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9. On viji. 14, 15. Christ alone is set by tion “child," inasmuch as they see in that the God to be a stone by which we are raised up. reason for the reign of peace spoken of afterThat He is, however, an occasion of offence to wards. It is not said a man, a king, a giant is many is because of their purpose, petulance and given to us. But this is erroneous. For the contempt (1 Pet. ii. 8). Therefore we ought to child does not remain a child. He becomes a fear lest we take offence at Him. For whoever man; and the six names that are ascribed to Him falls on this stone will shatter to pieces (Matth. and also the things predicted of His kingdom xxi. 44)." CRAMER.
apply to Him, not as a child, but as a man. That 10. On viii. 16 sqq. He warns His disciples His birth as a child is made prominent, has its against heathenish superstition, and exhorts them reason in this, that thereby His relation to huto show respect themselves always to law and man kind should be designated as an organic one. testimony. "They must not think that God must He does not enter into humanity as a man, i. e. answer them by visions and signs, therefore He as one whose origin was outside of it, but He was refers them to the written word, that they may born from it, and especially from the race of not become altogether too spiritual, like those David. He is Son of man and Son of David. He now-a-days who cry : spirit ! spirit!... Christ is a natural offshoot, but also the crowning bloom says, Luke xvi. : They have Moses and the of both. Precisely because He was to be conprophets, and again Jno. v. 39: Search the Scrip- ceived, carried and born of a human mother,
So Paul says, 2 Tim. iii. 16: The Scrip- and indeed of a virgin, this prophecy belongs ture is profitable for doctrine. So says Peter, 2 here as the completion and definition of the two Pet. i. 9: We have a sure word of prophecy. It prophetic pictures vii. 10 sqq. ; viii. 1 sqq.-“He is the word that changes hearts and moves them. came down from heaven for the sake of us men, But revelations puff people up and make them in- and for our bliss (1 Tim. i. 15; Luke ii.7). For our solent.” Heim and HOFFMANN after LUTHIER> advantage: for He undertook not for the seed of an
CHAP. IX.-11. On ver. 1 sqq. (2). “Postre- gels, but for the seed of Abraham (Heb. ii. 16). ma pars, etc. The latter part of chap. viii. was Not sold 10 us by God out of great love, but given VOLLkaì á meintiKÝ (legal and threatening) so, (Rom. v. 15; Jno. iii. 16). Therefore every one on the other hand, the first and best part of chap: ought to make an application of the word 'to ix. is evaz YEART) Kui rapaļevā ntikh, (evangelical us to himself, and to learn to say: this child was and comforting). Thus must ever law and gos- given to me, conceived for me, born to me."pel, preaching wrath and grace, words of reproof CRAMER." Cur oportuit, etc. Why did it be and words of comfort, a voice of alarm and a come the Redeemer of human kind to be not voice of peace follow one another in the church." merely man, nor merely God, but God and man FOERSTER.
conjoined or Deávo putov? Anselm replies brief12. On ix. 1 (2). Both in the Old Testament lv, indeed, but pithily: Deum qui posset, hominem, and New Testament Christ is often called light. qui deberet.” FOERSTER. Thus Isaiah calls Him“ a light to the gentiles," xlii. 6; xlix. 6. The same Prophet says: “Arise, here that He is to be nained and called accord
15. On ix. 5 (6). “You must not suppose shine (make thyself light), for thy light is come,” ing to His person, as Ix. 1. And again ver. 19: "The Lord shall be ther by his name; but these are names that one
une usually calls anounto thee an everlasting light." In the New
inust preach, praise and celebrate on account of Testament it is principally John that makes use of this expression : "The life was the light of His act, works and office.” LUTHER. men,” i. 4, "and the light shined in the dark 16. On ix. 6. “ Verba pauca, etc. A few ness,
John was not that light, but words, but to be esteemed great, not for their bore testimony to the light, ver. 8. “That was number but for their weight." Augustine. “ Adthe true light that lighteth every man that cometh mirabilis in, etc. Wonderful in birth, counsellor into the world,” ver. 9. And further : “And this in what He preaches, God in working, strong in is the condemnation that light is come into the suffering, father of the world to come in resurrecworld, and men loved darkness rather than light,” tion, Prince of peace in bliss perpetual.” BERiii. 19. “I am the light of the world,” (viii. 12; NARD OF CLAIRVAUX. In reference to "a child ix. 5; comp. xii. 35; xxxvi. 46).
