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V. 17. Then shall the lambs feed after their manner, and the waste places of the fat ones shall strangers eat. .
But though the Lord will take this just vengeance on his rebellious enemies, yet will he be ever gracious to his own flock; and shall cause the lambs thereof to feed comfortably, in their wonted pastures ; and those places, which the insolent enemies had wasted, shall be again possessed by his people, whom their long captivity hath made strangers to their own land.
V. 18. Woe unto them that draw iniquity with cords of vanity, and sin as it were with a cart rope:
Woe be to them, that are so set upon wickedness, as that they use all possible persuasions and provocations to draw themselves to a lawless commission of sin, and continuance in it;
V. 19. That say, Let him make speed, and hasten his work that we may see it: and let the counsel of the Holy One of Israel draw nigh and come, that we may know it !
That make light of the threatened judgments, and, in a scornful distrust, dare say, Why doth not God hasten these menaced plagues? fain would we see the performance of these terrible threats : let not God say, but do: let that, which God professeth to have determined against us, be speedily effected.
V. 20. Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil.
Woe be unto them, that colour wickedness with fair pretences, and cry down goodness with slanderous calumniations, &c. ,
V. 22. Woe unto them that are mighty to drink wine, and men of strength to mingle strong drink.
Woe be to them, that improve their strength to excess, glorying that they are able to pour in and to bear much wine ; and affect to be thought and approved strong and mighty drinkers.
V. 24. So their root shall be rottenness, and their blossom shall go up as dust,
So they shall be utterly destroyed; and shall be as a tree, whose root is rotten, and whose blossom flies away like dust, &c.
V. 25. And the hills did tremble, and their carcasses were torn in the midst of the streets. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still.
The neighbour hills did tremble with the noise and fury of that siege ; and their carcasses lay torn and mangled in the midst of the streets ; yet all this cannot be warning enough to this stubborn people, to turn from their sins, &c.
V. 26. And he will lift up an ensign to the nations from far, and will hiss unto them from the end of the earth. · He will raise up war against them, even from nations that dwell afar off ; and will stir up and provoke enemies against them from the furthest parts of the earth, &c.
V. 27. None shall be weary nor stumble among them ; none shall slumber nor sleep.
They shall come with such fierceness and spirit to this war, that they shall not be sensible of any weariness: they shall march
nimbly and boldly, no one shall give himself to slumber in the way, &c.
V. 28. Their horses' hoofs shall be counted like flint, and their wheels like a whirlwind.
There shall be both terror and vigour in their horses, prepared for this war; and their chariot wheels shall come rattling furiously on, like some dreadful tempest, and fly swiftly like a whirlwind. · V. 30. And in that day they shall roar against them like the roaring of the sea ; and if one look unto the land, behold darkness and sorrow, and the light is darkened in the heavens thereof..
What speak I of the roaring of a lion ? yea, these Chaldeans, which I will bring upon them, shall come roaring in like a mighty sea in a tempest; with such terror, that all shall be filled with confusion; the earth shall be darkened with sorrow, and the heavens shall yield no glimpse of comfort to the distressed.
VI. 1. In the year that king Uzziah died, I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple.
In the year that king Uzziah died, I had a vision from God; wherein it pleased the Lord, to represent unto me a clear sign of the majestical presence of the Son of God, sitting on high upon a glorious throne, and the train of his shining robe filled the temple:
VI. 2. Above it stood the seraphins : each one had six wings ; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.
Who, as he was glorious in himself, so in his attendants; for, over the throne stood the angels of heaven : each one had six wings ; with two whereof he covered his face, as not being able to behold the brightness of that divine majesty ; with two he covered his feet, as favouring the weakness of human eyes, that cannot behold the least splendour of those celestial creatures ; with two he did swiftly move, and fly to execute the charge of God.
VI. 4. And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke.
So strong and dreadful was that voice of theirs, that the very posts of the doors and the pillars of the temple were moved therewith; and, as it had wont to be when God would signify his presence in that sanctuary, the whole house was filled with smoke.
VI. 5. Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone : because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips.
Then said I, as one terrified with that sight, Woe is me! there is no way but death with me: I have delivered messages from
this holy God, but I am not nor have been so sanctified, as that I might be safely fit for this great service. • VI. 6. Then flew one of the seraphins unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar,
Then one of those bright angels flew unto me, having a live coal in his hand, signifying the purging and purifying efficacy of the Spirit, which he had taken, not from an ordinary and common hearth, but from the altar of God ; the true type of Christ, the Saviour.
VI. 7. Lo, this hath touched thy lips ; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged.
Lo, this coal touching thy lips, is a certain sign and representation of that powerful operation of the Spirit of God whereby thy sin is purged away, and thou enabled to this great function.
VI, 8. Also I heard the voice of the Lord saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I : send me.
Then the Lord represented a voice to my ear, saying, after the manner of men, Whom shall I send to this people? and who is willing to deliver this message from us? Then, when as once my lips had been thus touched and sanctified, I did gladly put myself forward, and said, Here I am, send me. • VI. 9. And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not ; and see ye indeed, but perceive not.
Be not discouraged : I shall send thee to an obstinate people, whose perverseness I do so well know, that I would have thee tell them beforehand, what I expect from them; viz. that they will hear indeed, but not care to understand; they will see, but not regard to perceive.
