|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
41:10-20 God speaks with tenderness; Fear thou not, for I am with thee: not only within call, but present with thee. Art thou weak? I will strengthen thee. Art thou in want of friends? I will help thee in the time of need. Art thou ready to fall? I will uphold thee with that right hand which is full of righteousness, dealing forth rewards and punishments. There are those that strive with God's people, that seek their ruin. Let not God's people render evil for evil, but wait God's time. It is the worm Jacob; so little, so weak, so despised and trampled on by every body. God's people are as worms, in humble thoughts of themselves, and in their enemies' haughty thoughts of them; worms, but not vipers, not of the serpent's seed. Every part of God's word is calculated to humble man's pride, and to make him appear little in his own eyes. The Lord will help them, for he is their Redeemer. The Lord will make Jacob to become a threshing instrument. God will make him fit for use, new, and having sharp spikes. This has fulfilment in the triumphs of the gospel of Christ, and of all faithful followers of Christ, over the power of darkness. God has provided comforts to supply all their wants, and to answer all their prayers. Our way to heaven lies through the wilderness of this world. The soul of man is in want, and seeks for satisfaction; but becomes weary of seeking that in the world, which is not to be had in it. Yet they shall have a constant supply, where one would least expect it. I will open rivers of grace, rivers of living water, which Christ spake of the Spirit, Joh 7:38,39. When God sets up his church in the Gentile wilderness, there shall be a great change, as if thorns and briers were turned into cedars, and fir-trees, and myrtles. These blessings are kept for the poor in spirit, who long for Divine enlightening, pardon, and holiness. And God will render their barren souls fruitful in the grace of his Spirit, that all who behold may consider it.
Verses 11, 12. - As Israel would grow strong through God's help, so her enemies would grow weak through God's disfavour. That enemies of all kinds may be seen to be included, the designation is four times varied - "they that are angry with thee;" "that are at strife with thee;" "that are in conflict with thee;" "that are at war with thee." The order is one of climax. Similarly, with each augmentation of the hostility there is an augmentation of the sentence of punishment - "shall be covered with shame;" "shall perish;" "shall not be found;" "shall become as nothingness."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Behold, all they that were incensed against thee,.... For rejecting their idols, and idol worship; for receiving the Gospel, and professing it:
shall be ashamed and confounded; their idols not being able to help them, nor they to defend the worship of them: the same is said with respect to Christ, Isaiah 45:24,
they shall be as nothing, and they that strive with thee shall perish; or, "the men of thy strife" (o); all shall come to nothing, and utterly perish, as to their persons, substance, power, and dignity; as did the Roman emperors, the persecutors of God's people.
(o) "viri litis tuae", Montanus; "rixae tuae", Vatablus.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
11. ashamed—put to the shame of defeat (compare Isa 54:17; Ro 9:33).
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