Isaiah 42:6
"I, the LORD, have called you for a righteous purpose, and I will take hold of your hand. I will keep you and appoint you to be a covenant for the people and a light to the nations,
Sermons
A Covenant of the PeopleProf. J. Skinner, D. D.Isaiah 42:6
A Word to Go Home OnChristian BudgetIsaiah 42:6
Called in RighteousnessProf. J. Skinner, D. D.Isaiah 42:6
Christ a Covenant to Open Blind EyesT. Crisp, D. D.Isaiah 42:6
God's CallingJ. A. Alexander.Isaiah 42:6
God's Covenant with ManR. H. Davies, B. A.Isaiah 42:6
Israel a MediatorJ. A. Alexander.Isaiah 42:6
The New Covenant of Free GraceT. Crisp, D. D.Isaiah 42:6
The Servant of JehovahE. Johnson Isaiah 42:1-7
Behold, My ServantF. B. Meyer, B. A.Isaiah 42:1-17
Christ Delighted in by the FatherH. Melvill, B. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
Cyrus and the Servant of JehovahProf. G. A. Smith, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
God's Programme for the WorldS. Chadwick.Isaiah 42:1-17
Jehovah and Jehovah's ServantProf. G. A. Smith, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
Messiah and His WorkOriginal Secession MagazineIsaiah 42:1-17
Purpose and Method of the RedeemerR. R. Meredith, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
Silent Spread of ChristianitySermons by the Monday ClubIsaiah 42:1-17
The Coming SaviourSermons by the Monday ClubIsaiah 42:1-17
The Coming SaviourHomiletic ReviewIsaiah 42:1-17
The Dignity of ServiceJ. Parker, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Ideal IsraeliteB. H. Alford.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Ideal Servant JehovahE. H. Plumptre, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Ideal Servant's WorkProf. S. R. Driver, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Mediator is the CentreF. Delitzsch, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Servant of JehovahProf. T. K. Cheyne, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Servant of JehovahAnon.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Servant of JehovahJ. A. Alexander.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Servant of the LordA. Maclaren, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Servant, First Israel as a Whole, Then Israel in PartProf. G. A. Smith, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Service of God and ManProf. G. A. Smith, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Servitude of JesusJ. Vaughan, M. A.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Trinity in UnityW. Cadman, M. A.Isaiah 42:1-17
Who is the Servant of JehovahProf. T. K. Cheyne, D. D.Isaiah 42:1-17
The Analogy Between God's Working in Revelation and in NaH. Macmillan, D. D.Isaiah 42:5-6
The Oneness of God in Revelation and in NatureA. Phelps, D. D.Isaiah 42:5-6
God and Man: Refusal, Retribution, RestorationW. Clarkson Isaiah 42:5-8
Mission of Jehovah's ServantE. Johnson Isaiah 42:5-9


A new revelation defines the mission of the Servant with greater precision. The plan of the mission requires an exhibition of the Divine wisdom and power on as large a scale as in creation and preservation (cf. Zechariah 12:1) (Cheyne).

I. THE RELATION OF GOD To THE WORLD. He is the God - the only God (cf. Psalm 85:9). He can admit no rival; he stands in a unique relation to the world - is alone to be worshipped. He is the Creator: his work is the heaven and the earth, and the people. The breath of life is by him breathed into his creatures. The universe is entirely subject to him, and he has the right to appoint whom he will to be the minister and channel of his favours to men. To the appointed Messiah, then, due reverence is to be paid.

II. HIS COVENANT WITH ISRAEL AND MANKIND. There is a covenant with the chosen people, and through them all nations are to own him as God. Generally the righteousness of God stands for the goodness of God, manifested to his world in the whole scheme and agency of salvation. "I have done this as a righteous and just God, and in accomplishment of my righteous purposes. I am the just moral Governor of the universe, and have designated thee to this work, in the accomplishment of those purposes."

III. THE MEDIATOR OF THE COVENANT. God holds his hand in his. What strength, then; what grace and Divine communication must there not be with the Mediator, who will be guided and guarded, will be visibly in the enjoyment of the Divine favour! And so the Mediator himself is called a Covenant - the personal realization of God's thought and purpose to the people - the embodiment of that spiritual relation announced in vers. 30, 31, etc. Another of his names is Light. Being Intelligence in himself, the Wisdom of God, he will diffuse it among the nations: bringing men out of their spiritual blindness and the prison-house and confinement of spiritual distress (Psalm 107:10; Job 36:8). "Such is the freedom the gospel imparts; nor can there be a more striking description of its happy effects on the minds and hearts of darkened and wretched men" (1 Peter 2:9).

IV. THE SOLEMN ASSURANCE. Jehovah now turns to the people, and assures them that he is the only true God, and jealously claims a sole and undivided homage. He is "the Eternal." The name includes "the unique reality, and power to confer reality, of the Divine Being." His glory he will not give to another; for were such a God's prediction to fail, he would sink to a lower level than the imaginary deities, who have, at any rate, not deluded their worshippers. But the earlier predictions have been fulfilled -those against the Babylonians or Assyrians; and the new things, later and more splendid - the deliverances of the Jews - will in like manner be fulfilled. The plant is contained in the seed; the event in the mind; the fulfilment in the Word of Jehovah (Isaiah 9:8; Isaiah 55:10, 11; Amos 3:7). - J.









I the Lord have called thee in righteousness.
We are apt to understand that there are two covenants, respectively called the covenant of works and the covenant of grace.

1. Let us define what a covenant is. In its primary sense it signifies a mutual compact or agreement between two parties. The covenant is kept on the one side by those conditions being ratified in a full and faithful observance of them; on the other side by the conferment of the benefit upon the completion of the conditions.

