Lectionary Calendar
Thursday, June 13th, 2024
the Week of Proper 5 / Ordinary 10
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Bible Commentaries
Isaiah 39

Dummelow's Commentary on the BibleDummelow on the Bible

Verses 1-8


Alliance with Babylon Denounced

Conclusion of the historical appendix. The chapter belongs to the period when Merodach-Baladan of Babylon was making efforts to bring the various peoples of W. Asia into alliance against the common enemy, the king of Assyria (at this time Sargon, Isaiah 20:1). The arrangement of such alliance with Hezekiah was, doubtless, the object of the embassy, and this explains Hezekiah’s gladness and exhibition of his resources (Isaiah 39:2). Congratulation to the king of Judah on his recovery, and enquiry into the astronomical marvel at Jerusalem (Isaiah 38:8) formed pretexts for the embassy (Isaiah 39:1; 2 Kings 20:12; 2 Chronicles 32:31).

1,2. The embassy from Babylon.

3-8. Isaiah rebukes the king and foretells captivity in Babylon.

5f. Isaiah consistently opposes reliance upon a human ally in place of trust in Jehovah.

6, 7. A remarkable prophecy of captivity in Babylon, though the Assyrians were the foe which at this time threatened Judah.

7. Thy sons] fulfilled in the captivity of Manasseh (2 Chronicles 33:11), and later in the fate of Jehoiachin (2 Kings 25:27).

8. Truth] i.e. stability (Jeremiah 14:13).

With words of pious resignation Hezekiah acquiesces in thé will of Jehovah (cp. 1 Samuel 3:18), then in the words that follow—For there shall be peace, etc.—he expresses his thankfulness that the punishment has been postponed. The prediction of the captivity of the royal house must have been a great blow to Hezekiah, especially so since the Hebrews firmly held the principle of the solidarity of the forefather and his posterity. The postponement of the blow was a divine mercy and token of God’s favour, for which Hezekiah did well to be thankful. It is quite unnecessary to read a tone of selfishness into his utterance; on the contrary, his spirit at this time seemed rather to have been one of humble contrition (2 Chronicles 32:26).

Bibliographical Information
Dummelow, John. "Commentary on Isaiah 39". "Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/dcb/isaiah-39.html. 1909.
 
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