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moval of all impediments, that might hinder their piety and obedience.
LVII. 16 For I will not contend for ever, neither will I be always wroth: for the spirit should fail before me, &c.
I will not always be exercising my people with heavy afflictions; neither will I always shew myself angry with them; for then the weak spirit of man must needs sink under the burden, and be utterly daunted.
LVII. 17 I hid me, and was wroth, and he went on frowardly in the way of his heart.
I was displeased with him, and withdrew my grace from him; and he went on frowardly in those wicked ways, which his own heart suggested unto him.
LVII. 18 I have seen his ways, and will heal him: I will lead him also, and restore comforts unto him and to his mourners, I have well seen the courses which he takes, and might take just occasion to be revenged of him; but I do rather pity his perverse ness, and will help him, though undeservedly, and restore his wonted comforts to him, and to those that are compassionately affected with his sorrows.
LVII. 19 I create the fruit of the lips; Peace, peace to him that is far off, and to him that is near, saith the LORD; and I will heal
I do put into the mouths of my prophets those tidings of peace, whereby the hearts of my people shall be cheered; and have put the word of reconciliation into the mouths of my evangelical preachers, whereby they may be saved: both of these messengers shall come with the happy news of peace, both unto Jews and Gentiles.
LVIII 2 Yet they seek me daily, and delight to know my ways, as a nation that did righteousness, &c.
Yet, they do, in an outward formality, make a goodly profession; as if they were zealous in seeking me, and delighted in knowing my laws, &c.
LVIII. 3 Wherefore have we fasted, say they, and thou seest not? wherefore have we afflicted our souls, and thou takest no knowledge? Behold, in the day of your fast you find pleasure, and exact all your labours.
Will you know the reason, why your fasts are not accepted of me? Behold, while you make a shew of austerity therein, ye give yourselves to carnal pleasures; and exact, on that day, which should be solemnly holy, the hardest labours and most servile works.
LVIII. 4 Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high.
Behold, though ye do formally fast, yet you do still give yourselves to strife and contention, to cruel extortion and oppression; and colour these wickednesses, with a shew of mortification and
holiness: such a fast as this is, is not that, which shall win any favour or acceptation to you, or to your devotions.
LVIII. 8 Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the LORD shall be thy rereward. Then shalt thou be blessed, with a happy renewing of all comforts upon thee: thy prosperity shall be suddenly restored: then shall all beholders acknowledge thee for just and righteous; and whereas now, thy shame is too apparent, then, the glory of the Lord shall encompass and deck thee.
LVIII. 9 If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity;
If thou shalt take off thy hand from oppressing thy poor brethren, and abstain from all injurious actions which may be to their prejudice, and shalt. refrain thy tongue from speaking vainly or lewdly;
LVIII. 10 And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noon day.
If, in a feeling compassion of the miseries of the needy, thou shalt enlarge thy bounty and relief to him, and shalt yield comfort to the afflicted soul, God shall turn thy sorrow and calamity into joy and happiness.
LVIII, 12 And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; &c. And those, that shall be of thee, shall build again the old neglected walls of the city and temple of Jerusalem; and raise up those foundations, which shall continue for many ages after, &c. LVIII. 13 If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, &c. If thou shalt refrain thy foot from walking, far or servilely, on the sabbath; and refrain thyself from doing thy own works, or taking thy own carnal pleasures, on my holy day; and shalt, contrarily, take delight in a conscionable sanctifying of that day of the Lord, as that, which is by thee accounted a day of consecration to thy God, and worthy of great reverence and honour, &c: LVIII. 14 Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.
Then shalt thou find unspeakable comfort in the Lord: then I will cause thee to possess and rule over that highly situated and fruitful land of Judea, and will maintain thee with that inheritance, which thou hast now from thy forefathers.
LIX. 5 They hatch cockatrice eggs, and weave the spider's web : he that eateth of their eggs dieth, and that which is crushed breaketh out into a viper.
All their projects and actions are either vain or wicked; full of
deadly poison, to the envenoming of all that deal with them: whosoever, therefore, meddleth with them cannot be free from the danger of infection and death.
LIX. 6 Their webs shall not become garments, neither shall they cover themselves with their works: their works are works of iniquity, and the act of violence is in their hands.
Their works and designs, which are least harmful, are yet utterly vain and unprofitable: however they may undertake much, their labours come to nothing, either for the benefit of others, or their own safeguard, &c.
LIX. 8 Whosoever goeth therein shall not know peace.
Whosoever walketh in them shall never have and enjoy true peace in his soul; nor expect to be blessed and prospered from above.
LIX. 9 Therefore is judgment far from us, neither doth justice overtake us: we wait for light, but behold obscurity; for brightness, but we walk in darkness.
Therefore hath God withdrawn the hand of his merciful protection and gracious administration from us; and we are yielded up to be a prey of rapine and injustice: we wait for comfort and prosperity, but we find nothing but sorrow and misery.
LIX. 10 We grope for the wall like the blind, and we grope as if we had no eyes: we stumble at noon day as in the night; we are in desolate places as dead men.
All the light of our former comfort is taken from us; and we are so affected with the judgments of God, as that we know not how to guide ourselves in our present condition: we cast about for helps and directions in vain, and miscarry in the use of them: we are carried captive into desolate places, out of the society of men; as if we were dead carcases, cast aside for the grave.
