Isaiah 35:1-10 . CONTINUATION OF THE PROPHECY IN THE THIRTY-FOURTH CHAPTER.
7. parched ground--rather, "the mirage (Hebrew, Sharab, 'the sun's heat') shall become a (real) lake." The sun's rays refracted on the glowing sands at midday give the appearance of a take of water and often deceive the thirsty traveller (compare Jeremiah 2:13 , Isaiah 41:18 ).
grass--rather, "a dwelling or receptacle (answering to the previous habitation) for reeds," &c. (which only grow where there is water, Job 8:11 ). Where once there was no water, water shall abound.
8. highway--such a causeway (raised way, from a Hebrew root, "to cast up") as was used for the march of armies; valleys being filled up, hills and other obstructions removed ( Isaiah 62:10 ; compare Isaiah 40:3 Isaiah 40:4 ).
way of holiness--Hebraism for "the holy way." HORSLEY translates, "the way of the Holy One;" but the words that follow, and Isaiah 35:10 , show it is the way leading the redeemed back to Jerusalem, both the literal and the heavenly ( Isaiah 52:1 , Joel 3:17 , Revelation 21:27 ); still Christ at His coming again shall be the Leader on the way, for which reason it is called, "The way of the Lord" ( Isaiah 40:3 , Malachi 3:1 ).
it shall be for those: the wayfaring men--rather, "He (the Holy One) shall be with them, walking in the way" [HORSLEY].
though fools--rather, "And (even) fools," that is, the simple shall not go astray, namely, because "He shall be with them" ( Matthew 11:25 1 Corinthians 1:26-28 ).
9. No lion--such as might be feared on the way through the wilderness which abounded in wild beasts, back to Judea. Every danger shall be warded off the returning people ( Isaiah 11:6-9 , Ezekiel 34:25 , Hosea 2:18 ). Compare spiritually, Proverbs 3:17 .
10. Language: literally, applying to the return from Babylon; figuratively and more fully to the completed redemption of both literal and spiritual Israel.
joy upon . . . heads--( Psalms 126:2 ). Joy manifested in their countenances. Some fancy an allusion to the custom of pouring oil "upon the head," or wearing chaplets in times of public festivity ( Ecclesiastes 9:8 ).