66:24 And they shall go forth, and look upon the carcases of the men that have transgressed against me: for their worm shall not die, neither shall their fire be quenched; and they shall be an abhorring unto all flesh. (KJV)
All three of these last sections end with the same idea . . . there shall be no peace, to the wicked. The Messiah brings peace, but any and all who reject Him will NEVER know peace. Turning TO idols is turning AWAY from the Messiah. As we have seen, this section has majored in a condemnation and rebuke of idolatry. Idolatry is a road that leads to Babylon. The LORD, in the Book of Isaiah, is traveling the lonely road to Calvary. BEWARE!!! ALL idolatry and witchcraft are an abomination to the LORD: (Deut.27:15; 1 Ki.11:7; 23:13; Isa.44:19; Jer.32:35; Eze.18:12; Dan.12:11; Mal.2:11; Rev.21:27)
ISAIAH 49 parallels with EPHESIANS. Isaiah 49 tells us that Israel will be the Bride of Christ on the Earth. Isaiah 49:18 Lift up thine eyes round about, and behold: all these gather themselves together, and come to thee. As I live, saith the LORD, thou shalt surely clothe thee with them all, as with an ornament, and bind them on thee, as a bride doeth. The Book of Ephesians tells us the qualifications of the Bride of Christ. Eph 5:25-27 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. The Church will be the ornament of the Bride of Christ. Isaiah 49:5 And now, saith the LORD that formed me from the womb to be his servant, to bring Jacob again to him, Though Israel be not gathered, yet shall I be glorious in the eyes of the LORD, and my God shall be my strength. Eph. 6:10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.
Isaiah 49:25 But thus saith the LORD, Even the captives of the mighty shall be taken away, and the prey of the terrible shall be delivered: for I will contend with him that contendeth with thee, and I will save thy children. Eph. 4:8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
Chapters 49-57 show us God’s gracious Provision of Redemption, pointing to an effective cure for their real problems. On the outside, the exile would seem to be the offender ruining their lives. If from section one they can understand their judgment is because of their sin, then they will look for relief not only in a return to their homeland but in the healing of their sins, and only God alone can provide this healing. Although they are comforted by their return to their homeland, it is but a small part of the whole worldwide plan of healing. The One and Only Almighty God will be providing the healing through the gracious and humble Servant.
This Amazing Servant serves as the Center of Hope for ALL people in these chapters. Because of this Servant, Israel can be assured that God has NOT forsaken them, nor will He ever forget them! Actually, this Humble Servant will be the One to lead ALL nations to God. The Servant’s work is far from easy, but He finds strength only in His Father and the Holy Spirit (Isa.11:2; 42:1; 62:1; Jn.3:34; 7:16; 8:26-28).
THIS SERVANT IS APPOINTED TO BRING SALVATION:
#1. He has been called to be the LORD'S Servant (vs.1-3)
#2. His work has been difficult (vs.4)
#3. He will bring salvation to both Israel and Gentiles (vs.5-6)
#4. Kings and princes will arise and worship Him (vs.7)
THIS SERVANT WILL COMFORT GOD'S PEOPLE:
#1. He will become a Covenant to the people (vs.8a)
#2. He will provide restoration and comfort for the afflicted (vs.8b-13)
GOD WILL REMEMBER ZION:
#1. He has not forgotten Zion, her destroyers will go away, (vs14-17)
#2. Zion will overflow with new children who come to her (vs.18-21)
#3. The nations shall bring her children, and kings and queens will foster them (vs.22-23)
#4. The LORD will contend with those who oppress Zion and her children (vs.2-25)
Theme: This is a discourse of Christ to the world; a discussion of Almighty God with Israel; with a temporary detour of the judgment of Israel's oppressors.
In this third and final division of the Book of Isaiah, there is a threefold division which is marked off with the words, "There is no peace, saith the Lord, unto the wicked." We have seen in the first division the comfort of JEHOVAH which comes through the Servant. Chapter 49 begins the second division, which shows us the redemption of Almighty God through the Suffering Servant.
This brings us to the definite revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ as the Suffering Servant of God who brings Redemption to all people. We have been moving in that revelation from the very beginning, but at first we saw Him more as a shadow in the background as the Servant who brings comfort to God's people. The closer we get to Chapter 53, where we have that wonderful revelation of the Cross of Christ, the clearer He will become to us.
Israel too, was the servant of God, but Israel had failed desperately! Now the LORD God speaks of another Servant, and that Servant is the LORD Jesus Christ. Prophetic Scriptures spoke mainly of Israel as God's servant; but the ultimate and absolute meaning is found in the Person of Christ. A classic illustration is in Hosea 11:1, where it states: When Israel was a child, then I loved him, and called my son out of Egypt. This was fulfilled in Christ (Mat.2:15). . . . Israel failed, but the One who came out of that nation will succeed. http://www.godcannotlie.org/hos_ch11.htm
Address of Christ to the World (49:1-7)
As we open this chapter, we are listening to a speech by Christ, just as the twelve apostles listened to Him in Galilee. In this chapter we see Christ moving out to become the Saviour of the world.
Isaiah 49:1 Listen, O isles, unto me; and hearken, ye people, from far; The LORD hath called me from the womb; from the bowels of my mother hath he made mention of my name. (KJV)
Listen, O isles, unto me; and hearken, ye people, from far . . . this is the introduction to the interpretation which refers it to the Messiah. It is to be considered as the Voice of the Redeemer calling to all the far parts of the Earth to pay close attention to the qualifications He has for His work, and to the assurances that His salvation would be extended to the isles (Gentiles). Salvation is to Gentiles too: (Isa.49:1; Ps.46:10; Zec.2:13; Rom.1 16; 2;9-10; 3:29-30; 4:11-12; 9:24; 10:12-15; 1 Cor.7:19; 12:13; Gal.3:26-29; 5:6; Eph.3:5-10; Col.3:11). The Redeemer here, is to be regarded as having already come in the Flesh (Jn,1:14), and as having been rejected and despised by the Jews (Isa.49:4-5; 53:2-3; Lk.19:14; 20:13-15; Jn.1:11; 3:32; Acts 7:51-52).
The Lord hath called me from the womb . . God the Father has set me aside for this office from My very Birth. The emphasis here is upon the fact that Jesus was prophesied to come long before He was born as Man (Isa.7:14; 9:6-7; Lk.1:35; 2:11).
From the bowels of my mother hath he made mention of my name . . . this is just another form of stating the Fact that He had been chosen to this office, BEFORE He was born as Man (Jn.1:14). Many have supposed that the reference here is to the fact that Mary was commanded by the angel, BEFORE He was born, to call His Name Jesus (Lk.1:31). The same command was also repeated to Joseph in a dream (Mat.1:21).
*****Christ is calling upon the nations of the world to hear His Words. He was given the Name of Jesus BEFORE He was born, and this Name is to be proclaimed throughout the world because it is the only Name of the One and Only Saviour (Jn.14:6; Acts 4;12), and the world most certainly needs a Saviour.
Isaiah 49:2 And he hath made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of his hand hath he hid me, and made me a polished shaft; in his quiver hath he hid me; (KJV)
And he hath made my mouth like a sharp sword . . . the idea here is, that He had been qualified for a convincing and powerful eloquence, for the utterance of words which would penetrate the heart like a sharp sword (Heb4:12). The bold and striking symbol of the sword applied to powerful discourse, has been used also by writers with great elegance and force.
In the shadow of his hand hath he hid me . . . (Isa.51:16; Deut.33:27). Almighty God was/is Jesus’ Refuge, and our Refuge too: (Ps.18:2; 27:5; 36:7; 46:1,7,11; 48:3; 91:102,9,15; Pro.18:10; Lk.13:34; Phil.3:9). He hid me . . . before His appearing, the Messiah was concealed with God like a sword kept in its sheath, or like an arrow lying in the quiver. The meaning is simply that God the Father had protected Him. God, by His almighty power protected Christ Jesus and His doctrine, so that NOTHING could hinder its course. I also think that this may mean that Christ would have the power to produce rapid and mighty judgments; that He was tailored, like an arrow, to overcome the enemies of God; and that He was kept in the quiver for that purpose. Christ Jesus, the Messiah, will most certainly bring about some utter judgments in the last days (Zec.14:1-9; Rev.19:11-21). Is YOUR name in the book of life (Rev.20:15)?
*****The sharp sword that went out of His Mouth is the Word of God (Heb.4:12; Rev.1:16; 2:16; 19:16, 21), and the comment of His enemies when He walked on this Earth was: John 7:46 . . . . Never man spake like this man. (KJV). The revelation of the Messiah concludes with these words: Revelation 19:15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. (KJV) . . . It is the judgment of the nations by the Word of God.
The symbol of the sword also points to Christ Jesus’ piercing people’s hearts by His Word and His Spirit. Is YOUR name in the book of life (Rev.20:15)?
Isaiah 49:3 And said unto me, Thou art my servant, O Israel, in whom I will be glorified. (KJV)
And said unto me . . . to the Messiah. God the Father, said to His only begotten Son (Jn.3:16), that He would be His Servant; and it would be Christ by whom the Father would be especially glorified and honored. And said unto me, both in the everlasting council, and when He made a covenant with Him in eternity; when He established and anointed Him, and also when He brought His first begotten, into the world at His incarnation (Jn.1:14) . . . . . . . . . http://hisservants.org/father_son_covenants_h_s.htm
Thou art my servant . . . God the Son was the Humble Servant of God the Father, of His choosing, His appointing, His calling, His sending, His bringing forth and His always supporting. He was also the Mediator (Gal.3:20; 1 Tim.2:5; Heb.8:6; 9:15; 12:24), and especially so in His time of humiliation, when He appeared in the Form of a Servant, and came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and give His life a ransom for many (Mat.20:28), and in so doing, He obtained redemption to all who believe, which was the great work and service in which He was appointed to; which He undertook voluntarily, willingly and cheerfully engaged in, and diligently and faithfully performed; to Whom rightly belong the characteristics of an obedient, diligent, prudent and faithful Servant. He joyfully showed His regard to His Father's will, and His love to His people (Gal.3:26-29). Redemption only through Jesus: (Rom.3:24; 1 Cor.1:30; Eph.1:7,14; 4:30; Col.1:14; Heb.9:12, 15).
