Isaiah 43 - Outline of Isaiah (MENU page)
III. Salvation (poetry), ch. 40-66
A. Peace assured through knowing the LORD God... (The God of Peace), ch. 40-48
4. Who alone is Israel's Redeemer and Savior, 43:1-44:5
1. But now thus saith the LORD that created thee, O Jacob,
and he that formed thee, O Israel,
Fear not: for I have redeemed thee,
I have called [thee] by thy name; thou [art] mine.
{cp. vs.7,15, 21}
2 When thou passest through the waters, I [will be] with thee;
and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee:
when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned;
neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.
{cp. Dan 3:25-27}
3 For I [am] the LORD thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour:
I gave Egypt [for] thy ransom, Ethiopia and Seba for thee.
{cp. Isa 20:3-5; Prov 21:18; 11:8}
4 Since thou wast precious in my sight,
{since} thou hast been honourable {honored}, and I have loved thee: {Jer 31:3}
therefore will I give
{other} men for thee, and {other} people for thy life.
the LORD that created thee, O Jacob...- The Lord made something out of nothing when He created Israel.
that formed thee, O Israel...- The Lord ordered the nation according to His design.
Fear not...- Israel's fear was due to oppression of gentile dominion,
from which they had no one to deliver them (Isa 42:22-25).
...for I have redeemed thee... for I am the LORD thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Savior...-
The work of redemption is stated as accomplished fact.
  • In part, this recollects the LORD's historic redemption of Israel from Egypt (Ex 15:13).
  • But it also speaks of the role of Israel's Messiah, as their 'kinsman redeemer.' The word 'redeemed' is HB= ga'al, referring to the work of the 'kinsman redeemer' (the 'goel'). This work of Christ, determined from eternity past, is finished. Heb 2:14-16 (see the Book Notes on Ruth for further explanation of the 'kinsman redeemer.').
  • Israel was redeemed from Egypt through the blood of the Passover lamb, which foreshadowed the Lamb of God who takes away sin (the Servant Messiah, Isa 42:6). The price of redemption was paid, even while Israel, in their blindness, could see no one to deliver them (Isa 42:22; Jer 30:14; cp. Joh 1:29; 1Pet 1:18-20).
...I will be with thee...- In all of Israel's tribulations, including the future Tribulation period,
the LORD will never abandon, but will preserve them.
...I gave Egypt... and people for thy life.-
The LORD would give Israel's enemies to destruction, in order to preserve her.
In the near application, Israel would be released from her captivity to Babylon by the rise of the Medo-Persian empire which would be given dominion over the nations and regions mentioned here (Isa 45:13,14).
In the distant application, the catastrophic collapse of Babylon (the worldwide system of gentile dominion) will precede the rise of Christ's Kingdom in which Israel is restored to prominence.
5 Fear not: for I [am] with thee:
I will bring thy seed from the east, and gather thee from the west;
6 I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Keep not back:
bring my sons from far, and my daughters from the ends of the earth;
{Jer 30:10,11; 46:27,28}
7 [Even] every one that is called by my name:
for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him.
...every one that is called by my name...- ie., the believing remnant of Israel. cp. Rom 9:6-8; Isa 63:16-19
8. Bring forth the blind people that have eyes, and the deaf that have ears.
9 Let all the nations be gathered together, and let the people be assembled:
who among them can declare this, and shew us former things?
let them bring forth their witnesses, that they may be justified:
or let them hear, and say, [It is] truth.
10 Ye [are] my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen:
that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I [am] he:
before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.
11 I, [even] I, [am] the LORD; and beside me [there is] no saviour.
12 I have declared, and have saved, and I have shewed,
when [there was] no strange [god] among you:
therefore ye [are] my witnesses, saith the LORD, that I [am] God.
13 Yea, before the day [was] I [am] he;
and [there is] none that can deliver out of my hand:
I will work, and who shall let it
{ie., who shall 'turn back' what I have done}?
bring forth the blind people...- Israel will be brought out of dispersion
from the four corners of the earth (vs.5,6), while still in a state of spiritual imperception (cp. Isa 6:9; 42:18,19; Eze 12:2).
let the nations be gathered together... let them bring forth their witnesses {ie., evidences}-
The wisemen and the gods of the nations did not discern Israel's past or future. Their explanations of Israel's history fall short of the Truth.
Ye are my witnesses {ie., evidences}, saith the LORD...-
Israel, even in her state of rebellion and spiritual blindness, is still God's servant, through whom He will accomplish His purpose. That purpose is:
