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cient promises, which I made, both in paradise to the first parents of mankind, and after, to Abraham the father of the faithful; not only to that one chosen nation, but even to the Gentiles also, to whom I bave ordained thee as a light, to guide them unto salvation.
XLII. 7 To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house. That, whereas mankind was utterly bereaved of the light of all divine knowledge, now, by his illumination, their eyes might be opened to see the things belonging to their peace; and, whereas they were shut up in a miserable bondage to sin and Satan, he might graciously deliver them.
XLII. 11 Let the wilderness and the cities thereof lift up their voice, the villages that Kedar doth inhabit : let the inhabitants of the rock sing, let them shout from the top of the mountains. Let the most barbarous of all nations know, that they have cause to praise and magnify the mercy of the Lord, for that interest which they shall have in this work of redemption ; let therefore the wildest Arabians sing and celebrate this great goodness of God our Saviour.
XLII. 14 I have long time holden my peace; I have been still, and refrained myself : now will I cry like a travailing woman ; will destroy and devour at once. I have long time refrained myself from a revenge of mine enemies, and delivering of my Church : now I can forbear no longer, but will suddenly express my love to the one, and my vengeance on the other ; even as a woman, who hath long bitten in her pain, yet when the last throes of her childbirth come upon her, cannot forbear to cry out,
XLII. 19 Who is blind, but my servant ? or deaf, as my, messenger that I sent? who is blind as he that is perfect, and blind as the Lord's servant ? However the rest of the world may pretend for their ignorance and blindness, yet my chosen people, who have had such means of knowledge from me, might well put me into expectation of great skill in and conscionable care of my commandments; and now behold, to their shame be it spoken, who is so blind as their wilfulness hath made them? yea, not the ordinary sort of them only, but even my messengers and prophets, who have challenged much perfection to themselves, they have hoodwinked themselves from beholding the certain truth of my judgments,
XLII. 21 The LORD is well pleased for his righteousness' sake ; he will magnify the law, and make it honourable.
The Lord is well pleased, for his gracious promise' sake, to make good all that ever he hath undertaken, concerning his people; and to glorify bimself, in the fulfilling of his word.
XLII. 22 But this is a people robbed and spoiled ; they are all of them snared in holes, and they are hid in prison houses : they are for a prey, and none delivereth ; for a spoil, and none saith, Restore. But this people make themselves unworthy and incapable of the great mercies of God; and will needs be guilty of those great miseries and calamities, that are coming upon them; for they shall be robbed, and spoiled, and fettered in dungeons, and be exposed to an utter vastation.
XLIII. 1 I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. I have taken special notice of thee, above all other nations; and have entered into terms of more near and dear respects unto thee.
XLIII. 3 I gave Egypt for thy ransom, Ethiopia and Sebu for thee. When Sennacherib did so furiously besiege thee, I fetched hiin off, and diverted his wars to Egypt and Ethiopia, and so made them to be thy ransom and rescue. So also verse 4.
XLIII. 5 Fear not: for I am with thee: I will bring thy seed from the east, and gather thee from the west; I will bring all the true seed of Israel out of their spiritual captivity, from all the corners of the world, even from the east and west;
XLIII. 6 I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Keep not back : bring my sons from far, and my daughters from the ends of the earth. As also from the north and south; so as all, that belong to mine election, shall in Christ be gathered unto me. So also verse 7.
XLIII. 8 Bring forth the blind people that have eyes, and the deaf that have ears. Bring forth those people, that were once blind, but now I have given them eyes ; and those, who were once deaf, but now I have given them ears.
XLIII. 14 For your sake I have sent to Babylon, and have brought down all their nobles, and the Chaldeans, whose cry is in the ships. It is for your sakes, to contrive the return of you my people from your captivity, that I will send Cyrus against Babylon, where you are detained ; and will give him victory against those princes and nobles of the Chaldeans, whom ye are subject unto, who shall be glad to make use of their ships for their fight and escape.
XLIII. 19 I will make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert. As I will address and accommodate all things for the return of my people from their captivity, so as no convenience shall be wanting thereunto; so also, will I give all gracious helps to all my chosen ones from the utmost coasts of heaven, for their conversion to my true Church,
XLIII. 20 The beast of the field shall honour me, the dragons and the owls : because I give waters in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert. Those, that are the most bestial and savage among all the people of the world, shall wonder at the great favours which I shew to my people, and shall give glory unto me, both of power and mercy.
XLIII 23 Thou hast not brought me the small cattle of thy burnt offerings; neither hast thou honoured me with thy sacrifices. I have not caused thee to serve with an offering, nor wearied thee with incense. Those oblations, which thou hast formally made unto me, have not been such, as I cared to receive from thee: I have not been beholden to thee, for a true devout consecration of thyself and thy services unto me: all these have been only outward and fashionable. So also verse 24.
XLIII. 24 For thou hast made me to serve with thy sins, thou hast wearied me with thine iniquities. Thou hast cast heavy and intolerable burdens upon me by thy sins ; as if my mercy served for nothing but to humour thy wickedness: yea thou hast pressed me so far, as that I am now weary of enduring thy provocations.
XLIII. 26 Put me in remembrance : let us plead together : declare thou, that thou mayest be justified. If thou hast any thing to say for thyself, speak it out freely : I give thee full scope to plead thy own cause with me; and, if thou canst, do thou either justify or excuse thyself.
XLIII. 28 Therefore I have profaned the princes of the sanctuary, and have given Jacob to the curse, and Israel to reproaches. Therefore I have determined to disregard and expose to contempt the chief priests and rulers of my sanctuary, and to give up Jacob to destruction, and Israel to the reproach of all nations.".
