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The Branch of the Lord

11 The cut-off stump of Jesse[a] will sprout,[b]

    and a fruitful Branch will grow from his roots:[c]
the Spirit of Yahweh will rest upon him,[d]
    the Spirit of Extraordinary Wisdom,[e]
    the Spirit of Perfect Understanding[f]
    the Spirit of Wise Strategy,[g]
    the Spirit of Mighty Power,[h]
    the Spirit of Revelation,[i]
    and the Spirit of the Fear of Yahweh.
He will find his delight[j] in living
    by the Spirit of the Fear of the Lord.
    He will neither judge by appearances[k]
    nor make his decisions based on rumors.[l]
With righteousness he will uphold justice[m] for the poor
    and defend the lowly of the earth.
    His words will be like a scepter of power
    that conquers the world,[n]
    and with his breath[o] he will slay the lawless one.[p]
Righteousness will be his warrior’s sash
    and faithfulness his belt.[q]

Christ Will Subdue All Things

Then the wolf will be subdued and live with the gentle lamb,[r] and the leopard[s] will lie down[t] with the gentle lamb.[u] The young calf and the ferocious lion[v] will be together, and as a shepherd drives his flock, a small child will guide them along! The cow and the bear will graze alongside each other;[w] cubs and calves will lie down together. The lion, like the ox, will eat straw. The nursing child will play safely near the rattlesnake’s den, and the toddler will stretch out his hand and shine light over the serpent.[x] On all my holy mountain of Zion,[y] nothing evil or harmful[z] will be found. For the earth will be filled[aa] with the intimate knowledge of the Lord Yahweh just as water swells the sea![ab]

The God Who Restores

10 On that day, the root of Jesse[ac] will be lifted up[ad] as a miracle-sign to rally the people.[ae] Gentiles will diligently seek him,[af] and his resting place will be glorious![ag]

11 On that day, the Lord will extend his hand a second time to restore[ah] the remnant of his people from Assyria, Egypt, Pathros,[ai] Ethiopia,[aj] Iran,[ak] Iraq,[al] Syria,[am] and the coastlands of the sea.[an] 12 He will lift up a banner among the nations and will gather the scattered Jews,[ao] and assemble the outcasts of Israel from the four corners of the earth. 13 Then Ephraim will be cleansed of envy, and those who are hostile to Judah will be cut off. Ephraim will no longer be jealous of Judah, and Judah will no longer be hostile toward Ephraim.[ap] 14 But they will swoop down on the slopes of Philistia[aq] to the west; together they will plunder the people of the east. They will rule over Edom and Moab, and the Ammonites[ar] will obey them.

15 The Lord Yahweh will dry up[as] the gulf of the Egyptian Sea.[at] He will raise his hand over the Euphrates, and with the might of his wind, he will split it into seven streams[au] that can be easily crossed in sandals. 16 Then there will be a highway leading out of Assyria for his remnant people to return, just as there was for Israel when they were set free from Egypt.


