World Wide Study Bible
a Bible passage
A King Will Reign in Righteousness
1Behold, a king will reign in righteousness,
and princes will rule in justice.
2Each will be like a hiding place from the wind,
a shelter from the storm,
like streams of water in a dry place,
like the shade of a great rock in a weary land.
3Then the eyes of those who see will not be closed,
and the ears of those who hear will give attention.
4The heart of the hasty will understand and know,
and the tongue of the stammerers will hasten to speak distinctly.
5The fool will no more be called noble,
nor the scoundrel said to be honorable.
6For the fool speaks folly,
and his heart is busy with iniquity,
to practice ungodliness,
to utter error concerning the Lord,
to leave the craving of the hungry unsatisfied,
and to deprive the thirsty of drink.
7As for the scoundrel—his devices are evil;
he plans wicked schemes
to ruin the poor with lying words,
even when the plea of the needy is right.
8But he who is noble plans noble things,
and on noble things he stands.
Complacent Women Warned of Disaster
9Rise up, you women who are at ease, hear my voice;
you complacent daughters, give ear to my speech.
10In little more than a year
you will shudder, you complacent women;
for the grape harvest fails,
the fruit harvest will not come.
11Tremble, you women who are at ease,
shudder, you complacent ones;
strip, and make yourselves bare,
and tie sackcloth around your waist.
12Beat your breasts for the pleasant fields,
for the fruitful vine,
13for the soil of my people
growing up in thorns and briers,
yes, for all the joyous houses
in the exultant city.
14For the palace is forsaken,
the populous city deserted;
the hill and the watchtower
will become dens forever,
a joy of wild donkeys,
a pasture of flocks;
15until the Spirit is poured upon us from on high,
and the wilderness becomes a fruitful field,
and the fruitful field is deemed a forest.
16Then justice will dwell in the wilderness,
and righteousness abide in the fruitful field.
17And the effect of righteousness will be peace,
and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust11Or security forever.
18My people will abide in a peaceful habitation,
in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.
19And it will hail when the forest falls down,
and the city will be utterly laid low.
20Happy are you who sow beside all waters,
who let the feet of the ox and the donkey range free.
Isa 32:1-20. Messiah's Kingdom; Desolations, to Be Succeeded by Lasting Peace, the Spirit Having Been Poured Out.
The times of purity and happiness which shall follow the defeat of the enemies of Jehovah's people (Isa 32:1-8). The period of wrath before that happy state (Isa 32:9-14). The assurance of the final prosperity of the Church is repeated (Isa 32:15-20).
1. king—not Hezekiah, who was already on the throne, whereas a future time is contemplated. If he be meant at all, it can only be as a type of Messiah the King, to whom alone the language is fully applicable (Ho 3:5; Zec 9:9; see on Isa 11:3-5). The kingdom shall be transferred from the world kings, who have exercised their power against God, instead of for God, to the rightful King of kings (Eze 21:27; Da 7:13, 14).
2. a man—rather, the man Christ [Lowth]; it is as "the Son of man" He is to reign, as it was as Son of man He suffered (Mt 26:64; Joh 5:27; 19:5). Not as Maurer explains, "every one of the princes shall be," &c.
3. them that see—the seers or prophets.
4. rash—rather, "the hasty"; contrast "shall not make haste" (Isa 28:16); the reckless who will not take time to weigh religious truth aright. Or else, the well-instructed [Horsley].
stammers—those who speak confusedly on divine things (compare Ex 4:10-12; Jer 1:6; Mt 10:19, 20). Or, rather, those drunken scorners who in stammering style imitated Isaiah's warnings to mock them [Maurer] (Isa 28:7-11, 13, 14, 22; 29:20); in this view, translate, "speak uprightly" (agreeably to the divine law); not as English Version, referring to the distinctness of articulation, "plainly."
churl—rather, "fraudulent" [Gesenius].
bountiful—religiously. The atheistic churl, who envies the believer his hope "full of immortality," shall no longer be held as a patriot struggling for the emancipation of mankind from superstition [Horsley].
6. vile … villainy—rather, "the (irreligious) fool … (his) folly."
will speak—rather, "present"; for (so far is the "fool" from deserving the epithet "noble-minded") the fool "speaketh" folly and "worketh," &c.
hypocrisy—rather, "profligacy" [Horsley].
error—impiety, perverse arguments.
hungry—spiritually (Mt 5:6).
speaketh right—pleadeth a just cause (Isa 29:21); spiritually, "the poor man's cause" is the divine doctrine, his rule of faith and practice.
