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THEY have sought me that before asked not for me, they have found me that sought me not. I said: Behold me, behold me, to a nation that did not call upon my name.

Ver. 1.  Me.  God answers the preceding prayer, and announces the rejection of the synagogue, alluding to the armies which prevailed in the days of the Machabees.

 

--- Not.  S. Paul explains this of the conversion of the Gentiles.  Rom. x. 20.  C.

 

--- It cannot regard the Jews, who are spoken of in the next verse.  W.



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2 I have spread forth my hands all the day to an unbelieving people, who walk in a way that is not good after their own thoughts.

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3 A people that continually provoke me to anger before my face: that immolate in gardens, and sacrifice upon bricks.

Ver. 3.  Gardens, to the impure Venus and Adonis.

 

--- Bricks, to the Manes.  C.

--- Tegula porrectis satis est velata coronis

Et sparsæ fruges parvaque mica salis.  Ovid, Fast. x.


4 That dwell in sepulchres, and sleep in the temple of idols: that eat swine's flesh, and profane broth is in their vessels.

Ver. 4.  Idols: to have dreams, (Strabo xvi.) and commit impurities.

 

--- Broth of swine's flesh, which was prohibited.  Lev. xi. 7.


5 That say: Depart from me, come not near me, because thou art unclean: these shall be smoke in my anger, a fire burning all the day.

Ver. 5.  Unclean.  Thus acted the hypocritical Pharisees.

 

--- Smoke.  A just punishment of those who had sought the smoke of human applause.


6 Behold it is written before me: I will not be silent, but I will render and repay into their bosom.

Ver. 6.  Bosom: good measure.  Lu. vi. 38.  Rewards and punishments will be eternal.


7 Your iniquities, and the iniquities of your fathers together, saith the Lord, who have sacrificed upon the mountains, and have reproached me upon the hills; and I will measure back their first work in their bosom.

Ver. 7.  Hills.  Some offered sacrifices to God, others to idols; both unlawfully.  C.


8 Thus saith the Lord: As if a grain be found in a cluster, and it be said: Destroy it not, because it is a blessing: so will I do for the sake of my servants, that I may not destroy the whole.

Ver. 8.  Whole.  The good grain is preserved amid the general corruption.  H.

 

--- A few of the Jews were chosen to believe in Christ.


9 And I will bring forth a seed out of Jacob, and out of Juda a possessor of my mountains: and my elect shall inherit it, and my servants shall dwell there.

Ver. 9.  Mountains of Judea, (Deut. iii. 25.) which the captives shall recover, as a figure of those who shall embrace the Christian faith.




10 And the plains shall be turned to folds of hocks, and the valley of Achor into a place for the herds to lie down in, for my people that have sought me.

Ver. 10.  Plains.  Heb. Sharon, in the land of Basan.

 

--- Achor, near Jericho, called after Achan, (C.) who perhaps was more correctly styled Achor.  Jos. vii. 26.  Osee ii. 15.  H.




11 And you, that have forsaken the Lord, that have forgotten my holy mount, that set a table for fortune, and offer libations upon it,

Ver. 11.  Fortune.  Heb. "Gad," the sun.  Gen. xxx. 11.

 

--- Upon it.  Sym. "without me."  Sept. "to fortune."  Heb. "to Meni," the moon, or Queen of heaven.  Jer. vii. 18. and xliv. 17.  C.


12 I will number you in the sword, and you shall all fall by slaughter: because I called and you did not answer: I spoke, and you did not hear: and you did evil in my eyes, and you have chosen the things that displease me.

Ver. 12.  Chosen.  Free-will is clearly expressed, as rewards are, v. 13.  W.



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13 Therefore thus saith the Lord God: Behold my servants shall eat, and you shall be hungry: behold my servants shall drink, and you shall be thirsty.

Ver. 13.  Servants; Christians, (C.) particularly the elect.  H.

 

--- When the Romans approached Jerusalem, the Christians retired to Pella, and had plenty.  Houbigant.


14 Behold my servants shall rejoice, and you shall be confounded: behold my servants shall praise for joyfulness of heart, and you shall cry for sorrow of heart, and shall howl for grief of spirit. 15 And you shall leave your name for an execration to my elect: and the Lord God shall slay thee, and call his servants by another name.

Ver. 15.  Execration.  They can wish to be preserved from nothing worse.

 

--- Name.  The faithful shall be no longer called Jews.  C.

 

--- They shall be hated, while the name of Christian shall point out God's servants.  W.


16 In which he that is blessed upon the earth, shall be blessed in God, amen: and he that sweareth in the earth, shall swear by God, amen: because the former distresses are forgotten, and because they are hid from my eyes.

Ver. 16.  Amen, or "of truth."  False gods shall be neglected.  They shall not swear by them, as formerly.  Soph. i. 5.

 

--- Christ usually adopted the asseveration, Amen, Amen, to enforce his truths.  H.


17 For behold I create new heavens, and a new earth: and the former things shall not be in remembrance, and they shall not come upon the heart.

Ver. 17.  New earth, in eternity, (Clarius) or here indeed, (2 Pet. iii. 3. &c.  Houbigant) having purified the former by the general conflagration, which many assert will take place at the end of 6,000 years.  S. Jer.  S. Aug. &c.  At the return of the captives, the country flourished again under the Machabees; (v. 18.  Grot.) or rather the gospel changes the face of the earth.  C. lxvi. 22.  C.  Forerius.

 

--- After the resurrection the qualities, and not the substance, of the world, will be changed.  W.



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18 But you shall be glad and rejoice for ever in these things, which I create: for behold I create Jerusalem a rejoicing, end the people thereof joy.


19 And I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in my people, and the voice of weeping shall no more be heard in her, nor the voice of crying.


20 There shall no more be an infant of days there, nor an old man that shall not fill up his days: for the child shall die a hundred years old, and the sinner being a hundred years old shall be accursed.

Ver. 20.  Fill up.  To die soon was deemed a misfortune.  Ps. liv. 24.  Ex. xx. 12.  Virtue is the measure of the Christian's life, and God will reward those who labour even late.  Mat. xx. 13.

 

--- Accursed.  This age will not be spared.  Both just and wicked shall be immortal in eternity.  Theod.


21 And they shall build houses, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and eat the fruits of them. 22 They shall not build, and another inhabit; they shall not plant, and another eat: for as the days of a tree, so shall be the days of my people, and the works of their hands shall be of long continuance.

Ver. 22.  A tree.  Sept. "of the tree of life."  Jer. xviii. 8.  C.

 

--- Continuance.  Heb. "My elect shall long enjoy the works," &c.  H.

 

--- They shall not build for others to enjoy.


23 My elect shall not labour in vain, nor bring forth in trouble; for they are the seed of the blessed of the Lord, and their posterity with them.

Ver. 23.  In.  Heb. "for trouble."  Chal. "death."  Sept. "malediction."  The children shall not be cut off; and baptism shall secure their salvation.


24 And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will hear; as they are yet speaking, I will hear.

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25 The wolf and the lamb shall feed together; the lion and the ox shall eat straw; and dust shall be the serpent's food: they shall not hurt nor kill in all my holy mountain, saith the Lord.

Ver. 25.  Straw.  People of the most perverse tempers shall become mild by the influence of the gospel, and shall dwell together in perfect concord.  C.

 

--- Food, according to the sentence.  Gen. iii. 14.  M.

 

--- The devil's power is abridged.  C. xi. 6.  C.

 

--- The proudest Gentiles are converted, and adopt the mild manners of Christians, in fasting and mortification.  W.



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