1 Yet now hear, O Jacob My servant (see 37:35); and Israel, whom I have chosen:” (see 1:29)
2 Thus says the Lord That made you, and fashioned you from the womb, Which will help you (Yehovah's first controversy with Israel closes. The second one ends in 48:22); “Fear not, O Jacob, My servant; and you, Jesurun (this is a direct reference to the Pentateuch, Deut. 32:15; 33:5,26, the only 3 places where this names occ.), whom I have chosen. (Are you beginning to get the idea that we have nothing to fear? Jesurun is a name God uses of Israel when they are fat, dumb and happy. When things are going well, Israel tends to forget God.)
3 For I will pour water upon him that is thirsty (these promises all refer to the day of Israel's future restoration), and floods upon the dry ground: I will pour My spirit upon you seed (for this promise, see Ezek.36:25-30; 39:29. Cp. Isa.32:15; 59:21. Joel 2:28. Zech. 12:10. I began at Pentecost, Acts 2:16; but the kingdom was then rejected, Acts 28:25,26, and the promise is now in abeyance. Cp. Joel 2:28, "afterward"), and My blessing upon your offspring: (That is a promise from God. Do you thirst? Do you hunger? God will pour His Spirit upon those who do. He will help you. He will intercede on your behalf. He loves you.)
4 And they shall spring up as among the grass, as willows by the water courses. (see Num. 24:6)
5 This one shall say, ‘I am the Lord's; and that one shall call himself by the name of Jacob; and that one shall subscribe with his hand to the Lord's, and surname himself by the name of Israel.”
F L 6. Yahaveh. His Own Witness. M 7. Idolaters. Their own witness. Ignorance. L 8. Yahaveh. His Own Witness. M 9-20. Idolaters. Their own witnesses. Impotence.
6 Thus says the Lord the King of Israel (Note this Title (1) in connection with the O.T. manifestation of the kingdom; (2) the Gospels, the proclamation of the kingdom by the Son, Matt. 27:42. Mark 15:32. John 1:49; 12:13. All were rejected, and the kingdom therefore is now in abeyance), and His Kinsman-Redeemerthe Lord of hosts (Yehovah Sabaioth) (see 41:14); “I Am the first, and I am the last; (quoted in Rev. 1:17, &c.) and beside Me there is no God.
7 And who, as I, shall call, and shall declare it, and set it in order for Me, since I established the everlasting Nation? (the nation of Israel is everlasting, like the Covenant. The nations which oppressed Israel [Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Rome] have passed away; but Israel remains, and, when restored, will remain forever) and the things that are coming, and [which] shall come, let them show to them.
8 Fear you all not, neither be afraid: have not I told you from that time, and have declared it? you all are even My witnesses. Is there an a GOD beside Me? yes, there is no Rock (see Deut. 32:4. Cp. Isa.26:4); I know not any.
M N 9-11. Idolaters. Their stupidity. O 12-17. The smith and the carpenter. N 18-20. Idolaters. Their stupidity.
9 They that fashion (or, form) a graven image are all of them emptiness (Heb. tohu [without form], as in Gen. 1:2. See 24:10); and the fashioners' delectable things shall not profit (fig., put for the things they have desired); and they are their own witnesses; they (i.e. the makers and the worshipers) see not, nor know; that they may be ashamed. (as the Babylonians were when their city was taken by Medo-Persians)
10 Who has formed a god, or molten a graven image that is profitable for nothing?
11 Behold, all his fellows shall be ashamed: and the workmen, they are of mankind: let them all be gathered together, let them stand up; yet they shall fear, and they shall be ashamed together.
O x 12-. The smith and his god. y -12. His own infirmity. x 13-15. The carpenter and his god. y 16,17. His own infirmity.
12 The smith with the tongs both works in the coals ("The smith was more or less a sacred person, and the iron foundry was an annex of heathen temples" Mounds of scoriœ and iron slag are found near many heathen temples. So writes Prof. Sayce in "The Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archæology" [1911. Note the contrast exhibited, apparently on purpose, in 1 Kings 6:7]), and fashioned it with hammers, and works it with the strength of his arms:
yes, he is hungry, and his strength fails: he drinks no water, and is faint.
