Teks -- Isaiah 20:1-6 (NET)
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JFB: Isaiah (Pendahuluan Kitab) ISAIAH, son of Amoz (not Amos); contemporary of Jonah, Amos, Hosea, in Israel, but younger than they; and of Micah, in Judah. His call to a higher deg...
ISAIAH, son of Amoz (not Amos); contemporary of Jonah, Amos, Hosea, in Israel, but younger than they; and of Micah, in Judah. His call to a higher degree of the prophetic office (Isa 6:1-13) is assigned to the last year of Uzziah, that is, 754 B.C. The first through fifth chapters belong to the closing years of that reign; not, as some think, to Jotham's reign: in the reign of the latter he seems to have exercised his office only orally, and not to have left any record of his prophecies because they were not intended for all ages. The first through fifth and sixth chapters are all that was designed for the Church universal of the prophecies of the first twenty years of his office. New historical epochs, such as occurred in the reigns of Ahaz and Hezekiah, when the affairs of Israel became interwoven with those of the Asiatic empires, are marked by prophetic writings. The prophets had now to interpret the judgments of the Lord, so as to make the people conscious of His punitive justice, as also of His mercy. Isa. 7:1-10:4 belong to the reign of Ahaz. The thirty-sixth through thirty-ninth chapters are historical, reaching to the fifteenth year of Hezekiah; probably the tenth through twelfth chapters and all from the thirteenth through twenty-sixth chapters, inclusive, belong to the same reign; the historical section being appended to facilitate the right understanding of these prophecies; thus we have Isaiah's office extending from about 760 to 713 B.C., forty-seven years. Tradition (Talmud) represents him as having been sawn asunder by Manasseh with a wooden saw, for having said that he had seen Jehovah (Exo 33:20; 2Ki 21:16; Heb 11:37). 2Ch 32:32 seems to imply that Isaiah survived Hezekiah; but "first and last" is not added, as in 2Ch 26:22, which makes it possible that his history of Hezekiah was only carried up to a certain point. The second part, the fortieth through sixty-sixth chapters, containing complaints of gross idolatry, needs not to be restricted to Manasseh's reign, but is applicable to previous reigns. At the accession of Manasseh, Isaiah would be eighty-four; and if he prophesied for eight years afterwards, he must have endured martyrdom at ninety-two; so Hosea prophesied for sixty years. And Eastern tradition reports that he lived to one hundred and twenty. The conclusive argument against the tradition is that, according to the inscription, all Isaiah's prophecies are included in the time from Uzziah to Hezekiah; and the internal evidence accords with this.
His WIFE is called the prophetess [Isa 8:3], that is, endowed, as Miriam, with a prophetic gift.
His CHILDREN were considered by him as not belonging merely to himself; in their names, Shearjashub, "the remnant shall return" [Isa 7:3, Margin], and Maher-shalal-hash-baz, "speeding to the spoil, he hasteth to the prey" [Isa 8:1, Margin], the two chief points of his prophecies are intimated to the people, the judgments of the Lord on the people and the world, and yet His mercy to the elect.
His GARMENT of sackcloth (Isa 20:2), too, was a silent preaching by fact; he appears as the embodiment of that repentance which he taught.
His HISTORICAL WORKS.--History, as written by the prophets, is retroverted prophecy. As the past and future alike proceed from the essence of God, an inspired insight into the past implies an insight into the future, and vice versa. Hence most of the Old Testament histories are written by prophets and are classed with their writings; the Chronicles being not so classed, cannot have been written by them, but are taken from historical monographs of theirs; for example, Isaiah's life of Uzziah, 2Ch 26:22; also of Hezekiah, 2Ch 32:32; of these latter all that was important for all ages has been preserved to us, while the rest, which was local and temporary, has been lost.
The INSCRIPTION (Isa 1:1) applies to the whole book and implies that Isaiah is the author of the second part (the fortieth through sixty-sixth chapters), as well as of the first. Nor do the words, "concerning Judah and Jerusalem" [Isa 1:1], oppose the idea that the inscription applies to the whole; for whatever he says against other nations, he says on account of their relation to Judah. So the inscription of Amos, "concerning Israel" [Amo 1:1], though several prophecies follow against foreign nations. EWALD maintains that the fortieth through sixty-sixth chapters, though spurious, were subjoined to the previous portion, in order to preserve the former. But it is untrue that the first portion is unconnected with those chapters. The former ends with the Babylonian exile (Isa 39:6), the latter begins with the coming redemption from it. The portion, the fortieth through forty-sixth chapters, has no heading of its own, a proof that it is closely connected with what precedes, and falls under the general heading in Isa 1:1. JOSEPHUS (The Antiquities of the Jews, 11. 1, sec. 1, 2) says that Cyrus was induced by the prophecies of Isaiah (Isa 44:28; Isa 45:1, Isa 45:13) to aid the Jews in returning and rebuilding the temple Ezr 1:1-11 confirms this; Cyrus in his edict there plainly refers to the prophecies in the second portion, which assign the kingdoms to him from Jehovah, and the duty of rebuilding the temple. Probably he took from them his historical name Cyrus (Coresh). Moreover, subsequent prophets imitate this second portion, which EWALD assigns to later times; for example, compare Jer. 50:1-51:64 with Isaiah's predictions against Babylon [Isa. 13:1-14:23]. "The Holy One of Israel," occurring but three times elsewhere in the Old Testament [2Ki 19:22; Psa 78:41; Psa 89:18; Jer 50:29; Jer 51:5], is a favorite expression in the second, as in the first portion of Isaiah: it expresses God's covenant faithfulness in fulfilling the promises therein: Jeremiah borrows the expression from him. Also Ecclesiasticus 48:22-25 ("comforted"), quotes Isa 40:1 as Isaiah's. Luk 4:17 quotes Isa 61:1-2 as Isaiah's, and as read as such by Jesus Christ in the synagogue.
The DEFINITENESS of the prophecies is striking: As in the second portion of isaiah, so in Mic 4:8-10, the Babylonian exile, and the deliverance from it, are foretold a hundred fifty years before any hostilities had arisen between Babylon and Judah. On the other hand, all the prophets who foretell the Assyrian invasion coincide in stating, that Judah should be delivered from it, not by Egyptian aid, but directly by the Lord. Again Jeremiah, in the height of the Chaldean prosperity, foretold its conquest by the Medes, who should enter Babylon through the dry bed of the Euphrates on a night of general revelry. No human calculation could have discovered these facts. EICHORN terms these prophecies "veiled historical descriptions," recognizing in spite of himself that they are more than general poetical fancies. The fifty-third chapter of Isaiah was certainly written ages before the Messiah, yet it minutely portrays His sufferings: these cannot be Jewish inventions, for the Jews looked for a reigning, not a suffering, Messiah.
