Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible
back to: Isaiah
Book: Isaiah
Chapter: 48

The Jews reproved for their Idolatry. (1-8) Yet deliverance is
promised them. (9-15) Solemn warnings of Judgment upon those who
persisted in evil. (16-22)

1-8 The Jews valued themselves On descent from Jacob, and used
the name of Jehovah as their God. They prided themselves
respecting Jerusalem and the Temple, yet there was No Holiness
in their lives. If we are not sincere in religion, we do but
take the name of the Lord in vain. By Prophecy they were shown
how God would Deal with them, long before it came to pass. God
has said and done enough to prevent men's boasting of
themselves, which makes the Sin and ruin of the proud worse;
sooner or later every mouth shall be stopped, and all become
silent before Him. We are all born children of disobedience.
Where original Sin is, actual Sin will follow. Does not the
Conscience of every Man Witness to the Truth of Scripture? May
the Lord prove us, and render us doers of the Word.

9-15 We have nothing ourselves to plead with God, why he should
have Mercy upon us. It is for his praise, to the honour of his
Mercy, to spare. His bringing men into trouble was to do them
good. It was to refine them, but not as Silver; not So
thoroughly as men refine Silver. If God should take that course,
they are all Dross, and, as such, might justly be Put away. He
takes them as refined in part only. Many have been brought home
to God as Chosen vessels, and a good work of Grace begun in
them, in the Furnace of affliction. It is comfort to God's
people, that God will secure his own honour, therefore work
deliverance for them. And if God delivers his people, he cannot
be at a loss for instruments to be employed. God has formed a
plan, in which, for his own sake, and the Glory of his Grace, he
saves all that come to Him.

16-22 The Holy Spirit qualifies for service; and those may
speak boldly, whom God and his Spirit send. This is to be
applied to Christ. He was sent, and he had the Spirit without
Measure. Whom God redeems, he teaches; he teaches to profit By
affliction, and then makes them partakers of his Holiness. Also,
By his Grace he leads them in the way of duty; and By his
Providence he leads in the way of deliverance. God did not
afflict them willingly. If their sins had not turned them away,
their peace should have been always flowing and abundant.
Spiritual enjoyments are ever joined with Holiness of Life and
regard to God's will. It will make the misery of the disobedient
the more painful, to think how happy they might have been. And
here is Assurance given of Salvation out of Captivity. Those
whom God designs to bring home to himself, he will take care of,
that they want not for their Journey. This is applicable to the
Grace laid up for us in Jesus Christ, from whom all good flows
to us, as the water to Israel out of the Rock, for that Rock was
Christ. The spiritual blessings of Redemption, and the rescue of
the Church from antichristian tyranny, are here pointed to. But
whatever changes take place, the Lord warned impenitent sinners
that No good would come to them; that inward anguish and outward
trouble, which Spring from guilt and from the Divine wrath, must
be their portion for ever.