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pensations and judgments: the whole earth [is] full of his
glory; his perfečtions now shine in his works and provi. 4 dence; but it hall be more so in gospel times. And the
posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke, in token of God's
indignation against his people. 5
Then said I, Woe [is] me! for I am undone, or, I am ftruck dumb, because I (am) a man of unclean lips, I am a polluted, sinful creature, unfit to, be employed in any service for God, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the
Lord of hosts; I have seen him in all his splendour and 6 purity, appearing as a judge. Then flew one of the
seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hånd,
[which] he had taken with the tongs from off the altar: 7 And he laid [it] upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this
hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged; this is a sign thai thy guilt is pardoned, and that a commilion is given thee to be a preachếr and
reprover to this people. 8 Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom
shall I send, and who will go for us? He asked not for information, but that Isaiah might willingly offer himself.
Then said I, Here [am] I; send me; I am very wil9 ling to go now my incapacity is removed. And he said, Go,
and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not; tho' I give you the means of instruction, and lay before you things most
worthy of seeing and hearing, yet by my prophet I foretel 10 that ye will not be affeEted with them. Make the heart
of this people fat, stupid and hardened, that is, declare: that it shall be so; be not wanting to inftru£t and reprove them, tho' this should be the consequence ; and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes ; left they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert and be healed, or par doned. Thus Jeremiah is said to build and destroy kingdoms, and Ezekiel is
said to destroy Jerusalem, because they foretold that they should 11. be destroyed. Then said I, Lord, how long shall this judge ment, this judicial blindness continue ? And he answered, Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land be utterly defolate; till utter destrution come upon them as a nation ; referring to
their destruction by the Romans, forty years after Christ's 12 time; And the LORD have removed men far away,
and [there be] a great forsaking in the midst of the
land; till many flee away, and others are carried captive 13 by the Romans, so that very few are left. But yet in
it [shall be] a tenth, or tythe of the inhabitants, and [it] shall return to God, and shall be eaten, that is, be ac
ceptable to him, as the tythe was eaten by the priest, and is fu. called meat in his house: as a teil tree, and as an oak,
whose substance [is] in them, when they cast [their leaves ;] like a tree that seems withered and dead in winter, yet is alive, and fallsprout again : [fo] the holy feed [shall be] the substance thereof; those who embrace the gospel shall preserve the nation from utter ruin, and at length it Mall flourish again; so that the jews shall never be entirely cast off, but in due time be numbered again among God's people.
ET us make this grand description of the Lord
Jehovah familiar to our minds. He is exalted above all cherubims; attended with an innumerable company of bright and holy beings. Observe with what humility and reverence they appear before him, covering their faces. With what ardour and zeal do they praise him! with what activity and speed do they execute his commands ! May we engage in religious services with the same dispofi: tion! contemplate and adore him as superlatively holy; and particularly think of him in this light when earthly kings die.
In the year Uzziah died, who was upon the whole a good king,' and reigned very long, Isaiah saw this vision. It was comfortable, in such circumstances, to reflect on the Lord as the King eternal and immortal; and to think that he has committed all judgment to his Son,
whose glory, as the image and representative of Jehovah, the prophet saw,
2. When we seriously consider the infinite purity and holiness of God, we may justly tremble before him. We are ready to think Isaiah was yery happy in such a fight as this ; but, exalted as his genius and piety were, he cries out, Woe is me! for I am undone. We are all men of pol luted lips; have said many rash and unholy things are unfit to appear before the Lord, and unworthy to be employed as his servants; therefore it becomés us to be afraid of his righteous displeasure, and to abase ourselves deeply before him. God is greatly to be feared, and to be hed in reverence of all them that draw nigh unto him
3. How honourable is it to be employed for God, and how cheerfully should we engage in his service! It should be the great desire of all christians, as the servants of God, more especially of ministers, to have their iniquity purged, their guilt removed, their inclinations to fin mortified, and to have a comfortable sense of pardon and peace. We should all be willing to work for God; and tho’ the times may be bad, and we may meet with many discouragements in our christian work, and see little hope of success in our endeavours to do good, yet still our language should be; Here am 1, Lord; Jend mé. It is honour enough to be émployed for God, tho' our work should be unsuccessful. But this is an additional comfort, that our work is with the Lord, and we shall by no means lofe the reward.
