|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
44:1-8 Israel is here called Jeshurun, which means the upright one. Such only are Israelites indeed, in whom is no guile. Those that serve God he will own. He will help them over difficulties, and in their services. Water is the emblem of the Holy Spirit; as water refreshes, cleanses, and makes the earth fruitful, so do his influences the soul. This gift of the Holy Ghost is the great blessing, the plentiful pouring out of which God kept for the latter days. Where God gives his Spirit, he will give all other blessings. Hereby shall be a great increase of the church; thus it shall be spread to distant places. Was there any other Rock, or Protector, that could defend them? None besides could foretell these things to come, of which God by his prophets gave notice. All was set in order in the Divine predictions, as well as in the Divine purposes. Could any other have done so? Who can compare with Israel's Redeemer and King?
Verse 8. - Fear ye not (comp. Isaiah 41:10, 13; Isaiah 43:5; ver. 2). Israel need not fear that they will be forgotten or forsaken. God has told them from that time, or, from the beginning (Isaiah 48:3, 7), and declared to them, what he is about to do - viz, destroy Babylon, and give them deliverance. He will assuredly do as he has said. Ye are even my witnesses (comp. Isaiah 43:10, 12). There is no God; literally, there is no Rock; i.e. no sure ground of trust or confidence (comp. Isaiah 17:10; Isaiah 26:4; Isaiah 30:29; and see the comment on Isaiah 17:10).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Fear ye not, neither be afraid,.... Of the accomplishment of prophecies and promises, and of professing the true God, and of adhering to Jesus Christ, the only Redeemer and Saviour; or of the gods of the Heathens, and of persecuting tyrants, and what they can do against you, and in favour of their idolatrous religion:
have not I told thee from that time, and have declared it? what should come to pass, before it did, even everything that has since the appointment of the ancient people; and particularly what troubles and persecutions the apostles, ministers of the word, the first Christians should meet with among the Heathens, for professing and propagating the Gospel, and what success they should meet with, which came to pass accordingly:
ye are even my witnesses; as especially the apostles were, who had it from Christ's own mouth, that they should be hated and persecuted for the sake of the Gospel, and should be successful wherever they came; as they also were his witnesses in Jerusalem, and Judea, and Samaria, and unto the uttermost parts of the earth, of his person, doctrine, miracles, death, resurrection, and ascension to heaven, Acts 1:8,
is there a God besides me? that is a true God; for there were many fictitious and false deities, but none omniscient and omnipotent, that could foretell future events, and accomplish them as he did; there is no god but the one God, Father, Son, and Spirit; for this an appeal is made to the witnesses:
yea, there is no God, I know not any; or, there is "no rock" (a); or, is there any? a word used for God, Deuteronomy 32:4, there is no rock to build upon for salvation, no rock for shelter and safety, but Christ the rock of ages, on which the church is built, and the gates of hell cannot prevail against it, Matthew 16:18, and if God, who is omniscient, knows none else, there can be no other.
(a) "nulls rupes", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator; "non est petra", Montanus, Cocceius; "estne rupes?" Vitringa.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
8. be afraid—literally, "be astounded," or "distracted with fear."
from that time—namely, from the time that "I appointed the ancient people" (Isa 44:7). From the time of Abraham's call, his family were the depositories of the predictions of the Redeemer, whereas the promise of Cyrus was not heard of till Isaiah's time; therefore, the event to the prediction and accomplishment of which God appeals in proof of His sole Godhead, is the redemption of man by a descendant of Abraham, in whose person "the ancient people" was first formally "appointed." The deliverance of the Jews, by Cyrus, is mentioned afterwards only as an earnest of that greater mercy [Horsley].
no God—Hebrew, tsur, "rock" (De 32:4); that is, a stronghold to take refuge in, and a solid foundation to build on.
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