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Bible Commentaries

Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary

Isaiah 35

Verses 1-2




1. Isaiah forsees a coming time of refreshment and renewal, (vs. 1).

a. A former wilderness, the land of promise will be marvellously transformed and delivered from its wretchedness - in contrast to Edom’s perpetual desolation, Isaiah 55:12-13; Romans 8:18-22).

b. The people of Israel - for centuries as unfruitful as the parched desert, because of their willful blindness, and the disobedience of their unbelief, (Isaiah 59:10; Micah 3:5-7; John 3:19, 2 Corinthians 3:14; Isaiah 5:1-7) -- will be revitalized by the power and presence of the Christ, Who is both the nourishing bread and thirst-quenching water of life to those who trust in Him, (John 6:35; John 6:48; John 4:14; John 7:38-39).

c. The promised blessing is such as will bring joy to the heart and praise to the lips of God’s ancient people, whose hearts are now turned back to Him, and whose lives now blossom as the autumn crocus (rose of Sharon, Song of Solomon 2:1) - with the beauty of holiness upon them, (Psalms 119:7; Psalms 90:17; Psalms 96:6; Psalms 96:9).

2. The blessings here described are clearly associated with, and conditioned upon, the coming and glorious manifestation of the Lord - wherein will be revealed the glory and "excellency of our God", (vs. 2; 25:9; Isaiah 41:17-18; Isaiah 41:20; Job 37:23; Psalms 8:1; Isaiah 12:5; Isaiah 28:29).

3. The result will be a time of great fruitfullness and productivity from both a physical and spiritual viewpoint, (Amos 9:13-15; Isaiah 29:17-19; Ezekiel 34:26-27; Joel 3:18; Isaiah 60:13-17; Zechariah 8:12; Ezekiel 36:8-9; Ezekiel 36:29-30; Ezekiel 36:35-36).

Verses 3-4

1. The servants of truth are to strengthen and encourage the weak, fearful and despondent by holding before them the faithful promises of Jehovah; promises that WILL NOT FAIL! (vs. 3; Job 4:3-4; Hebrews 12:12; Isaiah 41:13).

2. "Behold, your God will come!" His coming will be: with vengeance and recompense upon the enemy, (Isaiah 1:24-28; Isaiah 61:2; Isaiah 63:4; Isaiah 34:8; Isaiah 59:17-18; Romans 12:11; and with the manifestation of His saving strength in behalf of Israel, (Isaiah 12:2; Isaiah 26:1-4; Isaiah 33:22; Isaiah 49:26; Psalms 145:18-19; Jeremiah 23:5; Jeremiah 30:7; Ezekiel 37:21-28).

Verses 5-10

1. How beautifully is the regeneration of Israel figuratively set forth in verses 5 and 6.

a. Doubtless, the Lord, in His divine majesty and saving strength, will wipe out physical disease, deformity and decay from all whose hearts are stayed on Him, (Hosea 6:1; Luke 4:18; Isaiah 61:1-3; Revelation 22:2).

b. But this context, so far as its initial application (to Judah) is concerned, requires a deeper significance and wider interpretation.

c. So far as divine worship and service are concerned, the people of the covenant have long been blind, deaf, lame and mute -not a fruitful vineyard, but a parched desert that brings forth no fruit to the glory of God, (Isaiah 59:10; Matthew 13:14-15; Isaiah 6:9-10; Matthew 3:10; Matthew 13:22; Luke 13:6; Psalms 78:10-11; Psalms 81:11-16).

d. Following this time of refreshment and renewal "from the presence of the Lord" (Acts 3:19), they will, willingly and joyfully, submit themselves to the yoke of Jehovah and bear effective witness of His glorious name to the ends of the earth (Zechariah 10:6-12; Micah 7:15-20; Zephaniah 3:14-20).

2. Verse 7 indicates that there will also be a refreshment and renewal of the literal land of Palestine, (Isaiah 43:19-21).

3. Isaiah has a great deal to say concerning a "highway", (Isaiah 11:16; Isaiah 19:23; Isaiah 40:3; Isaiah 49:11; Isaiah 62:10) that is to be prepared for the return of a redeemed remnant of Israel to the Land of Promise, (vs. 8; Psalms 111:9).

a. Henceforth Israel will walk in "the way of holiness" -following God’s perfect plan, (Isaiah 30:21).

b. On this highway will also come to Zion all her spiritual children (from among the Gentiles) who have, through the engrafting of faith, become "fellow-citizens of the saints, and of the household of God", to share in the fullness of covenanted blessings, (Isaiah 60:4-5; Romans 11:11-24; Ephesians 2:19).

c. No one can travel on this highway (leading to the fullness of life) whose heart, life, love and loyalty are not perfectly attuned to the "Lord of glory", (vs. 9; Psalms 91:11; Malachi 3:1; Ezekiel 34:25-26).

4. It is to Zion, the City of God - where Messiah, the Lamb of God, now sits enthroned (vs. 10; Isaiah 1:27; Psalms 48:1-2) - that Isaiah beholds the redeemed returning with singing, (Isaiah 44:23; Isaiah 49:13; Jeremiah 31:11-12; Jeremiah 33:10-11); and he gives assurance:

a. That their joy will be everlasting, (Psalms 16:11; 1 Peter 4:13; comp. Revelation 5:8-13; Revelation 14:3; Revelation 15:3-4).

b. And that, for them, sorrow and sighing will be no more! (Isaiah 25:8; Isaiah 30:19; Isaiah 65:19; Revelation 7:17; Revelation 21:4).

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Blessed Hope Foundation and the Baptist Training Center.
Bibliographical Information
Garner, Albert & Howes, J.C. "Commentary on Isaiah 35". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. 1985.