Isaiah 65

1 “I am inquired of by those who didn’t ask. I am found by those who didn’t seek me. I said, ‘See me, see me,’ to a nation that was not called by my name. 2 I have spread out my hands all day to a rebellious people, who walk in a way that is not good, after their own thoughts; 3 a people who provoke me to my face continually, sacrificing in gardens, and burning incense on bricks; 4 who sit amongst the graves, and spend nights in secret places; who eat pig’s meat, and broth of abominable things is in their vessels; 5 who say, ‘Stay by yourself, don’t come near to me, for I am holier than you.’ These are smoke in my nose, a fire that burns all day. 6 “Behold, it is written before me: I will not keep silence, but will repay, yes, I will repay into their bosom, 7 your own iniquities, and the iniquities of your fathers together”, says the LORD, “who have burnt incense on the mountains, and blasphemed me on the hills. Therefore I will first measure their work into their bosom.” 8 The LORD says, “As the new wine is found in the cluster, and one says, ‘Don’t destroy it, for a blessing is in it:’ so will I do for my servants’ sake, that I may not destroy them all. 9 I will bring offspring out of Jacob, and out of Judah an inheritor of my mountains. My chosen will inherit it, and my servants will dwell there. 10 Sharon will be a fold of flocks, and the valley of Achor a place for herds to lie down in, for my people who have sought me. 11 “But you who forsake the LORD, who forget my holy mountain, who prepare a table for Fortune, and who fill up mixed wine to Destiny; 12 I will destine you to the sword, and you will all bow down to the slaughter; because when I called, you didn’t answer. When I spoke, you didn’t listen; but you did that which was evil in my eyes, and chose that in which I didn’t delight.” 13 Therefore thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, my servants will eat, but you will be hungry; behold, my servants will drink, but you will be thirsty. Behold, my servants will rejoice, but you will be disappointed. 14 Behold, my servants will sing for joy of heart, but you will cry for sorrow of heart, and will wail for anguish of spirit. 15 You will leave your name for a curse to my chosen; and the Lord GOD will kill you. He will call his servants by another name, 16 so that he who blesses himself in the earth will bless himself in the God of truth; and he who swears in the earth will swear by the God of truth; because the former troubles are forgotten, and because they are hidden from my eyes. 17 “For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; and the former things will not be remembered, nor come into mind. 18 But be glad and rejoice forever in that which I create; for, behold, I create Jerusalem to be a delight, and her people a joy. 19 I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and delight in my people; and the voice of weeping and the voice of crying will be heard in her no more. 20 “No more will there be an infant who only lives a few days, nor an old man who has not filled his days; for the child will die one hundred years old, and the sinner being one hundred years old will be accursed. 21 They will build houses, and inhabit them. They will plant vineyards, and eat their fruit. 22 They will not build, and another inhabit. They will not plant, and another eat: for the days of my people will be like the days of a tree, and my chosen will long enjoy the work of their hands. 23 They will not labor in vain, nor give birth for calamity; for they are the offspring of the LORD’s blessed, and their descendants with them. 24 It will happen that, before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear. 25 The wolf and the lamb will feed together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox. Dust will be the serpent’s food. They will not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain,” says the LORD.

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Questions about today’s reading? See if Matthew Henry can help.
Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, 1706

Verses 1-7

The Gentiles came to seek God, and find him, because they were first sought and found of him. Often he meets some thoughtless trifler or profligate opposer, and says to him, Behold me; and a speedy change takes place. All the gospel day, Christ waited to be gracious. The Jews were bidden, but would not come. It is not without cause they are rejected of God. They would do what most pleased them. They grieved, they vexed the Holy Spirit. They forsook God’s temple, and sacrificed in groves. They cared not for the distinction between clean and unclean meats, before it was taken away by the gospel. Perhaps this is put for all forbidden pleasures, and all that is thought to be gotten by sin, that abominable thing which the Lord hates. Christ denounced many woes against the pride and hypocrisy of the Jews. The proof against them is plain. And let us watch against pride and self-preference, remembering that every sin, and the most secret thoughts of man’s heart, are known and will be judged by God.

Verses 8-10

In the bunch of unripe grapes, at present of no value, the new wine is contained. The Jews have been kept a distinct people, that all may witness the fulfilment of ancient prophecies and promises. God’s chosen, the spiritual seed of praying Jacob, shall inherit his mountains of bliss and joy, and be carried safe to them through the vale of tears. All things are for the display of God’s glory in the redemption of sinners.

Verses 11-16

Here the different states of the godly and wicked, of the Jews who believed, and of those who persisted in unbelief, are set against one another. They prepared a table for that troop of deities which the heathen worship, and poured out drink-offerings to that countless number. Their worshippers spared no cost to honour them, which should shame the worshippers of the true God. See the malignity of sin; it is doing by choice what we know will displease God. In every age and nation, the Lord leaves those who persist in doing evil, and despise the call of the gospel. God’s servants shall have the bread of life, and shall want nothing good for them. But those who forsake the Lord, shall be ashamed of vain confidence in their own righteousness, and the hopes they built thereon. Wordly people bless themselves in the abundance of this world’s goods; but God’s servants bless themselves in him. He is their strength and portion. They shall honour him as the God of truth. And it was promised that in him should all the families of the earth be blessed. They shall think themselves happy in having him for their God, who made them forget their troubles.

Verses 17-25

In the grace and comfort believers have in and from Christ, we are to look for this new heaven and new earth. The former confusions, sins and miseries of the human race, shall be no more remembered or renewed. The approaching happy state of the church is described under a variety of images. He shall be thought to die in his youth, and for his sins, who only lives to the age of a hundred years. The event alone can determine what is meant; but it is plain that Christianity, if universal, would so do away violence and evil, as greatly to lengthen life. In those happy days, all God’s people shall enjoy the fruit of their labours. Nor will children then be the trouble of their parents, or suffer trouble themselves. The evil dispositions of sinners shall be completely moritified; all shall live in harmony. Thus the church on earth shall be full of happiness, like heaven. This prophecy assures the servants of Christ, that the time approaches, wherein they shall be blessed with the undisturbed enjoyment of all that is needful for their happiness. As workers together with God, let us attend his ordinances, and obey his commands.

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