4. What a deplorable condition is their's, who hear the gospel, but are made worse by it. This is the case of the jews; and this passage is quoted fix times in the New Testament, and applied to them by Christ and his apostless And it is the case of too many christians; they hear, but understand not; will not apply their minds to consider and attend to their own concern in it; so that they continue in sin, and are not healed; yea, they are given up to spiritual blindness, and their hearts grow harder by their misimprovement of the means of grace. Let us beware that this case be not our's. It is indeed a very discouraging circumstance to ministers, that it is so common a case; but there is this to balance it, that there is a holy feed, a pious Vol. V.
remnant, that will hear, learn, and improve; and that while the word of God is to fome a favour of death unto death, it is to others of life unto life, and they are a favour to God in both.
CH A P. VII. The design of this chapter is, to assure the house of David, or
royal family, that they should not be deftroyed by the kings of Syria and , who were confederate against them, but
Israel should be punished by the king of Asyria, in whom they trusted.
N D it came to pass in the days of Ahaz the son
of Jotham, the son of Uzziah, king of Judah, [that] Rezin the king of Syria, and Pekah the fon of
Remaliah, king of Israel, went up toward Jerusalem to 2 war against it, but could not prevail against it. And
it was told the house of David, saying, Syria is confederate with Ephraim. And his heart was moved, and
the heart of his people, that is, the royal family, as the 3 trees of the wood are moved with the wind. Then said
the Lord'unto Isaiah, Go forth now to meet Ahaz, thou, and Shear-jashub thy son, whose name signifies, the remnant shall return,' at the end of the conduit of the
up4 per pool in the highway of the fuller's field; And say
unto him, Take heed, and be quiet ; fear not, neither be faint hearted, for the two tails of these smoking firebrands, for the fierce anger of Rezin with Syria, and of the son of Remaliah; do not give way to anxious fears, for these two kings are but as two firebrands which are almost con5 Jumed. Because Syria, Ephraim, and the son of Remaliah,
us up against Judah, and vex it, and let us make a breach therein for us, and set a king in the midst of it, seven]
the son of Tabeal; thus pretending to the crown of Judah, 7 and designing to overthrow the house of David: Thus faith
the Lord God, It shall not stand, neither shall it come 8. to pass. For the head of Syria [is] Damascus, and the head of Damascus [is] Rezin; as Damascus is the
head city of Syria, and Rezin is the head or king of Damascus, so they shall continue to be, and not advance themselves, and enlarge their territories, as they defign; and within
threescore and five years shall Ephraim be broken, that 9 it be not a people. And the head of Ephraim, [is]
Samaria, and the head of Samaria [is] Remaliah's son. If ye will not believe, surely ye shall not be established; if ye will not trust what God says, and rely upon
him for deliverance, but seek out for foreign support, you fall never prosper in any design for the securing your peace and comfort, as it came to pass, 2 Chron. xxviii. 20.
Moreover the LORD spake again unto Ahaz, saying, 11 Ask thee a sign of the LORD thy God, some miracle to
confirm the truth of this predi&tion; ask it either in the 12 depth, or in the height above. But Ahaz said, I will
not afk, neither will I tempt the LORD; being secretly determined not to trust providence, but to seek help from the king of Asyria, therefore for political reasons he would not
ask a jgn; tho'he pretended religion and a regard to God as 13 the reason. And he said, Hear ye now, ( house of
David ? [Is it] a small thing for you to weary men, but will
ye weary my God also ? This is not only a slight to me, 14 but to the patience and kindness of God. Therefore the Lord
himself shall give you a fign, a double fign, one, that the house of David should not be totally destroyed, the other, that they should speedily be delivered; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a fon, and shall call his name
Immanuel; an illustrious prophecy of Chrift. Nevertheless 15 Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know, or
till he knows how, to refuse the evil, and choose the good, that is, he shall be bred up as other children are. The land fall continue its fruitfulness, and be capable of nourishing its inhabitants, till he is born; and as he is to be born of N2
the $ Accordingly, from the first year of Ahaz, when this confederacy was formed and this prophecy delivered, it was just fixty five years to the twenty second year of 'Manasseh, when the king of Assyria carried away the last of the ten tribes, and planted colonies of other nations in their stead, and probably took Manasseh captive at the same time. It was broken from being a kingdom by the former Affyrian kings, but not "broken from being a people till