66:1 Thus saith the LORD, The a heaven [is] my throne, and the
earth [is] my footstool: where [is] the house that ye build
to me? and where [is] the place of my rest?
(a) My majesty is so great, that it fills both heaven and
earth, and therefore cannot be included in a temple
like an idol, condemning by this their main confidence
which trusted in the temple and sacrifices.
66:2 For all these [things] hath my hand made, b and all these
[things] have been, saith the LORD: but to this [man] will
I look, [even] to [him that is] poor and of c a contrite
spirit, and trembleth at my word.
(b) Seeing that both the temple and the things in it, with
the sacrifices were made and done by his appointment,
he shows that he has no need of it, and that he can be
without them, (see Geneva "Ps 50:10").
(c) To him that is humble and pure in heart, who receives
my doctrine with reverence and fear.
66:3 He that killeth an ox [is as if] he d slew a man; he that
sacrificeth a lamb, [as if] he cut off a dog's neck; he
that offereth an oblation, [as if he offered] swine's
blood; he that burneth incense, [as if] he blessed an idol.
Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul
delighteth in their abominations.
(d) Because the Jews thought themselves holy by offering
their sacrifices, and in the mean season had neither
faith or repentance, God shows that he no less detests
these ceremonies than he does the sacrifices of the
heathen, who offered men, dogs and swine to their
idols, which things were expressly forbidden in the
66:4 I also will e choose their delusions, and will bring
their fears upon them; because when I called, none did
answer; when I spoke, they did not hear: but they did evil
before my eyes, and chose [that] in which I delighted not.
(e) I will discover their wickedness and hypocrisy, with
which they think to blind my eyes to all the world.
66:5 Hear the word of the LORD, ye that tremble at his f word;
Your brethren that hated you, that cast you out for my
name's sake, said, Let the LORD be glorified: but he shall
appear to your joy, and they shall be ashamed.
(f) He encourages the faithful by promising to destroy
their enemies, who pretended to be as brethren, but
were hypocrites, and hated them that feared God.
66:6g A voice of noise from the city, a voice from the
temple, a voice of the LORD that rendereth recompence to
g The enemies will shortly hear a more terrible voice,
even fire and slaughter, seeing they would not hear the
gentle voice of the prophets, who called them to
66:7 Before h she travailed, she brought forth; before her
pain came, she was delivered of a male child.
(h) Meaning, that the restoration of the church would be so
sudden and contrary to all men's opinions as when a
woman is delivered before she looked for it, and
without pain in travail.
66:8 Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things?
Shall the earth be made to bring forth in one i day?
[or] shall a nation be born at once? for as soon as Zion
travailed, she brought forth her children.
(i) This will pass the capacity of man to see such a
multitude that will come up at once, meaning under the
preaching of the gospel of which they who came out of
Babylon were a sign.
66:9 Shall I k bring to the birth, and not cause to bring
forth? saith the LORD: shall I cause to bring forth, and
shut [the womb]? saith thy God.
(k) Declaring by this that as by his power and providence
women travailed and delivered so he gives power to
bring forth the Church at his appointed time.
66:11 That ye may nurse, l and be satisfied with the breasts
of her consolations; that ye may draw milk, and be
delighted with the abundance of her glory.
(l) That is may rejoice for all the blessings that God
bestows on his Church.
66:12 For thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will extend m peace
to her like a river, and the glory of the n Gentiles
like a flowing stream: then shall ye be nursed, ye shall
be o borne upon [her] sides, and be dandled upon [her]
(m) I will give her happiness and prosperity in great
(n) Read (Isa 60:16).
(o) You will be cherished as her dearly beloved children.
66:14 And when ye see [this], your heart shall rejoice, and your
p bones shall flourish like an herb: and the hand of the
LORD shall be known toward his servants, and [his]
indignation toward his enemies.
(p) You will have new strength and new beauty.
66:15 For, behold, the LORD will come with fire, and with his
chariots like a whirlwind, to q render his anger with
fury, and his rebuke with flames of fire.
(q) This vengeance God began to execute at the destruction
of Babylon and has always continued it against the
enemies of his Church, and will do till the last day,
which will be the accomplishment of it.
66:17 They that sanctify r themselves, and purify themselves
in the gardens behind one [tree] in the midst, eating s
swine's flesh, and the abomination, and the mouse, shall
be consumed together, saith the LORD.
(r) Meaning, the hypocrites.
(s) By which are meant them that maliciously transgressed
the law, by eating beasts forbidden, even to the mouse
which nature abhors.
66:18 For I [know] their works and their thoughts: it shall
come, that I will gather all nations and tongues; and they
shall come, and see my t glory.
(t) The Gentiles will be partakers of that glory, which
before I showed to the Jews.
66:19 And I will set a u sign among them, and I will send
those that x escape of them to the nations, [to] y
Tarshish, z Pul, and a Lud, that draw the b bow,
[to] c Tubal, and d Javan, [to] the isles afar off,
that have not heard my fame, neither have seen my glory;
and e they shall declare my glory among the Gentiles.
(u) I will make these that I chose, that they perish not
with the rest of the infidels: by which he alludes to
the marking of the posts of his people, whom he
preserved, (Ex 12:7).
(x) I will scatter the rest of the Jews, who escaped
destruction, into various nations.
(y) That is, Cecilia.
(z) Meaning Africa.
(a) That is Lydia, or Asia minor.
(b) Signifying the Parthians.
(e) Meaning, the apostles, disciples and others who he
first chose of the Jews to preach to the Gentiles.
66:20 And they shall bring all your f brethren [for] an
offering to the LORD out of all nations upon g horses,
and in chariots, and in litters, and upon mules, and upon
swift beasts, to my holy mountain Jerusalem, saith the
LORD, as the children of Israel bring an offering in a
clean vessel into the house of the LORD.
(f) That is the Gentiles, who by faith will be made the
children of Abraham as you are.
(g) By which he means that no necessary means will want,
when God will call the Gentiles to the knowledge of
66:21 And I will also take of them for h priests [and] for
Levites, saith the LORD.
(h) That is, of the Gentiles, as he did Luke, Timothy and
Titus first, and others after to preach his word.
66:22 For as the new i heavens and the new earth, which I will
make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall
your seed and your name remain.
(i) By this he signifies the kingdom of Christ in which
his Church will be renewed, and where before there
were appointed seasons to sacrifice in this there will
be one continual Sabbath, so that all times and
seasons will be meet.
66:24 And they shall go forth, and look upon the k carcases of
the men that have transgressed against me: for their l
worm shall not die, neither shall their fire be quenched;
and they shall be an abhorrence m to all flesh.
(k) As he who declared the happiness that will be within
the Church for the comfort of the godly, so does he
show what horrible calamity will come to the wicked,
that are out of the Church.
(l) Meaning, a continual torment of conscience, which will
always gnaw them, and never permit them to be at rest,
(m) This is the just recompense for the wicked, who
contemning God and his word, will be by God's just
judgments abhorred by all his creatures.