Isaiah 35


‘The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy. The glory of Lebanon will be given to it, the splendour of Carmel and Sharon; they will see the glory of the LORD, the splendour of our God. Strengthen the feeble hands, steady the knees that give way; say to those with fearful hearts, “Be strong, do not fear; your God will come, he will come with vengeance; with divine retribution he will come to save you.” Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the mute tongue shout for joy. Water will gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert. The burning sand will become a pool, the thirsty ground bubbling springs. In the haunts where jackals once lay, grass and reeds and papyrus will grow. And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness; it will be for those who walk on that Way. The unclean will not journey on it; wicked fools will not go about on it. No lion will be there, nor any ravenous beast; they will not be found there. But only the redeemed will walk there, and those the LORD has rescued will return. They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.’ Isaiah 35:1-10

Joy Of The Redeemed

This chapter deals with the glorious return of Israel.

Because God’s people had left Him and His ways, God had destroyed the land of Palestine with drought and famine, but now it’s time for the captives, His people to come home. They would return to a land which had been restored, a land which has been transformed into a paradise.

Pledge, in his commentary, says the following.

‘Edom fell, never to rise again. However, Israel is not only restored to her land, but the very wilderness through which she must return is turned into a garden. Again we meet with what appears to be a prophetic type. The return of Israel is depicted in glowing terms to contrast with the destiny of Edom, but above that serves to typify the Gospel dispensation.’

Strong brethren will strengthen the weak brethren, Hebrews 12:12, the downhearted will be lifted up. The spiritually blind would see, Matthew 9:27 / Matthew 20:30 / Mark 8:23 / Mark 10:46 / Luke 7:21, and their eyes will be opened to the whole picture of the past. The deaf would hear again, Matthew 11:5 / Mark 7:32 / Mark 7:37 / Mark 9:25.

The intimidated captives would sigh for joy and the lame would leap for joy, Acts 14:10 / Acts 3:8. The mute will shout for joy, Matthew 9:32-33 / Matthew 12:22 / Matthew 15:30-31 / Mark 9:17 / Luke 11:14. The land that was given over to wild animals, Isaiah 34:10-15, will again be pasture for their flocks and cattle.

Lowth, in his commentary, says the following.

‘The miraculous works wrought by our blessed Saviour are so clearly specified here, Isaiah 35:5-6, that we cannot avoid making the application. And our Saviour himself has moreover plainly referred to this passage as speaking of him and his works in Matthew 11:4-5. This passage is so accurate a description of what the Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ did, that it doubtless refers to the miracles which he would perform.’

Isaiah looks to the way of redemption or period of redemption, Isaiah 40:3-4. The ‘highway’, that is, the edict of Cyrus provides the way for their return, Ezra 1:1-3.

The ‘Way of Holiness’ is the roadway that led the captives back to the Promised Land, it was now cleared of wickedness, and only those who wanted to believe in God would return, Isaiah 53:1-12.

It is called the ‘Way of Holiness’ because those who travelled on it had to be holy, Malachi 2:8. The great antitype is Jesus and His church, John 14:6 / Acts 9:2 / Acts 18:25-26 / Acts 19:25 / Acts 19:26 / Ephesians 3:10-21.

As the edict of Cyrus was plain, simple, and easy to understand and obey, Ezra 1:1-3, so are the Lord’s directions to the sinner today, Acts 2:38-40 / Acts 2:47.

Go To Isaiah 36