15 million Ukrainian are displaced by Russia's war.
Millions miss a meal or two each day.
Help us change that! Click to donate today!

Bible Commentaries

Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible

Isaiah 45

Verses 1-25

The Meaning of the Conquests of Cyrus

1-13. The conquests of Cyrus are ordained by Jehovah for His purposes. Let not Israel Criticise the manner of its deliverance.

14-17. Great honour awaits Israel.

18-25. All the world shall recognise Jehovah’s righteousness and power.

1. His anointed] as being consecrated to carry out the purposes of Jehovah, i.e. to release Israel from Babylon. This is the only place where a non-Israelite king is so entitled. Somewhat similarly Nebuchadnezzar is called Jehovah’s servant (Jeremiah 27:6; Jeremiah 43:10).

Whose right hand I have holden] cp. Isaiah 41:13.

Loose the loins] lit. ’ungird,’ i.e. disarm.

The two leaved gates] i.e. of the cities which Cyrus attacks.

2. Crooked.. straight] RV ’rugged.. plain.’

3. Treasures] referring primarily to the vast wealth of Babylon: cp. Jeremiah 51:13. Cyrus also captured Sardis with the riches of Crœsus (Herod. I, 84).

4. Surnamed] i.e. given an honourable title, referring to ’Anointed’ (Isaiah 45:1), or to ’shepherd’ (Isaiah 44:28).

5. Though thou hast] better, ’when thou didst not know me,’ i.e. before thy birth: cp. Isaiah 49:1. Or it may mean, before thou didst acknowledge me: cp. Ezra 1:1, Ezra 1:2.

7. Evil] not moral evil, but misfortune or calamity, the opposite of peace.

8. Righteousness] i.e. fidelity to promises: so also Isaiah 45:13.

9f. A possible objection is now met from Israelites dissatisfied, either with the nationality of the deliverer (a Gentile instead of a prince of the House of David), or with the tardy approach of the deliverance. Let.. potsherd] RV ’a potsherd among the potsherds of the earth!’

11. Ask, etc.] Read as interrogative, ’Will ye ask.. will ye command me?’

13. Him] i.e. Cyrus. Will Israel venture to dictate to Jehovah what He shall ordain for His people?

14. The nations shall come to acknowledge the God of Israel.

15. An exclamation of wonder on the prophet’s part at the unsearchable ways of God. Some have understood the words as an expression of the wondering adoration of the nations. Hidest] refers to the period of the exile, when Jehovah seemed not to hear the prayers of His people nor to help them.

19. Not.. in secret] Jehovah had plainly foretold the future, so that men might compare the prophecy with the event. I said not.. Seek ye me in vain] Israel’s hopes will not be disappointed.

21. A challenge to the idolaters, Jehovah is the only God who can fulfil His prophecies; therefore shall all the nations acknowledge Him (Isaiah 45:22-23).

23. The religion of Israel is to become the religion of the whole world. This anticipation finds its fulfilment in the Christian dispensation, and thus St. Paul applies the latter part of the v. to Christ in Philippians 2:10, Philippians 2:11.

24. Read, ’Only in the Lord, shall one say unto me, is righteousness and strength.’

25. Be justified] lit. ’be righteous.’

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Dummelow, John. "Commentary on Isaiah 45". "Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". 1909.