Say to them [that are] of a fearful heart
Or, "hasty of heart" F23; are at once for flying from the enemy; "hasty" in drawing black conclusions upon themselves and their state; "inconsiderate" of the promises made unto them; ready to doubt of, and call in question, the performance of the above things, respecting the fruitful and flourishing estate of the church: wherefore it must be said to them, Be strong, fear not;
be strong in faith, fear not the enemy, nor doubt of the fulfilment of divine promises, relating to their ruin and your safety: behold, your God will come [with] vengeance;
Christ, who is God in our nature, God manifest in the flesh, and who came by the assumption of human nature; and when he first came, he came with vengeance, and took vengeance on Satan and his works; on him, and his principalities, and powers, whom he spoiled and destroyed, as well as made an end of sin and abolished death; see ( Isaiah 61:2 ) ( 63:4 ) so likewise he came in his kingdom and power, and took vengeance on the Jewish nation, for their disbelief and rejection of him; and which time is expressly called the days of vengeance, ( Luke 21:22 ) and at the time of his spiritual coming he will destroy antichrist with the brightness of it, and avenge the blood of his servants, ( Revelation 18:20 ) ( 19:2 ) and at his personal coming he will take vengeance on them that know not God, and obey not his Gospel, ( 2 Thessalonians 1:8 ) and the words are so expressed as to take in the several times of his coming: and since he has already come, and taken vengeance in some instances, this may serve to encourage, and perhaps the design of it is to encourage, the faith of God's people, with respect to his future coming, and the end and issue of it: [even] God [with a] recompence:
or, "the God of recompence" F24; and so the Targum,
``the Lord of recompences;''both to the wicked a just recompence of reward or punishment for their sins, it being just with him to recompense tribulation to them that trouble his people; and to the saints, the time of his spiritual reign being the time, as to destroy them that destroy the earth, so to give a reward to his servants the prophets, and to the saints, and to them that fear his name, ( Revelation 11:18 ) : he will come and save you;
the end of his first coming was to save his people from sin, the curse and condemnation of the law, from hell, wrath, ruin, and destruction; and the end of his spiritual coming, at the latter day, will be to save his people from their antichristian enemies, from idolatry, superstition, and slavery.
F23 (bl yrhmn) "festinis corde", Vatablus; "praecipitantibus corde", Cocceius; "inconsideratis", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator.
F24 (awh Myhwla lwmg) "praemiator Deus ipse veniet", Castalio.