  1. Isaiah 11:1 That is, the royal family line of David. Jesse, the grandson of Boaz, was the father of King David. Jesse means “upright, firm, strong.”
  2. Isaiah 11:1 Or “Go forth.” Notice the contrast with the arrogant “trees” that are cut down (10:33-34).
  3. Isaiah 11:1 The Hebrew word for “branch” or “twig” is netzer (lit. “to grow green”), the root word for Nazarene, Nazarite, and Nazareth (Matt. 2:23). Christ is both the root and the offspring of David (Rev. 5:5; 22:16). This means that the “(scion) branch” that grows from the roots (his spirit/nature) points to the body of Christ, his church on the earth. Christ in us is the vine and we are his fruitful branches. Jesus Christ branches out through his people and grows from his root. Overcomers are the branches that bring forth the fruit of Christ’s life. This sprout will grow to become the rod of God’s power. See Jer. 23:5, 33:15; Zech. 3:8; 6:12; John 1:1-15; Rom. 15:12; Gal. 5:22-23.
  4. Isaiah 11:2 The Spirit of Yahweh is the Spirit of prophecy, the manifest presence of God resting upon the Lord Jesus. In the Hebrew culture, to say “the Spirit of Yahweh rests upon” someone meant the Spirit of prophecy was upon them. See John 1:32-33.
  5. Isaiah 11:2 Or “the Spirit of Skillfulness” (Ex. 31:2-4). This gives equipping ability for music, art, business, writing, creativity, and wisdom for judicial decisions. Paul prayed for the churches to receive this “Spirit of wisdom” (Eph. 1:17-19).
  6. Isaiah 11:2 Or “the Spirit of Intelligent Insight.” This imparts the ability to discern the truth, to know the meaning of riddles, and to decipher parables and allegories. This anointing was upon the prophet Daniel. See Dan. 1:17; 5:11-12; 9:21-23.
  7. Isaiah 11:2 Or “the Spirit of Guidance.” This is the Hebrew word etsah and is used numerous times in the Old Testament for “counsel, advice, or purpose.” It is also used for steering (guiding) a ship. This anointing imparts the wisdom and counsel needed for spiritual leadership. See Ex. 18:19.
  8. Isaiah 11:2 Or “the Spirit of a Mighty Warrior.”
  9. Isaiah 11:2 Or “the Spirit of Knowledge.” This is not knowledge that is learned from books or study but knowledge that comes from experiencing intimacy with God.
  10. Isaiah 11:3 Or “his smelling (sensing),” a Hebraic figure of speech for finding pleasure in something. The Septuagint reads “He will fill him with the spirit of the fear of the Lord (absolute loyalty to God).” The Aramaic can be translated “He will shine forth with the reverence of the Lord.” The seven Spirits of God mentioned in these verses are also mentioned in Rev. 1:4; 4:4-5; 5:6. The Holy Spirit is one (Eph. 4:3-4) but revealed in seven dimensions. The golden lampstand in the tabernacle had seven branches. The sevenfold Spirit of God is the illuminating influence over God’s people.
  11. Isaiah 11:3 Or “by the glance of his eyes.” Jesus, our Messiah, sees clearly into our hearts and knows our every motive. See James 3:16-17.
  12. Isaiah 11:3 Or “by what is heard by his ears.”
  13. Isaiah 11:4 Or “by judging with righteousness.” Isaiah uses this word (Heb. tzedeq) fifty-one times.
  14. Isaiah 11:4 See Rev. 2:26-28.
  15. Isaiah 11:4 Or “spirit.”
  16. Isaiah 11:4 See 2 Thess. 2:8.
  17. Isaiah 11:5 That is, fairness and truth will be his clothing. The first five verses of this chapter show us that the Messiah would be from David’s lineage and would have the sevenfold Spirit of God resting upon him. His government would be equitable, full of righteousness, and a demonstration of his loyalty to God. Jesus fulfills all these attributes completely.
  18. Isaiah 11:6 The list of animals in this section represents various attributes and spiritual conditions within human beings (cf. Calvin). Some are clean and some are unclean; some are wild and some are tame. They typify aspects of human nature (e.g., the nature of a wolf, a lamb, a lion, a leopard) because elsewhere in Scripture they refer to human beings. Each reveals an aspect of the nature of Adam or of the nature of Christ. This figurative passage of Scripture points to the subduing power of the life of Christ within his people, taming the “wolf,” the enemy of a lamb (John 10:12; Acts 20:29-30), to be subdued and to lie down with the lamb (Christ’s nature within us). The Hebrew word for “lamb” (kebes) is taken from the root word “to subdue, dominate.” There are fifteen natures (creatures) mentioned in this passage that are reconciled and rest together. Fifteen in the Bible is the number of rest.
