Isaiah 3 Judah's Fallen Condition

Isaiah 3:1-15

Isaiah 3 continues along the same line as Isaiah 2 and makes it very definitely clear that it is Jerusalem and Judah which God has in view above all others when He speaks of coming desolation and unsparing judgment. The covenant people and the one-time holy city had strayed so far from the path of obedience that God Himself prepared them for the vengeance decreed by weakening their means of defense. “Children” were their princes and “babes” ruled over them. Their leaders, in other words, were like infants unable to control themselves, much less guide others aright. So disorder and confusion prevailed in place of orderly government. When God is dethroned, anarchy always results.

In their desperation, men were ready to follow anyone who might seem to be able to point out a way of escape from the present misery and might promise to bring order out of the chaotic conditions prevailing. But those to whom men turned for guidance were in utter bewilderment themselves and so refused to take the responsibility of seeking to rectify the abuses that were affecting the nation so adversely.

The root cause of all the trouble is indicated in 3:8: “Jerusalem is ruined, and Judah is fallen: because their tongue and their doings are against the Lord, to provoke the eyes of his glory.” The people had brought down judgment on their own heads and therefore solemn woes were pronounced against them: two in Isaiah 3 (3:9,11) and six in Isaiah 5 (5:8, 11, 18, 20, 21, 22).

In 3:9 we read, “Woe unto their soul! for they have rewarded evil unto themselves,” and in 3:11, “Woe unto the wicked! it shall be ill with him: for the reward of his hands shall be given him.” As for the righteous remnant, God will care for them and protect them in the day of storm and stress.

Isaiah 1 The Call To Hear

Isaiah 1:1-6 Abruptly the voice of the Lord broke in upon the ears of men who prided themselves on their religiousness and trusted in their formal observance of the legal ritual: “Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the Lord hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me.” There is something sublime in the very simplicity of this challenge to obedience. Heaven and earth, ever subject to His will, were called to witness the base ingrati...

Author's Introduction

The book of Isaiah is a portion of God’s Holy Word in which spiritually minded believers find much to exercise their hearts and encourage their glad anticipation of the coming day when Immanuel will take His great power and reign.

Longer than any other prophetic book, Isaiah contains the fullest Messianic predictions to be found in the Old Testament, testifying in no uncertain way to “the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow” (1 Peter 1:11).

Like all other books of the Bible, Isaiah has suffered much at the hands of unbelieving and haughty critics who have done their best to undermine the faith of the simple in the integrity and unity of the Bible. But for those who have faith, all doubts are settled by the Lord Jesus, who when here on earth placed the seal of His divine approval on the prophecy in its entirety. After the ascension of the Savior, the apostles drew from this book again and again in their ministry, all by the direct guidance of the Holy Spirit, thus giving the prophecy a place of unquestionable authority as the very word of Jehovah.

According to Jewish tradition, Isaiah was a man of wealth, rank, and learning. He is supposed to be the one referred to in Hebrews 11:37 as having been “sawn asunder” by the enraged rejecters of his prophetic ministry. If this be so, the execution occurred at the close of a long and honored life, for his public service extended over at least half a century. As he told us in his opening verse, he prophesied “in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah.” In all likelihood he did not appear in the prophetic office until the last year of Uzziah’s long reign (Isaiah 6:1).

Isaiah 7 The Virgin's Son

Isaiah 7 has been the subject of endless controversy throughout the Christian centuries. However, the Holy Spirit makes this portion of Scripture clear to those who are ready to receive His testimony because of the way it is used in connection with the birth of our blessed Lord.

Isaiah 7:1-9

During the reign of King Ahaz (the grandson of Uzziah) war broke out between Judah and Israel. Pekah, the son of King Remaliah of Israel, entered into a confederacy with King Rezin of Syria; and they went together to besiege Jerusalem. Though the siege lasted for some time, they were unable to subjugate the holy city.

When Ahaz learned of the confederacy against him, his heart and the heart of his people were moved with fear, for Ahaz had walked in the ways of the kings of Israel rather than in those of the house of David. He had therefore little or no reason to expect divine help against his foes. But God’s heart was inclined to help the people of Judah, for the time had not yet come to deliver them up to their enemies. There had been quite a measure of return to the Lord during the days of Jotham, the father of Ahaz.

God heard the prayers of His almost distracted people and sent the prophet Isaiah to meet Ahaz and give him a word of encouragement. Isaiah took with him his son Shear-jashub, whose name meant “the remnant shall return.” All of Isaiah’s children seem to have been named prophetically in order that they might be signs to the people of Judah.

Isaiah 8 Maher-Shalal-Hashbaz

Isaiah 8:1-4 We have already met Isaiah’s son Shear-jashub and noted the meaning of his name: “the remnant shall return.” Now we are introduced to Maher-shalal-hashbaz, another of the prophet’s sons. His name, which was given as a sign to Judah, means “in making speed to the spoil he hastens the prey.” Some critics have insisted that Maher-shalal-hashbaz was the son of the maiden referred to in Isaiah 7 and that she was the prophet’s wife. But there is no possibility of i...

