|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
1:1-9 Isaiah signifies, The salvation of the Lord; a very suitable name for this prophet, who prophesies so much of Jesus the Saviour, and his salvation. God's professing people did not know or consider that they owed their lives and comforts to God's fatherly care and kindness. How many are very careless in the affairs of their souls! Not considering what we do know in religion, does us as much harm, as ignorance of what we should know. The wickedness was universal. Here is a comparison taken from a sick and diseased body. The distemper threatens to be mortal. From the sole of the foot even to the head; from the meanest peasant to the greatest peer, there is no soundness, no good principle, no religion, for that is the health of the soul. Nothing but guilt and corruption; the sad effects of Adam's fall. This passage declares the total depravity of human nature. While sin remains unrepented, nothing is done toward healing these wounds, and preventing fatal effects. Jerusalem was exposed and unprotected, like the huts or sheds built up to guard ripening fruits. These are still to be seen in the East, where fruits form a large part of the summer food of the people. But the Lord had a small remnant of pious servants at Jerusalem. It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed. The evil nature is in every one of us; only Jesus and his sanctifying Spirit can restore us to spiritual health.
Verse 8. - The daughter of Zion. Not "the faithful Church" (Kay), but the city of Jerusalem, which is thus personified. Comp. Isaiah 47:1, 5, where Babylon is called the "daughter of the Chaldeans;" and Lamentations 1:6; Lamentations 2:1, 4, 8, 10, where the phrase here used is repeated in the same sense. More commonly it designates the people without the city (Lamentations 2:13; Lamentations 4:22; Micah 3:8, 10, 13; Zephaniah 3:14; Zechariah 2:10; Zechariah 9:9, etc.). As a cottage; rather, as a booth (Revised Version; see Leviticus 23:42). Vineyards required to be watched for a few weeks only as the fruit began to ripen; and the watchers, or keepers, built themselves, therefore, mere "booths" for their protection (Job 27:18). These were frail, solitary dwellings - very forlorn, very helpless. Such was now Jerusalem. As a lodge in a garden of cucumbers. Cucumber-gardens required watching throughout the season, i.e. from spring to autumn, and their watcher needed a more solid edifice than a booth. Hence such gardens had "lodges" in them, i.e. permanent huts or sheds, such as those still seen in Palestine (Tristram's 'Natural History of Palestine,' p. 442). As a besieged city. Though not yet besieged, Jerusalem is as if besieged - isolated, surrounded by waste tracts, threatened.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And the daughter of Zion is left as a cottage in the vineyard,.... The Targum is,
"after they have got in the vintage.''
A cottage in the vineyard was a booth, as the word (e) signifies, which was erected in the middle of the vineyard for the keeper of the vineyard to watch in night and day, that the fruit might not be hurt by birds, or stolen by thieves, and was a very, lonely place; and when the clusters of the vine were gathered, this cottage or booth was left by the keeper himself: and such it is suggested Jerusalem should be, not only stand alone, the cities all around being destroyed by the besiegers, but empty of inhabitants itself, when taken.
As a lodge in a garden of cucumbers: the Targum adds here also,
"after they have gathered them out of it.''
A lodge in a garden of cucumbers was built up for the gardener to watch in at night, that nobody came and stole away the cucumbers, and this was also a lonely place; but when the cucumbers were gathered, the gardener left his lodge entirely; and such a forsaken place would Jerusalem be at the time of its destruction; see Luke 19:43.
as a besieged city; which is in great distress, and none care to come near it, and as many as can make their escape out of it; or "as a city kept"; so Gussetius (f), who understands this, and all the above clauses, of some places preserved from the sword in the common desolation.
(e) , Sept. (f) "ut urbs custodita", Gusset. Comment. Ling. Ebr. p. 529. "Observata vel observanda", Forerius.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
8. daughter of Zion—the city (Ps 9:14), Jerusalem and its inhabitants (2Ki 19:21): "daughter" (feminine, singular being used as a neuter collective noun), equivalent to sons (Isa 12:6, Margin) [Maurer]. Metropolis or "mother-city" is the corresponding term. The idea of youthful beauty is included in "daughter."
left—as a remnant escaping the general destruction.
cottage—a hut, made to give temporary shelter to the caretaker of the vineyard.
besieged—rather, as "left," and Isa 1:9 require, preserved, namely, from the desolation all round [Maurer].
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