I will greatly rejoice in the Lord
These are not the words of the prophet spoken in his own person, rejoicing in the goodness of the Lord to his people and countrymen; nor of Christ; but of the church, especially the Jewish church, expressing her joy for benefits received, as declared in the preceding verses. The Targum is,
``Jerusalem said, rejoicing I will rejoice in the Word of the Lord;''not in his word of promise, but in his essential Word, his Son the Messiah; in his person, offices, fulness, righteousness, and salvation:
my soul shall be joyful in my God;
in Christ, in that he is God, and so able to save to the uttermost, and keep from a final and total falling, and to preserve safe to his kingdom and glory: hence his person is excellent; his blood precious; his righteousness valuable; and his sacrifice efficacious; and all matter of joy to the believer: and who also rejoices in that he is his God, "my God"; God in our nature; Immanuel, God with us; the God-man and Mediator, through whom there is access to God and acceptance with him; and who stands in near relation to his people, and has all fullness to supply their wants, and makes all he has theirs; so that, they have great reason to rejoice in him indeed. The Targum is,
``my soul shall rejoice in the salvation of my God;''the nature of this joy may be collected from the text itself: it is not a carnal one, or the joy of a carnal man in carnal things, it is spiritual; nor a pharisaical joy, a rejoicing in a man's self, in his own works of righteousness, for this "is in the Lord"; nor is it a hypocritical one, or only externally, for it is the soul that rejoices; and it is the joy of faith, or in the Lord, as "my God"; and a very great one it is, joy unspeakable, and full of glory; and is what continues, as the matter and ground of it always does, as follows: "for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation"; with salvation as garments; the salvation of Christ, which, like garments, is without men, being wrought out by Christ; and is brought near, and applied by the spirit of Christ; and is all around, and encompasses the saints as such, and like them beautifies and adorns them, and keeps them warm and comfortable, when they have the joys of it; and which secures them from the storms of divine wrath and vengeance; and the plural number being used may denote the fulness and completeness of this salvation, from all sin, from wrath, hell, and damnation, and from every enemy: and this is matter of joy to the believer interested in it, and clothed with it; since it is a salvation so great; a garment so fitting and suitable, and had at free cost; and in which the glory of all the divine perfections is so conspicuous, as well as it being so full, complete, and perfect, and an everlasting one:
he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness:
not with her own, that is a rag, and not a robe, and a filthy one too, ( Isaiah 64:6 ) and no covering, and is indeed no righteousness, properly speaking; but the righteousness of Christ, the best robe, the wedding garment, and change of raiment, which, like a robe, is upon believers, but not in them; it in Christ, and imputed to them; it covers their persons and their nakedness, and all their sins, so as not to be seen with the eye of avenging justice: to clothe and cover with it is God's act of imputation, and Christ's application of it by his Spirit, ( Zechariah 3:4 ) , which, perceived by the believer, causes great joy; it being all of a piece, like Christ's seamless robe, and so pure and spotless, so perfect and complete, and so rich and glorious:
as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments;
or, "adorns" himself
in a princely or priestly manner
F4; for the word used signifies both. The sense is, as a bridegroom puts on the best clothes he has on his wedding day, and makes the appearance of a prince in his richest robes, or as the high priest when he had on all his sacerdotal garments; so the Targum,
``as a bridegroom that flourishes in his bridechamber, and as the high priest who is adorned with his garments:''and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels;
or "implements" F5; and makes herself as fine as she can, to recommend herself to her spouse and her friends: thus richly and magnificently arrayed is the church of Christ, and every believer, being clothed with his righteousness; he and they are in the same relation; he is the bridegroom, they the bride; and they are clothed alike with the garment down to the foot; and are righteous as he is righteous; and are herewith as a bride adorned and made ready for her husband; and the joy at such a solemnity fitly expresses the mutual joy of Christ and his church; see ( Revelation 19:7 Revelation 19:8 ) ( 21:2 ) ( Isaiah 62:5 ) so Christ's righteousness is compared to a wedding garment, ( Matthew 22:12 ) .
F4 (Nhky) "sacerdotali more ornabit", Tigurine version; "qui sacerdotem refert ornatu", Piscator.
F5 (hylk) "vasis suis", Vatablus, Montanus; "instrumentis"; Junius & Tremellius, De Dieu.