I S A I A H.
This chapter is designed for the comfort and
encouragement of those that fear God and keep his commandments,
even when they walk in darkness and have no light. Whether it was
intended primarily for the support of the captives in Babylon is
not certain, probably it was; but comforts thus generally expressed
ought not to be so confined. Whenever the church of God is in
distress her friends and well-wishers may comfort themselves and
one another with these words, I. That God, who raised his church at
first out of nothing, will take care that it shall not perish,
ver. 1-3. II. That the
righteousness and salvation he designs for his church are sure and
near, very near and very sure, ver.
4-6. III. That the persecutors of the church are weak
and dying creatures, ver. 7,
8. IV. That the same power which did wonders for the
church formerly is now engaged and employed for her protection and
deliverance, ver. 9-11.
V. That God himself, the Maker of the world, had undertaken both to
deliver his people out of their distress and to comfort them under
it, and sent his prophet to assure them of it, ver. 12-16. VI. That, deplorable as the
condition of the church now was (ver. 17-20), to the same woeful
circumstances her persecutors and oppressors should shortly be
reduced, and worse, ver.
21-23. The first three paragraphs of this chapter begin
with, "Hearken unto me," and they are God's people that are all
along called to hearken; for even when comforts are spoken to them
sometimes they "hearken not, through anguish of spirit" (Exod. vi. 9); therefore they are again
and again called to hearken, ver.
1, 4, 7. The two other paragraphs of this chapter begin
with "Awake, awake;" in the former (ver. 9) God's people call upon him to awake
and help them; in the latter, ver.
17. God calls upon them to awake and help