XLIV. 6 I am the first, and I am the last ; and beside me there is no God. I am the only true, eternal God, without all possibility of alteration; and therefore will be ever approved most constant to my own decrees and purposes.
IV. 7 And who, as I, shall call, and shall declare it, and set i in order for me? Since I decreed, before ever any of your idol-gods were extant in the world, to select a people to myself from the rest of the earth, which of your false gods could or can order their vocation and government, as I have done?
XLIV. 12 Yea, he is hungry, and his strength faileth : he drinketh no water, and is faint. Weak and foolish man will be making a god to bimself; and finds himself hungry, and thirsty, and faint, with the very work, while he makes it; yet, so eager is he in that business, as that he forbears bis own necessary sustenance, in his zeal to finish it.
XLIV. 18 They have not known nor understood : for he hath shut their eyes, that they cannot see ; and their hearts, that they cannot understand. God hath, in his just judgment, given them up to a strange besottedness, and hath suffered their idol to bereave them of their wits and senses; so as, though they have both hearts and eyes, yet they neither see nor understand.
XLIV. 20 He feedeth of ashes: a deceived heart hath turned turned him aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, Is there not alie in my right hand ? That, which should be his comfort, is bis affliction and misery: he trusteth to his idol, and that shall no more help him, than ashes can feed and nourish him: he hath given way to these idolatrous fopperies; and now they have utterly infatuated him, so as he hath not the grace to bethink himself of his fond and wicked courses.
XLIV. 28° That saith of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure : even saying to Jerusalem, Thou shalt be built ; and to the temple, Thy foundation shall be laid. That saith of Cyrus, that Persian Monarch who shall after many years be born, he is the man, that shall favour and restore my people, and perform my pleasure concerning their return from the Babylonish captivity; who shall also give order for the re-edifying of the walls of Jerusalem and the Temple.
XLV. 1 Thus saith the Lord to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden, to subdue nations before him; and I will loose the loins of kings, to open before him the two leaved gates; and the gates shall not be shut. Thus saith the Lord, concerning Cyrus, who is yet unborn, whom I bave ordained to be the king of Persia ; whom I have decreed to prosper in all his designs, and to make him victorious over all na, tions, and to subdue mighty kings, so as they shall be glad to open upto him their most defenced cities.
XLV. 3 And I will give thee the treasures of darkness, and hidden riches of secret places. I will give thee those treasures, which have been long laid up in the secret storehouses of kings.
XLV. 5 I girded thee, though thou hast not known me. I have girded thee with honour and power, though thou hast not considered whence these favours have come; neither bast thou, Cyrus, so well known me, as to abdicate thine idolatry, and to worship me aright.
XLV. 8 Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness : let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the LORD have created it. Let all my creatures, saith the Lord, conspire together to the furtherance of the restored happiness of my people : let the heavens, and the clouds, and the earth contribute all the blessings, which are committed unto them, to their enlargement and prosperity; and convey unto them the just performance of all the merciful promises, they have had from me.
XLV. 9 Or thy work, He hath no hands? Shall the work rise up and controul the workman, and say, He hath no skill?
XLV. 13 I have raised him up in righteousness, and I will die rect all his ways: he shall build my city, and he shall let go my captives, not for price nor reward, saith the Lord of hosts.
I, wbo am the faithful Guardian of my Church, have raised up Cyrus; who, in future times, shall come, and prosper in his great enterprizes ; and he shall build up the walls of Jerusalem; and shall send back the captive Jews into their country, not being hired thereto by any price or reward, but by my immediate instigation. See Ezra, chap. i.
XLV. 14 Thus saith the LORD, The labour of Egypt, and merchandise of Ethiopia and of the Sabeans, men of stature, shall come over unto thee, and they shall be thine : they shall come after thee; in chains they shall come over, &c. The Egyptians, and the Ethiopians, and Sabeans shall be tributary to Cyrus; and the benefit of their labour and merchandise shall by him be improved to the building of Jerusalem: so as the great enemies of God's Church shall voluntarily submit themselves thereunto, and shall acknowledge that God's presence is in her, and his power for her.
XLV. 15 Verily thou art a God that hidest thyself, O God of Israel, the Saviour. All this shall be done for thy people ; but, in the mean time, they shall have need of patience for thou wilt, for a long while, seem to hide thy face from them, ( thou God and Saviour of Israel, and wilt give them up into grievous affliction.
XLVI. 1 Bel boweth down, Nebo stoopeth, their idols were upon the beasts, and upon the cattle : your carriages were heavy loaden; they are a burden to the
beast. Tbe great idols of the Chaldees, in whom they so vainly trusted, shall now be pulled down, and carried away in carts, as the spoils of the Persian Conqueror : the beasts shall drag them away, and complain of their weight.
XLIV. 8 Remember this, and shew yourselves men : bring it again to mind, Oye transgressors. Remember this, and shew yourselves to be not more brutish than beasts, to worship those things which yourselves have made ; but men, endued with reason, which alone is able to teach
to abhor this gross idolatry.
XLVI. 10 Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure : Who, from the beginning of times, and ever since, have still foretold you what would come to pass, both till this present, and in the times yet to come ; which I have so infallibly performed, that you may hereby well know the immutable certainty of all my decrees :
XLVI. 11 Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that erecuteth my counsel from a far country. Calling Cyrus from the east to execute my decree ; who shall come swiftly upon the wings of speed, to do what I have determined, and shall devour the kingdoms of the earth before him.
XLVI. 13 I bring near my righteousness; it shall not be far