Christ's victory over his enemies. (1-6) His mercy toward his church. (7-14) The prayer of the church. (15-19)
Verses 1-6 The prophet, in vision, beholds the Messiah returning in triumph from the conquest of his enemies, of whom Edom was a type. Travelling, not as wearied by the combat, but, in the greatness of his strength, prepared to overcome every opposing power. Messiah declares that he had been treading the wine-press of the wrath of God, ( Revelation 14:19 , Revelation 19:13 ) , and by his own power, without any human help, he had crushed his obstinate opposers, for the day of vengeance was determined on, being the appointed season for rescuing his church. Once, he appeared on earth in apparent weakness, to pour out his precious blood as an atonement for our sins; but he will in due time appear in the greatness of his strength. The vintage ripens apace; the day of vengeance, fixed and determined on, approaches apace; let sinners seek to be reconciled to their righteous Judge, ere he brings down their strength to the earth. Does Christ say, "I come quickly?" let our hearts reply, "Even so, come; let the year of the redeemed come."
Verses 7-14 The latter part of this chapter, and the whole of the next, seem to express the prayers of the Jews on their conversation. They acknowledge God's great mercies and favours to their nation. They confess their wickedness and hardness of heart; they entreat his forgiveness, and deplore the miserable condition under which they have so long suffered. The only-begotten Son of the Father became the Angel or Messenger of his love; thus he redeemed and bare them with tenderness. Yet they murmured, and resisted his Holy Spirit, despising and persecuting his prophets, rejecting and crucifying the promised Messiah. All our comforts and hopes spring from the loving-kindness of the Lord, and all our miseries and fears from our sins. But he is the Saviour, and when sinners seek after him, who in other ages glorified himself by saving and feeding his purchased flock, and leading them safely through dangers, and has given his Holy Spirit to prosper the labours of his ministers, there is good ground to hope they are discovering the way of peace.
Verses 15-19 They beseech him to look down on the abject condition of their once-favoured nation. Would it not be glorious to his name to remove the veil from their hearts, to return to the tribes of his inheritance? The Babylonish captivity, and the after-deliverance of the Jews, were shadows of the events here foretold. The Lord looks down upon us in tenderness and mercy. Spiritual judgments are more to be dreaded than any other calamities; and we should most carefully avoid those sins which justly provoke the Lord to leave men to themselves and to their deceiver. "Our Redeemer from everlasting" is thy name; thy people have always looked upon thee as the God to whom they might appeal. The Lord will hear the prayers of those who belong to him, and deliver them from those not called by his name.
This chapter contains a prophecy of the vengeance of Christ upon the enemies of his church in the latter day, whereby complete salvation would be obtained for them; and this illustrated by the mercies of God to the people of Israel of old; and is concluded with the church s prayer to him. The account of the vengeance taken by Christ on his enemies is introduced by a colloquy between him and his church; who puts a question, in which he is described by the places from whence he came, by his apparel, and by his manner of walking; to which he returns an answer, Isa 63:1, then a second question is put, about the colour of his garments; for which he gives a reason, Isa 63:2,3 it being the time of his vengeance on his enemies, and of the redemption of his people, Isa 63:4 the manner in which he performed both is observed, Isa 63:5 and the thorough work he would make; and the entire riddance of all his enemies is determined upon, Isa 63:6, which puts the prophet, or the church, in mind of former mercies bestowed upon Israel of old, the peculiar people and children of God, the Lord had a great opinion of, and favour for, whom he dealt very tenderly with, and redeemed, and saved, and preserved, Isa 63:7-9 though they acted an ungrateful part to him, which is aggravated by the various kind steps of Providence, in leading them through the Red sea, guiding them in the wilderness, and bringing them to rest safely in Canaan's land, for his own glory, Isa 63:10-14 and all is closed with the church's prayer to God, imploring his grace and mercy; pleading relation to him; expostulating with him about their present case, and observing the difference between them and their enemies, Isa 63:15-19 and which prayer is continued in the next chapter.