VI. 10. Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes ; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed. · Yea, more than so, through the occasion of thy prophecy and holy ministry amongst them, their hearts shall be hardened and made obstinate, and their ears dulled and deafened; that, in my just judgment, they may be given up to a spiritual insensibleness, as a due punishment of their careless neglects of my ordinances, and that thereupon may follow their deserved condemnation.
VI. 11. Then said I, Lord, how long? And he answered, Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant.
Then said I, in a meet compassion of my people, But alas, Lord, how long shall this judgment lie upon thine Israel ? And he said, Until the cities be utterly wasted, and left, &c.
VI. 13. But yet in it shall be a tenth, and it shall return, and shall be eaten : as a teil tree, and as an oak, whose substance is in them, when they cast their leaves : so the holy seed shall be the substance thereof.
But yet, there shall be a tenth part of Israel, that shall return after it hath been dispersed and consumed, and be a seed, for the rest; even as it is with a tree, which having cast her leaves, yet hides the sap within the stock or bulk, which buds forth again in due season ; so shall the remainder of the holy seed, which, for the time seemed to lie dead, sprout forth into an abundant increase.
VII. 2. And it was told the house of David, saying, Syria is confederate with Ephraim. And his heart was moved, and the heart of his people, as the trees of the wood are moved with the wind.
It was told to some of the family of Ahaz, the king of Judah, saying, The king of Assyria is confederate with Israel, to make a second war upon Judah. And the heart of Ahaz and his subjects were moved, and shaken with fear, as the trees of the wood are moved with a strong wind.
VII. 4. Fear not, neither be fainthearted for the two tails of these smoking firebrands, for the fierce anger of Rezin with Syria, and of the son of Remaliah.
Fear not these two kings of Assyria and Israel; for they are but as two short ends of firebrands, not burning but smoking, which may threaten, but can work no combustion amongst you ; I mean Rezin the king of Syria, and Pekah the son of Remaliah.
VII. 6. And let us make a breach therein for us, and set a king in the midst of it, even the son of Tabeal.
Let us, instead of Ahaz, set up a king in Jerusalem, one of the most renowned peers of Syria.
VII, 8. For the head of Syria is Damascus, and the head of Damascus is Rezin ; and within threescore and five years shall Ephraim be broken, &c.
Damascus is the head city of Syria, and Rezin is the head or king of Damascus : so let him still be, and content himself with his own territories ; but as for Ephraim, which joins with Syria against thee, ere threescore years be expired, it shall be wasted and dispeopled.
VII. 9. And the head of Ephraim is Samaria, and the head of Samaria is Remaliah's son. If ye will not believe, surely ye shall not be established.
In the mean time, as Samaria is the head city of Israel, so let Pekah the son of Remaliah content himself to be the head or king of Samaria. These things I have foretold you from God, O ye men of Jerusalem : if ye will not give credit unto them, the fault and the punishment shall be yours; ye shall fail of that protection and stability, which you expect.
VII. 12. But Ahaz said, I will not ask, neither will I tempt the LORD.
I will demand no sign; for why should I, since I do already
PARPHRASE TE God made to
PARPHRASE UPON THE HÄRD TEXTS OF SCRIPTURE. believe the 'promise of God made to me? And why should I tempt God, by urging him to give proof and evidence of that, whereof I am sufficiently assured ?
VII. 13. And he said, Hear ye now, ( house of David : Is it a small thing for you to weary men, but will ye weary my God also ?
Hear me now, ( ye of the house of my dear and faithful servant David ; whose sin is therefore aggravated by the holiness of your forefathers : Is it a small thing for you, to reject and contemn me, that am a man like yourselves, but ye will, with your hypocrisy and disobedience, provoke and abuse my God also, whose message I bear? Are ye not ashamed and afraid, under a pretence of piety to refuse the gracious offer and command of God that sent me ?
VII. 14. Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign ; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his. name Immanuel.
Therefore, the Lord shall, without your will or assent, give you a sign; which shall be no other, than that ancient engagement of his to his Church. Behold, in the fulness of time a virgin shall miraculously conceive, and bear a son; and she shall, by the appointment of God himself, call his name, God with us.
VII. 15. Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good.
He shall have a true human body; and shall be sustained with that ordinary nourishment, wherewith children are wont to be fed : and shall grow up in experimental knowledge, as well as in stature ; and shall thus enable himself, like us, to refuse the evil and choose the good.
VII. 16. For before the child shall know to refuse the evil, and choose the good, the land that thou abhorrest shall be forsaken of both her kings.
But, because you may plead that it will be long ere this promise be effected, behold, before this child of mine, Shear-jashub, shall come to the age of discretion, this land of Israel and of Syria, shall be forsaken of both these kings, Rezin and Pekah ; for they shall both, ere long, be swept away by an untimely death.
VII. 17. From the day that Ephraim departed from Judah ; even the king of Assyria.
It was a heavy day to you, when the ten tribes departed away from Judah; but this judgment, which I will bring upon you, shall be rather worse than that, even the sword of the king of Assyria.
VII. 18. That the Lord shall hiss for the fly that is in the uttermost parts of the rivers of Egypt, and for the bee that is in the land of Assyria.