The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose.…
The desert shall blossom when Christ is in it, as the narcissus, the meadow-saffron, the rose.
1. There is a desert of separation from ordinary means of grace. I may be deprived, in God's providence, of my Christian surroundings. I may have to travel far from the homeland and the sound of the Sabbath bells. But Jesus may dwell in my heart by faith. And then the wilderness will be a garden.
2. There is a desert of trial. Perhaps I lose my substance. Perhaps I lose my health. Perhaps I lose my friend, the half of my own soul. How desolating the affliction is! But Jesus can bless me through it. He makes the sweetening tree grow beside Marsh.
3. There is a desert of apparent disaster to the cause of God. The Church has its periods of adversity when all things seem to be against it. But Jesus teaches it to be more serious then, more patient, more devout, stronger in faith, richer in feeling, purer in aim.
4. There is a desert of death. To go out from the world which I know so well into the world which is mysterious and strange — how my heart shrinks from it v But Jesus shows me by His Word and His Spirit and His own experience, that death is the road to glory and the path to fruitfulness and the gate into life. The solitary place shall be glad.
(A. Smellie, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose.