44:2 Thus saith the LORD that made thee, and formed a thee
from the womb, [who] will help thee; Fear not, O Jacob, my
servant; and thou, Jesurun, b whom I have chosen.
(a) He treated and chose you from the beginning of his own
mercy, and before you could merit anything.
(b) Whom God accepts as righteous: or who had opportunity
to it because of the law, and your holy calling.
44:3 For I will pour water upon him that is c thirsty, and
floods upon the dry ground: I will pour my spirit upon thy
seed, and my blessing upon thy offspring:
(c) Because man of himself is as the dry and barren land,
he promises to moisten him with the waters of his Holy
Spirit, (Joel 2:28, Joh 7:38, Ac 2:17).
44:4 And they d shall spring up [as] among the grass, as
willows by the water courses.
(d) That is, your children and posterity will increase
wonderfully after their deliverance from Babylon.
44:5 One shall say, I [am] the LORD'S; and another e shall
call [himself] by the name of Jacob; and another shall
write [with] his hand to the LORD, and surname [himself] by
the name of Israel.
(e) By this diversity of speech he means one thing, that
is, that the people will be holy, and receive the true
religion from God, as in (Ps 87:5).
44:6 Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer
the LORD of hosts; f I [am] the first, and I [am] the
last; and besides me [there is] no God.
44:7 And who, as I, shall g call, and shall declare it, and
set h it in order for me, since I appointed the i
ancient people? and the things that are coming, and shall
come, let k them show to them.
(g) And appoint them that will deliver the Church.
(h) That is, tell me how I should proceed in this.
(i) God calls the Israelites ancient, because he preferred
them to all others in his eternal election.
(k) Meaning, their idols.
44:8 Fear ye not, neither be afraid: have not I told thee from
that time, and have declared [it]? l ye [are] even my
witnesses. Is there a God besides me? verily, [there is] no
God; I know not [any].
44:9 They that make a graven image [are] all of them vanity; and
m their delectable things shall not profit; and they
[are] their own witnesses; n they see not, nor know; that
they may be ashamed.
(m) Whatever they bestow on their idols, to make them seem
(n) That is, the idolaters seeing that their idols are
blind, are witnesses of their own blindness, and
feeling that they are not able to help them, must
confess that they have no power.
44:10 Who hath formed a o god, or cast a graven image [that]
is p profitable for nothing?
(o) Meaning that whatever is made by the hand of man, if
it is valued as a god, is most detestable.
(p) By which appears their blasphemy, who call images the
books of the laity, seeing that they are not only here
called unprofitable, but in (Isa 41:24)
abominable. Jeremiah calls them the work of errors,
(Jer 10:15), Habakkuk, a lying teacher
44:11 Behold, all his q fellows shall be ashamed: and the
workmen, they [are] of men: let them all be gathered
together, let them r stand up; [yet] they shall fear,
[and] they shall be ashamed together.
(q) That is, who in any way consent either to the making
(r) Signifying, that the multitude will not then save the
idolaters, when God will take vengeance, although they
excuse themselves by it among men.
44:12 The smith with the tongs both worketh in the coals, and
fashioneth it with hammers, and worketh it with the
strength of his arms: yea, he is s hungry, and his
strength faileth: he drinketh no water, and is faint.
(s) He describes the raging affection of the idolaters,
who forget their own necessities to set forth their
devotion toward their idols.
44:13 The carpenter stretcheth out [his] rule; he marketh it out
with a line; he fitteth it with planes, and he marketh it
out with the compass, and maketh it after the figure of a
man, according to the beauty of a man; that it may remain
in t the house.
(t) To place it in some Temple.
44:15 Then shall it be for a man to burn: for he will take of
it, and u warm himself; indeed, he kindleth [it], and
baketh bread; yea, he maketh a god, and worshippeth [it];
he maketh it a graven image, and falleth down to it.
(u) He sets forth the obstinacy and malice of the
idolaters who though they see by daily experience that
their idols are no better than the rest of the matter
of which they are made, yet they refuse the one part,
and make a god of the other, as the papists make their
cake god, and the rest of their idols.
44:16 He burneth part of it in the fire; with part of it he x
eateth flesh; he roasteth meat, and is satisfied: yea, he
warmeth [himself], and saith, Aha, I am warm, I have seen
(x) That is, he either makes a table or trenchers.
44:18 They have not known nor understood: y for he hath shut
their eyes, that they cannot see; [and] their hearts, that
they cannot understand.
(y) The prophet gives here an answer to all them who
wonder how it is possible that any would be so blind
as to commit such abomination, saying that God has
blinded their eyes, and hardened their hearts.
44:20 He feedeth z on ashes: a deceived heart hath turned him
aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, [Is
there] not a lie in my right hand?
(z) He is abused as one that would eat ashes, thinking to
satisfy his hunger.
44:21a Remember these, O Jacob and Israel; for thou [art] my
servant: I have formed thee; thou [art] my servant: O
Israel, thou shalt not be forgotten by me.
(a) Showing that man's heart is most inclined to idolatry,
and therefore he warns his people by these examples,
that they should not cleave to any but to the living
God, when they should be among the idolaters.
44:23b Sing, O ye heavens; for the LORD hath done [it]:
shout, ye lower parts of the earth: break forth into
singing, ye mountains, O forest, and every tree in it: for
the LORD hath redeemed Jacob, and glorified himself in
(b) He shows that the work of the Lord toward his people
will be so great, that the insensible creatures will
be moved with it.
44:25 That frustrateth the c tokens of the liars, and maketh
diviners mad; that turneth wise [men] backward, and maketh
their knowledge foolish;
(c) He arms them against the soothsayers of Babylon, who
would have said that they knew by the stars that God
would not deliver Israel, and that Babylon would
44:26 That confirmeth the word of his d servant, and
performeth the counsel of his messengers; that saith to
Jerusalem, Thou shalt be inhabited; and to the cities of
Judah, Ye shall be built, and I will raise up her decayed
(d) Of Isaiah and the rest of his prophets, who assured
the Church of God's favour and deliverance.
44:27 That saith to the e deep, Be dry, and I will dry up thy
(e) He shows that God's work would be no less notable in
this their deliverance, than when he brought them out
of Egypt, through the sea.
44:28 That saith of f Cyrus, [He is] my shepherd, and he shall
perform all my pleasure: even saying to Jerusalem, Thou
shalt be built; and to the temple, Thy foundation shall be
(f) To assure them of their deliverance he names the
person by whom it would be, more than a hundred years
before he was born.