Isaiah 57:17-21

17 Because of their wicked covetousness I was angry; I struck them, I hid and was angry; but they kept turning back to their own ways.
18 I have seen their ways, but I will heal them; I will lead them and repay them with comfort, creating for their mourners the fruit of the lips.
19 Peace, peace, to the far and the near, says the Lord; and I will heal them.
20 But the wicked are like the tossing sea that cannot keep still; its waters toss up mire and mud.
21 There is no peace, says my God, for the wicked.

Isaiah 57:17-21 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO ISAIAH 57

This chapter contains complaints of the stupidity and idolatry of the people, described in the latter part of the preceding chapter; and some promises of grace to the people of God. The stupidity of the former is observed, Isa 57:1 they not taking notice of the death of good men, nor of impending calamities they were taken from, whose happiness is described, Isa 57:2, then these idolatrous people are summoned before the Lord, Isa 57:3 and are charged with deriding the saints with idolatry and murder, Isa 57:4-6 and their idolatry is represented under the notion of adultery, attended with very aggravating circumstances, Isa 57:7-9 and yet these people still entertained presumptuous hopes of happiness, and boasted of, and trusted in, their righteousness and good works, which would be exposed, and be of no advantage to them, Isa 57:10-12, next follow promises of grace to the saints, that such that trusted in Christ should inherit the holy mountain, Isa 57:13 that the stumblingblock of his people should be removed, Isa 57:14, that he should dwell with the humble and contrite, Isa 57:15, and not be always wroth and contend with them, for a reason given, Isa 57:16 and that though he had smote them, and hid his face from them because of their sins, yet would heal them, lead them, and comfort them, and speak peace unto them, Isa 57:17-19 and the chapter is concluded with the character of the wicked, and an assurance that there is no peace for them, Isa 57:20,21.

Isaiah 57:17-21 In-Context

15 For thus says the high and lofty one who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with those who are contrite and humble in spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite.
16 For I will not continually accuse, nor will I always be angry; for then the spirits would grow faint before me, even the souls that I have made.
17 Because of their wicked covetousness I was angry; I struck them, I hid and was angry; but they kept turning back to their own ways.
18 I have seen their ways, but I will heal them; I will lead them and repay them with comfort, creating for their mourners the fruit of the lips.
19 Peace, peace, to the far and the near, says the Lord; and I will heal them.
20 But the wicked are like the tossing sea that cannot keep still; its waters toss up mire and mud.
21 There is no peace, says my God, for the wicked.

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Meaning of Heb uncertain
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.