Isaiah 54* The increase of the church by the conversion of the Jews andGentiles. (1-5) Its certain deliverance. (6-10) Its triumphantstate is described. (11-17)1-5 Observe the low state of religion in the world, for a longtime before Christianity was brought in. But by preaching thegospel, multitudes were converted from idols to the living God.This is matter of great rejoicing to the church. The bounds ofthe church were extended. Though its state on earth is but meanand movable, like a tent or tabernacle, it is sometimes agrowing state, and must be enlarged as the family increases. Butthe more numerous the church grows, the more she must fortifyherself against errors and corruptions. Thy Maker is thyHusband. Christ is the Holy One of Israel, the Mediator of thecovenant made with the Old Testament church. Long he had beencalled the God of Israel; but now he shall be called the God ofthe whole earth. And he will cleanse from sin, and cause everytrue believer to rejoice in this sacred union. We never canenough admire this mercy, or duly value this privilege. 6-10 As God is slow to anger, so he is swift to show mercy. Andhow sweet the returns of mercy would be, when God should comeand comfort them! He will have mercy on them. God's gatheringhis people takes rise from his mercy, not any merit of theirs;and it is with great mercies, with everlasting kindness. Thewrath is little, the mercies great; the wrath for a moment, thekindness everlasting. We are neither to despond underafflictions, nor to despair of relief. Mountains have beenshaken and removed, but the promises of God never were broken byany event. Mountains and hills also signify great men.Creature-confidences shall fail; but when our friends fail us,our God does not. All this is alike applicable to the church atlarge, and to each believer. God will rebuke and correct hispeople for sins; but he will not cast them off. Let thisencourage us to give the more diligence to make our calling andelection sure. 11-17 Let the people of God, when afflicted and tossed, thinkthey hear God speaking comfortably to them by these words,taking notice of their griefs and fears. The church is allglorious when full of the knowledge of God; for none teacheslike him. It is a promise of the teaching and gifts of the HolySpirit. All that are taught of God are taught to love oneanother. This seems to relate especially to the glorious timesto succeed the tribulations of the church. Holiness, more thanany thing, is the beauty of the church. God promises protection.There shall be no fears within; there shall be no fightingswithout. Military men value themselves on their splendid titles,but God calls them, "Wasters made to destroy," for they makewasting and destruction their business. He created them,therefore he will serve his own designs by them. The day iscoming when God will reckon with wicked men for their hardspeeches, #Jude 1:15|. Security and final victory are theheritage of each faithful servant of the Lord. The righteousnessby which they are justified, and the grace by which they aresanctified, are the gift of God, and the effect of his speciallove. Let us beseech him to sanctify our souls, and to employ usin his service.
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