Isaiah 11: Messiah’s Reign-“There Shall Be A Highway.”
The Light of Israel, the Holy One, the LORD of hosts, The Mighty One, is also the “Rod from the stem of Jesse, and the Branch” that “shall grow out of his roots.” (v. 1 Cf. v. 10; 9:6-7; Mt. 1:5-6; Acts 13:23; Rev. 5:5) This One would come from the seed of the remnant. This is the sin-bearing Servant who would grow up as a tender plant (53:2). “Behold, the Man whose name is the BRANCH! From His place He shall branch out, and He shall build the temple of the LORD; Yes, He shall build the temple of the LORD. He shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule on His throne; So He shall be a priest on His throne, and the counsel of peace shall be between them both.” (Zech. 6:12-13) This One will be anointed with the Spirit (v. 2 Cf. 10:27; 42:1; 48:16). Jesus quoted the following passage from Isaiah at the inauguration of His earthly ministry, pulling all these thoughts together. “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach.” (Isaiah 61:1-2 Cf. v. 2; Lk. 4:18-19)
The Spirit, who is one of wisdom, understanding, counsel, might, knowledge, and the fear of the LORD, will rest upon Him (v. 2). Might cannot and is not apart from all the other attributes. The LORD’s might is guided by all the rest. Furthermore, these other attributes have power. “His delight is in the fear of the LORD.” (v. 3a) For this reason He will not judge by what He sees, or be swayed by fine sounding words. Instead, He will judge based on His own righteousness, will make decisions based on equity, and will ultimately rule according to His own word (vv. 4-5 Cf. Mal. 4:6; II Th. 2:8; Rev. 19:11). His peace will extend to the whole of creation via a covenant (vv. 6-9 Cf. 65:25; Job 5:23; Ezek. 34:25; Hos. 2:18;). The reason for this peace is clear, “for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.” (v. 9 Cf. 45:6; Ps. 98:2; Hab. 2:14) This Root shall stand as a banner for the people-Jew and Gentile alike, “and His resting place shall be glorious.” (v. 10 Cf. v. 12; 2:11; 11:1; 27:12-13; Jn. 12:32; Rom. 15:10-12)
The return of the exiles would be the second time the Lord had rescued His people, the first being deliverance from Egypt (v. 11 Cf. Hos. 11:11; Zech. 10:10-11). This would find fulfillment with the recovery of the remnant. All His people will dwell together in unity and peace (vv. 12-13 Cf. 19:23-25; Jer. 3:18; Ezek. 37:15-17, 22; Hos. 1:11). They will be used by the LORD to extend His reign over their enemies (vv. 14-15 Cf. 35:8-9; 50:2; 51:10-11; 63:1ff.; Dan. 11:41; Joel 3:19; Amos 9:12). “There will be a highway for the remnant of His people who will be left from Assyria, as it was for Israel in the day that he came up from the land of Egypt.” (v. 16 Cf. 1:8; 19:23; Ex. 14:29) “There shall be a highway.” The way for the remnant shall be prepared for the them, as they are destined to inherit the covenant promises. John the Baptist was used of the LORD to prepare this highway (Cf. 40:3; Mt. 3:3; Mk. 1:3; Lk. 3:4-6; Jn. 1:23). Jesus is the highway of salvation (Cf. 62:10-12)!