Rationalists are so far right that THE PROPHECIES ARE ON A GENERAL BASIS whereby they are distinguished from soothsaying. They rest on the essential idea of God. The prophets, penetrated by this inner knowledge of His character, became conscious of the eternal laws by which the world is governed: that sin is man's ruin, and must be followed by judgment, but that God's covenant mercy to His elect is unchangeable. Without prophetism, the elect remnant would have decreased, and even God's judgments would have missed their end, by not being recognized as such: they would have been unmeaning, isolated facts. Babylon was in Isaiah's days under Assyria; it had tried a revolt unsuccessfully: but the elements of its subsequent success and greatness were then existing. The Holy Ghost enlightened his natural powers to discern this its rise; and his spiritual faculties, to foresee its fall, the sure consequence, in God's eternal law, of the pride which pagan success generates--and also Judah's restoration, as the covenant-people, with whom God, according to His essential character, would not be wroth for ever. True conversion is the prophet's grand remedy against all evils: in this alone consists his politics. Rebuke, threatening, and promise, regularly succeed one another. The idea at the basis of all is in Isa 26:7-9; Lev 10:3; Amo 3:2.
The USE OF THE PRESENT AND PRETERITE in prophecy is no proof that the author is later than Isaiah. For seers view the future as present, and indicate what is ideally past, not really past; seeing things in the light of God, who "calls the things that are not as though they were." Moreover, as in looking from a height on a landscape, hills seem close together which are really wide apart, so, in events foretold, the order, succession, and grouping are presented, but the intervals of time are overlooked. The time, however, is sometimes marked (Jer 25:12; Dan 9:26). Thus the deliverance from Babylon, and that effected by Messiah, are in rapid transition grouped together by THE LAW OF PROPHETIC SUGGESTION; yet no prophet so confounds the two as to make Messiah the leader of Israel from Babylon. To the prophet there was probably no double sense; but to his spiritual eye the two events, though distinct, lay so near, and were so analogous, that he could not separate them in description without unfaithfulness to the picture presented before him. The more remote and antitypical event, however, namely, Messiah's coming, is that to which he always hastens, and which he describes with far more minuteness than he does the nearer type; for example, Cyrus (compare Isa 45:1 with Isa 53:1-12). In some cases he takes his stand in the midst of events between, for example, the humiliation of Jesus Christ, which he views as past, and His glorification, as yet to come, using the future tense as to the latter (compare Isa 53:4-9 with Isa 53:10-12). Marks of the time of events are given sparingly in the prophets: yet, as to Messiah, definitely enough to create the general expectation of Him at the time that He was in fact born.
The CHALDÆISMS alleged against the genuineness of the second portion of Isaiah, are found more in the first and undoubted portion. They occur in all the Old Testament, especially in the poetical parts, which prefer unusual expressions, and are due to the fact that the patriarchs were surrounded by Chaldee-speaking people; and in Isaiah's time a few Chaldee words had crept in from abroad.
His SYMBOLS are few and simple, and his poetical images correct; in the prophets, during and after the exile, the reverse holds good; Haggai and Malachi are not exceptions; for, though void of bold images, their style, unlike Isaiah's, rises little above prose: a clear proof that our Isaiah was long before the exile.
Of VISIONS, strictly so called, he has but one, that in the sixth chapter; even it is more simple than those in later prophets. But he often gives SIGNS, that is, a present fact as pledge of the more distant future; God condescending to the feebleness of man (Isa 7:14; Isa 37:30; Isa 38:7).
The VARIETIES IN HIS STYLE do not prove spuriousness, but that he varied his style with his subject. The second portion is not so much addressed to his contemporaries, as to the future people of the Lord, the elect remnant, purified by the previous judgments. Hence its tenderness of style, and frequent repetitions (Isa 40:1): for comforting exhortation uses many words; so also the many epithets added to the name of God, intended as stays whereon faith may rest for comfort, so as not to despair. In both portions alike there are peculiarities characteristic of Isaiah; for example, "to be called" equivalent to to be: the repetition of the same words, instead of synonyms, in the parallel members of verses; the interspersing of his prophecies with hymns: "the remnant of olive trees," &c., for the remnant of people who have escaped God's judgments. Also compare Isa 65:25 with Isa 11:6.
The CHRONOLOGICAL ARRANGEMENT favors the opinion that Isaiah himself collected his prophecies into the volume; not Hezekiah's men, as the Talmud guesses from Pro 25:1. All the portions, the dates of which can be ascertained, stand in the right place, except a few instances, where prophecies of similar contents are placed together: with the termination of the Assyrian invasion (the thirty-sixth through thirty-ninth chapters) terminated the public life of Isaiah. The second part is his prophetic legacy to the small band of the faithful, analogous to the last speeches of Moses and of Jesus Christ to His chosen disciples.
The EXPECTATION OF MESSIAH is so strong in Isaiah, that JEROME To Paulinus calls his book not a prophecy, but the gospel: "He is not so much a prophet as an evangelist." Messiah was already shadowed forth in Gen 49:10, as the Shiloh, or tranquillizer; also in Psalms 2, 45, 72, 110. Isaiah brings it out more definitely; and, whereas they dwelt on His kingly office, Isaiah develops most His priestly and prophetic office; the hundred tenth Psalm also had set forth His priesthood, but His kingly rather than, as Isaiah, His suffering, priesthood. The latter is especially dwelt on in the second part, addressed to the faithful elect; whereas the first part, addressed to the whole people, dwells on Messiah's glory, the antidote to the fears which then filled the people, and the assurance that the kingdom of God, then represented by Judah, would not be overwhelmed by the surrounding nations.
His STYLE (HENGSTENBERG, Christology of the Old Testament,) is simple and sublime; in imagery, intermediate between the poverty of Jeremiah and the exuberance of Ezekiel. He shows his command of it in varying it to suit his subject.
The FORM is mostly that of Hebrew poetical parallelism, with, however, a freedom unshackled by undue restrictions.
JUDAH, the less apostate people, rather than Israel, was the subject of his prophecies: his residence was mostly at Jerusalem. On his praises, see Ecclesiasticus 48:22-25. Christ and the apostles quote no prophet so frequently.
JFB: Isaiah (Garis Besar)
PARABLE OF JEHOVAH'S VINEYARD. (Isa. 5:1-30)
SIX DISTINCT WOES AGAINST CRIMES. (Isa. 5:8-23)
(Lev 25:13; Mic 2:2). The jubilee restoration of posses...
- PARABLE OF JEHOVAH'S VINEYARD. (Isa. 5:1-30)
- SIX DISTINCT WOES AGAINST CRIMES. (Isa. 5:8-23) (Lev 25:13; Mic 2:2). The jubilee restoration of possessions was intended as a guard against avarice.
- VISION OF JEHOVAH IN HIS TEMPLE. (Isa 6:1-13)
- PREDICTION OF THE ILL SUCCESS OF THE SYRO-ISRAELITISH INVASION OF JUDAH--AHAZ'S ALLIANCE WITH ASSYRIA, AND ITS FATAL RESULTS TO JUDEA--YET THE CERTAINTY OF FINAL PRESERVATION AND OF THE COMING OF MESSIAH. (Isa. 7:1-9:7)
- FATAL CONSEQUENCES OF AHAZ' ASSYRIAN POLICY. (Isa 7:17-25)
- THE COMING DESOLATE STATE OF THE LAND OWING TO THE ASSYRIANS AND EGYPTIANS. (Isa 7:21-25)
- CONTINUATION OF THE PROPHECY IN THE EIGHTH CHAPTER. (Isa 9:1-7)
- PROPHECY AS TO THE TEN TRIBES. (Isa. 9:8-10:4) Heading of the prophecy; (Isa 9:8-12), the first strophe.