LIX. 11 We roar all like bears, and mourn sore like doves. We do, in all fashions of sorrow, bemoan ourselves: either roar. ing out in the extremity of our grief, as bears in a forest; or more silently murmuring our complaints, as doves on the house top.
LIX. 15 Yea, truth faileth; and he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey.
Yea, truth, and honest sincerity, is failed amongst men; and he, that will not run with men into the same excess of riot, but maketh conscience of their evil ways, is exposed to the scorn and spoil
of the world.
LIX. 16 And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness it sustained him.
And he saw that there was no man, that would interpose himself, and labour for the reforming of these foul corruptions; and wondered to see so general a barrenness of grace, as that there was not one man to stand out for his Church, either to sue for it, or to endeavour the redress of it: therefore God resolved, since there was no help or hope in human means, to take the cause into his own hand; and to work mightily the deliverance and salvation of his people, by his own power and justice.
LIX. 17 For he put on righteousness as a breast plate, and an helmet of salvation upon his head; and he put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloak.
To which purpose, the Almighty hath completely armed himself, with righteousness, and salvation, and zeal, and means of vengeance upon his enemies; that his people may well see, how both forward and powerful he is, to rescue them, and to plague their
LIX. 19 When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.
When the enemy shall come furiously upon them, like a raging and impetuous flood, the Almighty shall wage war with him, and join battle accordingly against him to his destruction.
LIX. 20 And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them
that turn from transgression in Jacob, saith the LORD.
The Redeemer of the World shall, in his due time, be revealed, and shall personally come to mount Zion; and shall save all penitent sinners, in his whole Church upon earth.
LIX. 21 My spirit that is upon thee, and my words which I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed's seed, saith the LORD, from henceforth and for ever.
Amongst and above all other testimonies of my favour to thee, my Church, this shall be most remarkable; that I will give thee my word and my Spirit, for instruction, for sanctification: the one shall not depart out of thy heart, nor the other out of thy mouth; but shall perpetually continue to thee, and to thy seed after thee, unto the end of the world.
LX. 1 Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee.
Arise out of the dust and sorrow, O thou my afflicted Church, and be thou glorious; for the time is come, wherein God is purposed to comfort and to honour thee, before the eyes of the world.
LX. 2 For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee.
For, behold, the darkness, both of ignorance and calamity, shall upon the rest of the earth; but, as it was with thee in Goshen, so it shall be now again, the Lord shall cause the light, both of knowledge and comfort, to arise upon thee.
LX. 5 Then thou shalt see, and flow together, and thine heart shall fear, and be enlarged; because the abundance of the sea shall be converted unto thee, the forces of the Gentiles shall come unto thee.
Thou shalt assemble cheerfully together, and thy heart shall be full of astonishment and wonder and thankfulness; because the store of those foreign nations, which by divers seas are severed from thee, shall be converted unto thee, my Evangelical Church:
all the forces and excellent graces of the Gentiles shall be added unto thee.
LX. 6 The multitude of camels shall cover thee, the dromedaries of Midian and Ephah; all they from Sheba shall come: they shall bring gold and incense; and they shall shew forth the praises of the LORD.
The multitudes of several nations shall come, and send in unto thee, according to their sundry commodities and means of conveyance, all manner of rich and precious presents; whereby they shall testify their homage, and joy in that God, which hath honoured them with the high calling of the children of his Church.
LX 7 All the flocks of Kedar shall be gathered together unto thee, the rams of Nebaioth shall minister unto thee: they shall come up with acceptance on mine altar, and I will glorify the house of my glory.
So cheerful and so frequent and universal shall be the sacrifices, which shall be offered unto God, in joy and thanksgiving, as that all the Arabian flocks shall be gladly consecrated to this service, and shall ascend up, in a holy smoke, to the God of Heaven; and I will exceedingly glorify my Church, wherein I am honoured.
LX. 8 Who are these that fly as a cloud, and as the doves to their windows?
Then shall my Church, wondering at so frequent a confluence, say, Who are these, that come flying, as thick as clouds, and as swiftly as the doves to their windows?
LX. 9 Surely the isles shall wait for me, and the ships of Tarshish first, to bring thy sons from far, their silver and their gold with them, unto the name of the LORD.
Surely the foreign nation shall be called into the Church, even from beyond the seas: the ships shall be employed, therefore, to bring in both their persons and their treasures, to be dedicated to the service of God.
LX. 10 And the sons of strangers shall build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee.
And, in a type of the restoration of my Church, behold, the sons of strangers shall help to re-edify the walls of Jerusalem; and their kings shall give bountiful gifts, towards the repairing of the edifices thereof.
LX. 11 Therefore thy gates shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night; that men may bring unto thee the forces of the Gentiles, and that their kings may be brought.
The doors of the Church, under the Gospel, shall be always open: they shall not be shut, either by night or day, upon any man; but shall be wide opened, to receive all comers; that the riches of the Gentiles, and their kings and governors, may have a clear and free ingress thereinto.
LX. 12 For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted.
As there neither is nor can be any salvation out of Christ, or out