The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death…
Picture to yourselves a traveller fallen into a defile, the heavens concealed from his view by clouds and darkness; and as he turns in his passage he hears the ravening beasts of night yelling around him, and ready to devour him; conceive his heart sinking within him, and seeking a refuge in vain! If to this man's glimmering light was raised from a distant cottage where he might find security, oh, what joy, what hope of escape would burst across his mind! But yet this will but faintly represent the scene, for the light here spoken of is not a transitory light which may soon be extinguished, but it is a bright light that arises in the land; a light that is raised in heaven to shine on benighted man.
(J. Burnett, LL. B.)
Parallel VersesKJV: The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.