O Israel, in whom I will be glorified . . . there are many interpretations of this verse. To whom does the word Israel refer? IF it refers to the Messiah, why is this name given to Him? I believe that Israel . . . is applied to Messiah, according to the true importance of the Name, the Prince who had power with God in wrestling in behalf of man, and who prevails (Gen.32:28). He is also the ideal Israel, the Man who rightly represents the nation (Mat.2:15; Hos.11:1), and in Whom the Father is glorified (Jn.13:31; 14:13; 17:1-5; Phil.2:8-11). I believe that Christ Jesus is the Holy One of Israel (Isa.41:14). See Special Comments at the end of this chapter for more on: Christ Jesus, the Messiah: The True Israel
Isaiah 49:4 Then I said, I have laboured in vain, I have spent my strength for nought, and in vain: yet surely my judgment is with the LORD, and my work with my God. (KJV)
Then I said . . . I, is the Messiah. In the previous verses He speaks of His appointment to the office of Messiah, and of His divine dignity. The plan here is to prepare the way for the announcement of the fact that He would make known His Gospel to the pagan world, and that He would be for a light to the Gentiles (Isa.49:6; Lk.2:32; Acts 13:47).
I have labored in vain . . . He speaks of His labors among His own people, and is sad for so little success which came from His work, but consoles Himself, knowing that His cause perfectly agreed with God the Father, and that His labor would not go unrewarded. This is not to be thought that He had no success at all in His work, but means that He had little success with the Jews. He was not received and welcomed by the Jews; He was rejected and despised by them as a whole (Jn.1:11; 7:5; Isa.53:2-3; Lk.19:14; 20:13-15). After His death, there was success in reaching some Jews (Acts 2:41; 21:20), so His work was not totally in vain!
I have spent my strength for nough, and in vain . . . for nothing. This does not mean that He would not eventually be as successful as He desired to be (Isa.53:11); but it means, that in His Personal ministry He had used His strength, and seen very little fruit for His work. In vain, when compared to the great number of His own countrymen . . . He came unto His own, and His own received Him not (Isa.53:1-3; Lk.19:14; Jn.1:11). Only 120 disciples met after His personal ministry ended (Acts 1:15). After Peter’s sermon, there was success in reaching some Jews (Acts 2:41; 21:20), so the LORD’S work was not totally in vain!
Yet surely my judgment is with the Lord . . . in due course, God will do justice to My cause, and reward My labors and sufferings (Isa.40:10; 62:11). Christ was never discouraged (Isa.42:4; 50:7, 10). He was always calm and composed, in spite of the seeming lack of success, but always left the result with God, assured and confident of final victory (Isa.53:10-12; 1 Pet.2:23).
*****Although the LORD was rejected, and it looked as if He labored in vain, His confidence was/is in God, as it should be with us today. Even the death of the LORD Jesus Christ was a tremendous victory; in fact, it is the greatest victory on OUR behalf, that the world has ever seen up to and including the present time. The emphasis in this particular section, is on the suffering Servant. At His First Coming He did not gather Israel, for they rejected Him. At His First Coming He did something far more wonderful . . . He brought salvation for the world . . . therefore, God's purposes were NOT in the least thwarted by man's foolish schemes.
Isaiah 49:5 And now, saith the LORD that formed me from the womb to be his servant, to bring Jacob again to him, Though Israel be not gathered, yet shall I be glorious in the eyes of the LORD, and my God shall be my strength. (KJV)
And now, saith the Lord that formed me from the womb to be his servant. . . this verse holds the reason why He valued the hope that His work would be accepted. The LORD had said to Him that He should be glorious in His eyes, and that He would be His strength. Christ stood so high in the Father’s favor, and He had such assurances of that favor, that He could completely commit and trust Himself to His care. That formed thee. . . the LORD appointed Christ Jesus before He was born to the office of a Servant to accomplish such important purposes (vs.1).
To bring Jacob again to him . . . to convert the wicked and apostate Israelites (run away deserters) back to God. To recover the Jewish people again to the pure worship of Almighty God. To the Jews, the Messiah was to be sent first, but when they rejected Him, He was to extend the same great salvation to the Gentiles (vs.6); also see (Mat.21:33-44). The Saviour spent His life preaching to the Jews, and in trying to bring them back to TRUE God.
Though Israel be not gathered . . . Israel was not brought home to God by Christ’s ministry. This implies that the Israelites were divided and scattered from God, and divided among themselves, as they were in a high degree when Christ came into the world, and turned every one to his own way (Isa.53:6), and so they needed to be gathered. Either it is a symbol of wandering sheep, which the Good Shepherd (Jn.10:11; 14), diligently seeks and brings home to the fold; or it is a reference to the state of the Israelites, who either now were or shortly were, to be dispersed into several parts of the world, from whence God had promised to gather them, and bring them into their own land, and unto His Temple (Isa.43:5-6), and elsewhere. Israel shall be regathered in the last days: (Isa.11:12; 43:5; 54:7; Jer.23:3; 29:14; 31:8, 10; 32:37; Eze.11:17; 20:34, 41; 34:13; 36:24; 37:21)
Yet shall I be glorious in the eyes of the LORD, and my God shall be my strength . . . the LORD
God will not despise Christ when He is unsuccessful in His work, but He shall honor and glorify the Servant, both with Himself and in the face of the world, in crowning His activities with glorious success among other people. Although Christ would be rejected by the nation of Israel, yet He would be highly honored by God. The LORD would not only approve His character and His work, but would make sure that He would be honored among people by making Him the light of the Gentiles (Isa.43:4).
And my God shall be my strength . . . the LORD supported and strengthened Christ Jesus under all discouragements and difficulties in the discharge of His office. He might be rejected by the people, but in the LORD, He would find a trustworthy source of support and comfort. I think that this applies most accurately to the character of the Redeemer as exhibited in the New Testament. See Special Comments at the end of this chapter for Characteristics of Jesus in the New Testament. So sad that very few (Mat.7:14) possess or desire the wonderful characteristics of Christ our Lord. Every one of us fall short
Isaiah 49:6 And he said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth. (KJV)
And he said . . . He, God the Father, said in His Promise to the Messiah.
It is a light thing . . . the sense is, that God intended to glorify Christ in a very outstanding way, and that He would not appoint Him just to bring a restoration among the Jews, and to bring them back to the spiritual worship of God, but that He had also intended Him for another very important work . . . the recovery of the Gentile world, and to spread TRUE religion among ALL nations. One version renders this, it is a great thing for Thee to be called My Servant (vs.3).
To raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel . . . the remnant of them that survive all the calamities and desolations, shall be established in the True worship of God, and in prosperity, which is to be understood in a spiritual sense, since it is to be one and the same with the blessings which Christ would bestow on the Gentile world. His work in regard to both peoples, would largely be the same. In regard to the Jews, it was to bring them back to the worship of the True God; and in regard to the Gentiles, it was to convey to them the knowledge of this same God.
I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles . . . God the Father will make His Servant’s work successful to clarify, convert and bring salvation to the Gentiles in all the parts of the world. This definitely refers to Christ Jesus, not Isaiah as some think. Yes, Isaiah too was a ‘servant’ of God, but his job was simply to bring the words, the prophecies that the God had given him; he could in NO way bring about the fulfillment of any of the prophecies. The same expression and the same Promise occur in Isaiah 42:6.
That thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth . . . (Isa.42:10). TRUE religion shall be extended to the Gentile nations, and all parts of the world shall see the mighty salvation of God. This great work was to be handed over to the Redeemer, and it was regarded as a high honor that He would so be made the Way of spreading Truth and Light (Jn.14:6) among all nations. We may learn, #1. That God will raise up the tribes of Jacob, and large numbers of the Jews shall yet be preserved or recovered to Himself; #2. That the Gospel shall surely be extended to the ends of the Earth; #3. That it is a great honor to be made instrumental in extending TRUE religion. So great is this honor, that it is mentioned as the highest which could be conferred even on the Redeemer in this world. And if Christ believed it to be an honor, shouldn’t we not also regard it as a privilege to engage in the work of Christ, and to make every effort to save the world from the lake of fire (Rev.20:15)? Dear one, there is NO higher glory for us than to walk in the footsteps of the Son of God! Christ Jesus by His love and self-denial, personal toil and prayer, does most for the conversion of this whole world to God, but all who imitate our Blessed Redeemer, and walk as He walked, will have a wonderful place in the splendor of Heaven one day. Thank You Jesus!
Isaiah 49:7 Thus saith the LORD, the Redeemer of Israel, and his Holy One, to him whom man despiseth, to him whom the nation abhorreth, to a servant of rulers, Kings shall see and arise, princes also shall worship, because of the LORD that is faithful, and the Holy One of Israel, and he shall choose thee. (KJV)
Thus saith the Lord . . . this verse contains a Promise of the future honor that awaits the Redeemer, and of the success which would crown His marvelous work. The sense is, that the LORD had promised to this One who was despised and rejected (Isa.53:3), that kings and princes would rise up and honor Him in the last days (Isa.49:23; 52:15; 60:3,10,16; Rev.21:24,26).
The Redeemer of Israel, and his Holy One . . . (Isa.43:1), as He is often called in Scriptures; about 70 times.
To him whom man despiseth . . . to Christ, to Whom, as He was in the days of His Flesh (Jn.1:14), this description fully agrees with (Isa.53:3), because both Jews and Gentiles among whom He lived, did despise Him, and among whom He spoke and preached, they hated both His Person and His doctrine; for He was so far from being the great temporal monarch, as the Jews foolishly imagined, and that He came in the form of a humble Servant, and was a servant of rulers, professing subjection and laying tribute unto Caesar (Mat.17:24; 22:21), and being treated by the rulers, both of the Jews and the Romans, like a servant, being despitefully used and crucified, which was proper punishment of servants.
