|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
9:25-29 The rejecting of the Jews, and the taking in the Gentiles, were foretold in the Old Testament. It tends very much to the clearing of a truth, to observe how the Scripture is fulfilled in it. It is a wonder of Divine power and mercy that there are any saved: for even those left to be a seed, if God had dealt with them according to their sins, had perished with the rest. This great truth this Scripture teaches us. Even among the vast number of professing Christians it is to be feared that only a remnant will be saved.
Verse 29. - And as Esaias hath said before (i.e. in an earlier chapter), Except the Lord of sabaoth had left us a seed, we should have been as Sodom, and been made like unto Gomorrah. This quotation is from Isaiah 1:9, and, though it seems to have no obvious reference to the Messianic age, it expresses the same idea as the other, of a remnant only being saved; and it is quoted suitably, occurring as it does at the beginning of the Book of Isaiah, and being a sort of key-note of the prevailing purport of his prophecies. The force of all the above quotations is much enhanced, if we remember that they are not mere isolated texts, but suggestive specimens of many prophetic utterances to the same effect. All familiar with the prophetic writings are aware that main ideas constantly recurring are: First, judgments to come upon the chosen people, painted often in many consecutive verses without relief; but secondly, after such denunciations, a dawn of hope and comfort appearing, and culminating in unutterable blessing under the Messiah's kingdom; and thirdly, this dawn of hope being for a remnant only of the race, compared in one place to a gleaning of the grapes when the vintage is done (Isaiah 24:13); and fourthly, the association with this remnant, not only of the "outcasts of Israel" gathered from all lands, but also of a multitude of Gentiles, who should be gathered into the Messiah's kingdom (cf. Zephaniah 3:12, etc.; Zechariah 13:9; Amos 9:9; Joel 2:32; Isaiah 6:13; Isaiah 56:6; Isaiah 60.).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And as Esaias said before,.... In the beginning of his prophecy, in Isaiah 1:9.
Except the Lord of sabaoth had left us a seed; the title and character the great God goes by here, is "Lord of sabaoth", that is, "of hosts", or "armies"; the Septuagint often leave the word untranslated, as here and elsewhere, as in 1 Samuel 1:11. He is Lord of the hosts of heaven, the sun, moon, and stars, whom he brings forth by number, calls by their names, and them to praise him; of the angels, the multitude of the heavenly host, that do his pleasure, fight under him, and for him; and of the hosts of nations, of the several kingdoms of the world, who are all under his government, and among whom he acts according to his sovereign will and pleasure. Kimchi on the place says, he is called so,
"because of "the hosts above", and because of "the hosts below", who are the Israelites, that are called "hosts"; wherefore he would not consume us all, as we deserved:''
no, according to the council of his own will, he left them "a seed"; or as it is in Isaiah, a very small remnant": and so the Syriac here, a remnant"; both signify one and the same, namely, a few persons only: "a remnant" signifies a few, which remain out of a large number; and so does "seed", which is reserved for sowing again, after the whole stock is sold off, or consumed: and the leaving of this small number designs God's gracious acts of reserving in the election of a people for himself; the calling them by his grace in time, and preserving them from general corruption; which if he had not done among the Jews, as Jarchi on the text says,
"of himself, and by his mercies, and not for our righteousnesses,''
we had been as Sodoma, and been made like unto Gomorrha; the cities which God destroyed with fire and brimstone from heaven, for their iniquities: had it not been for electing grace, they would have been like the inhabitants of these cities for wickedness; and the case would have been the same with us and with the whole world, had it not been for God's act of election, choosing some to holiness here, and happiness hereafter. The decree of election is so far from being a door to licentiousness, that it is the true spring and source of all real holiness, that has been, or is in the world; and had it not been for this, there would have been no such thing as holiness in the world; and consequently not only Judea, but thee whole world, were it not for this, must have been long before now, like Sodom and Gomorrah, in their punishment.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
29. And as Esaias said—"hath said"
before—that is, probably in an earlier part of his book, namely, Isa 1:9.
Except the Lord of Sabaoth—that is, "The Lord of Hosts": the word is Hebrew, but occurs so in the Epistle of James (Jas 5:4), and has thence become naturalized in our Christian phraseology.
had left us a seed—meaning a "remnant"; small at first, but in due time to be a seed of plenty (compare Ps 22:30, 31; Isa 6:12, 13).
we had been—"become"
as Sodom, &c.—But for this precious seed, the chosen people would have resembled the cities of the plain, both in degeneracy of character and in merited doom.
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