Isaiah 40:18-25

18 With whom, then, will you compare God? To what image will you liken him?
19 As for an idol, a metalworker casts it, and a goldsmith overlays it with gold and fashions silver chains for it.
20 A person too poor to present such an offering selects wood that will not rot; they look for a skilled worker to set up an idol that will not topple.
21 Do you not know? Have you not heard? Has it not been told you from the beginning? Have you not understood since the earth was founded?
22 He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in.
23 He brings princes to naught and reduces the rulers of this world to nothing.
24 No sooner are they planted, no sooner are they sown, no sooner do they take root in the ground, than he blows on them and they wither, and a whirlwind sweeps them away like chaff.
25 “To whom will you compare me? Or who is my equal?” says the Holy One.

Isaiah 40:18-25 Meaning and Commentary


This chapter treats of the comforts of God's people; of the forerunner and coming of the Messiah; of his work, and the dignity of his person; of the folly of making idols, and of the groundless complaints of the church of God. The consolations of God's people, by whom to be administered, and the matter, ground, and reason of them, Isa 40:1,2. John the Baptist, the harbinger of Christ, is described by his work and office, and the effects of it; it issuing in the humiliation of some, and the exaltation of others, and in the revelation of the glory of Christ, Isa 40:3-5, then follows an order to every minister of the Gospel what he should preach and publish; the weakness and insufficiency of men to anything that is spiritually good; their fading and withering goodliness, which is to be ascribed to the blowing of the Spirit of God upon it; and the firmness and constancy of the word of God is declared, Isa 40:6-8, next the apostles of Christ in Jerusalem are particularly exhorted to publish fervently and openly the good tidings of the Gospel; to proclaim the coming of Christ, the manner of it, and the work he came about; and to signify his faithful discharge of his office as a shepherd, Isa 40:9-11, the dignity of whose person is set forth by his almighty power, by his infinite wisdom, and by the greatness of his majesty, in comparison of which all nations and things are as nothing, Isa 40:12-17 and then the vanity of framing any likeness to God, and of forming idols for worship, is observed, Isa 40:18-25, and from the consideration of the divine power in creation and upholding all things, the church of God is encouraged to expect renewed strength and persevering grace, and is blamed for giving way to a distrustful and murmuring spirit, Isa 40:26-31.

Cross References 27

  • 1. S Exodus 8:10; S 1 Samuel 2:2; Isaiah 46:5
  • 2. S Deuteronomy 4:15; Acts 17:29
  • 3. S Exodus 20:4; Psalms 115:4; S Isaiah 37:19; Isaiah 42:17; Jeremiah 2:8,28; Jeremiah 10:8; Jeremiah 16:19; Habakkuk 2:18; Zechariah 10:2
  • 4. Isaiah 41:7; Isaiah 46:6; Jeremiah 10:3
  • 5. Isaiah 2:20; Isaiah 31:7
  • 6. Isaiah 44:19
  • 7. S 1 Samuel 12:21
  • 8. S 1 Samuel 5:3
  • 9. ver 28; 2 Kings 19:25; Isaiah 41:22; Isaiah 42:9; Isaiah 44:8; Isaiah 48:3,5
  • 10. Psalms 19:1; Psalms 50:6; Acts 14:17
  • 11. S Genesis 1:1
  • 12. Romans 1:19
  • 13. Isaiah 48:13; Isaiah 51:13
  • 14. S 2 Chronicles 6:18; S Psalms 2:4
  • 15. S Numbers 13:33; Psalms 104:2; Isaiah 42:5
  • 16. S Genesis 1:1; S Isaiah 48:13
  • 17. S Genesis 1:8; S Job 22:14
  • 18. S Job 36:29
  • 19. S Job 26:7
  • 20. S Job 12:18; S Isaiah 34:12
  • 21. S Job 12:19; Amos 2:3; Job 12:21; Psalms 107:40
  • 22. S Job 5:3
  • 23. S 2 Samuel 22:16; S Isaiah 11:4; Isaiah 41:16
  • 24. S Job 8:12; S Job 18:16
  • 25. S Job 24:24; S Isaiah 41:2
  • 26. ver 18; S 1 Samuel 2:2; S 1 Chronicles 16:25
  • 27. Isaiah 1:4; Isaiah 37:23
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