Isaiah 26:1-21 NIV
A Song of Praise
1In that day this song will be sung in the land of Judah:
We have a strong city;
GOD Makes Salvation
its walls and ramparts.
2Open the gates
that the righteous nation may enter,
the nation that keeps faith.
3You will keep in perfect peace
those whose minds are steadfast,
because they trust in YOU.
4 Trust In The LORD Forever,
For The LORD, The LORD HIMSELF, Is The ROCK Eternal.
5HE Humbles those who dwell on high,
HE Lays the lofty city low;
HE Levels it to the ground
and Casts it Down to the dust.
6Feet trample it down—
the feet of the oppressed,
the footsteps of the poor.
7The path of the righteous is level;
YOU, The Upright ONE, Make the way of the righteous smooth.
we wait for YOU;
YOUR Name and Renown
are the desire of our hearts.
9My soul yearns for YOU in the night;
in the morning my spirit longs for YOU.
10But when grace is shown to the wicked,
they do not learn righteousness;
even in a land of uprightness they go on doing evil
and do not regard The Majesty of The LORD.
11LORD, YOUR Hand Is Lifted High,
but they do not see it.
Let them see YOUR Zeal for YOUR people and be put to shame;
12LORD, YOU Establish Peace For us;
all that we have accomplished YOU Have Done For us.
13LORD our GOD, other lords besides YOU Have Ruled Over us,
but YOUR Name Alone do we honor.
14They are now dead, they live no more;
their spirits do not rise.
YOU Punished them and Brought them to ruin;
YOU Wiped Out all memory of them.
15YOU Have Enlarged the nation, Lord;
YOU Have Enlarged the nation.
YOU Have Gained Glory for YOURSELF;
YOU Have Extended all the borders of the land.
16Lord, they came to YOU in their distress;
When YOU Disciplined them,
they could barely whisper a prayer.b
17As a pregnant woman about to give birth
writhes and cries out in her pain,
so were we in YOUR Presence, Lord.
18We were with child, we writhed in labor,
but we gave birth to wind.
We have not brought salvation to the earth,
and the people of the world have not come to life.
19But YOUR dead will live, LORD;
let those who dwell in the dust
wake up and shout for joy—
YOUR Dew Is like the dew of the morning;
the earth will give birth to her dead.
20Go, my people, enter your rooms
and shut the doors behind you;
hide yourselves for a little while
21See, The LORD Is Coming Out of HIS Dwelling
To Punish the people of the earth for their sins.
This chapter, like the foregoing, is a song of praise, in which thanksgivings for temporal and spiritual mercies are beautifully mingled, though the latter still predominate. Even the sublime and evangelical doctrine of the resurrection seems here to be hinted at, and made to typify the deliverance of the people of GOD from a state of the lowest misery; the captivity, the general dispersion, or both.
This hymn too, like the preceding chapter 25, is beautifully diversified by the frequent change of speakers. It opens with a chorus of the Church, celebrating the protection vouchsafed by GOD to HIS people; and the happiness of the righteous, whom HE Guards, contrasted with the misery of the wicked, whom HE Punishes, Isaiah 26:1-7. To this succeeds their own pious resolution of obeying, trusting, and delighting in GOD, Isaiah 26:8.
Here the prophet breaks in, in his own person, eagerly catching the last words of the chorus, which were perfectly in unison with the feelings of his own soul, and which he beautifully repeats, as one musical instrument reverberates the sound of another on the same key with it.
He makes likewise a suitable response to what had been said on the Judgments of GOD, and observes their different effects on the good and the bad; improving the one, and hardening the other, Isaiah 26:9-11. After this, a chorus of Jews express their gratitude to GOD for past deliverances, make confession of their sins, and supplicate His Power, which they had been long expecting, Isaiah 26:12-18. To this GOD makes a gracious reply, promising deliverance that should be as life from the dead, Isaiah 26:19. And the prophet, (apparently alluding to the command of Moses to the Israelites, when the destroying angel was to go through the land of Egypt), concludes with exhorting his people to patience and resignation, till GOD Sends the deliverance HE Has Promised, Isaiah 26:20, Isaiah 26:21.