  19. Isaiah 11:6 The leopard is mentioned eight times in the Bible, and in every instance, it is used figuratively for an aspect of human beings or of spiritual powers of darkness. It is emblematic of an aspect of human nature that cannot be changed or tamed. See Song. 4:8; Jer. 5:6; 13:23; Dan. 7:6; Hab. 1:8; Rev. 13:2.
  20. Isaiah 11:6 Or “stretch out.”
  21. Isaiah 11:6 Or “kid,” meaning either a male lamb or a male goat (Song. 1:8). The Hebrew word for “kid” (gĕdiy) comes from the root word “cut off.” As the Lamb of God, Jesus was cut off from the land of the living for our salvation.
  22. Isaiah 11:6 See 1 Peter 5:8.
  23. Isaiah 11:7 There is a subtle play on words found in the Hebrew. The word for “graze (feed)” is tir‛ēynâ, and the word for “become friends” is titrā‛ēynâ. So the cow and bear grazing together become friends.
  24. Isaiah 11:8 The Hebrew word for “hand” is yad and can also be translated “power.” Although many translations render this “A child will put his hand over the serpent’s den,” the Hebrew text uses the word meuwrah, which means “an opening of light.” Jesus told us that unless we become like little children we can never enter heaven’s kingdom reality. Even little children in God’s kingdom have power over the serpent and bring light into its hiding place. The Hebrew word for “toddler” is “weaned child.” This word (gāmûl) is a homophone that can also be translated “ripe fruit, reward, deal bountifully, do good (to another).” This “weaned child” is the nature of Christ being produced in us. All is subdued and hostility removed in the kingdom of God. See Phil. 3:21.
  25. Isaiah 11:9 See Isa. 2:1-5.
  26. Isaiah 11:9 Or “destructive.”
  27. Isaiah 11:9 The Septuagint uses a present-tense verb, “is (presently) filled (to the brim).”
  28. Isaiah 11:9 Or “as the waters form a covering for the sea.” See Jer. 31:34; Hab. 2:14; Heb. 8:11.
  29. Isaiah 11:10 That is, the royal family line of David (a metonymy). John took this phrase from Isaiah and quotes Jesus referring to himself as the Root of David. See Rev. 5:5; 22:16.
  30. Isaiah 11:10 Or “standing up.” Jesus was lifted up on the cross to bring us salvation (John 12:32).
  31. Isaiah 11:10 The contemporary Hebrew word nes means “miracle,” while the ancient Hebrew means “sign (signal).” The translation includes both concepts. The Septuagint is “He will arise to rule the nations (gentiles).”
  32. Isaiah 11:10 Or “Gentiles will put their hope in him” (LXX). See John 12:21; Rom. 15:12.
  33. Isaiah 11:10 Instead of saying “glorious,” the prophet simply employs the noun glory (kabod). The bride of Christ is now his resting place (Song. 1:16-17). The Hebrew word menuḥâ is also found in Psalm 23:2, “He offers a resting place for me. … His tracks take me to an oasis of peace.” He had nowhere to lay his head (headship), but the heart of a believer is now his resting place. Glory is found at the place where he rests.
  34. Isaiah 11:11 God is a God of restoration, even for those who have miserably failed him.
  35. Isaiah 11:11 Possibly a loan word from Egyptian indicating the region of Upper Egypt. Pathros means “desert dryness.”
  36. Isaiah 11:11 Or “Cush,” which means “scorched” or “blackened.”
  37. Isaiah 11:11 Or “Elam,” a nation-state in the southwestern region of modern-day Iran, whose ancient capital was Susa. Elam means “hidden” or “concealed.”
  38. Isaiah 11:11 Or “Shinar (Babylonia).” Shinar means “divided land” or “divided stream.”
  39. Isaiah 11:11 Or “Hamath,” west-central Syria. Hamath means “walled-up fortress.”
  40. Isaiah 11:11 Possibly the “islands of the (Mediterranean?) sea.” These eight regions are eight areas that Christ will restore within the hearts of those who follow him. Eight is the number of a new beginning.
  41. Isaiah 11:12 Or “He will gather the dispersed of Judah.”
  42. Isaiah 11:13 This is the healing of the divided kingdom. See Jer. 3:18; Ezek. 37:22.
  43. Isaiah 11:14 Or “on the shoulder of Philistia.” The shoulder becomes a metaphor for the hills.
  44. Isaiah 11:14 The Ammonites lived in modern-day Jordan.
  45. Isaiah 11:15 Or “divide” or “destroy.”
  46. Isaiah 11:15 Or “tongue of the Red Sea.”
  47. Isaiah 11:15 Or “wadis.”