is born," and "a son is given," Joh. COCCEIUS 13. On ix. 1 (2). The people that sit in remarks in his Heb. Lex. 8. v. 73: “ darkness may be understood to comprise three
respectu, grades. First, the inhabitants of Zebulon and etc., in respect to His human nature He is said to Naphtali are called so (viii. 23), for the Prophet's be born, and in respect to His divine nature and gaze is fixed first on that region lying in the ex- eternal generation not indeed born, but given, as, treme end of Palestine, which was neighbor to Joh. iii. 16, it reads God gave His only begotten the heathen and mixed with them, and on this ac
Son." count was held in low esteem by the dwellers in "In the application of this langnage all deJudah. The night that spreads over Israel in pends on the words is born to us, is given to us." general is darkest there. But all Israel partakes The angels are, in this matter, far from being as of this night, therefore all Israel, too, may be un blessed as we are. They do not say: To us a derstood as among the people sitting in darkness. Saviour is born this day, but; to you. As long Finally, no one can deny that this night extends as we do not regard Christ as ours, so long we over the borders of Israel to the whole human shall have little joy in Him. But when we know
For far as men dwell extends the night Him as our wisdom, righteousness, sanctification which Christ, as light of the world, came to dis- and redemption, as a gift that our heavenly pel, Luke i. 76 sqq.
Father designed for us, we will appropriate Him 14. On ix. 5 (6). Many lay stress on the no to ourselves in humble faith, and take possession
of all His redeeming effects that He has acquired. | fore to learn not to regard the power of the enemy For giving and taking go together. The Son is nor our own weakness, but to look steadily and given to us; we must in faith receive Him." J.J. simply into the word, that will assuredly esRAMBACH, Betracht. über das Ev. Esaj., Halle, tablish our minds that they despair not, but ex1724.
pect help of God. For God will not subdue our On ix. 6 (7), “The government is on His enemies, either spiritual or corporal, by might shoulders." "It is further shown how Christ and power, but by weakness, as says the text: difiers in this respect from worldly kings. They my strength is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Cor. remove from themselves the burden of govern- xii. 9).- LUTHER. ment and lay it on the shoulders of the privy 21. On x. 15. “Efficacia agendi penes Deum counsellors. But He does not lay His dominion est, homines ministerium tantum praebent. Quare as a burden on any other; He needs no prime nunc sibilo suo se illos evocaturum minabatur (cap. minister and vicegerent to help Him bear the
v. 26; vii. 18); nunc instar sayenae sibi fore ad irburden of administration, but He bears all by the retiendos, nunc mallei instar ad jeriendos Israelitas. word of His power as He to whom all things are Sed praecipue tum declararit
, quod non sit otiosus in given of the Father. Therefore He says to the illis, dum Sennacherib securim vocat, quae ad secanhouse of Jacob (xlvi. 3 sq.): Hearken unto me ye dum manu sua et destinata fuit et impacta. Non who were laid on my shoulders from your male alicubi Augustinus ita definit, quod ipsi pecmothers' womb. I will carry you to old age.
