King James Bible
with Catholic Commentary by George Leo Haydock

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Isaiah 54

The increase of the church by the conversion of the Jews and Gentiles. (1-5) Its certain deliverance. (6-10) Its triumphant state is described. (11-17)

Isaiah 54 Audio:

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The increase of the church by the conversion of the Jews and Gentiles

1 Sing, O barren, thou that didst not bear; break forth into singing, and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith the LORD.

2 Enlarge the place of thy tent, and let them stretch forth the curtains of thine habitations: spare not, lengthen thy cords, and strengthen thy stakes;

3 For thou shalt break forth on the right hand and on the left; and thy seed shall inherit the Gentiles, and make the desolate cities to be inhabited.

4 Fear not; for thou shalt not be ashamed: neither be thou confounded; for thou shalt not be put to shame: for thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth, and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood any more.

5 For thy Maker is thine husband; the LORD of hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall he be called.

Its certain deliverance

6 For the LORD hath called thee as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, and a wife of youth, when thou wast refused, saith thy God.

7 For a small moment have I forsaken thee; but with great mercies will I gather thee.

8 In a little wrath I hid my face from thee for a moment; but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee, saith the LORD thy Redeemer.

9 For this is as the waters of Noah unto me: for as I have sworn that the waters of Noah should no more go over the earth; so have I sworn that I would not be wroth with thee, nor rebuke thee.

10 For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, saith the LORD that hath mercy on thee.

Its triumphant state is described

11 O thou afflicted, tossed with tempest, and not comforted, behold, I will lay thy stones with fair colours, and lay thy foundations with sapphires.

12 And I will make thy windows of agates, and thy gates of carbuncles, and all thy borders of pleasant stones.

13 And all thy children shall be taught of the LORD; and great shall be the peace of thy children.

14 In righteousness shalt thou be established: thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near thee.

15 Behold, they shall surely gather together, but not by me: whosoever shall gather together against thee shall fall for thy sake.

16 Behold, I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth an instrument for his work; and I have created the waster to destroy.

17 No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is of me, saith the LORD.

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G Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Ver. 1. Barren Jews in captivity, or Church of the Gentiles, to which alone the expressions can be applied. C. — The Gentiles were before unfruitful, as the Jews will be till towards the latter times. W.

Ver. 2. Stakes, to receive so great a family. All the Israelites did not return, and it does not appear that many embraced their religion, as they have done that of Christ.

Ver. 3. Left. To the north and south. Jerusalem increased. But what was it compared with the Christians establishment!

Ver. 4. Widowhood. Thy former excesses shall be forgotten. C.

Ver. 5. Thee. Heb. “Bohalaic (H.) shall be your Baalim,” or husband, who was styled Lord. 1 Pet. iii. 6. Perhaps he may allude to the two wives, the synagogues and the Church, or to the idols, which should be adored no more.

Ver. 6. Youth. This enhances her fault. God is pleased to overlook it, in the captives (C. l. 1.) and Gentiles.

Ver. 9. Earth. Giving him the rainbow for a sign. My covenant with the Church is equally irrevocable: she is founded on a rock. Mat. xvi. 18. C. — Christ will no more abandon her than he will drown the world. Some mountains shall be moved out of their place, but she shall not. W.

Ver. 11. Sapphires. Heb. “antimony,” a mineral shining like silver. 4 K. ix. 30.

Ver. 12. Bulwarks. Heb. windows of crystal; (Ezec. xxvii. 16. C.) Prot. “of agate.” H. — All this is allegorical, like the redemption of the new Jerusalem. Apoc. xxi.

Ver. 13. Lord, Christ. Jer. xxxi. 33. John vi. 45.

Ver. 14. Thee. The Cutheans rendered the Jews suspected. 1 Esd. iv. 2. and vi. 1

Ver. 15. To thee, in the inheritance. This was verified in the Church. We have no accout of many being converted before.

Ver. 16. Destroy. I can give peace or war. C. — Sept. “but I have created thee not for utter destruction.” H.