- THANKSGIVING HYMN OF THE RESTORED AND CONVERTED JEWS. (Isa 12:1-6)
- THE THIRTEENTH THROUGH TWENTY-THIRD CHAPTERS CONTAIN PROPHECIES AS TO FOREIGN NATIONS.--THE THIRTEENTH, FOURTEENTH, AND TWENTY-SEVENTH CHAPTERS AS TO BABYLON AND ASSYRIA. (Isa. 13:1-22)
- CONFIRMATION OF THIS BY THE HEREFORETOLD DESTRUCTION OF THE ASSYRIANS UNDER SENNACHERIB. (Isa 14:24-27)
- A CHORUS OF JEWS EXPRESS THEIR JOYFUL SURPRISE AT BABYLON'S DOWNFALL. (Isa 14:4-8)
- THE SCENE CHANGES FROM EARTH TO HELL. (Isa 14:9-11)
- THE JEWS ADDRESS HIM AGAIN AS A FALLEN ONCE-BRIGHT STAR. (Isa 14:12-15)
- THE PASSERS-BY CONTEMPLATE WITH ASTONISHMENT THE BODY OF THE KING OF BABYLON CAST OUT, INSTEAD OF LYING IN A SPLENDID MAUSOLEUM, AND CAN HARDLY BELIEVE THEIR SENSES THAT IT IS HE. (Isa 14:16-20)
- GOD'S DETERMINATION TO DESTROY BABYLON. (Isa 14:21-23)
- A FRAGMENT AS TO THE DESTRUCTION OF THE ASSYRIANS UNDER SENNACHERIB. (Isa 14:24-27) In this verse the Lord's thought (purpose) stands in antithesis to the Assyrians' thoughts (Isa 10:7). (See Isa 46:10-11; 1Sa 15:29; Mal 3:6).
- PROPHECY AGAINST PHILISTIA. (Isa 14:28-32)
- THE FIFTEENTH AND SIXTEENTH CHAPTERS FORM ONE PROPHECY ON MOAB. (Isa 15:1-9)
- CONTINUATION OF THE PROPHECY AS TO MOAB. (Isa 16:1-14)
- CONTINUATION OF THE SUBJECT OF THE NINETEENTH CHAPTER, BUT AT A LATER DATE. CAPTIVITY OF EGYPT AND ETHIOPIA. (Isa 20:1-6)
- REPETITION OF THE ASSURANCE GIVEN IN THE THIRTEENTH AND FOURTEENTH CHAPTERS TO THE JEWS ABOUT TO BE CAPTIVES IN BABYLON, THAT THEIR ENEMY SHOULD BE DESTROYED AND THEY BE DELIVERED. (Isa 21:1-10)
- A PROPHECY TO THE IDUMEANS WHO TAUNTED THE AFFLICTED JEWS IN THE BABYLONISH CAPTIVITY. (Isa 21:11-12)
- PROPHECY THAT ARABIA WOULD BE OVERRUN BY A FOREIGN FOE WITHIN A YEAR. (Isa 21:13-17)
- PROPHECY AS TO AN ATTACK ON JERUSALEM. (Isa 22:1-14)
- PROPHECY THAT SHEBNA SHOULD BE DEPOSED FROM BEING PREFECT OF THE PALACE, AND ELIAKIM PROMOTED TO THE OFFICE. (Isa 22:15-25)
- PROPHECY RESPECTING TYRE. (Isa. 23:1-18)
- THE LAST TIMES OF THE WORLD IN GENERAL, AND OF JUDAH AND THE CHURCH IN PARTICULAR. (Isa. 24:1-23)
- CONTINUATION OF THE TWENTY-FOURTH CHAPTER. THANKSGIVING FOR THE OVERTHROW OF THE APOSTATE FACTION, AND THE SETTING UP OF JEHOVAH'S THRONE ON ZION. (Isa 25:1-12)
- CONNECTED WITH THE TWENTY-FOURTH AND TWENTY-FIFTH CHAPTERS. SONG OF PRAISE OF ISRAEL AFTER BEING RESTORED TO THEIR OWN LAND. (Isa. 26:1-21)
- CONTINUATION OF THE TWENTY-FOURTH, TWENTY-FIFTH, AND TWENTY-SIXTH CHAPTERS. (Isa 27:1-13)
- COMING INVASION OF JERUSALEM: ITS FAILURE: UNBELIEF OF THE JEWS. (Isa. 29:1-24)
- THE THIRTIETH THROUGH THIRTY-SECOND CHAPTERS REFER PROBABLY TO THE SUMMER OF 714 B.C., AS THE TWENTY-NINTH CHAPTER TO THE PASSOVER OF THAT YEAR. (Isa. 30:1-32)
- THE CHIEF STRENGTH OF THE EGYPTIAN ARMIES LAY IN THEIR CAVALRY. (Isa 31:1-9)
- MESSIAH'S KINGDOM; DESOLATIONS, TO BE SUCCEEDED BY LASTING PEACE, THE SPIRIT HAVING BEEN POURED OUT. (Isa. 32:1-20)
- JUDGMENT ON IDUMEA. (Isa. 34:1-17) All creation is summoned to hear God's judgments (Eze 6:3; Deu 32:1; Psa 50:4; Mic 6:1-2), for they set forth His glory, which is the end of creation (Rev 15:3; Rev 4:11).
- CONTINUATION OF THE PROPHECY IN THE THIRTY-FOURTH CHAPTER. (Isa 35:1-10)
- SENNACHERIB'S INVASION; BLASPHEMOUS SOLICITATIONS; HEZEKIAH IS TOLD OF THEM. (Isa. 36:1-22)
- CONTINUATION OF THE NARRATIVE IN THE THIRTY-SIXTH CHAPTER. (Isa. 37:1-38)
- HEZEKIAH'S SICKNESS; PERHAPS CONNECTED WITH THE PLAGUE OR BLAST WHEREBY THE ASSYRIAN ARMY HAD BEEN DESTROYED. (Isa. 38:1-22)
- HEZEKIAH'S ERROR IN THE DISPLAY OF HIS RICHES TO THE BABYLONIAN AMBASSADOR. (Isa 39:1-8)
- SECOND PART OF THE PROPHECIES OF ISAIAH. (Isa. 40:1-31)
- ADDITIONAL REASONS WHY THE JEWS SHOULD PLACE CONFIDENCE IN GOD'S PROMISES OF DELIVERING THEM; HE WILL RAISE UP A PRINCE AS THEIR DELIVERER, WHEREAS THE IDOLS COULD NOT DELIVER THE HEATHEN NATIONS FROM THAT PRINCE. (Isa. 41:1-29) (Zec 2:13). God is about to argue the case; therefore let the nations listen in reverential silence. Compare Gen 28:16-17, as to the spirit in which we ought to behave before God.
