Isaiah prophesied that Galilee would witness a major part of the blessings of the Messiah (Isaiah 9:1-2). Since foreigners dominated it for centuries, the region was called "Galilee of the Gentiles." The prophet also mentions "the way of the sea," the name of a major international highway running through this region. Assyrian soldiers used this route when they invaded the northern Kingdom of Israel. Isaiah predicts that from Galilee the Messiah would arise and wipe away the gloom brought on by Gentile control.
Martin G. Collins
The Miracles of Jesus Christ: The Great Catch of Fish
Isaiah wrote after the fall of Israel to Assyria. The Assyrians' attack on the land of Zebulun and Naphtali, in the northern part of Israel, came in two waves. The first "distress" resulted in the deportation of some Israelites. The second oppression was much heavier, resulting in the deportation of virtually everyone. Then, the Assyrians imported Gentile peoples to the area of Zebulon and Naphtali, the area of Galilee. Their descendents—the Samaritans—heavily populated Galilee in Christ's day.
Peter's Trumpets Message—on Pentecost
Other Forerunner Commentary entries containing Isaiah 9:1: