And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it…
Under the figure of deliverance from Assyria and Babylon the times of Messiah are foreshadowed. From the previous verses we get suggestions of his miracles of healing, and assurances that he will supply grace to men like abundant fountains in thirsty places. The figure of a "way" was even used by Christ himself. He said, "I am the Way" - the way to the Father; the way of salvation; the way of holiness; the way to glory, "bringing many sons unto glory." Spiritualizing the way described in this text, we may note -
I. THE HIGHWAY OF SALVATION IS A RAISED WAY. A made way; one actually lifted up, leveled, prepared. This is the idea in the Hebrew word. We must distinguish between the ordinary Eastern path, a mere track in the sand or the soil, and the road carefully made for a royal progress, valleys raised, mountains leveled, stones removed. Such a road is Christ's way of life and salvation for us. All hindrances are taken out of the way, and a plain path is laid before our feet. There are some points of view from which the way of life appears as a "strait gate" opening on to a narrow path. But from other points of view it is a broad, open road, which none can mistake. This may lead to consideration of the work of the Lord Jesus which was, as it were, the making of the way of life.
II. THE HIGHWAY OF SALVATION IS A HOLY WAY. There is no possibility of our treading it with the uncleanness of willful sin, kept sin, upon us. Sinners may tread it, but they must be penitent sinners. And a penitent man, so far as heart and purpose are concerned, is a holy man. Imperfect saints may tread it, but only if their heart is set on holiness. Only if they are "clean every whir," but needing to "wash their feet."
III. THE HIGHWAY OF SALVATION IS A SIMPLE WAY. "The wayfaring men, yea fools, shall not err therein." The difficulties we make; they are not really in the way. The way of salvation seems to wise people full of mystery, yet it is grasped by the wayfaring, the fool, the child. None need miss the way, for it is thoroughly well fitted with directions and guide-posts. We may blind ourselves, and refuse to see them. We may put obstacles in our own path. The one great obstacle takes many forms. What we really want is to keep our willfulness; to make a way of our own; to get God to save us on our own terms. There is the highway open right before us, and we persist in looking this way and that, if so be we may find any way but Christ's way of penitence and faith. - R.T.
Parallel VersesKJV: And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein.