World Wide Study Bible
a Bible passage
42. The Servant of the Lord
1Behold, my servant, whom I uphold; my chosen, in whom my soul delighteth: I have put my Spirit upon him; he will bring forth justice to the Gentiles. 2He will not cry, nor lift up his voice, nor cause it to be heard in the street. 3A bruised reed will he not break, and a dimly burning wick will he not quench: he will bring forth justice in truth. 4He will not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set justice in the earth; and the isles shall wait for his law. 5Thus saith God Jehovah, he that created the heavens, and stretched them forth; he that spread abroad 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: 6I, Jehovah, have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thy hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles; 7to open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison-house. 8I am Jehovah, that is my name; and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise unto graven images. 9Behold, the former things are come to pass, and new things do I declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them. 10Sing unto Jehovah a new song, and his praise from the end of the earth; ye that go down to the sea, and all that is therein, the isles, and the inhabitants thereof. 11Let the wilderness and the cities thereof lift up their voice, the villages that Kedar doth inhabit; let the inhabitants of Sela sing, let them shout from the top of the mountains. 12Let them give glory unto Jehovah, and declare his praise in the islands. 13Jehovah will go forth as a mighty man; he will stir up his zeal like a man of war: he will cry, yea, he will shout aloud; he will do mightily against his enemies. 14I have long time holden my peace; I have been still, and refrained myself: now will I cry out like a travailing woman; I will gasp and pant together. 15I will lay waste mountains and hills, and dry up all their herbs; and I will make the rivers islands, and will dry up the pools. 16And I will bring the blind by a way that they know not; in paths that they know not will I lead them; I will make darkness light before them, and crooked places straight. These things will I do, and I will not forsake them. 17They shall be turned back, they shall be utterly put to shame, that trust in graven images, that say unto molten images, Ye are our gods. 18Hear, ye deaf; and look, ye blind, that ye may see. 19Who is blind, but my servant? or deaf, as my messenger that I send? who is blind as he that is at peace with me, and blind as Jehovah's servant? 20Thou seest many things, but thou observest not; his ears are open, but he heareth not. 21It pleased Jehovah, for his righteousness' sake, to magnify the law, and make it honorable. 22But this is a people robbed and plundered; they are all of them snared in holes, and they are hid in prison-houses: they are for a prey, and none delivereth; for a spoil, and none saith, Restore. 23Who is there among you that will give ear to this? that will hearken and hear for the time to come? 24Who gave Jacob for a spoil, and Israel to the robbers? did not Jehovah? he against whom we have sinned, and in whose ways they would not walk, neither were they obedient unto his law. 25Therefore he poured upon him the fierceness of his anger, and the strength of battle; and it set him on fire round about, yet he knew not; and it burned him, yet he laid it not to heart.
9. The former things. He now recalls to remembrance the former predictions, by the fulfillment of which he shews that confidence ought to be placed in him for the future; for what we have known by actual experience ought to tend greatly to confirm our belief. It is as if he had said, “I have spoken so frequently to your fathers, and you have found me to be true in all things; and yet you cannot place confidence in me about future events: the experience of past transactions produces no effect upon you, and does not excite you to do better.” God’s favors, therefore, ought to be mentioned by us in such a manner that, whenever our salvation lies concealed in hope, we may rest on the word of God, and be confirmed by it during the whole course of our life.
Behold! they came. 155155 “By the former things he means those things which had been done in order to protect and deliver the Hebrew nation from the power of barbarians; and those things which Jehovah had foretold by his prophets came, that is, they happened.” — Rosenmiiller. By the adverb behold, he points out, as with the finger, that they had learned by experience, that God is not false, and did not; speak in vain by the prophets; because clear proofs openly testified and proclaimed the truth of God.
Before they spring forth. 156156 “That is, before they took place, as in Isaiah 43:12. The metaphor is taken from plants, which put forth the buds and flowers before their fruits are visible. (Genesis 2:5; Exodus 10:5.) The meaning is, that God does not foretell those things which have already begun to be accomplished, and which sagacious men may conjecture to be future; but before anything has happened, from which a conjecture may be formed as to future events.” — Rosenmuller. He distinguishes God from idols by this mark, that he alone knows and predicts future events, but idols do not; know them. As to the greater part of the responses which were given by the gods of the Gentiles, we have formerly seen that they were either false or ambiguous; for they who relied on them were often shamefully deceived, and this is the reward which they richly deserved. And if at first sight the event corresponded, this plunged them deeper in eternal perdition; and by the righteous judgment of God it was brought about that Satan imposed upon them by such delusions. Far otherwise was it with the sacred oracles, by which the Church, for her own advantage and salvation, was at one time brought to repentance, and at another time encouraged to entertain favorable hope, that she might not sink under the burden of punishments. It remains a settled principle, that all that God has foretold is verified by the event; for he rules and directs all things by his providence.