- MESSIAH THE ANTITYPE OF CYRUS. (Isa. 42:1-25)
- CONTINUATION OF THE PREVIOUS CHAPTER. (Isa. 44:1-28)
- BABYLON'S IDOLS COULD NOT SAVE THEMSELVES, MUCH LESS HER. BUT GOD CAN AND WILL SAVE ISRAEL: CYRUS IS HIS INSTRUMENT. (Isa 46:1-13)
- THE DESTRUCTION OF BABYLON IS REPRESENTED UNDER THE IMAGE OF A ROYAL VIRGIN BROUGHT DOWN IN A MOMENT FROM HER MAGNIFICENT THRONE TO THE EXTREME OF DEGRADATION. (Isa. 47:1-15)
- THE THINGS THAT BEFALL BABYLON JEHOVAH PREDICTED LONG BEFORE, LEST ISRAEL SHOULD ATTRIBUTE THEM, IN ITS "OBSTINATE" PERVERSITY, TO STRANGE GODS. (Isa 48:1-5). (Isa. 48:1-22)
- SIMILAR TO CHAPTER 42. (Isa 49:1-9). (Isa. 49:1-26)
- THE JUDGMENTS ON ISRAEL WERE PROVOKED BY THEIR CRIMES, YET THEY ARE NOT FINALLY CAST OFF BY GOD. (Isa 50:1-11)
- ENCOURAGEMENT TO THE FAITHFUL REMNANT OF ISRAEL TO TRUST IN GOD FOR DELIVERANCE, BOTH FROM THEIR LONG BABYLONIAN EXILE, AND FROM THEIR PRESENT DISPERSION. (Isa. 51:1-23)
- FIRST THROUGH THIRTEEN VERSES CONNECTED WITH FIFTY-FIRST CHAPTER. (Isa. 52:1-15)
- MAN'S UNBELIEF: MESSIAH'S VICARIOUS SUFFERINGS, AND FINAL TRIUMPH FOR MAN. (Isa 53:1-12)
- THE FRUIT OF MESSIAH'S SUFFERINGS, AND OF ISRAEL'S FINAL PENITENCE AT HER PAST UNBELIEF (Isa 53:6): HER JOYFUL RESTORATION AND ENLARGEMENT BY JEHOVAH, WHOSE WRATH WAS MOMENTARY, BUT HIS KINDNESS EVERLASTING. (Isa. 54:1-17)
- THE CALL OF THE GENTILE WORLD TO FAITH THE RESULT OF GOD'S GRACE TO THE JEWS FIRST. (Isa 55:1-13)
- THE PREPARATION NEEDED ON THE PART OF THOSE WHO WISH TO BE ADMITTED TO THE KINGDOM OF GOD. (Isa 56:1-12)
- THE PEACEFUL DEATH OF THE RIGHTEOUS FEW: THE UNGODLINESS OF THE MANY: A BELIEVING REMNANT SHALL SURVIVE THE GENERAL JUDGMENTS OF THE NATION, AND BE RESTORED BY HIM WHO CREATES PEACE. (Isa. 57:1-21)
- REPROOF OF THE JEWS FOR THEIR DEPENDENCE ON MERE OUTWARD FORMS OF WORSHIP. (Isa 58:1-14)
- THE PEOPLE'S SIN THE CAUSE OF JUDGMENTS: THEY AT LAST OWN IT THEMSELVES: THE REDEEMER'S FUTURE INTERPOSITION IN THEIR EXTREMITY. (Isa. 59:1-21)
- ISRAEL'S GLORY AFTER HER AFFLICTION. (Isa. 60:1-22)
- MESSIAH'S OFFICES: RESTORATION OF ISRAEL. (Isa 61:1-11)
- INTERCESSORY PRAYERS FOR ZION'S RESTORATION, ACCOMPANYING GOD'S PROMISES OF IT, AS THE APPOINTED MEANS OF ACCOMPLISHING IT. (Isa 62:1-12)
- MESSIAH COMING AS THE AVENGER, IN ANSWER TO HIS PEOPLE'S PRAYERS. (Isa. 63:1-19)
- TRANSITION FROM COMPLAINT TO PRAYER. (Isa 64:1-12)
- GOD'S REPLY IN JUSTIFICATION OF HIS DEALINGS WITH ISRAEL. (Isa. 65:1-25)
- THE HUMBLE COMFORTED, THE UNGODLY CONDEMNED, AT THE LORD'S APPEARING: JERUSALEM MADE A JOY ON EARTH. (Isa. 66:1-24)
TSK: Isaiah (Pendahuluan Kitab) Isaiah has, with singular propriety, been denominated the Evangelical Prophet, on account of the number and variety of his prophecies concerning the a...
Isaiah has, with singular propriety, been denominated the Evangelical Prophet, on account of the number and variety of his prophecies concerning the advent and character, the ministry and preaching, the sufferings and death, and the extensive and permanent kingdom of the Messiah. So explicit and determinate are his predictions, as well as so numerous, that he seems to speak rather of things past than of events yet future; and he may be rather called an evangelist than a prophet. Though later critics, especially those on the continent, have expended much labour and learning in order to rob the prophet of his title; yet no one, whose mind is unprejudiced, can be at a loss in applying select portions of these prophecies to the mission and character of Jesus Christ, and to the events in his history which they are cited to illustrate by the sacred writers of the New Testament. In fact, his prophecies concerning the Messiah seem almost to anticipate the Gospel history; so clearly do they predict his Divine character. (Compare Isa 7:14 with Mat 1:18-23, and Luk 1:27-35; see Isa 6:1-13; Isa 9:6; Isa 35:4; Isa 40:5, Isa 40:9, Isa 40:19; Isa 42:6-8; compare Isa 61:1, with Luk 4:18; see Isa 62:11; Isa 63:1-4); his miracles (Isa 35:5, Isa 35:6); his peculiar character and virtues (Isa 11:2, Isa 11:3; Isa 40:11; Isa 43:1-3); his rejection (Compare Isa 6:9-12 with Mar 13:14; see Isa 7:14, Isa 7:15; Isa 53:3); his sufferings for our sins (Isa 50:6; Isa 53:4-11); his death and burial (Isa 53:8, Isa 53:9); his victory over death (Isa 25:8; Isa 53:10, Isa 53:12); his final glory (Isa 49:7, Isa 49:22, 33; Isa 52:13-15; Isa 53:4, Isa 53:5); and the establishment, increase, and perfection of his kingdom (Isa 2:2-4; Isa 9:2, Isa 9:7; Isa 11:4-10; Isa 16:5; Isa 29:18-24; Isa 32:1; Isa 40:4, Isa 40:5; Isa 42:4; Isa 46:13; Isa 49:9-13; Isa 51:3-6; Isa 53:6-10; Isa 55:1-3; Isa 59:16-21; 60; Isa 61:1-5; Isa 65:25); each specifically pointed out, and pourtrayed with the most striking and discriminating characters. It is impossible, indeed, to reflect on these, and on the whole chain of his illustrious prophecies, and not be sensible that they furnish the most incontestable evidence in support of Christianity. The style of Isaiah has been universally admired as the most perfect model of elegance and sublimity; and as distinguished for all the magnificence, and for all the sweetness of the Hebrew language.
