Luke 1:68-70 . Blessed be the Lord God of Israel Who is also the God of the spirits of all flesh: but Zacharias, speaking of the work of redemption calls him only the God of Israel, because to Israel the prophecies, promises, and types of redemption, had hitherto been given, and to them the first offers and proposals of it were now to be made. Israel, as a chosen people, was a type of the people of God to be called out of all nations and ages, whom God had a particular eye to in sending the Saviour. For he hath visited, &c., his people In sending the Messiah, God made a gracious visit to his people, whom, for many ages, he had seemed to neglect, and be estranged from. He is said to have visited his people in bondage, when he delivered them, Exodus 3:16; to have visited them in famine, when he gave them bread, Ruth 1:6. He had often sent to them by his prophets, and had kept up a correspondence with them, but now he himself made them a visit, for Christ was Immanuel, God with us, God manifest in the flesh. And redeemed his people Εποιησε λυτρωσιν τω λαω αυτου . He hath wrought out redemption for his people, complete and illustrious redemption. This was the errand on which Christ came into the world, to redeem those that were sold for sin and sold under sin; even God’s own people, his Israel, need to be redeemed, and are undone if they be not. Christ redeems them by price out of the hands of God’s justice, and redeems them by power out of the hands of Satan’s tyranny, as Israel out of Egypt. And hath raised up a horn of salvation for us That is, a mighty, victorious, and glorious Saviour, who saves his people with an abundant salvation. The expression is metaphorical, taken from beasts, whose strength, defence, and victory over other animals, lies chiefly in their horns, as also the beauty and glory of several of them; the property likewise of the ancients consisting chiefly in their flocks and herds. Accordingly, the word horn is used in Scripture emblematically, to denote strength or power, Lamentations 2:3; Lamentations 2:17; Psalms 75:10; also honour and triumph, as, when the horn is exalted, Psalms 89:24. From the union of these, it signifies the power of a king or kingdom, Revelation 13:1. This is the chief import of the word in this place, the house of David being the regal family, and the word Saviour, implying deliverer, protector, and ruler; the horn of salvation in the house of David denotes the kingdom of Christ. As he spake That is, as he promised; by his holy prophets, which have been since the world began Απ ’ αιωνος , from the beginning of ages, the promise being made to Adam, Genesis 3:15, that the seed of the woman should bruise the serpent’s head; and to Abraham and the other patriarchs, that in their seed all nations of the earth should be blessed. “It cannot,” however, as Dr. Doddridge justly observes, “certainly be inferred from hence, as some have argued, that there was from the beginning of the world a series of prophets, or that every individual prophet spoke of the Messiah, which can never be proved without doing great violence to the remaining writings of some of them.” The words of Zacharias only amount to this, that the generality of prophecies in all ages refer to this great event. See Acts 10:43.
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