11:10-16 When the gospel should be publicly preached, the Gentiles would seek Christ Jesus as their Lord and Saviour, and find rest of soul. When God's time is come for the deliverance of his people, mountains of opposition shall become plains before him. God can soon turn gloomy days into glorious ones. And while we expect the Lord to gather his ancient people, and bring them home to his church, also to bring in the fulness of the Gentiles, when all will be united in holy love, let us tread the highway of holiness he has made for his redeemed. Let us wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life, looking to him to prepare our way through death, that river which separates this world from the eternal world.
11. set … hand—take in hand the work. Therefore the coming restoration of the Jews is to be distinct from that after the Babylonish captivity, and yet to resemble it. The first restoration was literal, therefore so shall the second be; the latter, however, it is implied here, shall be much more universal than the former (Isa 43:5-7; 49:12, 17, 18; Eze 37:21; Ho 3:5; Am 9:14, 15; Mic 4:6, 7; Zep 3:19, 20; Zec 10:10; Jer 23:8). As to the "remnant" destined by God to survive the judgments on the nation, compare Jer 46:28.
Pathros—one of the three divisions of Egypt, Upper Egypt.
Cush—either Ethiopia, south of Egypt, now Abyssinia, or the southern parts of Arabia, along the Red Sea.
Elam—Persia, especially the southern part of it now called Susiana.
Shinar—Babylonian Mesopotamia, the plain between the Euphrates and the Tigris: in it Babel was begun (Ge 10:10). In the Assyrian inscriptions Rawlinson distinguishes three periods: (1) The Chaldean; from 2300 B.C. to 1500, in which falls Chedorlaomer (Ge 14:1-17), called in the cuneiform characters Kudur of Hur, or Ur of the Chaldees, and described as the conqueror of Syria. The seat of the first Chaldean empire was in the south, towards the confluence of the Tigris and Euphrates. (2) The Assyrian, down to 625 B.C. (3) The Babylonian, from 625 to 538 B.C., when Babylon was taken by the Persian Cyrus.
islands of … sea—the far western regions beyond the sea [Jerome].