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Bible Commentaries

Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Isaiah 45

Verse 1

Cyrus. See App-57 .

loose the loins. Idiom for weakening. Compare Job 12:21 . The opposite of "girding" (Isaiah 45:5 ).

open before him the two leaved gates: i.e. of Babylon, as described by Herodotus.

not be shut. They were found open, and Gobryas and the soldiers of Cyrus entered Babylon without fighting.

Verse 2

straight = level.

break in pieces = shiver.

gates of brass. Herodotus (i. 180) tells us that the gates leading to the river were of brass.

cut in sunder =. smash.

Verse 3

call thee by thy name. Only four named by Divine prophecy before birth: Isaac (Genesis 17:19 ); Solomon (1 Chronicles 22:9 ); Josiah (1 Kings 13:2 ); and Cyrus, 137 years before his birth. See App-50 .

God. Hebrew. Elohim. App-4 .

Verse 4

My servant's. See note on Isaiah 37:5 .

surnamed. Cyrus was the additional name divinely given. His Persian name is said to have been Agradates.

though thou hast not = when thou didst not.

Verse 5

girded thee. Contrast "loose" (Isaiah 45:1 ), and see note on Isaiah 8:9 .

Verse 6

none. See note on Isaiah 5:8 .

Verse 7

create. Hebrew the Poel Participle of the verb bara' (create) which, with "evil", requires the rendering "bring about". Not the same form as in verses: Isaiah 45:8 , Isaiah 45:12 , or Isaiah 45:18 , in connection with the earth. In Jeremiah 18:11 the verb is yazar, to frame, or mould. In Amos 3:6 it is 'ashah, to bring about. A word of wide meaning; its sense has to be determined by its context. Here, disturbance in contrast with "peace".

evil: never rendered "sin". God brings calamity about as the inevitable consequence of sin. It is rendered "calamity" in Psalms 141:5 ; "adversity" in 1 Samuel 10:19 .

Psalms 94:13 .Ecclesiastes 7:14 ; "grief" in Nehemiah 2:10 . Proverbs 15:10 . .

Ecclesiastes 2:17 . .

Jonah 4:6 ; "affliction" in Numbers 11:11 ; "misery" in Ecclesiastes 8:6 ; "trouble" in Psalms 41:1 ; "Sore" in Deuteronomy 6:22 ; "noisome" in Ezekiel 14:15 , Ezekiel 14:21 ; "hurt" in Genesis 26:29 ; "wretchedness" in Numbers 11:15

; also "harm", "ill", and "mischief". Compare Jeremiah 18:11 , and Amos 3:6 . See note on "create", above.

Verse 8

let the earth open, &c. When the earth opened before it brought forth destruction (Numbers 16:32 ; Numbers 26:10 and Psalms 106:17 ).

Verse 9

earth = ground: i.e. here, clay.

Verse 11

the Holy One of Israel. See note on Isaiah 1:4 .

Maker = Former, or Fashioner.

Verse 12

have made, &c. Reference to Pentateuch (Genesis 1:1 ). App-92 .

man = Hebrew. adam . App-14 .

Verse 13

raised him up : i.e. raised Cyrus up.

he shall build My city. Nehemiah rebuilt only the walls. See Nehemiah 7:4 .

The city was not rebuilt until after the return under Zerubbabel, and the emancipation by Cyrus. See App-68 .

captives. Hebrew captivity. Put by Figure of speech Metonymy (of Adjunct), for the captives in it.

the LORD of hosts. See note on 1 Samuel 1:3

Verse 14

labour. Put by Figure of speech Metonymy (of Cause), for that which is produced by it.

men. Hebrew, plural of enosh . App-14 .

shall come over. Some codices, with five early printed editions (one Rabbinic, in margin), Septuagint, Syriac, and Vulgate, read "and they shall", &c.

GOD. Hebrew El. App-4 .

Verse 16

idols = images. Hebrew. zirim . Occurs in this sense only here.

Verse 17

everlasting salvation. See note on "ancient" people (Isaiah 44:7 ).

world without end = the ages of futurity.

Verse 18

That created = the Creator of. Note how these expressions are heaped together to impress us with the fact that the One Who created all ought to be able to tell us, better than ignorant man, how He created it.

That formed = The Former of. Hebrew. yazar = to fashion.

made = the Maker of.

He created. It did not come of itself by evolution (see App-5 and App-8 ). Reference to Pentateuch Genesis 1:1 ).

in vain = tohu . The same word as in Genesis 1:2 ("without form"). Therefore it must have become tohu : which is exactly what Genesis 1:2 declares (see note there). In Genesis 1:1 we have "the world that then was" (compare 2 Peter 3:6 ); and in Isaiah 45:2 we have the ruin into which it fell. We are not told how, when, or why, or how long it lasted. When geologists have settled how many years they require, they may place them between Genesis 1:1-2 . In Genesis 1:2-31 ; Genesis 2:1-4 , we have "the heavens and the earth which are now" of 2 Peter 3:7 . Both are set in contrast with the "new heavens and the new earth" of 2 Peter 3:13 .

[ Conversion Note : The following comment is found in some Companion Bible text on the Internet but not in my original book.]

"why" God destroyed "the world that then was" may be better understood from Revelation 12:4 (see note there), where Satan rebelled against God and drew a third part of God's children with him.

Verse 19

in vain. Hebrew. tohu . Repeated from Isaiah 45:18 . Jehovah did not command His People to seek Him in a pathless and trackless waste, where there are no indications of how He is to be found; but in His Word, where He has revealed Himself clearly and distinctly: not "in secret" or "in darkness" (same words as in Isaiah 45:18 ). Reference to Pentateuch (Deuteronomy 30:11 ). App-92 . See note on Isaiah 24:10 .

Verse 21

them: i.e. the "image" and "god" of Isaiah 45:20 .

there is no God. Note the Figure of speech Pleonasm , by which the same assertion is made in two ways (positive. and negative) for emphasis.

Verse 23

I have sworn, &c. Quoted in Romans 14:11 ; and Philippians 1:2 , Philippians 1:10 . Reference to Pentateuch (Genesis 22:16 ). App-92 .

unto Me. Ascribed to Christ in the quotation above.

Verse 24

men come = one come. Hebrew text is singular, as in preceding clause; but plural in Isaiah 45:1 .

Verse 25

shall glory. See note on "give light" (Isaiah 13:10 ).

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Bibliographical Information
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Isaiah 45". "Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". 1909-1922.