13 The carpenter stretches out his rule; he marks it out with a line; he fits it with planes, and he marks it out with the compass, and makes it after the figure of a man, according to the beauty of a man; that it may remain in the house.
14 He hews him down cedars, and takes the cypress and the oak, which he strengthens for himself among the trees of the forest: he plants an ash, and the rain does nourish it.
15 Then shall it be for a man to burn: for he will take of the wood] thereof, and warm himself; yea, he kindles it, and bakes bread; yes, he makes a god, and worships it; he makes it a graven image, and falls down thereto.
16 He burns part thereof in the fire; and with part thereof he eats flesh; he roasts roast, and is satisfied: yes, he warms himself, and says, ‘Aha, I am warm, I have seen the fire:’
17 And the residue thereof he makes into a god, even his graven image: he falls down to it, and worships it, and prays to it, and says, ‘Deliver me; for you are my god.’
18 They have not taken note nor understood: for he has smeared their eyes, that they cannot see; and their hearts, that they cannot understand.
19 And none reflects in his heart (none brings back to his heart = mind), neither is there knowledge nor discernment to say, ‘I have burned part of it in the fire; yes, also I have baked bread upon the coals thereof; I have roasted flesh, and eaten it: and shall I make the residue thereof an abomination? shall I fall down to a log of wood?’
20 He feeds on ashes: a deceived heart (mind) has turned him aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, ‘Is there not a lie in my right hand?’ (i.e. the maker's vain fancy)
21 Remember these, O Jacob and Israel; for you are My servant: I have formed you; you are My servant: O Israel, you shall not be forgotten of Me. (because of being the "everlasting Nation"[v.7])
22 I have blotted out (see 43:25), as a thick cloud, your rebellions, and, as a cloud, your sins: return to Me; for I have redeemed you. (see Ex.6:6)
23 Sing, O all you heavens; for the Lord has done it: shout, all you lower parts of the earth: break forth into singing (see 14:7), you mountains, O forest, and every tree therein: for the Lord has redeemed Jacob, and glorified himself in Israel.”
l P 44:24-26-. Yahaveh's attributes. Q S 44:-26,27. Jerusalem. Rebuilding. T 44:28 - 45:5. Cyrus. R 45:6-10. Sovereignty. P 45:11,12. Yahaveh's attributes. Q T 45:13-. Cyrus. S 45:-13,14. Jerusalem. Rebuilding. R 45:15. Inscrutability.
24 Thus says the Lord, your Kinsman-Redeemer, and He That fashioned you from the womb, “I Am the Lord That makes all things; That stretches forth the heavens alone; That spreads abroad the earth by Myself;
25 That frustrates the signs (see 7:11) of the liars (i.e. the false prophets of the heathen), and makes diviners mad (i.e. the astrologers, &c., of Assyria. See 47:13); That turns (accounted) wise men backward, and makes their knowledge foolish;
26 That confirms the word of His servant (i.e. His prophet Isaiah), and performs the counsel of His messengers;
That says to Jerusalem, ‘You shall be inhabited;’ and to the cities of Judah (these named first because first built. See v.28), ‘You all shall be rebuilt, and I will raise up the decayed places thereof:’
27 That says to the deep (i.e. the Euphrates, on which Babylon was built), ‘Be dry, and I will dry up thy rivers:’ (literally fulfilled, at the taking of Babylon, by Cyrus through his general, Gobryas. Cp. Jer. 50:38; 51:31,32,36. "Rivers", plural of Majesty for the great river Euphrates)
28 That says of Cyrus (see 45:1), ‘He is My shepherd, and shall perform all My pleasure: and saying to Jerusalem (i.e. Yahaveh the Speaker from v.24, and in the preceding clause. It does not mean that Cyrus spoke of rebuilding Jerusalem [for he did not], but it records what Yahaveh would say of Cyrus, and what He would say also to Jerusalem. Nehemiah must have obtained a copy of Isaiah on his visit to Jerusalem, or he could not have instructed Cyrus. "Jerusalem" named before the temple, because the city and its walls were first built, before the temple foundations were laid. See Neh.7:4), ‘You shall be built;’ and to the temple (named after Jerusalem, because the city walls were first built. See note above, and cp. Neh. 7:4 with Hag. 1:1-4), ‘Your foundation shall be laid.’