2. When viewing God and man as the two parties between whom a covenant has been made, we perceive that there have been two covenants entered into; in each the benefit offered by the Father has been the same, viz., eternal life, but the terms or conditions are different.(1) In the covenant of works, the condition to be accepted and ratified by man was single, that is, obedience to the moral law of God, which law contains within its sanctions not merely an obedience to any positive commands or implied wishes, but an inward heart-observance of a complete holiness, this complete holiness being in fact itself the law, and any deviation whatever from the prescription of a complete holiness being an infraction of the law, and consequently that flaw in the covenanted obedience on man's part, which destroys the covenant altogether, and thus, annulling it, renders it nugatory.(2) The conditions in the covenant of grace are twofold, repentance and faith, obedience to the law constituting no part of the terms on which God will confer the promised boon, though according to this, He will regulate the degrees of glory to be known and shared in and through the heavenly immortality. For the law of God has never been repealed, and never can be; neither does the covenant of grace at all make void the law, nay, as the apostle says, "it establishes it."

3. An ordinary attention to the constitution of these two covenants will show us that there is between God and man, now (the "now" taking in the position and history of man from the fall, to the finished and ultimate recovery of redemption) but this one covenant of grace. Consider, and this partly by contrasting the two, in what this second or new covenant consists.(1) It agrees with the first in this,

(a)that the ultimate object is the same, viz., everlasting life for man;

(b)that in God's part of the contract the promise attached to it is the same.(2) It differs from the other in these respects. That a third party is introduced — the Mediator Christ Jesus, the Son of God. That on man's part the conditions are different, repentance and faith being in the stead of obedience.

4. See the vital importance of understanding the truth with respect to the two covenants. There are not two covenants. There never have been two co-existing covenants. When man broke the first, it was at an end. Morally speaking, it could not be re-instituted; because, the nature of man having become sinful, and this sinfulness a necessary entailment on all his children, it was rendered impossible for man to keep a covenant of works. And a covenant broken is no longer a covenant. God, then, in His mercy and love, instituted another covenant, the same as to intent, but differing in its conditions for man, prescribing conditions which he could observe, because of the new provision made in the Mediator Christ Jesus, by whom the law should be inviolably kept, and so a justifying righteousness procured, and by whom a full, perfect, and sufficient sacrifice should be made in the offering of His own spotless body for the sins of the whole world. See how this strikes at the root of all man's pride and self-dependence, and attempts at working out a self-righteousness for his justification. See, too, the surpassing consideration of God for the pour, condemned helpless, sinner. See also the wondrousforce of our text. It was to the dearly-beloved Son that God said, "I, the Lord, have called Thee in righteousness," etc. Because on Him devolved the work of rescue, because He is the Mediator, because He will ensure the final victory, because in Him the new covenant was opened, in Him established, by Him maintained, Himself is called the covenant. To reject Him is to reject the covenant; to look anywhere else for salvation, to attempt any other way to God's favour than by Him, to try any other terms than those of His Gospel, is to reject Him; and that is to reject the covenant of God and to enter into covenant with death.

(R. H. Davies, B. A.)

The act of calling here implies —

1. Selection.

2. Designation.

3. Providential introduction to God's service.

(J. A. Alexander.)

in accordance with a steadfast and consistent purpose.

(Prof. J. Skinner, D. D.)

And give Thee for a covenant of the people
Not only the Messiah, but the Israel of God was sent to be a mediator or connecting link between Jehovah and the nations.

(J. A. Alexander.)

I. WHO IT IS THAT SPEAKS THIS GRACIOUS LANGUAGE. The Lord.

II. THE PERSON TO WHOM THIS GRACIOUS LANGUAGE IS DIRECTED AND SPOKEN. CHRIST.

III. WHAT HE SPEAKS UNTO CHRIST HERE, even gracious language in respect of us. "He will give Him for a covenant."

IV. UNTO WHOM THE FATHER GIVES CHRIST FOR A COVENANT. "Unto the people, and unto the Gentiles"; that is, to Jews and to Gentiles, to all sorts of people.

V. THE END AND PURPOSE FOR WHICH THE FATHER GIVES HIM TO BE A COVENANT UNTO THE PEOPLE. "To open the blind eyes, to bring the prisoners out of prison."

(T. Crisp, D. D.)

I. WHAT IT IS FOR CHRIST TO BE A COVENANT, OR, THE COVENANT.

II. WHAT IT IS FOR CHRIST TO BE GIVEN TO BE A COVENANT.

III. WHAT IT IS FOR CHRIST TO BE A COVENANT TO OPEN THE BLIND EYES.

IV. TO WHOM THIS CHRIST IS GIVEN TO BE A COVENANT.

(T. Crisp, D. D.)

The idea must be something like this: the Divine ideal represented by the Servant of the Lord becomes the basis of a new national life, inasmuch as it expresses that for the sake of which Jehovah enters into a new covenant relation with His people.

(Prof. J. Skinner, D. D.)

The saintly Miss Frances Ridley Havergal literally lived and moved in the Word of God. It was her constant solace, delight, and inspiration. It is related of her that, on the last day of her life, she asked a friend to read to her the forty-second chapter of Isaiah. When the friend read the sixth verse, "I the Lord have called thee in righteousness and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee," Miss Havergal stopped her. "Called — held — kept — used," she whispered. "Well, I will just go home on that." And she did "go home on that," as on a celestial chariot, and the home-going was a triumph, with an abundant entrance into the city of God.

(Christian Budget)

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