Therefore your gates shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night; that men may bring to you the forces of the Gentiles, and that their kings may be brought.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Thy gates shall be open continually.—The words imply (1) a state of peace in which there would be no danger of attack; and (2) the constant stream of caravans of pilgrims, With their offerings, entering by night as well as day. It is interesting to note St. John’s transfer of the thought to the heavenly Jerusalem (Revelation 21:25-26).
The forces of the Gentiles.—Better, the riches, or the possessions.
1. That there will be immense multitudes that shall enter the true church from the pagan world.
2. That the gospel will be constantly and unceasingly offered to people. The doors of the church shall at no time be closed. By day and by night, at all seasons and in all places, people may come and obtain salvation. None shall be excluded because the gates shall be closed upon them; none because they are strangers and have come from distant lands; none because there will be no room; none because the conflux shall be so great that the provisions of mercy will be exhausted.
3. It will be a time of safety when the world shall be brought under the influence and the dominion of the Prince of Peace. There will be no need of closing the gates of cities, or of building walls around them. There will be no need to guard against hostile armies or the intrusions of hordes of banditti. There will be no need of guarding against the fraud, oppressions, and dishonest arts of other people. If the principles of the true religion everywhere prevailed, there would be no need of wails to cities, or gates, or bars; no need of ramparts, of ships of war, and of fortifications; no need of bolts and locks and iron chests to guard our property. No true Christian needs to guard himself or his property against another true Christian. No lock, no bolt, no wall, no gate, no iron safe has been made in order to guard against a man who is the sincere friend of the Redeemer. They are made to guard against wicked people; and when universal truth and righteousness prevail, they may be suffered to rust and rot for want of use. Should the principles of Christianity be everywhere diffused, the walls of all cities might be suffered to fall down; their gates to stand open until they should decay; ships of war to lie in the dock until they should sink to the bottom, forts and fleets to be dismantled; and the whole business of making locks and shackles, and of building prisons and manufacturing instruments of war, would come to an end.
That men may bring unto thee - So many shall be coming with the wealth of the Gentiles, that the gates shall be continually open.
The forces of the Gentiles - The wealth of the pagan (see the notes at Isaiah 60:5).
And that their kings may be brought - Lowth renders this, 'That their kings may come pompously attended.' Noyes, 'May come with their retinues.' The Chaldee renders it, 'And their kings be brought bound,' or in chains. But the Hebrew word used here (נהוּגים nehûgı̂ym) denotes simply that they would be led or conducted in any way; and the idea is, that they would be induced, by the force of truth, to come and devote themselves to the service of God, They might be expected, indeed, to come, as Lowth says, pompously attended, but this idea is not in t the Hebrew text.
be brought—as willing captives to the truth; or, if not willingly, be bought by judgments to submit to Israel (Isa 60:12, 14). Gesenius explains it, "may come escorted by a retinue."Therefore; for that end and purpose; or by reason of the conflux of people that shall be continually flocking thither, arguing abundance of peace and security, and great enlargement of the church, and that the Christian church shall be always open to the godly, to receive all comers freely.
The forces; or, wealth; either all wherein they excel, or all the prey taken in fight.
May be brought, as it were, captives in chains, such as they took in war, being made victorious, so say some; but rather, such as were led and conducted in state. Ezekiel 38:11 and of the vast concourse of people to it continually; converts from all parts shall be always coming in, and the gates of the church will stand open always to receive them; they will be welcome, come as many as will; there will be no objection to them, no hinderance of them; ministers and people will gladly embrace them; see Isaiah 26:2 and likewise of the capacity of the church to receive them; for though they will be continually coming in great numbers, yet still there will be room; the gates will not be shut upon them, as unable to receive more; place will be given for them to dwell in; her tents will be enlarged; the curtains of her habitation stretched out; her cords lengthened, and stakes strengthened; so that though she breaks forth on the right hand, and on the left, there will be room for them all, Isaiah 54:2,
they shall not be shut day nor night; this clause is referred to in Revelation 21:25 but there differently expressed,
and the gates of it shall not be shut at all day, for there shall be no night there; the reason of which difference is, because the New Jerusalem state, or personal reign of Christ, will be a perfect state, and no night at all in it; but the spiritual reign of Christ, to which this prophecy relates, will be an imperfect one, though glorious; and therefore mention is made both of day and night:
that men may bring unto thee the forces of the Gentiles; the whole strength of them, their armies; See Gill on Isaiah 60:5. The Targum paraphrases it, the substance of the people, their wealth and riches:
and that their kings may be brought; or "led" (d), either in state, as kings on horseback sometimes are, or rather as captives in chains; see Isaiah 20:4, so the Targum renders it, "bound"; being conquered by mighty grace, and led in chains of love to Christ, and to his church, and become obedient. Kimchi has this note,
"they shall come before the King Messiah, as servants before their masters.''Therefore thy gates shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night; that men may bring unto thee the forces of the Gentiles, and that their kings may be brought.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)11. For Therefore read And (R.V. “also”).
the riches of nations] as Isaiah 60:5.
and that their kings may be brought] R.V. and their kings led with them;—a circumstantial clause. Some commentators would change the passive participle into an active: “their kings being the leaders.” The alteration seems unnecessary.Verse 11. - Thy gates shall be open continually. That all who seek salvation may have free access at all times. There is no fear of enemies entering, since war has ceased (Isaiah 2:4; Isaiah 11:9, etc.). The forces of the Gentiles; rather, the wealth of the Gentiles, as in ver. 5. That their kings may be brought; i.e. forced to come by their subjects, who know that their own prosperity is involved in complete submission to the Church established in Zion, and therefore compel their kings to come and render their homage in person. Colossians 6) observes that this רתאי is the only instance of such a form from ראה (differing therefore from תיראי in Zephaniah 3:15, where we also find the readings תיראי and תראי); and there is a note in the margin of the Masora, חטף לית, to the effect that this תראי is the only one with chateph, i.e., Sheva. Moreover, תּראי (thou shalt see) is the more natural reading, according to Isaiah 66:14 and Zechariah 10:7; more especially as ירא is not a suitable word to use (like pâchad and râgaz in Jeremiah 33:9) in the sense of trembling for joy (compare, on the contrary, ירע, Isaiah 15:4, and רהה in Isaiah 44:8). The true rendering therefore is, "Then wilt thou see and shine," i.e., when thou seest this thou wilt thine, thy face will light up with joy; nâhar as in Psalm 34:6. Luther render it, "Then wilt thou see thy desire, and break out," viz., into shouting; Jerome, on the contrary, has, "Thou wilt overflow, i.e., thou wilt be inundated with waters coming suddenly like rivers."
The impression produced by this revolution is so overpowering, that Zion's heart trembles; yet at the same time it is so elevating, that the straitened heart expands (ורחב, a figure quite unknown to the classical languages, although they have angor and angustia; the lxx renders it καὶ ἐκστήση, after the reading ורהב in Chayug, and Isaac Nathan in his Concordance, entitled נתיב מיר): for hămōn yâm, i.e., everything of value that is possessed by islands and coast lands (hâmōm, groaning, a groaning multitude, more especially of possessions, Psalm 37:16, etc.), is brought to her; and chēl gōyim, the property, i.e., (looking at the plural of the predicate which follows; cf., Haggai 2:7) the riches (gold, silver, etc., Zechariah 14:14) of the heathen, are brought into her, that she may dispose of them to the glory of her God.
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