Isaiah 14 The Burden Of Babylon (Part Two)

Isaiah 14 shows that God linked Israel’s restoration with Babylon’s doom. Part of this divine prediction concerning the recovery of Judah was fulfilled when through a decree of the conquering Cyrus a remnant was permitted to return to Jerusalem. Likewise the future final restoration of Israel will be connected to the complete overthrow of Gentile power. Isaiah 14:1-2 Note the expression in 14:2, “They shall take them captives, whose captives they were.” This seems to explain th...

Isaiah 13 The Burden Of Babylon (Part One)

Isaiah 13-23 is a distinct section of Isaiah’s prophecy, dealing particularly with the nations who had caused Israel to suffer in the past. In these chapters are “burdens”—that is, prophetic messages—relating particularly to Babylon (13-14); Moab (15-16); Damascus, the capital of Syria (17); some unnamed maritime power west of Ethiopia (18); Egypt (19); Egypt and Ethiopia (20); Edom and Arabia (21); and Tyre (23). Some of these nations will appear on the scene in the last days, sti...

Isaiah 12 When God's Anointed Takes Over (Part Two)

There will be great joy when God’s Anointed takes over and the remant return to Zion. Isaiah 12 gives us the song of triumph that will rise exultantly from the hearts of the redeemed of the Lord, as in the days when the people sang on the shore of the Red Sea after all their enemies had been destroyed.

It is a blessed and precious experience when the heart is fixed on the Lord Himself and the soul realizes the gladness of reconciliation to the One against whom he has sinned. Then with joy he is able to say, “Though thou wast angry with me, thine anger is turned away, and thou comfortedst me.”

It means much to know God as the One through whom deliverance has been wrought and who is Himself “salvation.” Such knowledge is the end of all worry and anxiety. And so we hear the remnant saying, “I will trust, and not be afraid.” Faith is the antidote to fear. As we learn to look to God in confidence, all anxiety disappears, for we know that He who saved us will stand between us and every foe. He does not leave His people to fight their battles in their own power; He is the strength of all who rest on His Word.

The self-righteous Jew, seeking to save himself by his own efforts, has long spurned the wells of salvation. But from that well the returned remnant will draw the water of life as they call on His name and bear witness before all the world to the salvation He has provided.

The exultant song in Isaiah 12 is a psalm and it ends with a call to praise and adore the God of Israel, who will dwell in the midst of His redeemed people in that day when His glory “is known in all the earth.” Even now those who come to Him in faith can make this song their own as they know the reality of His saving grace.

Isaiah 2 Zion's Future Glory

Isaiah 2-5 is a connected discourse, a soul-stirring message addressed to Judah and Jerusalem at a time unspecified. The parable of the vineyard in chapter 5 is a lovely yet solemn epitome of it all and is really the prophet’s text. That which precedes the parable is introductory and that which follows is a fitting conclusion, pronouncing the woes of the Lord upon the vine that only brought forth wild grapes.

Isaiah 2:1-5

Isaiah 2:2-4 is almost identical to Micah 4:1-3. There is no need to suppose plagiarism or a scribe’s blunder in transferring the words of one prophet to the book of another. Rather the similarity is a blessed evidence that the same Spirit inspired both speakers or writers. The double testimony is added assurance that the thing spoken cannot fail.

These verses tell in language too plain to be misunderstood that in the last days God will restore His ancient people Israel to their land and make Jerusalem His throne-city, from which His laws will go forth to the ends of the earth. Isaiah foresaw “that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills.” Mountains are a common prophetic symbol signifying governments and throne-cities, and the mountain in Isaiah 2:2 is the city of Jerusalem.

Jerusalem will be “the city of the great King” (Psalm 48:2) and “all nations shall flow unto it.” This will be fulfilled literally in the coming age after God’s present work of grace has come to an end. He is now, as James pointed out in Acts 15:14, visiting the Gentiles “to take out of them a people for his name.” But when this special work is completed, He will “build again the tabernacle of David” (Acts 15:16) and through restored Israel bless all the nations.

Isaiah 11 When God's Anointed Takes Over (Part One)

Isaiah 11:1-5

After the Assyrian of the endtimes is destroyed and Israel is delivered from all her enemies, there will be peace during the reign of Him who is the Rod out of Jesse’s stem. Coming by virgin birth through David’s line, He is the Branch out of the root of Jesse, who was the father of David. The Branch of the Lord will bring all things into subjection to God and rule with the iron rod of inflexible righteousness.

This Ruler is the One who is presented in the Apocalypse as having the seven spirits of God—that is, the Holy Spirit in the sevenfold plenitude of His power. Upon Him rests (1) the Spirit of Jehovah; (2) the Spirit of wisdom; (3) the Spirit of understanding; (4) the Spirit of counsel; (5) the Spirit of might; (6) the Spirit of knowledge; and (7) the Spirit of the fear of Jehovah, which is the Spirit of reverence. We are told in John 3:34 that the Father giveth not the Spirit “by measure” to His beloved Son.

From the moment of His birth the Lord Jesus was under the controlling power of the Holy Spirit. As man on earth He chose not to act in His own omnipotence, but as the Servant of the godhead. After His baptism in the Jordan, the Spirit was seen descending on Him as a dove. This was the anointing (of which the apostle Peter spoke) in preparation for His gracious public ministry. Never for one moment was He out of harmony with the Spirit. It was this that made it possible for Him to grow in wisdom as he grew in stature, “and in favour with God and man” (Luke 2:52).

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