I will do it, I will lift, and carry and deliver,-on ex virtute Dei esse, tenebras prout visum est dividen
cant, eorum esse; quod peccando hoc vel illud agant, the contrary the heathen must bear and lift up tis (De praedest Sanctt.).”—Calvin Inst. II. 4, 4. their idols, (xlvi. 1, 7).”-RAMBACH. “In the first place we must keep in mind His first name: 22. On 20–27. “In time of need one He is called Wonderful. This name affects all ought to look back to the earlier great deliverthe following." "All is wonderful that belongs ances of the children of God, as to the deliverto this king: wonderfully does He counsel and ance of Israel out of Egypt, or later, from the comfort; wonderfully He helps to acquire and hand of the Midianites. Israel shall again grow conquer, and all this in suffering and want of out of the yoke.”—DIEDRICH. strength. (LUTHER, Jen. germ. Tom. III. Fol.
CHAP. XI.-23. On ver. 4. “The staff of 184 b.)” " He uses weakness as a means of sub- His mouth.” “Evidence that the kingdom of duing all things to Himself. A wretched reed, Christ will not be like an earthly kingdom, but a crown of thorns and an infamous cross, are the consist in the power of the word and of the sacraweapons of this almighty God, by means of which He achieves such great things. In the second ments; not in leathern, golden or silver girdles, place, He was a hero and conqueror in that just CRAMER.
but in girdles of righteousness and faith."by death, He robbed him of his might who had the power of death, i. e., the devil (Heb. ii. 14);
24. On xi. 10 sqq. If the Prophet honors in that He, like Samson, buried His enemies the heathen in saying that they will come to with Himself
, yea, became poison to death itself, Christ before Israel, he may be the more readily and a plague to hell (Hos. xiii. 14) and more
believed, when ver. 11 sqq., he gives the assugloriously resumed His life so freely laid down, rance that the return out of the first, the Egyptian which none of the greatest heroes can emulate."
" exile, shall be succeeded by a return out of the -RAMBACH.
second, the Assyrian exile, (taking this word
in the wider sense of Isaiah). It is manifest that 17. On ix. 18 (19) sqq. True friendship can never exist among the wicked. For every one Ezra was only an imperfect beginning of that
the return that took place under Zerubbabel and loves only himself. Therefore they are enemies promised return. For according to our passage one of another; and they are in any case friends this second return can only take place after the to each other, only as long as it concerns making Messiah has appeared. Farthermore, all Israelwar on a third party.
ites that belong to “the remnant of Israel," in Chap. X:-18. On ver. 4. (Comp. the same whatever land they may dwell, shall take part in expression in chap. ix.). God's quiver is well it. It will be, therefore, a universal, not a parfilled. If one arrow does not attain His object, tial return. If now the Prophet paints this reHe takes another, and so on, until the rights of turn too with the colors of the present (ver. 13 God, and justice have conquered.
sqq.), still that is no reason for questioning the 19. On X. .5-7. “God works through men reality of the matter. Israel will certainly not in a threefold way. First, we all liv move and disappear, but arise to view in the church of the have our being in Him, in that all activity is an new covenant. But if the nation is to be known outflow of His power. Then, He uses the ser- among the nations as a whole, though no more as vices of the wicked so that they mutually destroy a hostile contrast, but in fraternal harmony, why each other, or He chastises His people by their then shall not the land, too, assume a like posihand. Of this sort the Prophet speaks here. In tion among the lands ?
But the nation can the third place, by governing His people by the neither assume its place among nations, nor the Spirit of sanctification : and this takes place only land its place among lands, if they are not both in the elect.”—HEIM AND HOFFMANN.
united: the people Israel in the land of their 20. On X.
