1 The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom.
Like the crocus, 2 it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy.
The glory of Lebanon will be given to it, the splendor of Carmel and Sharon;
they will see the glory of the Lord, the splendor of our God.
3 Strengthen the feeble hands, steady the knees that give way;
4 say to those with fearful hearts, “Be strong, do not fear; your God will come,
He will come with vengeance; with divine retribution He will come to save you.
I really like the title of this chapter in the NIV, Joy of the Redeemed, and it applies to all ten verses. There is rejoicing throughout. Look how verse one passes, The desert and the parched land will be glad! And it continues until we get to the end of verse two when we discover why there is such rejoicing and gladness they will see the glory of the Lord, the splendor of our God.
On to verse four why should the fearful hearts no longer be fearful and instead rejoice? Because your God will come, He will come with vengeance; with divine retribution He will come to save you. He will come Himself to save those addressed. With this knowledge fearful hearts can be told do not fear. These verses may very well address king Hezekiah as his words in 2 Chronicles 32:7 closely match those above
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or discouraged because of the king of Assyria and the vast army with him, for there is a greater power with us than with him.
And those of Joshua when he was installed as the leader of Israel after the death of Moses in Joshua 1:6-7 much before the time of Isaiah
Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them.
Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go.
However, it may also be a Messianic prophecy looking ahead to the time of Christ and His glorious return. Paul addresses this idea very clearly in Philippians 4
4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.
6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
And if one is having some difficulty with that Paul provides great additional advice in the next verse
8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things
Wonderful advice, easy to follow if we focus on whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Number one on the list would be the incredible Gift of Grace.