The Vision of Isaiah

Chapter 41

God expostulates with his people about his mercies to the church, 1-9, about his promises, 10-20, and about the vanity of idols, 21-29.

"Keep silence before me, O coastlands,/
and let the people renew their strength./
Let them come near, then let them speak./
Let us come near together for judgment.

Who raised up the righteous man from the east,/
called him to his foot,/
gave the nations before him,/
and made him rule over kings?/
He gave them as the dust to his sword/
and as driven stubble to his bow.

He pursued them and passed safely,/
even by the way that he had not gone with his feet.

Who has wrought and done it,/
calling the generations from the beginning?/
I, the LORD, the first/
and with the last, I am he."

The coastlands saw it and feared./
The ends of the earth were afraid,/
drew near, and came.

They each helped his neighbor,/
and each said to his brother,/
"Be of good courage."

So the carpenter encouraged the goldsmith,/
and he who smooths with the hammer/
encouraged him who smote the anvil,/
saying, "It is ready for the soldering."/
And he fastened it with nails/
so that it should not be moved.

"But you, Israel, are my servant,/
Jacob whom I have chosen,/
the offspring of Abraham my friend,

You whom I have taken from the ends of the earth/
and called you from the chief men thereof,/
and said to you, 'You are my servant./
I have chosen you, and not cast you away.'

10 Do not fear, for I am with you./
Do not be dismayed, for I am your God./
I will strengthen you and I will even help you./
I will also uphold you with the right hand of my righteousness.

11 Behold, all those who were incensed against you/
shall be ashamed and confounded./
They shall be as nothing./
And those who contend with you shall perish.

12 You shall seek them, and shall not find them,/
even those who contended with you./
Those who war against you/
shall be as nothing, and as a thing of nothing.

13 For I, the LORD your God,/
will hold your right hand,/
saying to you, 'Do not fear./
I will help you.'

14 Do not fear, you worm Jacob/
and you men of Israel./
I will help you," says the LORD,/
"and your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel.

15 Behold, I will make you a new sharp threshing instrument/
having teeth./
You shall thresh the mountains and beat them small,/
and shall make the hills as chaff.

16 You shall fan them, and the wind shall carry them away,/
and the whirlwind shall scatter them./
And you shall rejoice in the LORD/
and glory in the Holy One of Israel.

17 When the poor and needy seek water and there is none,/
and their tongue fails for thirst,/
I, the LORD, will hear them,/
I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them.

18 I will open rivers in high places/
and fountains in the midst of the valleys./
I will make the wilderness a pool of water/
and the dry land springs of water.

19 I will plant in the wilderness the cedar,/
the shittah-tree, the myrtle, and the oil-tree./
I will set in the desert the fir-tree, the pine,/
and the box-tree together,

20 So that they may see, know,/
consider, and understand together,/
that the hand of the LORD has done this,/
and the Holy One of Israel has created it.

21 Produce your cause," says the LORD./
"Bring forth your strong reasons," says the King of Jacob.

22 "Let them bring them forth and show us/
what shall happen./
Let them show the former things, what they are/
so that we may consider them/
and know the latter end of them,/
or declare to us things to come.

23 Show the things that are to come hereafter/
so that we may know that you are gods./
Indeed, do good or do evil,/
so that we may be dismayed and behold it together.

24 Behold, you are of nothing,/
and your work of nothing./
He who chooses you is an abomination.

25 I have raised up one from the north, and he shall come./
From the rising of the sun he shall call upon my name./
And he shall come upon princes as upon mortar,/
and as the potter treads clay.

26 Who has declared from the beginning/
so that we may know,/
and beforehand/
so that we may say, 'He is righteous'?/
Surely, there is no one who shows./
Surely, there is no one who declares./
Surely, there is no one who hears your words.

27 The first shall say to Zion,/
'Behold, behold them.'/
And I will give to Jerusalem/
one who brings good tidings.

28 For I beheld, and there was no man,/
even among them, and there was no counselor,/
who, when I asked of them, could answer a word.

29 Behold, they are all vanity./
Their works are nothing./
Their molten images are wind and confusion."


Matthew Henry Commentary - Isaiah, Chapter 41[➚]