1-5 - A
AND REGENERATION. This section is closely connected with ch. 43, of
which it ought to form the conclusion. The prophet cannot bear to leave
to “reproaches.” He must end with a brighter prospect. Accordingly, he
holds out, in the present passage, the double hope:
place of the preceding “curse” (Isaiah 43:28); and
in honor, instead of making it the object of their “reproaches.”
vs. 2-3 – “Thus saith the Lord that made thee, and formed thee from the
womb….Jesurun whom I have chosen” - The Lord’s people have their proper
as descendants of the patriarch — the people to whom the promises were
they fought his battles and maintained His cause in the midst of a hostile
world. The third name, “Jeshurun,” which is very rarely used (only here
and in Deuteronomy 32:15; 33:5, 26), designates them as “righteous,”
being a derivative from the root yashar (or joshar), equivalent to
“upright,” and points to that standard of moral excellence which it was
their duty to set forth, and which to some extent they did set forth, in a
world that “lay in wickedness.” Had they been more worthy of the name, it
would probably have been oftener applied to them. “I will pour water upon
him that is thirsty. “Water” is, in Isaiah, the common metaphor for Divine grace.
(Without moisture seed will not germinate, neither can the embryo be formed.
Without grace no spiritual life can exist, there can be no commencement of life!
We may note here that the “water” is only poured on him who is
athirst for it. Thy
seed… thine offspring. Not “
vs. 6-20 - A FURTHER CONTRAST OF GOD WITH IDOLS. The
captive Jews, dwelling scattered in a land the inhabitants of which were,
one and all, idolaters, and having by hereditary taint an inclination to
idolatry, would be easily tempted, during the long and weary period of the
Captivity, to put away the worship and even the thought of Jehovah, who
had allowed their subjugation, and conform to the religion of their
conquerors. Hence the repeated contrasts in these later chapters —
specially addressed to caprice
sharp ridicule of the latter (comp. Isaiah 40:18-25; 41:4-7, 21-29).
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v. 6 –“Thus saith the Lord, the King of
the Lord of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and
beside me there is no God.”
v. 7 - The claim is that, from the first creation of
mankind, God has not only prearranged the
events that should happen, but has declared
them by His prophets
v. 8 - the Omniscient God knows no other God – “ye are even my
witnesses. Is there a God beside me? yea, there is no God;
I know not any”
vs 9-10 - a lot of trouble for nothing
v. 11 - fear and shame - peer groups
v. 13 - To obtain his block, the carpenter must first cut down a
tree, or have one cut down for him (v. 14); to obtain a tree,
he (or some one for him) must have planted it; for the tree to
have grown to a fitting size, the rain must have watered it. So
the very existence of these wooden idols depends ultimately on
whether it has rained or not — i.e., whether God has given his rain
or withheld it.
vs. 15-16 - the wood serving both for fuel & divinity -
for warming himself and cooking his food
v. 18 - The cause of all this folly is a blinding of the
understanding, a Divine punishment for
having wilfully closed the eyes to the Truth!
"For this they willingly are ignorant" - II Peter 3:
Human beings and things are allowed to stand
between us and God - to absorb the attention, the
thought, the affections that are to be to God only!
Beware of a greater desire to be rich on earth than to be
a saint in heaven.
Precious pieces of metal cannot save us from one twinge of
pain in sickness or one pang of remorse in death!
Rank and station, like wealth, belong to this world
only and like the clothes we wear have to be left behind when
we step into the grave!
v. 19 - "shall I fall down to a stock of a tree"
v. 20 - "a deceived heart.....he cannot deliver his
soul....is there not a lie in my right hand?"
An idol is a lie. It professes to have power, strength, ability
to help and save, whereas it has no power at all.
AND THE DELIVERER MENTIONED BY NAME.
exhorted never to forget the impotency of idols (v. 21), is promised
forgiveness and deliverance (vs. 21, 22). Then, heaven and earth are
called upon to join in rejoicing over the announcement (v. 23). Finally, in
a noble burst of poetry, God is represented as solemnly declaring His
intention of frustrating all the false sayings of the soothsayers concerning
His people, and accomplishing their restoration to their own land, and the
rebuilding of their temple through the instrumentality of Cyrus (vs. 24-
vs. 21-23 - notice the "I's" of the Lord's proclamations
"I have formed thee" - the duty of unquestioning
obedience to Him that formed it - it may be assumed
that He who has formed a thing will have a constant
care of it and will not forget it !
“I have blotted out….thy transgressions…return unto me”
“Return unto me” - This is an underlying condition, both of
restoration and of forgiveness. Only the penitent can be received back into
favor. The knowledge, however, that God has, in His counsels,
“redeemed” His people generally, may act as a stimulus on individuals to
repent and turn to Him
Deut. 32:9-11, 33:27
v. 22 - "I have blotted out thy sins....return unto me,
(underlying condition for forgiveness and
restoration) for I have redeemed thee"
v. 23 - "sing O ye heavens for the Lord hath done it..
... break forth into singing, ye mountains, O
forest, and every tree therein for the Lord hath
redeemed Jacob and
glorified Himself in
Compare Isaiah 14:7; 35:2 - As children and birds sing from the very
gladness of their hearts, thereby venting the .joy that almost oppresses
them, so all nature is called upon, not merely to rejoice, but to give vent to
its joy, now that
Contrast the joy in heaven over one sinner that
repents - Luke 15:10
v. 24 – “Thus saith the Lord, thy redeemer, and He that formed thee
from the womb, I am the Lord that maketh all things”
"that stretcheth forth the heavens ALONE; that spreadeth abroad
the earth BY MYSELF” - God did not delegate this responsibility
to an inferior being
v. 25 - "that frustrateth the tokens of the liars…that turneth wise men
backward, and maketh their knowledge foolish"
The Lord taketh men in their "craftiness"
I Cor. 3:19
v. 26 - The Lord backs up His messengers who proclaim
the Lord's message!