Isaiah 60


‘Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the LORD rises upon you and his glory appears over you. Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.’ Isaiah 60:1-3

The Glory Of Zion

This chapter tells us that Zion will be glorified in her New state, that is, the church.

De Hoff, in his commentary, says the following.

‘The glory of the church of our Blessed Lord is outlined in this chapter. The picture is of the city of Zion radiant in the glory of the Palestinian morning with the sun bursting over the highlands while darkness still lingers in the deep valleys. The golden city of Jerusalem is high on the hill for all to see. This highly poetic language pictures to the Jew the glory of the rebuilt Jerusalem and, to all mankind, the glory of the New Testament church’.

It begins by telling that Zion shall be the light for the world. The light that comes first to Jerusalem, will then go into the world for the salvation of all men, John 8:12. The light first breaks upon the tops of the mountains, but it will go into all the world.

Darkness may be upon other nations and may rest in the valley, but the dawn has now come, Galatians 4:26. The light will go from Israel and spread to all humanity, Matthew 28:19-20 / Mark 16:15-16. The Gospel is now preached to both Jew and Gentile.

Coffman, in his commentary, says the following.

‘The birth of Christ did indeed occur at a time of universal spiritual darkness of the human race.’

1. The Gentile nations were sunk in the grossest and most shameful idolatry.

2. The Jewish nation was in no better position, despite their possession of God’s Law, which they had formalized and perverted and by their transgression of it dishonoured God, leading to the blasphemy of God on their account by the whole Gentile world, Romans 2:23-24.

3. The vain philosophy of the Greeks and Romans provided no relief from the awful darkness of that era.

‘Lift up your eyes and look about you: All assemble and come to you; your sons come from afar, and your daughters are carried on the hip. Then you will look and be radiant, your heart will throb and swell with joy; the wealth on the seas will be brought to you, to you the riches of the nations will come. Herds of camels will cover your land, young camels of Midian and Ephah. And all from Sheba will come, bearing gold and incense and proclaiming the praise of the LORD. All Kedar’s flocks will be gathered to you, the rams of Nebaioth will serve you; they will be accepted as offerings on my altar, and I will adorn my glorious temple. “Who are these that fly along like clouds, like doves to their nests? Surely the islands look to me; in the lead are the ships of Tarshish, bringing your children from afar, with their silver and gold, to the honour of the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has endowed you with splendour.’ Isaiah 60:4-9

Here we read that all blessings shall be found in Zion, Hebrews 10:1. The Gospel is sent out across the land and from the entire world, those that dwell in darkness shall come to Zion, Isaiah 2:1-4.

The ‘ships of Tarshish’ were eventually used to carry the Gospel of Christ to distant lands.

Coffman, in his commentary, says the flowing.

‘These verses undoubtedly depict the glorious wealth that shall characterize Christianity, an amazing truth evident in all generations. This very day, all over the world, let the Christian nations, however imperfectly they deserve the title, be compared with the nations that are in darkness, either because they never accepted the truth, or because they rejected it and reverted to their old ways; and the result is astounding. Compare Ethiopia, India, China, etc. with England, Western Europe, and North America; and behold the difference. Russia is indeed a great nation, but they rejected Christianity; and today, they are rapidly slipping backward into the impoverished state that always belongs to the rejection of Christianity. The United States is feeding them via the sale of 200,000.000 metric tons of wheat a year! To us, this remarkable passage speaks more of this colossal truth than of anything else. This very year, 1989-1990, Russia is authorizing the shipment of millions of Bibles into their nation. The new leadership, at last, seems to have discovered the cause of the nation’s failure and are attempting to remedy it.’

‘Foreigners will rebuild your walls, and their kings will serve you. Though in anger I struck you, in favour I will show you compassion. Your gates will always stand open, they will never be shut, day or night, so that people may bring you the wealth of the nations—their kings led in triumphal procession. For the nation or kingdom that will not serve you will perish; it will be utterly ruined. “The glory of Lebanon will come to you, the juniper, the fir and the cypress together, to adorn my sanctuary; and I will glorify the place for my feet. The children of your oppressors will come bowing before you; all who despise you will bow down at your feet and will call you the City of the LORD, Zion of the Holy One of Israel.’ Isaiah 60:10-14

Here we read that the government of Zion is universal. As the Old Testament temple was the house of God, the New Testament church is now the Zion of the Holy One of Israel.

Mercy will replace wrath and the gates of the city will continually be opened, Revelation 3:7, to receive others, to receive trade, and to receive the homage of every nation. Those who once despised Israel would pay homage to her.

‘Although you have been forsaken and hated, with no one travelling through, I will make you the everlasting pride and the joy of all generations. You will drink the milk of nations and be nursed at royal breasts. Then you will know that I, the LORD, am your Saviour, your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob.’ Isaiah 60:15-16

The new Zion will be glorified beyond imagination. The city that was once rejected by the nations, becomes the focal point of their spiritual interest.

Coffman, in his commentary, says the following.

1. God is not unmindful of the welfare of his people, and all of their humiliation and suffering shall be made up to them, if they are faithful, a thousand-fold.

2. Nothing can thwart the eternal purpose of God. Satan indeed may win victories over any given generation, but God is forever winning the Great War against evil.

3. The walls that have been destroyed will be rebuilt.

4. Those who have hated God’s people will return, along with their seed, to adore and honour them.

5. God’s judgment against the wicked will take place dramatically before the eyes of the whole world.

‘Instead of bronze I will bring you gold, and silver in place of iron. Instead of wood I will bring you bronze, and iron in place of stones. I will make peace your governor and well-being your ruler. No longer will violence be heard in your land, nor ruin or destruction within your borders, but you will call your walls Salvation and your gates Praise.’ Isaiah 60:17-18

Here we read that wealth would replace poverty Matthew 5:1-9. Justice would be restored, peace would administrate between the citizens of the city, and righteousness would oversee all relationships. Injustice would cease between citizens.

The defence of the city would be its salvation, and its strength would be the praise of God.

‘The sun will no more be your light by day, nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you, for the LORD will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory. Your sun will never set again, and your moon will wane no more; the LORD will be your everlasting light, and your days of sorrow will end. Then all your people will be righteous and they will possess the land forever. They are the shoot I have planted, the work of my hands, for the display of my splendour. The least of you will become a thousand, the smallest a mighty nation. I am the LORD; in its time I will do this swiftly.” Isaiah 60:19-22

The Lord is the bright and shining light, none other is needed, Revelation 21:23. Righteousness will dwell within the city, for all those who are citizens will have submitted to the will of God, Revelation 21:27. In the future, one is spiritually born into the city, Jeremiah 31:31-34.

The ‘land’ is metaphorical of the eternal possession that the righteous receive upon their obedience to the Gospel. The least of them will become a thousand, that is, spiritual Israel by faith, the church, would grow far beyond physical Israel.

The church will be a strong nation and was reminded that God will always keep His promises.

Go To Isaiah 61