“Ad hunc, elc. places are to be turned to uses of comfort. Al 25. On Chap. XI. “We may here recall though the objects of temptation vary and ene- briefly the older, so-called spiritual interpretamies differ, yet the effects are the same, and the tion. Vers. 1-5 were understood of Christ's prosame spirit works in the pious. We are there- 1 phetic office that He exercised in the days of
His flesh, then of the overthrow of the Roman go out into all the world. He creates peace in Empire and of Antichrist, who was taken to be the restless creatures, and shows us here in adthe Pope. But the most thorough-going of those vance what more glorious things we may look old expositors must acknowledge, at ver. 4, that for in the new earth. He presents to the world the Antichrist is not yet enough overthrown, a church which, united in itself, unmolested by and must be yet more overthrown. If such is neighbors, stands under God's mighty protection. the state of the case, then this interpretation is all these facts are parts of a chain of hope that certainly false, for ver. 4 describes not a gradual must be valuable and dear to our hearts. The judgment, but one accomplished at once. There light of this future illumines the obscurity of the have been many Antichrists, and among the present; the comfort of that day makes the heart Popes too, but the genuine Antichrist described fresh.” 'WEBER, der Prophet Jesaja, 1875. 2 Thess. ii., is yet to be expected, and also the CHAP. XII.-26. On ver. 4 sq. “These will fulfillment of ver. 4 of our chapter. Thereby not be the works of the New Testament: sacriis proved at the same time that the peaceful state ficing and slaying, and make pilgrimage to Jeruof things in the brute world and the return of salem and to the Holy Sepulchre, but praising the Jews to their native land are still things of God and giving thanks, preaching and hearing, the future, for they must happen in that period believing with the heart and confessing with the when the Antichristian world, and its head shall mouth. For to praise our God is good; such be judged by Christ. But then, too, the dwelling praise is pleasant and lovely” (Psalm cxlvii. 1). together of tame and wild beasts is not the en- CRAMER. trance of the heathen into the church, to which 27. On Chap. XII. “With these words conthey were heretofore hostile, and the return of clude the prophetic discourses on Immanuel. the Jews is not the conversion of a small part of Through what obscurity of history have we not Israel that took place at Pentecost and after had to go, until we came to the bright light of the The miracles and signs too, contained in vers. 15, kingdom of Christ! How Israel and the nations 16 did not take place then. We see just here had to pass through the fire of judgment before how one must do violence to the word if he will the sun arises in Israel and the entire gentile not take it as it stands. But if we take it as we world is illumined ! It is the same way that have done, then the whole chapter belongs to the every Christian has to travel. In and through doctrine of hope (Hoffnungslehre) of the Scrip- the fire we become blessed. Much must be burnt ture, and constitutes an important member of it. up in us, before we press to the full knowledge The Lord procures right and room for His of God and of His Son, before we become enchurch. He overthrows the world-kingdom to- tirely one with Him, entirely glad and joyful in gether with Antichrist. He makes of the rem- Him. Israel was brought up and is still brought nant of Israel a congregation of believers filled up for glory, and we too. O that our end too were with the Spirit, to whom He is near in an un- such a psalm of praise as this psalm !" WEBER, usual way, and from it causes His knowledge to Der Pr. Jes. 1875.
CHAP. XIII.-XXIII. The people of God do not stand insulated and Amos, also, put together his utterances against historically severed from ihe rest of the human foreign nations (chap. i.). But this grouping is race, but form an integral part of it, and contri- so interwoven in the plan of his work, that, like bute to the great web of the history of humanity. an eagle first circles around his prey, and then Therefore the Prophet of the Lord must necessa- swoops down on it, so he first passes through the rily direct his gaze to the Gentile world, and, as nations dwelling around the Holy Land, then sethistoriographer, set forth their relations to the tles down on the chief nation, Israel, dwelling in Kingdom of God, whether hostile or friendly. It the middle. Isaiah has brought the independent is true that, in those prophecies that deal with the prophecies against foreign nations into a less intheocracy as a whole, or with individual theocra- timate connection with his utterances that relate tic relations or persons, the prophet has always to set their relations to the outward world in the directly to the theocracy, by incorporating them light of God's word. But he has often occasion into his book as a special 100 (or volume). Ze to make some heathen nation or other the primary phaniah has joined Isaiah in this as to material subject of direct prophecy. Isaiah, too, has such and form; except that the latter appears less occasion: and his prophecies that come under this marked because of the smallness of his book (ch. category we now find collected here.