TSK: Isaiah 20 (Pendahuluan Pasal) Overview
Isa 20:1, A type prefiguring the shameful captivity of Egypt and Ethiopia.
Isa 20:1, A type prefiguring the shameful captivity of Egypt and Ethiopia.
Poole: Isaiah (Pendahuluan Kitab) THE ARGUMENT
THE teachers of the ancient church were of two sorts:
1. Ordinary, the priests and Levites.
2. Extraordinary, the prophets. These we...
THE teachers of the ancient church were of two sorts:
1. Ordinary, the priests and Levites.
2. Extraordinary, the prophets. These were immediately called by God, and inspired, as with other singular gifts and graces, so particularly with a supernatural knowledge of Divine mysteries, and of future things, and invested by God with an authority superior not only to the ordinary teachers of the church, but in some sort even to the civil powers of the nation. These holy prophets, whose writings are contained in the sacred Scripture, are sixteen. Of these Isaiah is first in place, and, as may seem probable, in time also. But undoubtedly he was contemporary with Hosea, whom others suppose to have been before him. Compare Isa 1:1 , with Hos 1:1 . The Jews tell us that he was of the blood royal of Judah, which is uncertain. But undoubtedly he was the prince of all the prophets, whether we consider the great extent and variety of his prophecies, the excellency and sublimity of those mysteries which were revealed to him and by him, the majesty and elegancy of his style, or the incomparable liveliness and power of his sermons. He doth so evidently and fully describe the person, and offices, and sufferings, and kingdom of Christ, that some of the ancients called him the fifth evangelist. And it is observed, that there are more testimonies and quotations in the New Testament taken out of Isaiah than out of all the other prophets.
Poole: Isaiah 20 (Pendahuluan Pasal) CHAPTER 20
The captivity of Egypt and Ethiopia represented, to take off the Jews from seeking to them for help.
The captivity of Egypt and Ethiopia represented, to take off the Jews from seeking to them for help.
MHCC: Isaiah (Pendahuluan Kitab) Isaiah prophesied in the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah. He has been well called the evangelical prophet, on account of his numerous and...
Isaiah prophesied in the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah. He has been well called the evangelical prophet, on account of his numerous and full prophesies concerning the coming and character, the ministry and preaching, the sufferings and death of the Messiah, and the extent and continuance of his kingdom. Under the veil of the deliverance from Babylon, Isaiah points to a much greater deliverance, which was to be effected by the Messiah; and seldom does he mention the one, without alluding at the same time to the other; nay, he is often so much enraptured with the prospect of the more distant deliverance, as to lose sight of that which was nearer, and to dwell on the Messiah's person, office, character, and kingdom.
MHCC: Isaiah 20 (Pendahuluan Pasal) The invasion and conquest of Egypt and Ethiopia.
The invasion and conquest of Egypt and Ethiopia.
Matthew Henry: Isaiah (Pendahuluan Kitab) An Exposition, With Practical Observations, of The Book of the Prophet Isaiah
Prophet is a title that sounds very great to those that understand it, t...
An Exposition, With Practical Observations, of The Book of the Prophet Isaiah
Prophet is a title that sounds very great to those that understand it, though, in the eye of the world, many of those that were dignified with it appeared very mean. A prophet is one that has a great intimacy with Heaven and a great interest there, and consequently a commanding authority upon earth. Prophecy is put for all divine revelation (2Pe 1:20, 2Pe 1:21), because that was most commonly by dreams, voices, or visions, communicated to prophets first, and by them to the children of men, Num 12:6. Once indeed God himself spoke to all the thousands of Israel from the top of Mount Sinai; but the effect was so intolerably dreadful that they entreated God would for the future speak to them as he had done before, by men like themselves, whose terror should not make them afraid, nor their hands be heavy upon them, Job 33:7. God approved the motion ( they have well said, says he, Deu 5:27, Deu 5:28), and the matter was then settled by consent of parties, that we must never expect to hear from God any more in that way, but by prophets, who received their instructions immediately from God, with a charge to deliver them to his church. Before the sacred canon of the Old Testament began to be written there were prophets, who were instead of Bibles to the church. Our Saviour seems to reckon Abel among the prophets, Mat 23:31, Mat 23:35. Enoch was a prophet; and by him that was first in prediction which is to be last in execution - the judgment of the great day. Jud 1:14, Behold, the Lord comes with his holy myriads. Noah was a preacher of righteousness. God said of Abraham, He is a prophet, Gen 20:7. Jacob foretold things to come, Gen 49:1. Nay, all the patriarchs are called prophets. Psa 105:15, Do my prophets no harm. Moses was, beyond all comparison, the most illustrious of all the Old Testament prophets, for with him the Lord spoke face to face, Deu 34:10. He was the first writing prophet, and by his hand the first foundations of holy writ were laid. Even those that were called to be his assistants in the government had the spirit of prophecy, such a plentiful effusion was there of that spirit at that time, Num 11:25. But after the death of Moses, for some ages, the Spirit of the Lord appeared and acted in the church of Israel more as a martial spirit than as a spirit of prophecy, and inspired men more for acting than speaking. I mean in the time of the judges. We find the Spirit of the Lord coming upon Othniel, Gideon, Samson, and others, for the service of their country, with their swords, not with their pens. Messages were then sent from heaven by angels, as to Gideon and Manoah, and to the people, Jdg 2:1. In all the book of judges there is never once mention of a prophet, only Deborah is called a prophetess. Then the word of the Lord was precious; there was no open vision, 1Sa 3:1. They had the law of Moses, recently written; let them study that. But in Samuel prophecy revived, and in him a famous epocha, or period of the church began, a time of great light in a constant uninterrupted succession of prophets, till some time after the captivity, when the canon of the Old Testament was completed in Malachi, and then prophecy ceased for nearly 400 years, till the coming of the great prophet and his forerunner. Some prophets were divinely inspired to write the histories of the church. But they did not put their names to their writings; they only referred for proof to the authentic records of those times, which were known to be drawn up by prophets, as Gad, Iddo, etc. David and others were prophets, to write sacred songs for the use of the church. After them we often read of prophets sent on particular errands, and raised up for special public services, among whom the most famous were Elijah and Elisha in the kingdom of Israel. But none of these put their prophecies in writing, nor have we any remains of them but some fragments in the histories of their times; there was nothing of their own writing (that I remember) but one epistle of Elijah's, 2Ch 21:12. But towards the latter end of the kingdoms of Judah and Israel, it pleased God to direct his servants the prophets to write and publish some of their sermons, or abstracts of them. The dates of many of their prophecies are uncertain, but the earliest of them was in the days of Uzziah king of Judah, and Jeroboam the second, his contemporary, king of Israel, about 200 years before the captivity, and not long after Joash had slain Zechariah the son of Jehoiada in the courts of the temple. If they begin to murder the prophets, yet they shall not murder their prophecies; these shall remain as witnesses against them. Hosea was the first of the writing prophets; and Joel, Amos, and Obadiah, published their prophecies about the same time. Isaiah began some time after, and not long; but his prophecy is placed first, because it is the largest of them all, and has most in it of him to whom all the prophets bore witness; and indeed so much of Christ that he is justly styled the Evangelical Prophet, and, by some of the ancients, a fifth Evangelist. We shall have the general title of this book (Isa 1:1) and therefore shall here only observe some things,
I. Concerning the prophet himself. He was (if we may believe the tradition of the Jews) of the royal family, his father being (they say) brother to king Uzziah. He was certainly much at court, especially in Hezekiah's time, as we find in his story, to which many think it is owing that his style is more curious and polite than that of some other of the prophets, and, in some places, exceedingly lofty and soaring. The Spirit of God sometimes served his own purpose by the particular genius of the prophet; for prophets were not speaking trumpets, through which the Spirit spoke, but speaking men, by whom the Spirit spoke, making use of their natural powers, in respect both of light and flame, and advancing them above themselves.