To him whom the nation abhorreth . . . nation here, no doubt, refers to the Jewish people (Isa.1:4; 10:6). Abhorreth means ‘for an abomination’, and the idea is, that Christ was regarded as an abomination (something hated) by Israel. The same idea is more fully expressed (Isa.53:3-4), where the Messiah would be rejected and treated with abhorrence (hatred) by the Jews. Anyone that is even slightly familiar with the New Testament, will see the prophecy in Isaiah 53 has been literally fulfilled. No other person ever stirred up more hatred; no other man was ever considered with so much outrage by any people as Jesus of Nazareth was, and still is, by the Jewish people today. He was condemned by the Sanhedrim (Mat.26:3,59); publicly rejected by the nation (Isa.53:3; Mat.8:34; Mk.5:17-18); and at the urging and by the desire of the assembled people at Jerusalem (Mat.27:16-26); He was executed as a malefactor (criminal) in the most shameful and humiliating manner then known (Lk.23:13-21). To this day, the Name of Jesus, brings about the utmost contempt among Jews, and they turn away from Him and His claims of being the Messiah with the deep hatred . . . . . . . . http://www.godcannotlie.org/book_of_isaiah_52.13-53.12.htm
Kings shall see and arise . . . dear one, although for a time Christ Jesus would be despised, yet in the last days, ALL people, Jews and Gentiles, shall see such royal majesty and glory in Him. Kings shall look upon this Awesome Person with great admiration and reverence, and arise from their royal seats in token of reverence, and to worship Him. It is NOT here yet . . . but it is coming! This shall be fulfilled in the last days (Isa.2:2-3; 49:23; 52:15; 55:5; 60:10,16; Ps.2:10-12; 68:31; 72:10-11; 86:9; 89:15-17; Rev.11:15).
Princes also shall worship . . . worship means to bow down, in order to do Him honor and/or reverence. This was the customary way of showing respect or reverence in the East. Here it means that they would show Him honor, respect and reverence for Who He is.
To a servant of rulers . . . this means that the Messiah voluntarily submitted Himself to human power, and yielded obedience to human rulers (Mat.17:24-27) while on Earth. The idea, is, that even though He was the Ruler of all worlds, yet He willingly became subject to human laws, and yielded submission and obedience to human rulers. http://www.godcannotlie.org/matthew_ch17.html
Because of the Lord that is faithful . . . it is because the LORD is faithful in the fulfillment of His Promises, that He shall certainly bring this to pass. The fact that Christ shall be so honored shall be traced entirely to the faithfulness of the Covenant-keeping God.
And he shall choose thee . . . the LORD selected Christ to accomplish this, and to be a Light to the Gentile world. This has been fulfilled. Kings and princes have bowed before the Redeemer; but there is a time coming when in far greater numbers they shall adore Him. These expressions can be applied to none other than the Messiah, Christ Jesus. Of the Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ alone, was ALL this true; and the assurance is therefore given, that even though He was rejected by His own nation (Jn.1:11), the time will come, in the last days, when the kings and princes of all the world shall pay Him homage (Rev.12:10; 15:3-4; 17:14; 19:1-6; 20:4; 22:27;28).
Because of the LORD that is faithful, and the Holy One of Israel . . . because God shall make good His Promises to Christ concerning the raising thee from the dead, and concerning the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon His disciples (Acts 2), by whose assistance they shall preach most powerfully, and confirm their doctrine by clear and glorious miracles, and concerning the giving unto thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession, as He promised (Ps.2:8). These and similar considerations were the great motives which prevailed with the princes and people of the Gentiles to receive Christ as the True Messiah and Saviour of the world.
He shall choose thee . . . even though Christ would be rejected by His own people (Jn.1;11), and was refused by their builders or rulers, as was prophesied (Ps.118:22; Mat.21:42), and for a time and in some respects forsaken by God Himself (Mat.27:46); yet God will return to Him and choose Him again, and reveal to the world, that Christ, and Christ alone, is the Person Whom God hath chosen to be the One and Only Redeemer of mankind (Jn.14:6; Acts 4:12), and whom, in spite of all the opposition, He will make the Head-stone of the corner (Isa.28:16; Mat.21:32; Mk.12:10; 20:17; Acts 4:11; 1 Cor.3:11; Eph.2:20; 1 Pet.2:6).
*****Paul said: Romans 11:12 Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness? (KJV) . . . The rejection of Christ by Israel meant that the Gospel went out to the ends of the Earth, meaning the Gentiles. Just think how wonderful it will be in the last days, when God regathers Israel!
Discussion of God with Israel (49:8-16)
Isaiah 49:8 Thus saith the LORD, In an acceptable time have I heard thee, and in a day of salvation have I helped thee: and I will preserve thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, to establish the earth, to cause to inherit the desolate heritages; (KJV)
Thus saith the LORD . . . still speaking to the Messiah, and intending to give the assurance that He would extend TRUE religion, and remove the evils of sin on the Earth. It seems the Messiah is represented as having asked for the divine favor to attend His efforts, and this is the answer, and the assurance that His petition had not been offered in vain.
In an acceptable time . . . in the time of the will of God, or when it pleased Him. The idea is plain, that the LORD was well pleased to hear Christ when He called upon Him, and would answer His prayers. It would be in a time of favor; in a time that would be best fitted to the purposes of salvation, The LORD will be pleased to exalt the Messiah to glory, and to make Him the means of salvation to all mankind.
Have I heard thee . . . the LORD heard the petitions of Christ, and the desires of His Heart. The giving of the world to the Messiah is represented as an answer to His prayer. Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance (Ps.2:8).
And in a day of salvation have I helped thee . . . in the time of grace and the Gospel, which I have appointed for the working out of man's salvation by Thee.
And I will preserve thee . . . the cause of the Redeemer would be dear to the heart of God, and He would preserve the Servant and the cause from being destroyed on the Earth.
And give thee for a covenant of the people . . . the people no doubt refers mainly to the Jews, the better portion of the Israelite people, or maybe the True Israel (Rom.2:28-29). To the Jews, Christ the Messiah, was first sent, and His own personal work was with them (vs.6). The following verse also tells us that Christ is a covenant of the people. Isaiah 42:6 I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles; (KJV) Christ is also the Mediator and Surety of that covenant (Heb.7:22; 8:6), which is made between the LORD and the people to renew and confirm the covenant, which the Messiah is said to do (Dan.9:27), by His own precious Blood (1 Pet.1:18-19), by which God and men are reconciled and united one to the other (Rom.3:24-26; 5:1-2, 9, 18).
To establish the earth . . . to compose and settle the inhabitants, by making peace between God and men, and between Jews and Gentiles, and by establishing Truth, righteousness and holiness upon Earth, and by the lessening of lusts and passions which are the worst trouble-makers to human society; which was the plan of God in sending His Son (Jn.3:16), and of Christ agreeing to come into the world to pay a price He did NOT owe, because we had a debt which we could not pay. He would accomplish and recover the True Israel (Rom.2:28-29), from the devastating effects of sin (Jn.3:18, 36; 8:24; 14:6; Acts 4:12; Rev.20:15), and would establish the church on a firm foundation (1 Cor.3:10-15). You do NOT want to be condemned to Hell: ( Mat.8:12; 13:41-42, 50; 22:13; 25:30, 41-46; Mk.9:43; Lk.16:23-24; 2 Pet.2:4, 17; Jude 1:6-7, 13; Rev.9:2; 16:10; 19:20; 20:10, 14-15; 21:8). See more on Hell in Special Comments at the end of this chapter.
To cause to inherit the desolate heritages . . . that deserted places may be repossessed and repaired, and that Christ may possess the heathen (Ps.2:8), who were in a spiritual sense in a most desolate and forlorn condition.
*****God heard the prayer of Christ, and He Whom the nation of Israel crucified (Mk.15:6-15), He will be the same One, in the last days, before whom kings will bow (vs.23), and every knee shall bow and acknowledge Him as Lord (Isa.45:23; Rom.14:11; Phil.2:10). In the last days, there shall be a Judgment Day, in which all who have ever lived shall stand. We all must consider this great truth, and live accordingly. Do YOU believe that Christ Jesus is the LORD?
He that believeth not, BEWARE: (Mk.16:16; Jn.3:18, 36; Heb.2:3; 12:25; 1 Jn.5:10).
See more on Hell in Special Comments at the end of this chapter.
Isaiah 49:9 That thou mayest say to the prisoners, Go forth; to them that are in darkness, Shew yourselves. They shall feed in the ways, and their pastures shall be in all high places. (KJV)
That thou mayest say to the prisoners, Go forth . . . with power and success, as when God said, Let there be light (Gen.1:3). God's covenant people, while not converted, are prisoner, in the prison of sin, and are totally under the power and rule of it, and under the guilt of sin, and are required to pay the punishment for it, eternal death in Hell (Jn.3:18, 36). They are in the prison of the law, they are transgressors of it, and are accused and convicted by it, and are condemned. They are also Satan's prisoners, and are held and led captive by him at his will, but by virtue of the Covenant, and the precious Blood of it, these prisoners are set free. Christ in the Gospel speaks to them, and proclaims liberty to them; and by the knowledge of the Truth they are made free, and are brought into the liberty of the children of God ; and are bid to go forth, and they are brought forth from their prison houses; and bid to go to the house of God, and walk at liberty (Isa.61:1; Jer.34:8; Gal.5:1, 13; Jam.1:25), enjoying all the privileges and rules of the Gospel. To the prisoners; to the Gentiles, who are fast bound by the cords of their sins, and taken captive by the devil at his will, as this same phrase is understood (Isa.42:7).
To them that are in darknes, Shew yourselvess . . . is the same as being prisoners, as prisoners are usually confined in dark cells. They are in a state of nature and unregeneracy, which is a state of unfaithfulness and ignorance; when men are in the dark, and do not know that they are in a lost state and condition; nor are aware of the exceeding sinfulness of sin; they do not know Christ, and the way of salvation by Him.
Our punishment was paid in full when Christ died on the cross, IF you believe in His Work: (Rom.4:25; 2 Cor.5:21; Eph.1:7; Col.2:13-14; Heb.9:22;10:4; 1 Jn.1:7)
The wages of sin is eternal death: (Gen.2:17; Isa.3:11; Eze.18:4, 20; Jn.3:36; Rom.5:12; 6:23; 1 Cor.6:9-10; Gal.6:7-8; Jam.1:15; Rev. 20:15; 21:8)
Shew yourselves . . . reveal yourselves, as those who come out of a dark cell come into light, so do you, who have been confined in the darkness of sin, come forth into the light of the Sun of righteousness (Mal.4:2), and be shown as the redeemed.
