|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
8:1-8 The sins of Zion were her worst enemies. God will take away her sins, and then no other enemies shall hurt her. Those who profess religion must adorn their profession by godliness and honesty. When become a city of truth and a mountain of holiness, Jerusalem is peaceable and prosperous. Verses 4,5, beautifully describe a state of great outward peace, attended with plenty, temperance, and contentment. The scattered Israelites shall be brought together from all parts. God will never leave nor forsake them in a way of mercy, for this he has promised them; and they shall never leave nor forsake him in a way of duty, as they have promised him. These promises were partly fulfilled in the Jewish church, betwixt the captivity and the time of Christ's coming; and they had fuller accomplishment in the gospel church; but the full import must be as to the future times of the Christian church, or the future restoration of the Jews. With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible; so far are God's thoughts and ways above ours. In the present low state of vital godliness, we can hardly conceive that so complete a change can be made; but a change thus extensive and glorious, can be brought to pass by the almighty power of the new-creating Spirit, in less time than he was pleased to employ in creating the world. Let the hands of all who labour in the cause of the gospel be strong, serving the Lord in true holiness, assured that their labour shall not be in vain.
Verse 3. - I am returned (Zechariah 1:16); I return. When Jerusalem was taken and given over to the enemy, God seemed to have deserted her (Ezekiel 10:18; Ezekiel 11:23); but new the restoration of the exiles, the rebuilding of the temple, the voice of prophecy, showed that the Lord had returned, and that new he will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem (Zechariah 2:10). A city of truth; city of truth; no longer full of lies and treachery and infidelity. God dwelling therein, it shall be "the faithful city" (Isaiah 1:26), in which all that is true and real shall flourish (comp. ver. 16; Zephaniah 3:13). The holy mountain. The hill whereon the temple is built shall be called the holy mountain, because the Lord dwelt in the sanctuary. The prophecy in this and the following verses received a partial fulfilment in the days between Zerubbabel and Christ; but there is a further accomplishment in store.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Thus saith the Lord, I am returned to Zion,.... The temple being now building, and almost finished, and the worship of God restored in it. The Targum renders it, "I will return to Zion"; and it may refer to the time of Christ's incarnation, when the Redeemer came to Zion, Isaiah 59:20 or to the time of the conversion of the Jews in the latter day, of both which it is true; see Romans 11:26,
and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem: or "cause my Shechinah to dwell there", as the Targum paraphrases it; which was fulfilled when the Word was made flesh, , "and dwelt" or "tabernacled" among the inhabitants of Judea and of Jerusalem, and taught his doctrines, and wrought his miracles, in the midst of them; and will be also when he shall dwell among them by his Spirit and grace in the latter day:
and Jerusalem shall be called a city of truth; when Christ, who is "truth" itself, was in it, and the truths of the Gospel were preached there by him and his apostles, and they were received and professed by many, though despised by others; and especially in the latter day, when the Jews shall generally and cordially embrace Christ and his Gospel, and shall worship God in spirit and in truth, and not in that shadowy, formal, and hypocritical way they do now; see Isaiah 1:26 and especially this will be true of the New Jerusalem, into which nothing shall enter that makes a lie, Revelation 21:27,
the mountain of the Lord of hosts; which will be established upon the top of the mountains, and where the Lord will be seen and exalted in his glory, even the Lamb, with the hundred and forty four thousand with him, Isaiah 2:2,
the holy mountain; where the holy word of God will be preached, the holy ordinances administered, and holiness of life and conversation will be strictly attended to; yea, Holiness will be upon the bells of the horses, Zechariah 14:20.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
3. I am returned—that is, I am determined to return. My decree to that effect is gone forth.
Jerusalem … city of truth—that is, faithful to her God, who is the God of truth (Isa 1:21, 26; Joh 17:17). Never yet fully fulfilled, therefore still to be so.
the mountain of the Lord—(Isa 2:2, 3).
holy mountain—(Jer 31:23).
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