8. liberal—rather, "noble-minded."
stand—shall be approved under the government of the righteous King.
9-20. Address to the women of Jerusalem who troubled themselves little about the political signs of the times, but lived a life of self-indulgence (Isa 3:16-23); the failure of food through the devastations of the enemy is here foretold, being what was most likely to affect them as mothers of families, heretofore accustomed to every luxury. Vitringa understands "women—daughters" as the cities and villages of Judea (Eze 16:1-63). See Am 6:1.
10. Many days and years—rather, "In little more than a year" [Maurer]; literally, "days upon a year" (so Isa 29:1).
vintage shall fail—through the arrival of the Assyrian invader. As the wheat harvest is omitted, Isaiah must look for the invasion in the summer or autumn of 714 B.C., when the wheat would have been secured already, and the later fruit "gathering," and vintage would be still in danger.
12. lament for … teats—rather, shall smite on their breasts in lamentation "for thy pleasant fields" (Na 2:7) [Maurer]. "Teats" in English Version is used for fertile lands, which, like breasts, nourish life. The transition from "ye" to "they" (Isa 32:11, 12) is frequent.
houses of joy—pleasure-houses outside of Jerusalem, not Jerusalem itself, but other cities destroyed by Sennacherib in his march (Isa 7:20-25). However, the prophecy, in its full accomplishment, refers to the utter desolation of Judea and its capital by Rome, and subsequently, previous to the second coming of the King (Ps 118:26; Lu 13:35; 19:38); "the joyous city" is in this view, Jerusalem (Isa 22:2).
14. palaces—most applicable to Jerusalem (see on Isa 32:13).
multitude … left—the noisy din of the city, that is, the city with its noisy multitude shall lie forsaken [Maurer].
forts—rather, "Ophel" (that is, the mound), the term applied specially to the declivity on the east of Zion, surrounded with its own wall (2Ch 27:3; 33:14; 2Ki 5:24), and furnished with "towers" (or watchtowers), perhaps referred to here (Ne 3:26, 27).
for ever—limited by thee, "until," &c., Isa 32:15, for a long time.
15. This can only partially apply to the spiritual revival in Hezekiah's time; its full accomplishment belongs to the Christian dispensation, first at Pentecost (Joe 2:28; Ac 2:17), perfectly in coming times (Ps 104:30; Eze 36:26; 39:29; Zec 12:10), when the Spirit shall be poured on Israel, and through it on the Gentiles (Mic 5:7).
wilderness … fruitful field … forest—when Judea, so long waste, shall be populous and fruitful, and the land of the enemies of God shall be desolate. Or, "the field, now fruitful, shall be but as a barren forest in comparison with what it shall be then" (Isa 29:17). The barren shall become fruitful by regeneration; those already regenerate shall bring forth fruits in such abundance that their former life shall seem but as a wilderness where no fruits were.
fruitful field—then become more fruitful (Isa 32:15); thus "wilderness" and "fruitful field" include the whole land of Judea.
peace—internal and external.
18. sure … quiet—free from fear of invasion.
19. Literally, "But it shall hail with coming down of the forest, and in lowness shall the city (Nineveh) be brought low; that is, humbled." The "hail" is Jehovah's wrathful visitation (Isa 30:30; 28:2, 17). The "forest" is the Assyrian host, dense as the trees of a forest (Isa 10:18, 19, 33, 34; Zec 11:2).
20. While the enemy shall be brought "low," the Jews shall cultivate their land in undisturbed prosperity.
all waters—well-watered places (Isa 30:25). The Hebrew translation, "beside," ought rather to be translated, "upon" (Ec 11:1), where the meaning is, "Cast thy seed upon the waters when the river overflows its banks; the seed will sink into the mud and will spring up when the waters subside, and you will find it after many days in a rich harvest." Before sowing, they send oxen, &c., into the water to tread the ground for sowing. Castalio thinks there is an allusion to the Mosaic precept, not to plough with an ox and ass together, mystically implying that the Jew was to have no intercourse with Gentiles; the Gospel abolishes this distinction (Col 3:11); thus the sense here is, Blessed are ye that sow the gospel seed without distinction of race in the teachers or the taught. But there is no need of supposing that the ox and ass here are yoked together; they are probably "sent forth" separately, as in Isa 30:24.