II. Concerning the prophecy. It is transcendently excellent and useful; it was so to the church of God then, serving for conviction of sin, direction in duty, and consolation in trouble. Two great distresses of the church are here referred to, and comfort prescribed in reference to them, that by Sennacherib's invasion, which happened in his own time, and that of the captivity in Babylon, which happened long after; and in the supports and encouragements laid up for each of these times of need we find abundance of the grace of the gospel. There are not so many quotations in the gospels out of any, perhaps not out of all, the prophecies of the Old Testament, as out of this; nor such express testimonies concerning Christ, witness that of his being born of a virgin (ch. 7) and that of his sufferings, Isa 53:1-12. The beginning of this book abounds most with reproofs for sin and threatenings of judgment; the latter end of it is full of wood words and comfortable words. This method the Spirit of Christ took formerly in the prophets and does still, first to convince and then to comfort; and those that would be blessed with the comforts must submit to the convictions. Doubtless Isaiah preached many sermons, and delivered many messages to the people, which are not written in this book, as Christ did; and probably these sermons were delivered more largely and fully than they are here related, but so much is left on record as Infinite Wisdom thought fit to convey to us on whom the ends of the world have come; and these prophecies, as well as the histories of Christ, are written that we might believe on the name of the Son of God, and that, believing, we might have life through his name; for to us is the gospel here preached as well as unto those that lived then, and more clearly. O that it may be mixed with faith!
Matthew Henry: Isaiah 20 (Pendahuluan Pasal) This chapter is a prediction of the carrying away of multitudes both of the Egyptians and the Ethiopians into captivity by the king of Assyria. Her...
This chapter is a prediction of the carrying away of multitudes both of the Egyptians and the Ethiopians into captivity by the king of Assyria. Here is, I. the sign by which this was foretold, which was the prophet's going for some time barefoot and almost naked, like a poor captive (Isa 20:1-2). II. The explication of that sign, with application to Egypt and Ethiopia (Isa 20:3-5). III. The good use which the people of God should make of this, which is never to trust in an arm of flesh, because thus it will deceive them (Isa 20:6).
Constable: Isaiah (Pendahuluan Kitab) Introduction
Title and writer
The title of this book of the Bible, as is true of the o...
Title and writer
The title of this book of the Bible, as is true of the other prophetical books, comes from its writer. The book claims to have come from Isaiah (1:1; 2:1; 7:3; 13:1; 20:2; 37:2, 6, 21; 38:1, 4, 21; 39:3, 5, 8), and Jesus Christ and the apostles quoted him as being the writer at least 21 times, more often than they quoted all the other writing prophets combined.1 The name of Isaiah, the son of Amoz, is the only one connected with the book in any of the Hebrew manuscripts or ancient versions. Josephus, the Jewish historian who wrote at the end of the first century A.D., believed that Isaiah wrote this book. He said that Cyrus read the prophecies that Isaiah had written about him and wished to fulfill them.2
There is no record of any serious scholar doubting the Isaianic authorship of the entire book before the twelfth century when Ibn Ezra, a Jewish commentator, did so. With the rise of rationalism, however, some German scholars took the lead in questioning it in the late eighteenth century. They claimed that the basis for their new view was the differences in style, content, and emphases in the various parts of the prophecy. Many scholars have noted that it is not really the text itself that argues for multiple authorship as much as the presence of predictive prophecy in chapters 40-66, which antisupernaturalistic critics try to explain away.3 At first, there seemed to these critics to have been two writers whose respective emphases on judgment in chapters 1-39 and consolation in chapters 40-66 pointed to two separate writers, Isaiah and "Deutero-Isaiah." With further study, a theory of three writers ("Trito-Isaiah") emerged because of the differences between chapters 40-55 and 56-66. These critics sensed addresses to three different historical settings in these three parts of the book: Isaiah's lifetime (ca. 739-701 B.C.; chs. 1-39), the Babylonian exile (ca. 605-539 B.C.; chs. 40-55), and the return (ca. 539-400 B.C.; chs. 56-66).4
"Along with what is known as the JEDP theory of the origins of the Pentateuch, the belief in the multiple authorship of the book of Isaiah is one of the most generally accepted dogmas of biblical higher criticism today."5
However, internal and external evidence points to the unity of authorship. The title for God, "holy one of Israel," which reflects the deep impression that Isaiah's vision in chapter 6 made on him, occurs 12 times in chapters 1-39 and 14 times in chapters 40-66 but only seven times elsewhere in the entire Old Testament. Other key phrases, passages, words, themes, and motifs likewise appear in both parts of the book. Jewish tradition uniformly attributed the entire book to Isaiah as did Christian tradition until the eighteenth century. The Isaiah Dead Sea Scroll, the oldest copy of Isaiah that we have, dating from the second century B.C., has chapter 40 beginning in the same column in which chapter 39 ends.6
Isaiah was arguably the greatest of four prophets who lived and wrote toward the end of the eighth century. Amos and Hosea ministered in the northern kingdom of Israel at this time, and Micah and Isaiah served in Judah.7 Isaiah's name, "The Lord (Yahweh) is salvation," meaning the Lord is the source of salvation, symbolized his message.
". . . in that one name is compressed the whole contents of the book!"8
Isaiah lived in Jerusalem, and that capital city features prominently in his prophecies. His easy access to the court and Judah's kings, revealed in his book, suggests that he ministered to the kings of Judah and may have had royal blood in his veins. Jewish tradition made him the cousin of King Uzziah. His communication gifts and his political connections, whatever those may have been, gave him an opportunity to reach the whole nation of Judah. The prophet was married and had at least two sons to whom he gave names that also summarized major themes of his prophecies (8:18): Shearjashub (a remnant shall return, 7:3), and Maher-shalal-hash-baz (hastening to the spoil, 8:3).