ii.). But Jeremiah (chap. xlvi.-li.) and Ezekiel
(chap. xxv.-xxxii.) have, just like Isaiah, de- | a similar one against Syria, against the Arabians, yoted independent divisions of their books to the and against Jerusalem, the last with a supplement utterances against foreign nations. The order in directed against the steward Shebna. These which Isaiah gives his prophecies against the four prophecies in chap. xxi. and xxii. stand toheathen nations is not arbitrary. It makes four gether because they all of them have emblematical subdivisions. First, in chaps. xiii., xiv., comes superscriptions. Out of regard to this the prophecy a prophecy against Babylon. It stands here for against Babylon (chap. xxi. 1-10) stands here, ala double reason: 1) because it begins with a ge- though in respect to its contents it belongs rather neral contemplation of the day of Jehovah, which to xiii. and xiv. Even the prophecy against “the evidently is meant for a foundation for all the fol- valley of vision" with its supplement stands here lowing denunciations of judgment;. 2) because out of regard to its superscription, although it is Isaiah, after he had lived to see the judgment of directed against no heathen nation, but against God on Assyria under the walls of Jerusalem, Jerusalem; so that we must say that chaps. xiii.knows well that the world-power culminates, not xxiii. contain prophecies against the heathen in Assyria, but in Babylon, and that not Assyria nations, not exclusively, but with one exception but Babylon is to execute the judgment of God on that has its special reasons. the centre of the theocracy.
Chap. xxiii. forms the fourth division. It conBut it is quite natural that Assyria should not tains a prophecy against Tyre, which, indeed, prebe unrepresented in the list of the nations against supposes the Assyrian invasion, but expressly which the Prophet turns his direct utterances.
names the Chaldeans as executors of the judgment This is the less allowable because the following
on Tyre. On account of this remarkable, and, in utterances have all of them for subject the rela a certain respect, solitary instance of such a sight tions to Assyria of the nations mentioned. For of things distant, this prophecy is put alone and
at the end. all that the Prophet has to say from chap. xiv. 28-xx. 6, and then again in chap. xxi. (from ver.
Thus the chapters xiii.-xxiii. are divided as
follows: 11 on), xxii, and xxiii. stands in relations more or less near to the great Assyrian deluge that Isaiah
I. The first prophecy against Babylon, xiii. 1
-xiv. 23. saw was breaking in on Palestine and the neighboring lands. Thus the second division begins tions threatened by Assyria, Philistia, Moab, Sy
II. Prophecies relating to Assyria, and the nawith the brief word against Assyria, chap. xiv. 24-27. Philistia, Moab, Syria, Ephraim, Cush and Egypt. phecies against Babylon, Edom, Arabia and JeTo this are joined prophecies against ria, Ephraim, Cush, Egypt. xiv. 24—xx. 26.
ÍII. The libellus emblematicus, containing proThe third division forms a singular little 130
rusalem, the last with a supplement directed It might be named libellus emblematicus. For it against the steward Shebnah. xxi., xxii. contains a second prophecy against Babylon, then IV. Prophecy against Tyre. xxiii.
1.-THE FIRST PROPHECY AGAINST BABYLON.
