Isa 61:1-11. Messiah's
Offices: Restoration of Israel.
Messiah announces His twofold commission to bring
gospel mercy at His first coming, and judgments on unbelievers and
comfort to Zion at His second coming (Isa 61:1-9); the language can be applied to Isaiah,
comforting by his prophecies the exiles in Babylon, only in a
1. is upon me; because … hath anointed
me—quoted by Jesus as His credentials in preaching (Lu 4:18-21). The Spirit is upon Me in
preaching, because Jehovah hath anointed Me from the womb (Lu 1:35), and at baptism, with the Spirit
"without measure," and permanently "abiding" on Me (Isa 11:2; Joh 1:32; 3:34; Ps 45:7; with which compare 1Ki
1:39, 40; 19:16; Ex 29:7).
"Anointed" as Messiah, Prophet, Priest, and King.
good tidings—as the word "gospel"
the meek—rather, "the poor," as Lu 4:18 has it; that is, those afflicted
with calamity, poor in circumstances and in spirit (Mt 11:5).
proclaim liberty—(Joh 8:31-36). Language drawn from the
deliverance of the Babylonian captives, to describe the deliverance
from sin and death (Heb 2:15);
also from the "liberty proclaimed" to all bond-servants in the year of
jubilee (Isa 61:2; Le 25:10; Jer 34:8, 9).
opening of the prison—The
Hebrew rather is, "the most complete opening," namely, of
the eyes to them that are bound, that is, deliverance from
prison, for captives are as it were blind in the darkness
of prison (Isa 14:17; 35:5; 42:7) [Ewald].
4:18 and the
Septuagint interpret it; Lu 4:18, under inspiration, adds to this, for
the fuller explanation of the single clause in the
Hebrew, "to set at liberty them that are bruised"; thus
expressing the double "opening" implied; namely, that of the
9:39), and that of the prison
(Ro 6:18; 7:24, 25; Heb 2:15). His miracles were acted
2. acceptable year—the year of jubilee
on which "liberty was proclaimed to the captives" (Isa 61:1; 2Co
day of vengeance—The "acceptable time
of grace" is a "year"; the time of "vengeance" but "a day" (so Isa
34:8; 63:4; Mal 4:1). Jesus
21) "closed the book" before
this clause; for the interval from His first to His second coming is
"the acceptable year"; the day of vengeance" will not be till He comes
our God—The saints call Him
"our God"; for He cometh to "avenge" them (Re 6:10; 19:2).
all that mourn—The "all" seems to
include the spiritual Israelite mourners, as well as the
literal, who are in Isa 61:3
called "them that mourn in Zion," and to whom Isa 57:18 refers.
3. To appoint … to give—The double
verb, with the one and the same accusative, imparts glowing vehemence
to the style.
beauty for ashes—There is a play on
the sound and meaning of the Hebrew words, peer, epher,
literally, "ornamental headdress" or tiara (Eze 24:17), worn in times of joy, instead of a
headdress of "ashes," cast on the head in mourning (2Sa 13:19).
oil of joy—Perfumed ointment was
poured on the guests at joyous feasts (Ps 23:5; 45:7, 8; Am 6:6). On occasions of grief its use
was laid aside (2Sa 14:2).
garment of praise—bright-colored
garments, indicative of thankfulness, instead of those that indicate
despondency, as sackcloth (Joh 16:20).
trees of righteousness—Hebrew,
terebinth trees; symbolical of men strong in righteousness,
instead of being, as heretofore, bowed down as a reed with sin and
calamity (Isa 1:29, 30; 42:3;
1Ki 14:15; Ps 1:3; 92:12-14; Jer 17:8).
planting of … Lord—(See on Isa 60:21).
that he might be glorified—(Joh 15:8).
4. old wastes—Jerusalem and the cities
of Judah which long lay in ruins (see on Isa
5. stand—shall wait on you as servants
(Isa 14:1, 2; 60:10).
6. But ye—as contrasted with the
"strangers." Ye shall have no need to attend to your flocks and
lands: strangers will do that for you; your exclusive
business will be the service of Jehovah as His "priests" (Ex 19:6, which remains yet to be realized;
compare as to the spiritual Israel, Isa 66:21; 1Pe 2:5,
9; Re 1:6; 5:10).
eat … riches of …
in their glory … boast
yourselves—rather, "in their splendor ye shall be
substituted in their stead"; ye shall substitute yourselves [Maurer].
7. double—Instead of your past share, ye
shall have not merely as much, but "double" as much reward (Isa
40:2; Zec 9:12; compare the
third clause in this verse).
confusion—rather, "humiliation," or
rejoice—They shall celebrate with
jubilation their portion [Maurer].
Transition from the second to the third person.
in their land—marking the reference to
literal Israel, not to the Church at large.
everlasting joy—(Isa 35:10).
8. judgment—justice, which requires that
I should restore My people, and give them double in compensation for
robbery for burnt offering—rather,
from a different Hebrew root, the spoil of iniquity
[Horsley]. So in Job 5:6. Hating, as I do, the rapine,
combined with iniquity, perpetrated on My people by their
enemies, I will vindicate Israel.
direct … work in truth—rather,
"I will give them the reward of their work" (compare Isa 40:10, Margin; Isa 49:4, Margin; Isa 62:11, Margin) in faithfulness.
9. known—honorably; shall be
illustrious (Ps 67:2).
seed … blessed—(Isa 65:23).
10. Zion (Isa 61:3) gives thanks for God's returning favor
(compare Lu 1:46, 47; Hab 3:18).
righteousness—inseparably connected together. The "robe" is a
loose mantle thrown over the other parts of the dress (Ps 132:9, 16; 149:4; Re 21:2; 19:8).
decketh himself with ornaments—rather
"maketh himself a priestly headdress," that is, a magnificent
headdress, such as was worn by the high priest, namely, a miter and a
plate, or crown of gold worn in front of it [Aquila, &c.]; appropriate to the "kingdom of
priests," dedicated to the offering of spiritual sacrifices to God
continually (Ex 19:6; Re 5:10; 20:6).
jewels—rather, "ornaments" in general
11. (Isa 45:8, 55:10,
11; Ps 72:3; 85:11).
bud—the tender shoots.
praise—(Isa 60:18; 62:7).