Isaiah received his call to prophetic ministry in the year that King Uzziah died (740 B.C.; ch. 6). He responded enthusiastically to this privilege even though he knew from the outset that his ministry would be fruitless and discouraging (6:9-13). His wife was a prophetess (8:3) probably in the sense that she was married to a prophet; we have no record that she prophesied herself. Isaiah also trained a group of disciples who gathered around him (8:16). His vision of God, which he received at the beginning of his ministry, profoundly influenced Isaiah's whole view of life as well as his prophecies, as is clear from what he wrote.9
The prophet had a very broad appreciation of the political situation in which he lived. He demonstrated awareness of all the nations around his homeland. Judah and Jerusalem were the focal points of his prophecies, but he saw God's will for them down the corridors of time as well as in his own day. He saw that the kingdom that God would establish through His Messiah would include all people. He was a true patriot who denounced evils in his land as well as giving credit where that was due. He condemned religious cults yet remained neutral politically. His understanding of theology was profound. He set forth the wonder and grandeur of Yahweh more ably than any other biblical writer. As a writer, Isaiah is without a peer among the Old Testament prophets. He was a poetic artist who employed a large vocabulary and many literary devices to express his thoughts beautifully and powerfully. Most of his prophecies appear to have been messages that he delivered, which means that he was probably also a powerful orator.
There is no historical record of Isaiah's death. Jewish tradition held that he suffered martyrdom under King Manasseh (697-642 B.C.) because of his prophesying. The early church father Justin Martyr (ca. A.D. 150) wrote that the Jews sawed him to death with a wooden saw (cf. Heb. 11:37).10 Another ancient source says he took refuge in a hollow tree, but his persecutors discovered and extracted him. This may account for the unusual method of his execution.
Historical Background and Date
Isaiah ministered during the reigns of four Judean kings (1:1): Uzziah (792-740 B.C.), Jotham (750-732 B.C.), Ahaz (735-715 B.C.), and Hezekiah (715-686 B.C.).11 The prophet began his ministry in the year that King Uzziah (or Azariah) died, namely, 740 or 739 B.C. (6:1).
During Uzziah's reign Judah enjoyed peace because of her surrounding nations' lack of antagonism and hostility. However, in 745 B.C. Tiglath-pileser III mounted the throne of Assyria and began to expand his empire. His three successors (Shalmaneser V, Sargon II, and Sennacherib) proved equally ambitious. Aram (Syria) and Israel (Ephraim) felt the pressure of Assyrian expansion before Judah did, but in King Ahaz's reign Judah had to make a crucial decision regarding her relationship to Assyria. Isaiah played a major role in that decision.
A second major crisis arose during the reign of King Hezekiah. By this time Babylon had defeated Assyria, and it was also expanding aggressively in Judah's direction. Again Isaiah played a major part in the decision about how Judah would respond to this threat.
". . . Isaiah exercised his prophetic ministry at a time of unique significance, a time in which it was of utmost importance to realize that salvation could not be obtained by reliance upon man but only from God Himself. For Israel it was the central or pivotal point of history between Moses and Christ. The old world was passing and an entirely new order of things was beginning to make its appearance. Where would Israel stand in that new world? Would she be the true theocracy, the light to lighten the Gentiles, or would she fall into the shadow by turning for help to the nations which were about her?"12
Sennacherib outlived Hezekiah, who died in 686 B.C., and Isaiah recorded the death of Sennacherib in 681 B.C. (37:38). Just how long the prophet ministered after that event is impossible to determine, but he must have prophesied for at least 60 years. However the bulk of the material in his book derives from the first 50 of those years (ca. 740-690 B.C.).
|Important dates for Isaiah|
|745||Tiglath-pileser III of Assyria begins his reign|
|740||Uzziah of Judah dies; Isaiah begins his ministry|
|735||Ahaz of Judah begins his co-regency with Jotham; Pekah of Israel and Rezin of Aramea ally against Assyria|
|733-32||Tiglath-pileser invades Aramea and Israel|
|732||Damascus falls; Pekah and Rezin die; Jotham dies|
|722||Samaria falls; Shalmaneser V of Assyria dies and Sargon II begins to reign|
|715||Ahaz dies and Hezekiah begins his reign|
|711||Sargon attacks Ashdod and returns to Assyria|
|710||Sargon attacks Babylon|
|701||Sennacherib of Assyria defeats Egypt at Eltekah and departs from Jerusalem; Merodach-baladan of Babylon sends messengers to visit Hezekiah|
|697||Manasseh of Judah begins his co-regency|
|690||Tirhakah of Egypt begins his reign|
|689||Sennacherib of Assyria defeats Babylon|
|681||Sennacherib of Assyria dies and Esarhaddon begins to reign|
|671||Esarhaddon imports foreigners into Israel and defeats Egypt|
|612||Nineveh falls to Babylon|
|609||Nabopolassar of Babylon defeats Assyria and Assyria falls|
|605||Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon defeats Egypt at Carchemish; first deportation of Judahites to Babylon|
|597||Second deportation of Judahites to Babylon|
|586||Jerusalem falls to Nebuchadnezzar|
|559||Cyrus II of Persia begins to reign|
|539||Cyrus overthrows Babylon|
|538||Cyrus issues his decree allowing Jews to return to Palestine|
|518||Darius Hystaspes of Persia destroys Babylon|
Audience and purpose
Isaiah ministered and wrote to the people of Jerusalem and Judah. His task was to explain to these chosen people that the old world order was passing away and that the new order, controlled by Gentile world empires that sought to swallow Judah up, required a new commitment to trust and obey Yahweh as His servant. The Assyrian threat called for this new dedication. This was a theological even more than a historical and political crisis for Judah. It raised many questions that Isaiah addressed.
"Is God truly the Sovereign of history if the godless nations are stronger than God's nation? Does might make right? What is the role of God's people in the world? Does divine judgment mean divine rejection? What is the nature of trust? What is the future of the Davidic monarchy? Are not the idols stronger than God and therefore superior to him?"13
The far-reaching nature of these questions called for reference to the future, which Isaiah revealed from the Lord. The Northern Kingdom had made the wrong commitment, which Amos announced, but the Southern Kingdom still had an opportunity to trust Yahweh and live.
"Stated briefly, the purpose of Isaiah is to display God's glory and holiness through His judgment of sin and His deliverance and blessing of a righteous remnant."14
The Book of Isaiah, the third longest book in the Bible after Psalms and Jeremiah, deals with as broad a range of theology as any book in the Old Testament. In this respect it is similar to Romans. However, there are four primary doctrines, all arising out of the prophet's personal experience with God in his call (ch. 6), that receive the most emphasis. These are God, man and the world, sin, and redemption.
Isaiah presented God as great, transcendently separate, authoritative, omnipotent, majestic, holy, and morally and ethically perfect. In contrast, he described sarcastically the stupidity of idolatry. God creates history as well as the cosmos, and He has a special relationship with Israel among the nations. The adjective "holy" (Heb. qadosh) describes God 33 times in Isaiah and only 26 times in the rest of the Old Testament. It is the primary attribute of God that this prophet stressed.
Isaiah showed the tremendous value that God places on humanity and the world but also the folly of pride and unbelief. Assuming pretensions to significance leads to insignificance for the creation, but giving true significance to God results in glory for humanity and the world. As all the other eighth-century prophets, Isaiah condemned injustice.