CHAPTER XIII. 1-XIV. 23. There yawns a tremendous chasm between the the LORD,” that does not come on one day, but preceding prophecies that originated in the time realizes itself in many successive stages. He sees of Ahaz and the present. We at once recognize in Babylon the summit of the world-power, by Isaiah again in xiii., xiv. It is his spirit
, his whose disintegration Israel must be made free. power, his poetry, his wit. They are his funda- Therefore he makes the great day of Jehovah's mental views, but it is no longer the old form. judgment break before our eyes (xiii. 1-13), but His way of speaking is quieter, softer, clearer; he describes immediately only the judgment upon no longer bursts on us like a roaring mountain Babylon. On both these accounts this prophecy
He is grown older. But he has pro- stands at the head of all Isaiah's prophecies gressed, too, in his prophetic knowledge. Now against the nations. For it seemed fitting to put he knows that it is not Assyria that is the the- in the front a general and coinprehensive word ocracy's most dangerous enemy. For him As- about the great judgment day which immediatebyria is a thing of the past. In proportion as it ly introduced the denunciation of judgment came to the front before, it now and henceforth against the head of all the nations of the worldretires. Isaiah had seen Assyria's humiliating power. Some have maintained that it was imoverthrow before the gates of Jerusalem. Now possible that Isaiah could have recognized Babyhe knows that another power, that Babylon shall ion as the enemy of the theocracy : and that it destroy the theocracy and stand as the sole gov- was still more impossible that he could have preerning world-power. But he knows, too, that dicted the deliverance of Israel out of the capBabylon's day will come as well as Nineveh’s. tivity of Babylon. But both these chapters are For how could Jehovah's Prophet ever doubt Isaiah's, both in form and contents, as we have that his LORD and his nation will triumph, and that declared above and shall prove in detail below. the world-power will be overthrown? But the Beside, there is the consideration that our chapter judgment of Babylon is for him only a part of has undoubtedly been used by Jeremiah (1., li.), the great judgment of the world, of that “day of l by Ezekiel in various passages (vii. 17, comp.
Isa. xiii. 7 ;-vii. 29, comp. Isa. xiii. 11;-xix. | ble. For to deny premises in order to avoid a 11, comp. Isa. xiv. 5 ;-xxxviii. 6, 15-xxxix. 2, conclusion that one will not draw, is just as upcomp. Isa. xiv. 13), and by Zephaniah (iii. 11, gain a conclusion that one wants to draw.
scientific as it is to invent premises in order to comp. Isa. xiii. 3), as shall be shown when deal
The discourse divides into a general part and a ing with the passages concerned. Therefore it particular. The former (xiii. 1-13) is, as has seems to me to be beyond doubt that Isaiah wrote been said, at the same time the introduction to our chapters. But how Isaiah could know all the totality of the prophecies against the heathen that is here given to the world under his name nations. The particular part again presents two (xiii. 1) as prophecy, that is certainly a problem. halves: the first (xiii. 14-22) portrays the judgThat is the problem that science should propose ment on Babylon, the second, after a short referto itself for solution. It ought not to deny ac ence to the redemption and return home of Israel credited facts in order not to be compelled to (xiv. 1, 2) contains a satirical song on the ruler recognize prophecy as a problem, i. e. as possi. I of Babylon conceived in abstracto (xiv. 3-23).
a) The preface: introduction in general to the prophecies of the day of the Lord,
CHAPTER XIII. 1-13. 1 THE 'BURDEN OF BABYLON, WHICH ISAIAH THE SON OF AMOZ DID SEE. 2 Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain,
Exalt the voice unto them, shake the hand,
That they may go into the gates of the nobles. 3 I have commanded my sanctified ones,
I have also called my mighty ones for mine anger,
Even them that rejoice in my highness. 4 The noise of a multitude in the mountains, 'like as of a great people :
A tumultuous noise of the kingdoms of nations gathered together:
The Lord of hosts mustereth the host of the battle. 5 They come from a far country,
From the end of heaven, Even the LORD, and the weapons of his indignation, "To destroy the whole land. 6 Howl ye; for the day of the Lord is at hand;
It shall come as a destruction from the Almighty. 7 Therefore shall all hands ?be faint,
And every man's heart shall melt: 8 And they shall be afraid :
Pangs and sorrows shall take hold of them ;
Their faces shall be as 'flames.
Cruel both with wrath and fierce anger,
And he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it.
Shall not give their light:
And the moon shall not cause her light to shine. 11 And I will punish the world for their evil,
And the wicked for their iniquity ;
And will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible. 12 I will make a man more precious than fine gold ;
Even a man than the golden wedge of Ophir. 13 Therefore I will shake the heavens,
And the earth shall fremove out of her place,