Isaiah 2

1 The word that Isaiah son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.
2 In days to come the mountain of the Lord's house shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and shall be raised above the hills; all the nations shall stream to it.
3 Many peoples shall come and say, "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths." For out of Zion shall go forth instruction, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.
4 He shall judge between the nations, and shall arbitrate for many peoples; they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
5 O house of Jacob, come, let us walk in the light of the Lord!
6 For you have forsaken the ways of [a] your people, O house of Jacob. Indeed they are full of diviners [b] from the east and of soothsayers like the Philistines, and they clasp hands with foreigners.
7 Their land is filled with silver and gold, and there is no end to their treasures; their land is filled with horses, and there is no end to their chariots.
8 Their land is filled with idols; they bow down to the work of their hands, to what their own fingers have made.
9 And so people are humbled, and everyone is brought low— do not forgive them!
10 Enter into the rock, and hide in the dust from the terror of the Lord, and from the glory of his majesty.
11 The haughty eyes of people shall be brought low, and the pride of everyone shall be humbled; and the Lord alone will be exalted on that day.
12 For the Lord of hosts has a day against all that is proud and lofty, against all that is lifted up and high;
13 against all the cedars of Lebanon, lofty and lifted up; and against all the oaks of Bashan;
14 against all the high mountains, and against all the lofty hills;
15 against every high tower, and against every fortified wall;
16 against all the ships of Tarshish, and against all the beautiful craft.
17 The haughtiness of people shall be humbled, and the pride of everyone shall be brought low; and the Lord alone will be exalted on that day.
18 The idols shall utterly pass away.
19 Enter the caves of the rocks and the holes of the ground, from the terror of the Lord, and from the glory of his majesty, when he rises to terrify the earth.
20 On that day people will throw away to the moles and to the bats their idols of silver and their idols of gold, which they made for themselves to worship,
21 to enter the caverns of the rocks and the clefts in the crags, from the terror of the Lord, and from the glory of his majesty, when he rises to terrify the earth.
22 Turn away from mortals, who have only breath in their nostrils, for of what account are they?

Isaiah 2 Commentary

Chapter 2

The conversion of the Gentiles, Description of the sinfulness of Israel. (1-9) The awful punishment of unbelievers. (10-22)

Verses 1-9 The calling of the Gentiles, the spread of the gospel, and that far more extensive preaching of it yet to come, are foretold. Let Christians strengthen one another, and support one another. It is God who teaches his people, by his word and Spirit. Christ promotes peace, as well as holiness. If all men were real Christians, there could be no war; but nothing answering to these expressions has yet taken place on the earth. Whatever others do, let us walk in the light of this peace. Let us remember that when true religion flourishes, men delight in going up to the house of the Lord, and in urging others to accompany them. Those are in danger who please themselves with strangers to God; for we soon learn to follow the ways of persons whose company we keep. It is not having silver and gold, horses and chariots, that displeases God, but depending upon them, as if we could not be safe, and easy, and happy without them, and could not but be so with them. Sin is a disgrace to the poorest and the lowest. And though lands called Christian are not full of idols, in the literal sense, are they not full of idolized riches? and are not men so busy about their gains and indulgences, that the Lord, his truths, and precepts, are forgotten or despised?

Verses 10-22 The taking of Jerusalem by the Chaldeans seems first meant here, when idolatry among the Jews was done away; but our thoughts are led forward to the destruction of all the enemies of Christ. It is folly for those who are pursued by the wrath of God, to think to hide or shelter themselves from it. The shaking of the earth will be terrible to those who set their affections on things of the earth. Men's haughtiness will be brought down, either by the grace of God convincing them of the evil of pride, or by the providence of God depriving them of all the things they were proud of. The day of the Lord shall be upon those things in which they put their confidence. Those who will not be reasoned out of their sins, sooner or later shall be frightened out of them. Covetous men make money their god; but the time will come when they will feel it as much their burden. This whole passage may be applied to the case of an awakened sinner, ready to leave all that his soul may be saved. The Jews were prone to rely on their heathen neighbours; but they are here called upon to cease from depending on mortal man. We are all prone to the same sin. Then let not man be your fear, let not him be your hope; but let your hope be in the Lord your God. Let us make this our great concern.

Footnotes 4

  • [a]. Heb lacks [the ways of]
  • [b]. Cn: Heb lacks [of diviners]
  • [c]. Cn Compare Gk: Heb [low]
  • [d]. Compare Gk: Meaning of Heb uncertain

Chapter Summary

INTRODUCTION TO ISAIAH 2

This chapter contains a vision or prophecy of the enlargement of Christ's kingdom and interest, and of the glory of his church in the latter day, by the calling of the Gentiles, and the numerous conversions of them to it, and of the abolition of idolatry, and the destruction of the antichristian party. The inscription to it is in Isa 2:1 the prophecy itself follows; the date of it is the last days; the subject matter of it, the kingdom, interest, and church of Christ, signified by the mountain of the Lord's house; its glorious estate is expressed by its establishment on the mountains; by its exaltation above the hills; and by the great numbers that should flock to it, and should encourage one another to go up to it, in order to learn the ways of God, and walk in them; the means of which is the Gospel preached, that should go out of Jerusalem; the effect of that is peace among the nations: hence the house of Jacob is exhorted to walk in the light held forth by it, Isa 2:2-5 and then the reasons are given of God's rejecting and forsaking some that bear the Christian name, called the house of Jacob; namely, their Heathenish superstition, idolatry, covetousness, and confidence in their riches; who are sarcastically called upon to hide themselves in the rocks for fear of the Lord, Isa 2:6-10 when the judgments of God are denounced on the proud and lofty, comparable to cedars, oaks, mountains, hills, high towers, fenced walls, and ships of the ocean, at which time, Christ, and he alone, will be exalted, and idolatry utterly abolished; the consequence of which will be the utmost dread and terror to all idolaters, Isa 2:11-21 and the chapter is concluded with an exhortation to such to cease from the man of sin, and have him in no account, Isa 2:22.

Isaiah 2 Commentaries