They shall feed in the ways. . . in the rest of this verse, and in the following verses, the Messiah is represented under the image of a Shepherd, who leads forth His flock to green fields, and who takes care that they shall be guarded from the heat of the sun, and shall not hunger nor thirst. They shall feed in the ways, probably means that in the way in which He led them, they would have abundant food and water. They would not be forced to seek for pasture in distant places (Ps.23). It simply means that the LORD would provide for the needs of His people, even when passing through a desert, and that He would open before them unexpected sources of supply as He did when Israel leaving Egypt (Ex.17:6; Deut.8:15; 20:8-11; Neh.9:15,20; Ps.78:15-16, 20; Isa.48:21).
And their pastures shall be in all high places . . . Go forth; come forth to the light, receive Divine illumination and consolation.
They shall feed in the ways, and their pastures shall be in all high places . . . they shall have abundant provision in all places, even in those which commonly are barren and unfruitful. The idea here is, that in the ways or paths that were commonly traveled, and where all vegetation would be consumed or trodden down by the caravans, and on the hills that were usually barren and desolate, they would find abundance. This is an image that we often have in Isaiah, and the meaning may be, that to His people the Redeemer would open unexpected sources of comfort and joy; and in places where they would hardly think to look for a supply of their spiritual needs, He would suddenly meet and satisfy them. Green grass for flocks and herds would suddenly spring up in down-trodden places, or luxuriant vegetation would burst forth on barren, rocky and deserted hills.
*****The Redeemer shall free the souls of men from the bondage of guilt and corruption and bring them into the glorious liberty of God's children. He shall say to the prisoners that were bound under the power of Satan, Go forth. Pardoning mercy is an outstanding release from the curse of the law (Gal.3:13), and renewing grace is a wonderful release from the power of sin. Both liberty and mercy are from Christ, and are parts of the great salvation He offers. It is He that says, Go forth; it is the Son of God (Jn.3:16) that makes us free, and then we are free indeed (Jn.8:36). He tells those that are in darkness, Show yourselves; not only to see, but to be seen, to the glory of God and their own comfort. When we see the light, we must let our light shine.
The Redeemer shall provide for the comfortable passage of all those whom He sets free to the place of their rest and happy settlement (vs.9-11). These verses refer to the provision made for the Jews' return out of their captivity, who were taken under the particular care of the divine Providence, as favorites of Heaven, and now are so in a special way; and they can apply for the guidance of divine grace to all God's spiritual Israel (Rom.2:28-29).
Isaiah 49:10 They shall not hunger nor thirst; neither shall the heat nor sun smite them: for he that hath mercy on them shall lead them, even by the springs of water shall he guide them. (KJV)
They shall not hunger nor thirst . . . ALL their needs shall be provided for abundantly, just as a shepherd provides for his flock. It means that the Messiah as a Shepherd shall abundantly satisfy all the needs of His people; and it may with as much correctness be applied to the joys of Heaven, as to the happiness which they will experience on Earth. Their longing desires for holiness and salvation; and their hungering and thirsting after righteousness (Mat.5:6), shall be abundantly satisfied. They shall be supplied with all good and necessary things, and kept from all evil occurrences.
Neither shall the heat nor sun smite them . . . Rev. 7:16 They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. (KJV) . . . The burning heat of the sun shall not oppress them . . . an image of refreshment, protection and joy, as when the traveler in burning sands of the desert finds the grateful shade of a rock or of a grove (Isa.4:6; 14:3; 25:4; 32:2). Heat properly means high temperatures, hot, burning sands and the heated vapor which in burning deserts produces the spectacle of the mirage (illusion). I think that here it means intense heat; and means that they shall not be exposed to any suffering like that of the intense heat of the burning sun reflected from sandy wastes.
For he that hath mercy on them . . . God, our Saviour who redeemed them shall be their Shepherd and their Guide, and they shall have nothing to fear.
Even by the springs of water shall he guide them . . . Rev. 7:17 For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes. (KJV) . . . The symbol in this verse is taken from the character of a faithful shepherd who leads his flock to places where they may feed in plenty; who guards them from the intense heat of a burning sun on sandy plains; and who leads them beside cooling and refreshing streams (Ps. 23:2). It is a beautiful image of the tender care of the Great Shepherd (Heb.13:20) of His people in a world like this . . . a world in its main features, in regard to real comforts, rightly compared to barren hills and pathless burning sands. God who has magnified His mercy to them will conduct them with safety and comfort.
Isaiah 49:11 And I will make all my mountains a way, and my highways shall be exalted. (KJV)
And I will make all my mountains a way . . . I will make all the mountains to be a highway; or an even, level road. He would remove all obstructions from their path. The symbol is taken from the return from Babylon to the land of Palestine, in which God so often promises to make the hills a plain, and the crooked places straight (Isa.40:4).
And my highways shall be exalted . . . the way shall be cast up (Isa.57:14; 62:10), as when a road is made over valleys and gulf (Isa.42:16; 45:2). He will remove all hindrances, and prepare the way for them, by levelling high grounds, and raising low grounds (Isa.40:3-4). Mountains removed: (Ps.46:2-3; Job 9:5; 14:18; 28:9; Isa.40:4; 41:15; Eze.38:20; Hab.3:6; Lk.3:5; Rev.6:14; 16:20).
Isaiah 49:12 Behold, these shall come from far: and, lo, these from the north and from the west; and these from the land of Sinim. (KJV)
Behold, these shall come from far . . . His people shall be called and gathered from the most remote parts of the Earth, referring to the work of gathering and bringing back the Jews, from all parts where they were dispersed, back into their own land. This is thought by some to mean the conversion of the Gentiles, or True Israel (Rom.2:28-29) as well. This fulfills the Promise made to Christ (Isa.49:6-7), that He would be for a Light to the Gentiles, and that kings and princes would rise up and honor Him. The LORD shall Gather Israel: (Deut.30:3-4; Neh.1:9; Ps.106:2-3, 47; 147:2; Isa.11:11-12; 27:12; 43:5; 54:7; 56:8; Jer.29:14; 31:8, 10; 32:37; Eze.11:17; 20:34, 41; 28:25; 34:13; 36:24; 37:21; 39:27-28; Mic.2:12; Zep.3:20; Zec.10:10)
And, lo, these from the north and from the west . . . from the several parts of the world; which is here expressed as many other places.
And from the land of Sinim . . . either of the Sinites, as they are called (Gen.10:17), who dwelt about the wilderness of Sin, which was south of Judea; or of Sin, a famous city of Egypt, called the strength of Egypt, which may be put for all Egypt, and that for all southern parts. And so he here mentions the several quarters of the world, where the Jews were dispersed; the north, which is everywhere named as the chief place of their banishment and dispersion (Jer.16:15; 31:8), and elsewhere; the west, the western countries and islands; and the south.
***** The LORD shall bring all of them together from all parts, that they may return in a body, that they may encourage one another and be the more taken notice of. The Jews were dispersed into several parts of the country of Babylon, as their enemies desired, to prevent any uniting among themselves. But, when God's time shall come to bring them home together, one spirit shall move them all at once, even those that were the greatest distance from each other, and those also that had taken shelter in other countries, and shall meet them in the land of Judah. Some shall come from very far, some from the north, some from the west, some from the land of Sinim. This place of Sinim is mentioned only here, nowhere else in the Bible. Some think it was a province of Babylon, while others think it to be a country belonging to one of the chief cities of Egypt, called Sin (Eze.30:15-16).
This Promise was to have a further accomplishment in the great joining together of converts to the Gospel church, and its full accomplishment shall be in the last days when God's chosen shall come from the east and from the west to sit down with the patriarchs in the kingdom of God (Mat.8:11; 24:31; Eph.1:10, 22; Phil.2:9-10; 2 Thes.2:1).
Isaiah 49:13 Sing, O heavens; and be joyful, O earth; and break forth into singing, O mountains: for the LORD hath comforted his people, and will have mercy upon his afflicted. (KJV)
Sing, O heavens; and be joyful, O earth; and break forth into singing, O mountains . . . sing, because of the glorious Truths stated in the previous verses, that kings should rise up, and princes worship Him; that the Messiah would be for a Light to the Gentiles, and that TRUE religion would be extended to every part of the globe. This is indeed a reason why the heavens and the Earth would have cause to rejoice together. It is common with Isaiah to add a song of praise on the announcement of any great and glorious Truth, and to call on the heavens and the Earth to rejoice together (Isa.12:1-6; 42:10-11; 44:23).
For the LORD hath comforted his people, and will have mercy upon his afflicted . . . God hath now sent that long-desired Consolation of Israel. How God loves us! How wonderful He is!
Creation worships the LORD: (Neh.9:6; Ps.19:1-14; 66:4; 99:5; 104:24; 150:1-6; Isa.29:16; 40:28; 43:21; 55:12; Jer.32:17).
*****Nothing can furnish us with better reason for songs of praise and thanksgiving, than knowing that we can trust and believe the LORD in any and all circumstances! All Creation join with us in songs of joy, for it shares with us in the benefits of redemption. Let there be joy in heaven, and let the angels of God celebrate the praises of the great Redeemer; let the Earth and the mountains, especially the great ones of the Earth, be joyful, and break forth into singing, for the earnest expectation of the creature that waits for the glorious liberty of the children of God (Rom.8:19, 21), shall now be abundantly answered. God's people are the blessings of the world, and therefore let there be universal joy, for God has comforted His people that were in sorrow and He will have mercy on the afflicted because of His compassion, upon His afflicted because of His Covenant.
Isaiah 49:14 But Zion said, The LORD hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me. (KJV)
But Zion said, The LORD hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me . . . Zion (Isa.1:8). This is utter complaining, expressing the deep feeling of the people of God amidst their many calamities, afflictions and trials . . . but . . . it was their sinful disobedience that put them where they were (Ps.78:10; Isa.3:8). This may apply to the exile Jews in Babylon during their long captivity, as if God had forsaken them; or to those who were waiting for the Coming of the Messiah, and who were yearning for the divine intervening position under Him to restore the beauty of Zion, and to extend His Kingdom; for it seemed to them that God had forsaken Zion, and forgotten its interests. The language here suggests a view of the desolations of Jerusalem and Judea, and the long and painful captivity in Babylon; but it seems to me that it is general, and applies to all the people of God, in all times of similar oppression and distress.
