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Passage: Isaiah 62:1-4

Isaiah 62:1-4 – Forsaken No More

Summary

As a sign of God's new beginning, Zion is given new names. The time of judgment is past.

Analysis

In the harsh message of judgment given to Isaiah at his call (Isaiah 6:9-13), God announced that the land would be "desolate" (v. 11) and "forsaken" (v. 12 NIV; "emptiness" in NRSV). Now those same two Hebrew terms are taken up and overturned: the land is no longer called "desolate" but "Married"; no longer "forsaken" but "My Delight Is in Her." These words, terms of God's overwhelming grace and favor, were often used by believers, especially in generations past, as names for newborn girls ("Beulah" and "Hephzibah" in Hebrew).

"Hephzibah" builds from a root used often in Isaiah, translated usually as purpose, will, delight, or intention. Here God makes clear that the divine "purpose" (same root) to redeem Israel (44:28), which was to be accomplished by God's word (55:11) and through God's servant (53:10, using the same Hebrew root), is coming to pass.