that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am He...- cp. Isa 41:4; 44:6; Hos 13:4
I have declared {ie., proclaimed, published}, and saved {ie., delivered}, and shewed {HB=shama, caused to be heard}-
Long before He did it, the LORD proclaimed what He would do with Israel. The fulfilment of His Word would demonstrate that He alone is their Savior (apart from any 'stranger' which they had followed previously). cp. Isa 46:10; 48:4-7; Deu 32:12
14. Thus saith the LORD, your redeemer, the Holy One of Israel;
For your sake I have sent to Babylon, and have brought down all their nobles,
and the Chaldeans, whose cry [is] in the ships.
15 I [am] the LORD, your Holy One, the creator of Israel, your King.
Here, about 120 years prior to the Babylonian captivity of Jerusalem, the LORD predicts the fall of Babylon (cp. Jer 50:34). The ships by which Babylon conducted commerce on the Euphrates River, would carry her nobles away as captives.
16 Thus saith the LORD,
which maketh a way in the sea, and a path in the mighty waters;
17 Which bringeth forth the chariot and horse, the army and the power;
they shall lie down together, they shall not rise:
they are extinct, they are quenched as tow
{ie., a wick of flax}.
18 Remember ye not the former things, neither consider the things of old.
19 Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it?
I will even make a way in the wilderness, [and] rivers in the desert.
20 The beast of the field shall honour me, the dragons and the owls:
because I give waters in the wilderness, [and] rivers in the desert,
to give drink to my people, my chosen.
21 This people have I formed for myself; they shall shew forth my praise.
The LORD who would bring Babylon's armies against Jerusalem, would also extinguish those armies. Whereas the LORD had powerfully delivered Israel in the past (eg., in the exodus from Egypt, and in the miraculous defeat of Sennacherib's army), those events would seem small in comparison to a yet future deliverance. The LORD would "make a way..." and provide "waters in the wilderness" for the remnant who would return from Babylon to Jerusalem. However, the ultimate fulfilment awaits the fall of Babylon the Great.
22. But thou hast not called upon me, O Jacob;
but thou hast been weary of me, O Israel.
23 Thou hast not brought me the small cattle of thy burnt offerings;
neither hast thou honoured me with thy sacrifices.
I have not caused thee to serve with an offering
{ie., meal offerings}, nor wearied thee with incense.
24 Thou hast bought me no sweet cane
{ie., calamus, cp. Ex 30:23-25} with money,
neither hast thou filled me with the fat of thy sacrifices:
but thou hast made me to serve with thy sins, thou hast wearied me with thine iniquities.
thou hast been weary of me...- Israel had grown tired of serving the LORD.
I have not caused thee to serve {as a slave}...- The LORD had called Israel to sonship, to serve Him from the heart.
But because their hearts were far from Him, His service had become a drudgery to them. They failed to see a reason to bring a sacrifice for their sins. Yet, their sins were ever before the LORD, and He grew weary of the necessary work of punishing sin. cp. Isa 1:11-15; Mal 1:13,14
Still, He reasons with them in His love and grace...
25. I, [even] I, [am] he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake,
and will not remember thy sins.
26 Put me in remembrance: let us plead together:
declare thou, that thou mayest be justified.
27 Thy first father hath sinned, and thy teachers have transgressed against me.
28 Therefore I have profaned the princes of the sanctuary,
and have given Jacob to the curse, and Israel to reproaches.
I, even I, am He...- "It is a Royal pardon."
that blotteth out...- "It is an effectual pardon."
thy transgressions... thy sins...- "It is a personal pardon."
for mine own sake...- "It is a purchased pardon."
"God finds in Himself (Christ), and not in the sinner, a righteous ground on which He can act in pardoning the guilty." [in quotes, GWms]
declare that thou mayest be justified...- The LORD invites them to produce a righteousness of their own,
by which they can be justified before Him. But of course, this is impossible. Rom 10:3,4
Their history of sin and their suffering of its consequences are evidence of their unrighteousness.
thy first father hath sinned...- The children of Abraham and Jacob exhibited the sinful nature of their forefathers.
...therefore, I have given Jacob to the curse, and Israel to reproaches.
thy teachers {the scornful priests, cp. Isa 28:14} have transgressed {ie., rebelled}...-
...Therefore, I have profaned {ie., defiled, dishonored} the princes of the sanctuary {ie., the Holy Place}...
[This section continues into the next chapter.]

Click here to continue the study in Isaiah 44
Return to Isaiah - MENU page.

Limited permission is granted to copy & distribute these notes from www.theBookWurm.com


Go to The Book opening page.