*****This is an objection against all these glorious predictions and promises previously mentioned. How can these things be true, when the condition of God's people is now so sad and desperate, as it was when the Jews were captives in Babylon, in which the prophet here supposes them to be.
Isaiah 49:15 Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee. (KJV)
Can a woman forget her sucking child? . . . the intention of this verse is clear. It reveals that the love that the LORD has for His people is much stronger and sincere than that which comes from earthly parents. The love of a mother for her infant child is the strongest attachment in nature. This implies that it was rare for a mother to be unaware of that tie, and for her to forsake the child that she would nourish and love.
That she should not have compassion on the son of her womb?. . . that she would not pity and help it in times of sickness and distress; that she would not see it suffer without any attempt to relieve it, and she would not turn away, and see it die without being consoled and eased.
Yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee . . . natural parents would sooner forget their child than God will forget His afflicted and suffering people. They may forget, implies that such a thing could happen. In heathen lands, strong as is the instinct which binds a mother to her offspring is, it was not uncommon for a mother to expose her infant child, and to leave it to die (Rom.1:31; 2 Tim.3:3).
*****Earthly parents can at times be unnatural and unfeeling; but we will never have to wonder if the LORD is worthy of such things, for He will always remember His people, and He will bring them out of Babylon, and which is much greater, He shall send His Son into the world to work out eternal redemption for them.
Isaiah 49:16 Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands; thy walls are continually before me. (KJV)
Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands . . . this is another argument in answer to the complaint of Zion in verse 14. There have been many interpretations of this Passage. Some think it refers to a custom of placing some mark or sign on the hand, or on one of the fingers when they wished to remember anything. Another supposes that it is a reference to some practice common among the Jews at that time, of making marks on their hands or arms by means of punctures in the skin with some sign or representation of the city or temple, to show their zeal and affection for it (Lev.19:28; 21:5). Still others think it refers to those who mark themselves with what are called the signs of Jerusalem. It seems that God had laid out the plan for Jerusalem long before it was built, and that it was so near and dear to Him that He had even engraved it on His Hands. Zion was so dear to the Heart of God; that he had sketched or described it as an object in which He felt a deep interest . . . so deep that He even set its outlines on the Palms of His Hands, where it would constantly be before Him.
Thy walls are continually before me . . . the meaning is, that He constantly looked upon them, He never forgot them. He had a constant and holy regard for His people, and amidst all their disasters and trials, He never forgot them. Thy walls are the walls of Jerusalem, which are now broken down, that He would repair them when the set time came and then proceed to do far greater things for them.
*****Verses 14-16 is beautiful assurance that God gives His people that they are not forsaken by Him! Israel may forsake Him . . . as they (and we) are still doing today . . . but God will NEVER forsake them (or us). Dear one, IF you still have any doubts that God will restore Israel, I ask you to read this section very carefully once more. The LORD will NEVER forsake Israel (or us) on a permanent basis! Israel is here to stay. Jeremiah 31:35-37 Thus saith the LORD, which giveth the sun for a light by day, and the ordinances of the moon and of the stars for a light by night, which divideth the sea when the waves thereof roar; The LORD of hosts is his name: 36 If those ordinances depart from before me, saith the LORD, then the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before me for ever. 37 Thus saith the LORD; If heaven above can be measured, and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I will also cast off all the seed of Israel for all that they have done, saith the LORD. (KJV) . . . This will NEVER happen!
Isaiah 49:17 Thy children shall make haste; thy destroyers and they that made thee waste shall go forth of thee. (KJV)
Thy children shall make haste . . . the children, Israel (vs.20-21), or, as others render it, thy builders. Shall make haste, to rebuild your forsaken capital. They that destroyed thee shall hurry to rebuild thee. For her children were her builders, as we read in Ezra and Nehemiah (Ezra 4:12; 5:8; Neh.3:1-32; 4:6; 6:15; 7:1)
Thy destroyers and they that made thee waste shall go forth of thee . . . shall go forth; your destroyers shall leave Judea to Israel. Language is drawn from the destruction of Jerusalem. The sense is, that they would no longer seek to keep possession, but would permit its former inhabitants to return, and engage in repairing its ruins. Those who will rebuild are coming soon, and those who destroyed you will leave.
Restoration of the Church (18-21)
Isaiah 49:18 Lift up thine eyes round about, and behold: all these gather themselves together, and come to thee. As I live, saith the LORD, thou shalt surely clothe thee with them all, as with an ornament, and bind them on thee, as a bride doeth. (KJV)
Lift up thine eyes round about . . . and see your ruined city rise again in its former beauty; see the Gentiles come and yield themselves to the worship of the true God; see kings and princes approach and do thee homage.
And behold: all these gather themselves and come to thee . . . gather from a far country, from the north, the west, and the south (vs.12). All these, the Gentiles, as appears from what has already been said, and from what follows. The sense is, the church shall not only be restored and established in Jerusalem, but it shall be infinitely enlarged and adorned by the addition of the Gentiles to it. Come to thee, to receive instruction and to be incorporated into one and the same church.
As I live, saith the Lord . . . this was the customary form of an oath when Almighty God states it. It is solemn assurance that the event shall certainly happen just as He is the TRUE and only God. As I live: (Isa.45:23; Jer.22:24; Eze.5:11; 14:16, 18, 20; 16:48).
Thou shalt surely clothe thee with them all, as a bride doeth . . . Zion is often compared to a bride (Isa.54:5; Jer.3:14; Hos.2:19-20), so the progress of converts is like bridal ornaments, jewels (Isa.62:3-4; Mal.3:17). Behold, look what is happening! His people are gathering, they are coming home! The LORD would be proud of His people, as proud as a bride is of her jewels.
*****It was said in verse 17, that her children should make haste; those words are here enlarged upon, and are made very encouraging. It is promised: #1. That multitudes would flock to the church from all parts of the Earth (vs.12). Look round, and see how they gather themselves to Zion (vs.18), by a local agreement to the Jewish church. They come to Jerusalem from all the neighboring countries, for that was then the center of their unity; but, under the Gospel, it is by a spiritual accession to the spiritual Body of Christ in faith and love. Those that come to Jesus as the Mediator of the new covenant (Jer.31:31; Heb.8:8, 13; 12:22-24), come to Mount Zion, the church of the first-born (Heb.12:23). Lift up thy eyes, and behold how the fields are white unto the harvest (Jn.4:35). It is indeed a matter of great joy to the church to see a multitude of converts to Christ. #2. Those that are added to the church shall not be a burden nor blemish to her, but will be her strength and ornament. This part of the Promise is confirmed with an oath:
As I live, saith the LORD, thou shalt surely clothe thee with them all. The addition of such numbers to the church shall complete her clothing; and, when all that were chosen are effectively called, then the bride, the Lamb's wife, shall have made herself ready, and she must be properly dressed (Jn.1:12-13; 3:3-8; 2 Cor.11:2; Eph.1:4; 5:25-27; Col.1:22, 28; 1 Thes.5:23; 1 Pet.1:18-19; 2 Pet.3:14; Rev.19:7). When those that are added to the church are honest, serious, holy, and loving and honorable in their lifestyle, they are an ornament, a jewel to the church. Jerusalem, Zion, in the last days: (Isa.3:3; 8:18; 40:9; 46:13; 51:3, 11; 52:7; 59:20; 60:14; Jer.31:10-16; 33:10-11; 50:5; Joel 2:1, 15, 32; Joel 3:16-17; Zep.3:16; Rev.5:9-13; 7:9-10; 14:1-4; 19:1-7).
Isaiah 49:19 For thy waste and thy desolate places, and the land of thy destruction, shall even now be too narrow by reason of the inhabitants, and they that swallowed thee up shall be far away. (KJV)
For thy waste and thy desolate places . . . their own land, which was now waste and deserted, and where many parts formerly lay waste and desolate for lack of people to possess and manage them.
And the land of thy destruction . . . the land laid in ruins, here the sense is, that their entire country had been so laid waste that it was a land of hopelessness.
Shall even now be too narrow by reason of the inhabitants . . . shall now be too small to contain all who shall become converted to the TRUE God. The territory of Palestine would not be capable of housing all who would accept the TRUE God, and who would be considered as His friends (Jn.15:14-15).
And they that swallowed thee up shall be far away . . . the enemies that laid waste to the land, and removed the people to a distant land, all shall be gone, and the land shall once again shine in loveliness and prosperity.
***** The country which was waste and deserted, and without inhabitants (Isa.5:9; 6:11), shall once again be again inhabited, in fact, it shall be over-populated (vs.19). The waste and desolate places that have long laid so, and the land of destruction, the land which was destroyed with them and which nobody cared to dwell in, shall now be so full of people that there would not be enough room for the inhabitants. Thus the Kingdom of God among men, which had been so impoverished and almost depopulated, partly by the corruptions of the Jewish church and partly by the abominations of the Gentile world, was again populated and enriched by the setting up of the Christian church, and by its graces and glories.
Isaiah 49:20 The children which thou shalt have, after thou hast lost the other, shall say again in thine ears, The place is too strait for me: give place to me that I may dwell. (KJV)
The children which thou shalt have . . . the increase of the population shall be great.
After thou hast lost the other . . . the sons of thy widowhood, meaning after they had lost those that had been killed in the wars, and those that have died in captivity in a distant land, there would be a great increase again as if they were given to a widowed mother. And possibly the general truth is taught here, that the persecution of the people of God will be attended ultimately with a vast increase; and that all the attempts to obliterate the church will only tend to finally enlarge and strengthen it.
Shall say again in thy ears . . . or, shall say to thee.
The place is too strait for me . . . there is not room for us all. This means an enormous joining to the TRUE church of God. It reveals such an increase as took place when the Gospel was proclaimed by the apostles to the Gentiles, and of such an increase as shall much more abundantly take place when the whole world shall become converted to God.
