Behold, I will bring them from the north country, and gather them from the coasts of the earth, and with them the blind and the lame, the woman with child and her that travaileth with child together: a great company shall return thither.
Behold, I will bring them from the north country,.... As from Babylon, at the end of the seventy years' captivity, which lay north of Judea; so, in the latter day, from those northern countries, as ours, where they now are in great numbers:
and gather them from the coasts of the earth; or "sides" of it; from all the parts of the world where they are:
and with them the blind and the lame, the woman with child and her that travaileth with child together; signifying that no difficulties whatsoever should hinder them in their return to their own land; provision should be made for persons under these circumstances, so unfit to travel. All this may be understood, in a figurative sense, of those who are spiritually "blind"; who are made to see their lost estate, and need of Christ; and are brought to him, and to his church, in a way they had not known, and in paths they knew not before: and of the lame and impotent, unable to do any good thing in a spiritual sense, and will not come to Christ, unless drawn; these are made to leap as a hart, and to flee to Christ for refuge, and run the ways of his commandments: and of such who are laden and burdened, as "women with child"; and who are encouraged and enabled as such to come to Christ, and cast their burdens on him, and find rest for their souls: and of such who are in pain and distress, as one "that travaileth with child": in the pangs of the new birth, under a sense of wrath, and as ready to perish; who also are enabled to come and venture their souls on Christ, receive his Gospel, and submit to his ordinances, where they find peace and comfort:
a great company shall return thither; three thousand were converted under one sermon, in the first times of the Gospel; and, in the latter day, the nation of the Jews shall be born again at once; the number of the children of Israel shall then be as the sand of the sea, and great shall be the day of Jezreel, Isaiah 66:8.