|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
32:9-20 When there was so much provocation given to the holy God, bad times might be expected. Alas! how many careless ones there are, who support self-indulgence by shameful niggardliness! We deserve to be deprived of the supports of life, when we make them the food of lusts. Let such tremble and be troubled. Blessed times shall be brought in by the pouring out of the Spirit from on high; then, and not till then, there will be good times. The present state of the Jews shall continue until a more abundant pouring out of the Spirit from on high. Peace and quietness shall be found in the way and work of righteousness. True satisfaction is to be had only in true religion. And real holiness is real happiness now, and shall be perfect happiness, that is, perfect holiness for ever. The good seed of the word shall be sown in all places, and be watered by Divine grace; and laborious, patient labourers shall be sent forth into God's husbandry.
Verse 17. - The work of righteousness shall be peace. Peace - a true peace, not a false one (Jeremiah 6:14) - shall be the result of the reign of righteousness. War, quarrels, enmity, hostile feelings, are all of them the fruit of unrighteousness. In the kingdom of the Messiah, just so far forth as it is thoroughly established, "the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace" (James 3:18). The effect of righteousness; literally, the service of righteousness, which perhaps means here "the wages of righteousness." Quietness and assurance; or, quietness and confidence (comp. Isaiah 30:15). The final happiness of the blessed in Christ's kingdom is always spoken of as a state of "rest and quietness" (see Psalm 95:11; Job 3:17; Jeremiah 6:16; Matthew 11:28; Hebrews 4:9-11, etc.). The "confidence" felt would be an assured confidence, not a rash and foolish one, like that of the women of vers. 10, 11.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And the work of righteousness shall be peace,.... Not works of righteousness done by men, no, not by the best of men; for though peace may be had and enjoyed in doing them, yet it does not arise and flow from thence, because there is no justification by them, and salvation through them, without which there can be no true solid peace; nor the work of righteousness in men, which is their sanctification, and is indeed the work of God, and follows upon the pouring forth of his Spirit, and therefore bids fairer to be the sense than the former; yet peace is one part and branch of the work itself; see Romans 14:17 but the work of righteousness wrought out for man is rather meant, even the righteousness of Christ, a work proposed unto him, which he undertook, and has wrought out, and which was a work, and lay in working, and was a very toilsome and laborious one; the consequence of which is "peace", inward peace of soul now, and eternal peace hereafter; the righteousness of Christ applied removes the guilt of sin from the conscience, it being perfect justifies from all things, and yields a tranquillity and serenity of mind, which is had in a way of believing, in this righteousness now, and it will issue in everlasting peace and rest in the world to come; the end of the perfect and upright man, who is perfectly justified by Christ's righteousness, is peace, Psalm 37:37,
and the effect of righteousness, quietness and assurance for ever; or, (q) "the service of righteousness"; the same as before, with the "work of righteousness": a service which Christ performed, as a servant, in obedience to the law, in the room and stead of his people; a service perfectly and completely done, and what is well pleasing unto God; and which, when a sensible sinner sees its interest in, produces "quietness" of soul, under the mighty hand of God, amidst all the calamities in the world, and judgments upon men, under the load of calumny and reproach cast upon him, and notwithstanding all the charges and accusations of Satan: moreover, this also gives "assurance for ever", of interest in divine things, in the love of God, and relation to him as a Father, in Christ as a Saviour and Redeemer, and in the glorious inheritance which this gives a title to; or a holy confidence and boldness at the throne of grace now, having this righteousness to make mention of as a justifying one, and also hereafter, before the throne of judgment, this being what will answer for him in a time to come.
(q) "et cultus justitiae", V. L. Montanus; "labor, seu operatio", Piscator, Cocceius.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
17. work—the effect (Pr 14:34; Jas 3:18).
peace—internal and external.
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