Isaiah 27:10 MEANING

Isaiah 27:10
(10) The defenced city shall be desolate . . .--The key to this prediction is found in Isaiah 25:2, where the same words occur. The "defenced city" is that of the strangers, who are the enemies of God's people, and its destruction is contrasted with the restoration of the purified Jerusalem of the preceding verse. To see in the "defenced city" which is to be laid low Jerusalem itself is at variance with the natural sequence of thought. The picture of desolation--calves feeding in what had been the busy streets of a populous city--is analogous to that of the "wild beasts of the desert," roaring among the ruins of Babylon, in Isaiah 13:21-22.

Verse 10. - Yet the defensed city shall be desolate. Though her punishment is in mercy, as a chastisement which is to purge away her sin, yet Jerusalem shall for a time be desolate, void, without inhabitant, left like a wilderness. Forsaken; or, put away; the same word that is used in ver. 8 of Jerusalem. There shall the calf feed. A familiar image of desolation (comp. Isaiah 5:17; Isaiah 17:2; Isaiah 32:14, etc.).

27:6-13 In the days of the gospel, the latter days, the gospel church shall be more firmly fixed than the Jewish church, and shall spread further. May our souls be continually watered and kept, that we may abound in the fruits of the Spirit, in all goodness, righteousness, and truth. The Jews yet are kept a separate and a numerous people; they have not been rooted out as those who slew them. The condition of that nation, through so many ages, forms a certain proof of the Divine origin of the Scriptures; and the Jews live amongst us, a continued warning against sin. But though winds are ever so rough, ever so high, God can say to them, Peace, be still. And though God will afflict his people, yet he will make their afflictions to work for the good of their souls. According to this promise, since the captivity in Babylon, no people have shown such hatred to idols and idolatry as the Jews. And to all God's people, the design of affliction is to part between them and sin. The affliction has done us good, when we keep at a distance from the occasions of sin, and use care that we may not be tempted to it. Jerusalem had been defended by grace and the Divine protection; but when God withdrew, she was left like a wilderness. This has awfully come to pass. And this is a figure of the deplorable state of the vineyard, the church, when it brought forth wild grapes. Sinners flatter themselves they shall not be dealt with severely, because God is merciful, and is their Maker. We see how weak those pleas will be. Verses 12,13, seem to predict the restoration of the Jews after the Babylonish captivity, and their recovery from their present dispersion. This is further applicable to the preaching of the gospel, by which sinners are gathered into the grace of God; the gospel proclaims the acceptable year of the Lord. Those gathered by the sounding of the gospel trumpet, are brought in to worship God, and added to the church; and the last trumpet will gather the saints together.Yet the defenced city shall be desolate,.... Or "but", or "notwithstanding" (b); though the Lord deals mercifully with his own people, and mixes mercy with their afflictions, and causes them to issue well, and for their good; yet he does not deal so with others, his and their enemies: for by the "defenced city" is not meant Jerusalem, as many interpret it, so Kimchi; nor Samaria, as Aben Ezra; nor literal Babylon, as others; but mystical Babylon, the city of Rome, and the whole Roman or antichristian jurisdiction, called the "great" and "mighty" city, Revelation 18:10 which will be destroyed, become desolate, or "alone" (c), without inhabitants:

and the habitation forsaken and left like a wilderness; or "habitations"; the singular for the plural; even beautiful ones, as the word (d) signifies, the stately palaces of the pope and cardinals, and other princes and great men, which, upon the destruction of Rome, will be deserted, and become as a wilderness, uninhabited by men:

there shall the calf feed: not Ephraim, as Jarchi, from Jeremiah 31:18 nor the king of Egypt, as Kimchi, from Jeremiah 46:20 nor the righteous that shall attack the city, and spoil its substance, as the Targum; see Psalm 68:30 but literally, and which is put for all other cattle, or beasts of the field, that should feed here, without any molestation or disturbance:

there shall he lie down, and consume the branches thereof; which the Targum interprets of the army belonging to the city; it denotes the utter destruction of it, and its inhabitants; see Revelation 18:2. Some of the Jewish writers (e) interpret this passage of Edom or Rome, and of the Messiah being there to take vengeance on it.

(b) "sed", Junius & Tremellius, Forerius; "tamen, nihilominus", Calvin. (c) "solitaria", Pagninus, Montanus, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator. (d) "amoenum habitaculum", Tigurine version; Piscator (e) Shemot Rabba, sect. 1. fol. 91. 3.

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