Isaiah 48:12-16

Israel Freed

12 “Listen to me, Jacob, Israel, whom I have called: I am he; I am the first and I am the last.
13 My own hand laid the foundations of the earth, and my right hand spread out the heavens; when I summon them, they all stand up together.
14 “Come together, all of you, and listen: Which of the idols has foretold these things? The LORD’s chosen ally will carry out his purpose against Babylon; his arm will be against the Babylonians.[a]
15 I, even I, have spoken; yes, I have called him. I will bring him, and he will succeed in his mission.
16 “Come near me and listen to this: “From the first announcement I have not spoken in secret; at the time it happens, I am there.” And now the Sovereign LORD has sent me, endowed with his Spirit.

Isaiah 48:12-16 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO ISAIAH 48

The prophecy of this chapter is concerning the deliverance and salvation of the Jews, and is addressed unto them; who are described by their natural descent and lineage, and by their hypocrisy in religious things, Isa 48:1,2. By their obstinacy and impudence, and by their proneness to idolatry, and to ascribe that to idols which belonged to God; which were the reasons why the Lord foretold all former things to them, before they came to pass, Isa 48:3-5. And for the same reasons also he declared unto them what should be hereafter, particularly the destruction of Babylon, and their deliverance by Cyrus, Isa 48:6-8. From which account of them it would clearly appear, that it was not for any merits of theirs, but for his own name's sake, for his own glory, that he chose them, purified, and saved them as gold tried in the fire, Isa 48:9-11. He observes his own perfections, his eternity and immutability, and power displayed in creation, to engage their faith in the promise of deliverance, Isa 48:12,13 and points out the deliverer Cyrus, a type of Christ, whom he loved, called, sent, and made him prosperous, Isa 48:14-16. Then he directs them to walk in his ways, with promises of peace and prosperity, Isa 48:17-19. And the chapter is concluded with an exhortation to go out of Babylon with joy, publishing wherever they came their redemption, and who would be supplied with all necessaries in their return to their own land; only it should be observed, that there was no peace or happiness for the wicked, Isa 48:20-22.

Isaiah 48:12-16 In-Context

10 See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.
11 For my own sake, for my own sake, I do this. How can I let myself be defamed? I will not yield my glory to another.
12 “Listen to me, Jacob, Israel, whom I have called: I am he; I am the first and I am the last.
13 My own hand laid the foundations of the earth, and my right hand spread out the heavens; when I summon them, they all stand up together.
14 “Come together, all of you, and listen: Which of the idols has foretold these things? The LORD’s chosen ally will carry out his purpose against Babylon; his arm will be against the Babylonians.
15 I, even I, have spoken; yes, I have called him. I will bring him, and he will succeed in his mission.
16 “Come near me and listen to this: “From the first announcement I have not spoken in secret; at the time it happens, I am there.” And now the Sovereign LORD has sent me, endowed with his Spirit.
17 This is what the LORD says— your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: “I am the LORD your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go.
18 If only you had paid attention to my commands, your peace would have been like a river, your well-being like the waves of the sea.

Cross References 20

  • 1. S Isaiah 46:3
  • 2. Isaiah 41:8; Isaiah 42:6; Isaiah 43:1
  • 3. S Isaiah 43:13
  • 4. S Isaiah 41:4; S Revelation 1:17; Revelation 22:13
  • 5. Hebrews 1:10-12
  • 6. S Genesis 2:1; Exodus 20:11; Job 9:8; Isaiah 40:22; S Isaiah 42:5; Isaiah 45:18; Isaiah 51:16; Isaiah 65:17
  • 7. S Isaiah 34:16; Isaiah 40:26
  • 8. S Isaiah 43:9
  • 9. S Isaiah 41:22
  • 10. S Isaiah 41:2
  • 11. Isaiah 46:10-11
  • 12. S Isaiah 21:9; S Isaiah 45:1; Jeremiah 50:45
  • 13. S Judges 4:10; Isaiah 45:1
  • 14. Isa 44:28-45:4
  • 15. S Isaiah 41:1
  • 16. S Isaiah 33:13
  • 17. S Isaiah 45:19
  • 18. Isa 50:5,7,9
  • 19. Zechariah 2:9,11
  • 20. S Isaiah 11:2

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Or "Chaldeans" ; also in verse 20