***** The new converts shall wondrously increase and multiply. Jerusalem, after she had lost such large numbers of her children by the sword, famine and captivity, shall have a new family growing up instead of them, children which she shall have after she has lost the other (vs.20), as Seth, who was appointed another seed instead of Abel (Gen.4:25), and Job's children, which God blessed him with instead of those that were killed in the ruins of the house (Job.42:12-13). God will most certainly repair His church's losses and secure to Himself a seed to serve Him in it (Gal.3:26-29). It is promised to the Jews, after their return, that Jerusalem shall be full of boys and girls playing in the streets (Zec.8:5). The church, after it had lost the Jews, who will be cut off by their own infidelity, shall have abundance of children still, more than she had when the Jews belonged to her (Gal.4:27). They shall be so numerous that, #1. They shall complain for lack of room; they shall say, Our numbers increase so fast that the place is too strait for us; as the sons of the prophets complained (2 Ki.6:1), still strait as the place is, still more shall desire to be admitted, and the church shall gladly admit them, and the inconvenient straitness of the place shall not be a hindrance to them, for it will be found, that even when the poor and the maimed, the halt and the blind, are brought in, there still is room, room enough for those that are in and room for more (Lk.14:21-22).
Isaiah 49:21 Then shalt thou say in thine heart, Who hath begotten me these, seeing I have lost my children, and am desolate, a captive, and removing to and fro? and who hath brought up these? Behold, I was left alone; these, where had they been? (KJV)
Then shalt thou say in thine heart . . . then shalt thou say, with great admiration, you shall wonder at the multitude, and shalt ask with astonishment from where they all come. This verse is designed to describe the great increase of the TRUE people of God under the image of a mother who had been deprived of her children, who should suddenly see herself surrounded with more than had been lost, and should ask in astonishment from where they all came.
Who hath begotten me these . . . the idea here is, that the increase would be from other nations. They would not be the natural increase of Zion or Jerusalem, but they would come in from abroad . . . as if a family that had been bereaved should be increased by an addition from other families.
Seeing I have lost my children . . . Jerusalem had been desolated by wars, and had become like a widow that was mourning all her sons (Isa 47:8-9).
And am desolate, a captive, and removing to and fro? . . . a captive in Babylon, and forced to wander from my own land, and to live in a strange and distant country.
And who hath brought up these? Behold, I was left alone; these, where had they been?. . . the image in this entire verse is one of great beauty; representing a mother who had been suddenly deprived of all her children, who had been made a widow, and was carried as a captive from land to land. She had seen ruin spread all around her, and considered herself totally alone. Suddenly she finds herself restored to her home, and surrounded with a happy family. She sees it increased far beyond its former numbers, and herself blessed with much more than her former prosperity. She looks on all this with surprise on this happening, and asks with wonder from where all these have come, and where had they been. This verse beautifully expresses the agitation of such a state of mind, and of the effect which it would have as the result produced. The idea is clear. Jerusalem had been deserted. Her inhabitants had been carried captive, or had been put to death. But she would be restored, and the church of God would be vastly increased by the addition from the Gentile world, so much that the narrow limits which had been formerly occupied . . . the territory of Palestine, would now be too small for the vast numbers that would be united to those who professed to love and worship the LORD God.
Powerful Deliverance out of Captivity (49:22-26)
Isaiah 49:22 Thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I will lift up mine hand to the Gentiles, and set up my standard to the people: and they shall bring thy sons in their arms, and thy daughters shall be carried upon their shoulders. (KJV)
Thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I will lift up mine hand to the Gentiles . . . to lift up the hand is a sign of beckoning to, or inviting; and the idea here is, that God would call the Gentiles to partake of the blessings of the TRUE religion, and to embrace the Messiah (Isa.11:11).
And set up my standard to the people . . . to the people of other lands or isles, means the Gentiles. A standard, or an ensign (Isa.11:12), was erected in times of war to rally the forces of a nation around it; and the sense here is, that God would erect an ensign high in the sight of all the nations, and would call them to Himself, as a military leader assembles his forces for battle; He would call the nations to embrace the TRUE religion. To the people; unto thee, or to their church and people. Shall bring thy sons; those which shall be thine, if not by natural generation, yet by adoption, that shall own God for their Father, and Jerusalem for their mother.
And they shall bring thy sons in their arms . . . in their arms, or bosom, with great care and tenderness, as nurses carry young infants. The sense is, the heathen shall contribute to the increase and preservation of those children which shall be begotten to thee.
And thy daughters shall be carried upon their shoulders . . .referring, no doubt to the manner in which children were carried upon the sides, referring to the custom still prevailing in the East, of placing a child when it is nursed astride on the side of the mother (Isa.66:12). The sense is, that converts would come from every land, the nations would flock to the standard of the Messiah. And it may also be considered, that those who come would bring their children with them.
*****God assures Israel that the Gentiles will assist Him in the final restoration of the nation to the land. Since it was the Gentiles that has scattered them, it shall be the Gentiles which would help to restore them. This makes this a rather remarkable prophecy even for today. Great Britain did open the land for the Jews . . . BUT it was Great Britain that issued the order which forbade them to enter their land, and they have been hindered in some way ever since that time. Continuous persecution has pushed them out of other countries, and they are subjects to much anti-Semitic oppression. But, in the last days, the LORD will bring them back into their land, and He will use Gentiles to help in moving them back!
Isaiah 49:23 And kings shall be thy nursing fathers, and their queens thy nursing mothers: they shall bow down to thee with their face toward the earth, and lick up the dust of thy feet; and thou shalt know that I am the LORD: for they shall not be ashamed that wait for me. (KJV)
And kings shall be thy nursing fathers, and their queens thy nursing mothers . . . kings and queens shall have a sincere affection and tender regard to them and their children, which was in some way fulfilled by Cyrus, Ahasuerus, and some few others of the Persian kings or queens (Isa.41:2,13,25l; 45:1; Jer.50:3,35; 51:11,20-24; Dan.5:6,28-30) , but shall much more fully by the kings and emperors of the Gentile world, in the last days, (Ezra 6:7-12; 7:11-28; Neh.2:6-10; Esther Ch.8-10; Ps.2:10-12; 68:31; 72:10-11; 138:4; Isa.49:7; 52:15; 60:3,10-11,16; 62:2; Rev.21:24-26).
They shall bow down to thee with their face toward the earth . . . a posture indicating the deepest and greatest reverence. This is the common posture of showing great respect in the East.
And lick up the dust of thy feet . . . this would be the highest possible respect, adoration and worship for the church and people of God. This would be the same as kissing His Feet!
And thou shalt know that I am the LORD . . . I am the LORD is found 28 times in Isaiah alone, about 275 times in the Old Testament. He IS the One and Only TRUE God!
For they shall not be ashamed that wait for me . . . they who worship Me shall not be ashamed of the act requiring the deepest self-abasement, to show their reverence for Me. Even those of highest rank shall be willing to humble themselves with the profoundest expressions of adoration. They shall not be ashamed that wait for me, for their hopes and expectations shall not be disappointed, but abundantly satisfied.
Isaiah 49:24 Shall the prey be taken from the mighty, or the lawful captive delivered? (KJV)
Shall the prey be taken from the mighty . . . this seems to be the language of Zion. It is not exactly the language of doubt but rather one of amazement and wonder. God had made great Promises. He promised a restoration of the captive Jews to their own land, and of their complete deliverance from the power of the Chaldeans. He still further promised that the blessings of the TRUE religion would be extended to the Gentiles, and that kings and queens would come and show the deepest adoration for God and for His cause. With the amazement and wonder at the greatness of these Promises, difficulties arise . . . Zion asks here how can it be accomplished? HOW can God's church be delivered, when she is a prey and is in the hands of her most potent enemies?
Or the lawful captive delivered . . . he who was taken captive in a just war, as God's people might well be said to be, because God Himself had delivered them into their enemy's hands, and that rightly for their sins. The indication is, that it was difficult or almost impossible to rescue captives from such hands, and so it was a matter of wonder and amazement that such a thing could be accomplished which God here promises to do.
Isaiah 49:25 But thus saith the LORD, Even the captives of the mighty shall be taken away, and the prey of the terrible shall be delivered: for I will contend with him that contendeth with thee, and I will save thy children. (KJV)
But thus saith the Lord . . . the meaning of this verse is, that however difficult or impracticable this might seem to be, yet it would be done. The captives taken by the terrible and the mighty would be rescued, and would be restored to their own land.
Even the captives of the mighty shall be taken away . . . the captivity of the mighty, that which could not have been rescued by any ordinary means. The language here refers no doubt to Babylon, and to the captivity of the Jews there.
The prey of the terrible . . . prey is victims of a cruel, demanding nation, that never showed compassion; in the verse 24 described as unwilling to consider mercy.
For I will contend with him . . . the LORD will punish the nation that has inflicted these wrongs on Israel, and will rescue them from bondage. The prey of the terrible which is opposed to the lawful captive in verse 24, and it is hereby suggested that although God was fair and right to deliver them into captivity, yet their oppressors were guilty of injustice and violence, both in desiring and trying to keep them in continuous bondage beyond the 70 years which God had fixed, and in their cruel usage of them. I will contend; Almighty God will take on their quarrel and this work, and therefore it must necessarily be accomplished. The LORD may temporarily detour judgment on a guilty nation, but in the end . . . the detour will bring Him right back to the main road. NO guilty person or nation, shall escape Judgment of the LORD!
Isaiah 49:26 And I will feed them that oppress thee with their own flesh; and they shall be drunken with their own blood, as with sweet wine: and all flesh shall know that I the LORD am thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob. (KJV)
And I will feed them that oppress thee with their own flesh . . . I will make them eat their own flesh, either through hunger (Lev.26:26-29; Isa.9:20; Jer.19:9; Lam.4:10), or through rage and madness. Or, I will make your enemies to destroy one another, and that greedily and with delight, as the next clause implies. All their enemies are here represented as one body; and so when one part of them devoured another, it was their own flesh that was destroyed. Their rage shall be so excited against each other; there shall be chaos, internal discord, and the desire of mutual revenge. They shall destroy themselves by mutual conflicts, until they are gorged with slaughter, and drunk with blood.
