Isaiah 35

* The flourishing state of Christ's kingdom. (1-4) The

privileges of his people. (5-10)

1-4 Judea was prosperous in the days of Hezekiah, but the

kingdom of Christ is the great subject intended. Converting

grace makes the soul that was a wilderness, to rejoice with joy

and singing, and to blossom abundantly. The feeble and

faint-hearted are encouraged. This is the design of the gospel.

Fear is weakening; the more we strive against it, the stronger

we are, both for doing and suffering; and he that says to us, Be

strong, has laid help for us upon One who is mighty. Assurance

is given of the approach of Messiah, to take vengeance on the

powers of darkness, to recompense with abundant comforts those

that mourn in Zion; He will come and save. He will come again at

the end of time, to punish those who have troubled his people;

and to give those who were troubled such rest as will be a full

reward for all their troubles.
5-10 When Christ shall come to set up his kingdom in the world,

then wonders, great wonders, shall be wrought on men's souls. By

the word and Spirit of Christ, the spiritually blind were

enlightened; and those deaf to the calls of God were made to

hear them readily. Those unable to do any thing good, by Divine

grace were made active therein. Those that knew not how to speak

of God or to God, had their lips opened to show forth his

praise. When the Holy Ghost came upon the Gentiles that heard

the word, then were the fountains of life opened. Most of the

earth is still a desert; neither means of grace, spiritual

worshippers, nor fruits of holiness, are to be found in it. But

the way of religion and godliness shall be laid open. The way of

holiness is the way of God's commandment; it is the good old

way. And the way to heaven is a plain way. Those knowing but

little, and unlearned, shall be kept from missing the road. It

shall be a safe way; nothing can do them any real hurt. Christ,

the way to God, shall be clearly made known; and the way of a

believer's duty shall be plainly marked out. Let us then go

forward cheerfully, assured that the end of this way shall be

everlasting joy, and rest for the soul. Those who by faith are

made citizens of the gospel Zion, rejoice in Christ Jesus; and

their sorrows and sighs are made to flee away by Divine

consolations. Thus these prophecies conclude. Our joyful hopes

and prospects of eternal life should swallow up all the sorrows

and all the joys of this present time. But of what avail is it

to admire the excellence of God's word, unless we can call its

precious promises our own? Do we love God, not only as our

Creator, but because he gave his only Son to die for us? And are

we walking in the ways of holiness? Let us try ourselves by such

plain questions, rather than spend time on things that may be

curious and amusing, but are unprofitable.

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