Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible, by John Wesley, [1754-65], at sacred-texts.com
isa 30:1The rebellious - The Jews. Take counsel - That consult together. Cover - That seek protection. But not - Not such as by my spirit, speaking in my word, I have required them to do. That they may add - That unto all their sins, they may add distrust of my power and mercy, and put confidence in an arm of flesh.
isa 30:2Asked - Either by the priests or prophets.
isa 30:4His princes - The princes of Judah. Hanes - An eminent city of Egypt.
isa 30:5They - Both the messengers, and they who sent them.
isa 30:6The burden - The treasures, which were carried upon asses or camels, into Egypt, which lay southward from Judea. The land of trouble - Egypt, so called prophetically. From whence - This may be understood properly, but withal, seems to design the craft and cruelty of that people. They - The Jews. Their riches - To procure their assistance. Bunches - Upon the backs.
isa 30:7To her - To Jerusalem or Judah. Sit still - It is safer and better for them to sit quietly at home, seeking to me for help.
isa 30:8Write - This warning. Before - In their presence. Note it - So this was to be written twice over, once in a table, to be hanged up in some public place, that all present might read it; and again, in a book, that it might be kept for the use of posterity. The time to come - As a witness for me and against them.
isa 30:11Cause, &c. - Do not trouble us with harsh messages from God.
isa 30:12And trust - In the wealth which you have gotten by oppression, and in your perverse course of sending to Egypt for help.
isa 30:13This iniquity - Of trusting to Egypt, shall be like a wall which is high, but swelling forth in some parts, which, upon the least accident, falls down suddenly.
isa 30:14He - God.
isa 30:15In returning - To God. Quietness - In sitting still, and quieting your minds. Confidence - Placed upon me, and my promises.
isa 30:17'Till - 'Till you be destroyed, and but a few of you left.
isa 30:18Wait - Patiently expect your repentance. Exalted - He will work gloriously. Judgment - Or mercy. That wait - In his way, with faith and patience.
isa 30:19Shall dwell - After a set time, they shall return to Jerusalem, and have a fixed abode. This was in part accomplished upon their return from Babylon; but more fully in the times of the gospel, when many of them were, and the whole body of them shall be brought into Christ's church.
isa 30:21Shall hear - Thou shalt hear the voice of God's word and spirit. Behind thee - A metaphor borrowed from shepherds, who use to follow their sheep, and recall them when they go out of the way.
isa 30:22Defile - To shew your contempt of it. Covering - The leaves or plates wherewith their images were frequently covered. Ornament - It was a costly and glorious robe.
isa 30:23Bread - Which shall be the fruit of thy own land and labour: and excellent for quality, which is called, fat, Deu 32:14, and abundant for quantity.
isa 30:24Clean provender - There should be such plenty of corn, that the very beasts, instead of straw, should eat corn; and that not in the ear, or with the straw, but the pure grain.
isa 30:25Hill - Which is commonly dry and barren. In the day - When God shall destroy the enemies of his people. The towers - The mighty potentates, who fought against God's people.
isa 30:26Sevenfold - As if the light of seven days were combined together in one. Healeth - When God shall effectually cure the wounds of his people, making Israel and Judah to be one, and making Jew and Gentile to be one fold under one shepherd.
isa 30:27Behold - Here he gives them an earnest of those greater mercies in times to come, by assuring them of the approaching destruction of the Assyrian forces. The name - The Lord himself. From far - From a remote place: even from heaven. Heavy - He will inflict heavy judgments upon them. Indignation - He hath pronounced a severe sentence against them, and will give command for the execution of it.
isa 30:28His breath - God's anger. A stream - Coming from him as vehemently, as a mighty torrent of waters. To sift - To shake and scatter, as it were with a sieve. The nations - The Assyrian army, which was made up of several nations. With - Not with an ordinary sieve, which casteth away the chaff only, but with a sieve, which should shake them so long and so vehemently, as to cast away altogether. A bridle - God will over - rule them by his powerful providence. To err - Whereas other bridles guide into the right way, this shall turn them out of the way, by giving them up to their own foolish counsels, which shall bring them to certain ruin.
isa 30:29A song - You shall have songs of praise. The night - He seems to have a particular respect to the solemnity of the passover, in which they spent some considerable part of the night in rejoicing, and singing psalms before the Lord. As when - Like the joy of one that is going up to the solemn feasts with musick.
isa 30:30His voice - His thunder, metaphorically taken for some terrible judgment. The lightning - Upon the Assyrian. With - With great wrath; which is signified by heaping so many words of the same signification together.
isa 30:32The rod - Heb. the founded rod, the judgment of God, called a founded rod, because it was firmly established, by God's immutable purpose. Him - Upon the Assyrian. With harps - Their destruction shall be celebrated by God's people, with joy and musick, and songs of praise. Of shaking - Or, shaking of the hand, of which kind of shaking this Hebrew word is constantly used. God will fight against them, and destroy them by his own hand. With it - With the army of the Assyrians.
isa 30:33Tophet - This was a place near Jerusalem, in which the idolatrous Israelites used to offer up their children to Moloch. It may be put, for any place of torment; and particularly it is put for hell. For the king - For the king of Assyria. Fire - He alludes to the ancient custom, of burning sacrifices, and particularly of burning children to Moloch. The breath - The immediate hand of God, or his word of anger. Brimstone - He seems to allude to that shower of fire and brimstone, Gen 19:24.