And they shall be drunken with their own blood . . . a similar expression occurs in: Rev. 16:6 For they have shed the blood of saints and prophets, and thou hast given them blood to drink; for they are worthy. (KJV) . . . This expression describes a state of internal strife, where blood would be freely shed, and where it would be, as it were, the drink of those who were contending with each other. Some suppose that it refers to the conflicts between the Persians and the Medes, and those of the Medes and Persians with the Babylonians. Another thinks it received its fulfillment in the contests which took place in the Roman empire, particularly during the reign of Diocletian, when so many rivals contended for the sovereignty. I think it is foolish to try place this to any single conflict, or state of anarchy, for the language is general; and it may mean that God would guard and protect His people; and that in doing this, He would fill His enemies with confusion, and allow them to be torn and distracted with internal strife; and in the middle of all their strife, and by means of them, He would secure and deliver safely His own people. It seems to me that this also refers to the last days in the Great Tribulation.
As with sweet wine . . . or new wine (Joel 1:5; 3:18; Amos 9:13-14). New wine was the pure juice which first ran after the grapes had been pressed. The ancients had the art of preserving this for a long time, so that it retained its special flavor, and were in the habit of drinking it in the morning. The intoxicating property was very slight, if at all; some suppose that it was the kind meant here. It could be that there may be a reference here to the fact that it required a large amount of the new wine to produce drunkenness, and that the idea here is that a large quantity of blood would be shed.
And all flesh shall know that I the LORD am thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob . . . see (Rev.19:16-18), it shall be known to all the world, that the LORD, is the KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS. He is the LORD of the whole earth, He is the Saviour and Redeemer of His church and His people out of all their afflictions, all their oppressions and all their persecutions by the monstrous Roman Antichrist in the last days. All this shall be actually seen, and publicly owned and acknowledged, when Antichrist shall be destroyed (Rev.20:10), and the church saved, by which it will be clear, that it is the LORD'S work, and amazing and wondrous in the eyes of men, that He is the mighty One of Jacob, able to help and save them.
*****An objection started against the Promise of the Jews' release out of their captivity in Babylon, suggesting that it was not to be expected (vs.24); for they were a prey (victim) in the hands of the mighty, of such as were then the greatest monarchs on Earth, and therefore it was not likely they would be rescued. But that was not all: they were lawful captives, by the law of God, and having offended Him, they were rightly delivered into captivity. By the law of nations, being taken in war, they were rightly held in captivity until they would be ransomed or exchanged, and this is spoken either:
#1. By the enemies, as justifying themselves in their refusal to let them go. They plead both might and right. Proud and vain men think that all that they can lay their hands on, they own, and their deed or title is good because they have the greater power. Or,
#2. By their friends, either in a way of distrust and being hopeless of the deliverance, for who is able to deal with those that keep us, or in a way of thankfulness, admiring the deliverance. Who would have ever thought that the prey could be taken from the mighty? Yet it is done. This applies to our redemption by Christ. As to Satan, we were indeed a prey in the hand of the mighty, and yet we were delivered even from him that had the power of death (Heb.2:14), by Him that had the power of life (Jn.1:4; 5:40; 6:33, 53, 57; 11:25; 14:6). As to the justice of God, we were without a doubt lawful captives, but delivered by a price of infinite value. See Special Comments at the end of this chapter for what Christ did for us!
Christ Jesus, the Messiah: The True Israel
Israel’s prophets clearly see a time when Israel will be restored to its former greatness. Will Israel’s restoration to its former glory and status with God, mirror the days of the kingdom . . . OR will the kingdom show us to the King? (Rev.19:16).
Such a prophetic vision as this, includes not only the nation, but the land of Canaan, the Holy City of Jerusalem, the throne of David, and the Temple of God in Jerusalem. Since the nation had been divided and the people were carried off into captivity in Babylon about 500 years before the First Coming of Jesus, the magnificent Temple had been destroyed and the Aaronic priesthood gone, such prophetic expectation connected to Israel’s future quite naturally spoke of a reversal of fortune and the undoing of calamity which had come upon the nation.
Isaiah 41:8-9 But thou, Israel, art my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham my friend. 9 Thou whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, and called thee from the chief men thereof, and said unto thee, Thou art my servant; I have chosen thee, and not cast thee away. (KJV)
Isaiah 42:1-7 Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles. 2 He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street. 3 A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth. 4 He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law. 5 Thus saith God the LORD, he that created the heavens, and stretched them out; he that spread forth the earth, and that which cometh out of it; he that giveth breath unto the people upon it, and spirit to them that walk therein: 6 I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles; 7 To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house. (KJV) . . . Emphasis mine.
Isaiah continues to speak of this servant in:
Isaiah 44:1-2 Yet now hear, O Jacob my servant; and Israel, whom I have chosen: 2 Thus saith the LORD that made thee, and formed thee from the womb, which will help thee; Fear not, O Jacob, my servant; and thou, Jesurun, whom I have chosen. (KJV)
Isaiah 45:4 For Jacob my servant's sake, and Israel mine elect, I have even called thee by thy name: I have surnamed thee, though thou hast not known me. (KJV)
Some people are most likely to interpret such Passages literally, thereby assign the fulfillment of these prophecies of Isaiah, only to a future earthly millennium in which Israel co-exists with Gentiles under the reign of the Davidic King. In effect, this amounts to the restoration of the kingdom . . . as Jesus takes His place on David's royal throne and rules the nations from this restored Israel. BUT . . . is this how the New Testament interprets these Messianic prophecies regarding the Servant of the Lord? WHO is this servant of the Lord? It is the nation of Israel, or is it Jesus, Israel’s Messiah?
To answer this question correctly, we must understand that the Gospel writers interpret these prophecies from Isaiah as fulfilled in the Messianic Mission of Jesus. Matthew 12:15-21, tells us that when Jesus withdrew from the crowds who had followed Him, Matthew states that this event fulfilled what had been spoken in Isaiah the prophet (Isa.53:11) This past event serves to prove that Jesus IS the TRUE Servant of the LORD.
Jesus cast out demons and healed the sick, Matthew saw in this the fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecies of a Suffering Servant who would take upon Himself our infirmities and carry our diseases (Matthew 8:17 with Isaiah 53:4).
Luke speaks of both Israel (Lk.1:54) and David as the servant of God (Lk.1:69). Yet in Acts, Luke without doubt speaks of Jesus as the Servant of God (Acts 3:13). After His crucifixion, God raised up Jesus from the dead so that people everywhere might be called to repentance (Acts 3:26).
When the Ethiopian eunuch reads from Isaiah 53:7-12, he asks Philip about whom this prophecy refers, Luke tells us that Philip informed the Ethiopian that this Passage refered to Jesus (Acts 8:34-35).
Hosea 11:1 When Israel was a child, then I loved him, and called my son out of Egypt. (KJV)
Matthew 2:15 And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son. (KJV) . . . Matthew tells us that Hosea’s prophecy was fulfilled when His parents took Jesus to Egypt to protect him from Herod’s slaughter of the innocents (Mat.2:3-18). But after Herod died, God called Jesus and His family back to Nazareth. Matthew takes a Passage from Hosea, which clearly refers to Israel, and tells us that this Passage is now fulfilled in Christ Jesus! He does this to prove to his mostly Jewish audience that Jesus is the Servant of the Lord, foretold all throughout the Old Testament, and especially in the Book of Isaiah.
I believe that Christ Jesus is the TRUE Servant, the TRUE Son of God and the TRUE Israel of God. Let us remember that it was Isaiah who spoke of Israel and the descendants of Abraham as the people of God. It was through the seed of Abraham that the nations of the earth would be blessed (Gen.12:1-3). It seems to me that JESUS is the TRUE Israel, for He IS the TRUE Seed of Abraham.
Christ Jesus Suffering And Dying To Redeem Us: (Isa.53:8, 12; Dan.9:26; Mat.16:21; 17:23; 21:39; 26:42; 27:50; Mk.8:31; 9:31; 10:45; 12:8; 14:1; 15:37; Lk.9:22,31; 23:46; Jn.10:11; 11:51; 12:23-24;33; 19:30; Acts 8:33; 10:39; Rom.4:25; 5:6; 8:34; 14:9,15; 1 Cor.11:26; 15:3; 2 Cor.4:10; 5:15; Gal.3:1; Phil.2:8; Col.1:22; 1 Thes,5:10; Heb.2:9; 7:27; 9:15; 10:10; 12:2; 1 Pet.3:18; 1 Jn.3:16; Rev.2:8; 5:6,9,12).
Offering Himself As A Sacrifice, For Us: (Isa.53:4; Mat.20:28; 27:42; Mk.10:45; Lk.22:19; Jn.1:29; 6:51; 10:11,15,17; 11:50;15:13; 18:14; Rom.5:8; 1 Cor.5:7; 8:11; 2 Cor.5:15; 8:9; Gal.1:4; 2:20; Eph.5:2,25; 1 Tim.2:6; Tit.2:14; Heb.7:27; 9:14,26; 10:12; 1 Pet.3:18; 1 Jn.3:16; Rev.1:5).
Love Of Christ: (Mk.10:21; Jn.10:11; 11:3; 13:1, 34; 14:21; 15:9,13; 19:26; 20:2; Rom.5:7; 8:35-38; 2 Cor.5:14; Gal.2:20; Eph.3:19; 5:2,25; 1 Tim.1:14).
Characteristics of Jesus in the New Testament
Characteristics of Jesus in the New Testament
• Love enables us to build up and meet the needs of others without expecting anything in return.
