Isaiah 61


Chapter 61 and 62 describe the people of God whom the Servant/Messiah has delivered.

They will be righteous, powerful, prosperous and generally blessed.


61:1-3 begins by detailing the role of the Servant/Messiah has in creating the new righteous character of his people and the environment that they live in.


62:10-12 is a proclamation to all the Israelites scattered in the earth that their Savior comes and they are to enter into this new life.

Divisions of
Isaiah 61 & 62

Topic of





Declares His Ministry to the People



Promise: Those who receive the grace of God




Promise: Nations will see that God has not
forsaken Israel



Promise: Nations will not take the wealth from



Proclamation to scattered Israel to
respond to the work of the Servant and the
salvation that is now available






Isaiah 11:1-5 Describes this Messiah.



Chapter 60 ended describing the climate and living conditions in Jerusalem or Zion.

Chapter 61 describes who we find in that city:  The Servant/Messiah himself


The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me,

When the Spirit is mentioned in Isaiah the Spirit is associated with these things:

Isaiah 11:2 –

·   wisdom,

·   understanding,

·   counsel,

·   power,

·   knowledge,

·   fear of the Lord

Isaiah 32:15-16 –

·   desert becomes a fertile field, and then a forest

·   justice

·   righteousness

·   justice and righteousness will produce:

o       peace,  

o       quietness and

o       confidence


Isaiah 42:1 -

·   Justice will be brought to the nations

Isaiah 44:3 -

·   Descendants will spring up like grass

·   Descendants will have the character of God

Isaiah 48:16-17 –

·   Teaches you what is best

·   Directs you in the way you should go

·   His ways provide:

o       Peace

o       Righteousness

o       Descendants



because the LORD has anointed me

The reason for the Spirit being on Him is this anointing.

The only place the anointing and spirit are assosciated in the OT is when a king was being established:

a) Saul 1 Sam. 10

b)David 1 Sam. 16

2 Samuel 23:1-7 David’s last words.  Here he is called “the man anointed by the God of Jacob” and David’s last words begin with “The Spirit of the Lord spoke through me. . .”

In this oracle the Lord says through David in 23:3,

         “When one rules over men in righteousness, when he rules in the fear of God, he is            like the light of morning at sunrise on a cloudless morning, like the brightness after rain that brings the grass from the earth.”

to preach good news to the poor.

The Messiah’s mission will be to preach the gospel. 
“Good News” is the Hebrew word “basser” which is translated in the LXX as “euangelizomai” or which is the NT word for the good news or gospel.

The Good News is the communication of God’s victory over his enemies and the           deliverance he has provided for people.

The Servant/Messiah will proclaim the success of his work in Isaiah 53 and 63:1-6 to the           poor.

Who are the poor?

The poor is more than those who are in poverty or the oppressed minorities. 
The poor are anyone who will benefit from the Lord’s victory and the deliverance that follows.


Notice the sequence:

1. Anointed

2. Spirit then comes on the Servant/Messiah

3. Proclaiming the Victory is the Servant/Messiah’s Mission

4. Target audience of the Servant/Messiah is those who will benefit from His victory


He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,

While he is anointed only to preach or proclaim. (anointed only has the one indirect object “preach good news”)


“sent” has six indirect objects:

1) to bind. . .

a) bind up broken hearted

2) to proclaim. . .

b)proclaim freedom for the captives

c) proclaim release from darkness for prisoners

3) to proclaim. . .

d)proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor

e) proclaim the day of vengeance of our god

4) to comfort. . .

f)  to comfort all who mourn

5) to provide. . .

g) provide for those who grieve

6) to bestow. . .

h) bestow a crown of glory

i)   bestow oil of gladness

j)  bestow garment of praise


The description of “sent” is what the Lord does when He “preaches good news”

The people who He is “sent” to are the “poor”




In 60:17 the climate of the city was described as:

a) gold for bronze

b)silver for iron

c) bronze for wood

d)iron for stone


Now concerning the people themselves there will be:

1)      crown of beauty instead of ashes

                                                               i.      instead of going about as mourners with ashes on their heads they will wear the headdress of a person at a party

2)      oil of gladness instead of mourning

                                                               i.      instead of having themselves soaked in tears and an attitude of sorrow they will be soaked in fine smelling oils with a disposition of joy

3)      garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair

                                                               i.      This garment may reflect a spirit of praise to the Lord

                                                             ii.      This garment may cause observers to praise the one wearing it for having such a beautiful garment.



“Oaks of Righteousness” refer to:

a)  people who are stable and permanent and productive because of the work the Lord has done in their lives

b) Trees here are a contrast to the trees in Isaiah 1:29-31.  There the people had forsaken God and glorified themselves. Here they where like dead oaks whose leaves and wood burnt in the fire.  Here the oaks remain because of right standing with God.



These are the people who have responded and been blessed by God



They will rebuild what was previously destroyed because of sin and rebellion



Former nations who oppressed Israel will be shepherds and farmers. 

Obviously they will not be in a position to oppress Israel anymore.


But Israel does not become the oppressor because these shepherds and farmers who are called “aliens” here are also addressed in 56:3 and told not to say “The Lord will surely exclude me from his people.”  In 60:10 the “aliens” (“foreigners”) will rebuild the walls.

So these “aliens” are members of God’s people.



In this condition Israel will fulfill their role and fulfill their mission to be priest of God to the world or to these aliens. 

Israel is not oppressing or ruling but serving and ministering.


Israel’s exalted position is to be a teacher of the word and ways of God to the people of the world.

Israel will fulfill Isaiah 43:10 and 12, “You are my witnesses.”