TODAY’S READING: ISAIAH 13-18
The judgment of Babylon; the judgment of Assyria; the judgment of Philistia; the judgment of Moab; the judgment of Damascus; the judgment of Ethiopia.
HIGHLIGHTS & INSIGHTS:
As we move into chapter 13 today, we find ourselves in a transition. Whereas chapters 1-12 dealt with judgments specifically related to Judah and Jerusalem, chapters 13-23 broaden the prophecies concerning judgment to include the Gentile nations.
Because Babylon was the nation that destroyed Jerusalem and took the people of Judah captive in 586 B.C. , it is not mere coincidence that Babylon is at the top of God’s list concerning judging the Gentile the nations. In 13:1-5, God prophesies concerning those that would wield the judgment, “they come from a far country.” In an historical sense, it is Persia, which was positioned 350 miles east of Babylon. In a prophetic sense, it is referring to heaven itself, and the judgment will be delivered by the Lord Himself “in that day” – “the day of the Lord” (13:6, 9, 13).
Once God has executed His judgment “in that day,” Isaiah says to the nation of Israel in 14:3 – “And it shall come to pass in the day that the LORD shall give thee rest from thy sorrow, and from thy fear, and from the hard bondage wherein thou wast made to serve.” Obviously, this is a reference to the peace and rest Israel will experience in the Millennial reign of the Lord Jesus Christ. I love the way God described what it will be like in His Kingdom in 14:7 – “The whole earth is at rest, and is quiet: they break forth into singing.” I’m with the Apostle John, “Even so, come, Lord Jesus”! (Rev. 22:20)
Just as Ezekiel 28:11-17 is referring to the literal King of Tyrus in an historic sense, but is referring to the power that was working through the King of Tyrus as well, Eden’s first “King,” none other than Lucifer himself, Isaiah 14:8-23 does the same basic thing. It has application to the King of Babylon, but is obviously also referring to the power working behind and through that earthly king, and provides us with vital information concerning Lucifer’s fall. Because this is covered in detail in Lesson #2 in our Discipleship Ministry, I will defer to it for further commentary. It may be sound a little “back-woodsy” to some, but if I had a Bible that didn’t identify “Lucifer” in Isaiah 14:12, I’d get me one that did! Satan has done a masterful job of writing himself right out of almost every book on church history on the market, and in the past several decades, he’s written himself out of almost every Bible on the market! Some Bibles refer to him (Lucifer) as the Morn!
ing Star in verse 12, and actually have cross references in the margin pointing you to II Peter 1:26, and then to Rev. 22:16 where the “Morning Star” is specifically identified as the very Lord Jesus Christ Himself!!! I don’t parade myself as knowing Greek or Hebrew or every little nuance concerning the version debate (though I did take two years to study it), what they’ve done with Isaiah 14:12 is spooky enough to me to keep me “toting” (nice southern word) a Bible where I can at least find Satan when I need to!
Obviously, in the context, Isaiah 14:27 is talking about what God purposed concerning Babylon and Israel, but it is a “dandy” verse to claim about any and everything God has promised that is in accordance with His purposes for us as New Testament believers: “For the Lord of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? And his hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back?”
In chapters 15 and 16, Isaiah prophesies the destruction of Moab, but again, it has futuristic implications and applications, as 16:5 refers to the time when Moab will seek refuge in Judah (16:3-4), and the rescue will come from the Lord Jesus Christ as He rises to his throne at His Second Coming, “judging, and seeking judgment, and hasting righteousness.” (Compare Isa. 16:5 with 9:7; 11:4; 28:6; 32:16; 33:5; 42:1, 3, 4; 51:5).
Chapters 17 and 18 prophesy both the destruction of Damascus and Ethiopia, and yet is filled with icons pointing to the time of Christ’s Second Coming at the end of the Tribulation Period, and the beginning of His Millennial reign (17:4, 7, 9, 11; 18:4).
SPECIFIC REFERENCES TO “THE DAY OF THE LORD”:
13:6 – “the day of the Lord”
13:9 – “the day of the Lord”
13:13 – “in the day”
14:3 – “in the day”
17:4 – “in that day”
17:7 – “at that day”
17:9 – “in that day”
17:11 – “in the day”
18:4 – “I will take my rest”
CHRIST IS REVEALED:
As the ONE WHO WILL SIT ON THE THRONE OF DAVID – Isa. 16:5 (Luke 1:32-33)