(Jn.10:11, 15; 13:1; 15:13; Rom.5:6-8; Eph.5:2; 1 Jn.4:7-11)
• Joy allows us to appreciate God’s love and support even when our circumstances are trying and dismal. We can have joy, even when we are not happy. (Jn.15:11; 16:24, 33; 17:13; Rom.15:13; 2 Cor.1:24; Eph.5:18; Phil.1:25; 1 Thes.5:16; 1 Pet.1:8; 2 Jn.1:12)
• Peace can happen only when we surrender and yield to the Lord’s control, for He is our ultimate peace! (Jn.14:27; 16:33; 20:19, 21, 26; Col.3:15; Phil.4:7)
• Patience is being tolerant and courageous, and accepting difficult situations without making demands and conditions. (Mat.27:14; Rom.12:12; 2 Cor.6:6; Gal.5:22; Eph.4:2; Col.1:11; 3:12;2 Tim.3:10; 4:2; Jam.1:3,12)
• Kindness is practicing compassion and a loving attitude towards others. (Lk.6:35; 1 Co.13:4; 2 Cor.6:6; Col.3:12-13; 2 Pet.1:7)
• Goodness reveals compassion, honesty and reliability to others (Mat.19:16; Rom.11:22; 15:14; Gal.5:22; Eph.5:9)
• Faithfulness is standing firm in your belief and trust in the Lord (1 Thes.5:24; 2 Thes.3:3; 2 Tim.2:13; Heb.2:17; 3:2; 10:23; Rev.1:5; 19:11)
• Gentleness reveals calmness, compassion and tenderness to others (Lk.18:16; 1 Thes.2:7; 1 Tim.3:3; 2 Tim.2:24; Tit.3:2; Jam.3:17)
• Self-Control allows us to restrain ourselves in any circumstance (Rom.6:12; 1 Thes.5:22; Tit.1:8; Jam.1:19; 1 Pet.4:4; 2 Pet.5-7)
Love vs hate. Peace vs variance. Joy vs strife. Longsuffering (patience) vs quick temper, wrath. Gentleness vs fierce, cruel. Goodness vs evil, immoral. Faith vs doubt, distrust. Meekness vs proud, arrogant. Temperance (self-control) vs no restraint.
• Forgivness is when we realize just how much Christ has forgiven us, which enables us to forgive things that are done to us. (Pro.19:11; Mat.6:14; 18:21-22; Mk.11:25; Lk.6:37; 11:4; 17:4)
• Humility, being humble puts to rest arrogance and removes pride. (Mat.18:4; 23:12; Jam.4:6, 10; 1 Pet.5:5-6)
• Courage is what God has given us, the strength to face any situation, trial or peril. It is the ability to react, knowing that God is in control, that He who is in me is greater than he who is against me (Jn.15:4-5, 7; 2 Cor.3:4-5; Phil.4:13; 1 Jn.4:4)
• Compassion feels the pain and trouble of others (Mat.8:7; 9:19, 36; 12:15; 14:14; 15:32; 18:12; 20:34; 23:37)
• Avoiding anger is knowing how destructive it is, and determined to maintain a cool and serene attitude (Mat.5:22; Gal.5:20-21; Eph.4:26, 31; Col.3:8, 15; Jam.1:19-20)
• Harmless is not willing to deliberately hurt anyone or anything (Mat.10:16; Phil.2:15; Heb.7:26)
• Honest is being truthful and doing what is sincere and right before God and others (Rom.12:17; 2 Cor.8:21; 13:7; Phil.4:8; 1 Pet.2:12)
• Meekness is NOT being weak! Meekness is strength under control, which yields personal rights and expectations to God. (Ps.62:5-6; Isa.53:7; Mat.11:29; 12:19; 21:5; 26:52; 27:31; Jn.18:23; Acts 8:32; 2 Cor.10:1; Jam.5:6; 1 Pet.2:23)
• Mercy is demonstrating more forgiving and gracious kindness than the world requires. (Mat.9:27; 17:15; 18:26, 29; 20:31; Mk.17:13; Lk.6:36; 17:13; 18:13, 38)
• Prompt is not holding others back with our inadequacies; it is respecting the time of others and being able to act quickly when God and others call on us. (Ecc.3:1)
• Prudence is caution by applying good, reasonable and fair judgment to situations that will help in avoiding error and problems (Pro.5:2; 13:6; 16_20; 19:11; Mat.27:19; Mk.12:34; Tit.1:5)
• Security is trust and total reliance upon God for our daily needs. This does NOT mean and depending on the government to support you (2 Thes.3:10). If a person is able to work, he/she should work, for it is a sin to be lazy. Taking money when you well able to work is stealing from those who really need it (Pro.15:19; 21:25; 24:30; 26:16; 1 Thes.3:10). I personally believe that any able-bodied man or woman who live on government money cannot be a TRUE Christian. We are to use Christ Jesus as our model, and He certainly did NOT let the government support Him! (Mat.8:20; Lk.2:7,12,16; 8:3; 2 Cor.8:9).
• Understanding is the ability to reason and comprehend situations. (Mat.15:10; 16:12; 24:15; Mk.12:34; 13:29; Acts 13:7; 1 Cor.14:15; Eph.3:4,18; 5:17; Col.1:9; 2 Tim.2:7; Jam.3:3)
• Virtue is an asset, an advantage, a quality which holds to the principles of moral excellence and calls us to a higher level where few people ever think to go, but as a Christian, we must go (Rom.12:9-10. Gal.5:6, 22-23; Eph.4:2, 32. Phil.2:2-4; Col.3:12-17; 1 Thes.5:15; Jam.3:17-18; 1 Pet.3:8-11; 2 Pet.1:5-8; 1 Jn.3:14-20).
• Zealous means to maintain our passion for our faith and our call, not allowing ourselves to fall into a rut of meaningless pretention (Lk.2:49; Jn.2:17; 8:29; Rom.10:2; 2 Cor.9:2; Col.4:13; Tit.2:14; Rev,3:19)
HOW RIDICULOUS AND PREPOSTEROUS IT IS,
FOR ANYONE TO OPPOSE GOD!
Have You E’er Thought About Hell?
Have you ever, really thought about Hell?
This place, where one day, millions shall dwell?
We should be burden’d, by this horrid place,
Where no one will e’er see, God’s gracious Face!
Have you e’er really thought, about Hell’s fires?
Eternal fires, that will never expire?
Have you e’er thought, these fires have been prepar’d?
For the devil, and all who his evils share?
Have you ever wondered, where can hell be?
This prepared place, for all eternity?
The center of the Earth, is what some think,
Where e’er it is, there’s no water to drink!
Have you e’er thought, about the darkness of Hell?
Deep, scary blackness, where evil ones dwell?
Have you e;er thought, that black too was prepar’d?
And will by all who God condemns, be shar’d?
Have you e’er thought, to Hell I don’t want to go?
This everlasting place, far, far below?
Move off that broad road, to the narrow path,
This will remove you, from God’s holy wrath!
That narrow path of light, will to Heav’n lead!
If to God’s Word, you will only pay heed!
To Heav’n or Hell, just two places to go,
Heav’n’s bliss, or Hell’s eternal sorrow!
CHOOSE THE RIGHT ONE!
His servant, Connie Kramer Sept.17, 2016 #1393
ETERNAL FIRES of HELL: (Deut.32:22; Isa.33:14; Mat.3:12; 5:22; 13:42; 25:41,50; Mk.9:43,45,47; Lk.16:19-31; Jam.3:6; Rev.14:10-11; 20:10-11,14; 21:8).
OUTER DARKNESS: (Mat 8:12; 22:13; 25:30; 2 Thes.1:9 [no God, no light]; 2 Pet.2:4,17; Jude 1:6,13). GOD’S LOVE: (Mat,18:14; 21:37; Mk.12:6; Jn.3:16; 14:21; 16:27; 17:23; Rom.5:5,8; 8:32,38-39; 2 Cor.13:14; Eph.2:4-5; 2 Thes.2:16; Tit.3:4; Heb.12:6; 1 Jn.3:1; 4:9,16,19) GRACE OF GOD: (Rom.1:7; 3:21-26; 5:2,15; 6:14; 15:8-12; 16:20; 1 Cor.1:4; 3:10; 15:10; 2 Cor.1:12,20; 6:1; 8:1; 9:14; 13:14; Gal.2:21; Eph.2:8-9; 3:2,7; Col.1:6; 1 Thes.1:1; 2 Thes.1:12; Tit.2:11;) HEAVEN: (Jn.14:1-6; 1 Pet.1:3-5; Rev.21) PATH of LIGHT: (Ps.119:105; Mat.4:16; 5:14,16; Jn.1:5; 8:12; 12:35; Eph.6:14; Jam.1:17; 1 Pet.2:9; Jn.1:7; Rev.21:23)
My personal thoughts about Hell
We made a trip to Yellowstone a while back. Beautiful country up there! We never did get to see Old Faithful, because the roads were all tore up, being repaired, and neither of us are capable of walking.
There were hot springs everywhere. I want to comment on one thing that we saw . . . that being the boiling water in several places. I took pictures. It actually was scary to say the least! I was amazed. It certainly made us think! That hot water had to come from heat beneath the Earth, a volcano! I searched to find out more on volcanoes. There are volcanoes in every part of the Earth!
Now, considering this fact . . . consider just how many hot springs there are in the world, and then consider how many volcanoes there are all over the world.
What I am trying to get across to you is just how many hot springs and volcanoes there are all over the world. Where are they? Beneath the ground, in the center of the Earth. So . . . what does it look like down there? I would want to say that God tells us in every Passage in the Bible that speaks of Hell and the lake of fire! It is only common sense to think that Hell is in the center of the Earth. And thinking how large the Earth is, it is only common sense to think that Hell will indeed be large enough to house all the wicked of the world. (Isa.5:14; 14:9; 30:33; Pro.27:20; Eze.32:21; Hab.2:5; Mat.7:13; Rev.20:13-15).
PLEASE, SERIOUSLY CONSIDER WHAT THE BIBLE STATES ABOUT HELL!
EVERLASTING FIRE. Matthew 25:41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: [KJV] Jesus' Words.
EVERLASTING BURNINGS. Isaiah 33:14 The sinners in Zion are afraid; fearfulness hath surprised the hypocrites. Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings? [KJV]
A FURNACE OF FIRE. Matthew 13:42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. [KJV] Jesus' Words.
OUTER DARKNESS. Matthew 22:13 Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. [KJV] Jesus' Words.
Matthew 25:30 And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. [KJV] Jesus' Words.
SO . . . how do we reconcile these two things? In reality fire and darkness are opposites! In my mind, they can be reconciled! When we consider just how large this Earth is, and when we consider the center of the Earth, it too is massive. It seems to me that there are many, many caves down there just as there are here on the Earth, and they would indeed be dark, just like the caves here. Anyone who has ever been in a cave, knows just how dark they can be. There is not a bit of light, it is pitch dark, black as can be! On the other hand, there are fires everywhere else down there from the volcanoes. When I think of Hell, this is what comes to my mind.
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (KJV)
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