Sin is rebellion for Isaiah that springs from pride. The book begins and ends on this note (1:2; 66:24). All the evil in the world results from man's refusal to accept Yahweh's lordship. The prophet repeatedly showed how foolish such rebellion is. It not only affects man himself but also his environment. God's response to sin is judgment if people continue to rebel against Him, but He responds with redemption if they abandon self-trust and depend on Him. Sin calls for repentance, and forgiveness for the penitent is available.
God's judgment, the outworking of the personal rage of offended deity, takes many forms: natural disaster, military defeat, and disease being a few, but they all come from God's hand ultimately. The means of salvation can only be through God's activity. Substitutionary atonement makes possible God's announcement of pardon and redemption. This redemption comes through the promised Messiah ultimately, the Lord's anointed king. The goal of redemption is not just deliverance from sin's guilt but the sharing of God's character and fellowship. Salvation could only come to God's people as they accepted the role of servant. Deliverance cannot come to man through his own effort, but he must look to God alone for it. His emphasis on salvation has earned Isaiah the title of evangelist of the Old Testament.
Isaiah is strongly eschatological. In many passages the prophet dealt with the future destiny of Israel and the Gentiles. He wrote more than any other prophet of the great kingdom into which the Israelites would enter under Messiah's rule.
"We stand precisely on 56:1, looking back to the work of the Servant (now fulfilled in the person, life, death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus) and looking forward to the coming of the Anointed Conqueror."15
Isaiah's emphasis on the coming Messiah is second only to the Psalms in the Old Testament in terms of its fullness and variety. God revealed more about the coming Messiah to Isaiah than He did to any other Old Testament character. Messianic themes in Isaiah include the branch, the stone (refuge), light, child, king, and especially servant. In some of the passages in Isaiah, Israel is the servant of the Lord that is in view, in others the faithful remnant in Israel is the servant, and in still others a future individual, the Messiah, must be in view. As Matthew clarified, Jesus Christ was the fulfillment of what God intended the Israelites to be (Matt. 2:15; cf. Hos. 11:1-2).
"What is the overarching theme of OT theology? Perhaps it is the covenant. Here in Isaiah, God's special relationship with Israel is presupposed throughout. Perhaps it is the kingdom of God. The whole structure of the book brings out the implications of God's sovereign control of things in the interests of his kingdom. Perhaps it is promise and fulfillment. Here we see time and again the word of divine authority being fulfilled and further fulfillment thereby pledged. Perhaps it is simply God himself, Israel's Holy One. This book is one long exposition of the implications--for Israel and the world--of who and what he is. So this great prophecy--its whole structure unified by its teaching about the Holy One of Israel, who is true to his word, faithful to his covenant, and pursues the establishment of his kingdom--is a classic disclosure of the very heart of the OT faith."16
"The theological message of the book may be summarized as follows: The Lord will fulfill His ideal for Israel by purifying His people through judgment and then restoring them to a renewed covenantal relationship. He will establish Jerusalem (Zion) as the center of His worldwide kingdom and reconcile once hostile nations to Himself."17
Genre and interpretation
The book is a compilation of the visions that Isaiah received from the Lord. He presented this revelation as messages and compiled them into their present form. His disciples may have put finishing touches on the collection under divine inspiration. Most of the book is poetic in form, the prophet having been lifted up in his spirit as he beheld and recorded what God revealed to him. Much of the content is eschatological and therefore prophetic, though most of the ministry of the prophets, including Isaiah, was forth telling rather than foretelling. Much of what is eschatological is also apocalyptic, dealing with the final climax of history in the future. These portions bear the marks of that type of literature: symbols, analogies, and various figures of speech.18
Students of Isaiah have difficulty understanding the eschatological portions of the book. Some believe that we should look for a literal fulfillment of everything predicted. Others believe that when Isaiah spoke of Israel and Jerusalem he was referring to the church. More literal interpretation results in a premillennial understanding of prophecy whereas spiritualization results in an amillennial or postmillennial understanding. The problem with taking every prophecy literally is that in many places the prophet used metaphors and other figures of speech to describe his meaning; what he wrote does not describe exactly what he meant. The problem with spiritualizing all the prophecies is that the New Testament teaches that Israel will have a future in God's plans as Israel (Rom. 11:26-27). The church will not replace Israel though the church does participate in some of the blessing promised to Israel. The most satisfying position, for me, is to interpret Isaiah as literally as seems legitimate in view of other divine revelation while at the same time remembering that some of what appears to be literal description may in fact be metaphorical. This is the approach taken by most premillennialists.
"Surely God may be expected to have one basic meaning in what he says. This is true, but just as human speech, especially when it is poetical, may suggest further levels of significance beyond the meaning conveyed by the passage in its context, so may the Word of God."19
Occasional time references scattered throughout the book indicate that Isaiah arranged his prophecies in a basically chronological order (cf. 6:1; 7:1; 14:28; 20:1; 36:1; 37:38). However, they are not completely chronological. More fundamentally, Isaiah arranged his prophecies as an anthology in harmony with a unifying principle. That organizing principle seems to be that God's people should view all of life in the light of God's reality and should therefore orient themselves to Him appropriately, namely, as His servants.
Isaiah built a huge mosaic out of his prophecies and used pre-exilic material to serve pre-exilic, exilic, post-exilic, and eschatological ends. It is not unreasonable to assume that after Isaiah had completed what we now have in chapters 1-39 he received new revelations from God along a different line that led him to adopt the somewhat different style that is characteristic of the last part of the book. The first part deals primarily with the threat of Assyria and the second (chs. 40-66) with that of Babylonia, with chapters 36-39 forming a transition. Chapters 1-5 are an introduction to the whole collection of messages. Chapters 6 and 53 are the key chapters because they provide the most concise answers to the great questions raised in the book. The book contains many extended doublets: repetition of the same truth in the same consecutive steps.
In contrast to the New Testament prophets, Isaiah had very little to say about an individual's relationship with God. His concern was more the relationship of God's people as a whole to the Lord, specifically the nation of Israel's relationship to God. This is true of most of the Old Testament writing prophets. Isaiah focused on Israel's past, her present, her near future, and her distant future. He also gave considerable attention to the fate of the Gentile nations.
In the first section of the book, Isaiah insists that judgment is necessary before there can be peace. He was not referring to judgment beyond this life, judgment when we die. He was dealing with judgment here and now, repentance and divine intervention. Peace on earth requires repentance and divine intervention.
In the last section of the book, Isaiah also stressed the importance of righteousness before there can be peace, righteousness here and now before there can be peace on earth in the future. Thus this emphasis on righteousness and peace acts as bookends and frames the content of Isaiah's prophecies.
The great value of Isaiah is its revelation of the throne of God. This book clarifies the principles by which God rules the universe. In chapter six, Isaiah saw the Lord sitting on His throne. This vision of God impacted the rest of Isaiah's ministry and the rest of his book. In chapter 53, the prophet revealed the Servant of the Lord in whom and through whom God reigns. Isaiah balanced the transcendence of God with the immanence of God. These great revelations of Isaiah come together in the Revelation of John, 5:6: "And I saw between the throne and the elders a Lamb standing." Revelation gives more revelation along the same lines that Isaiah gave earlier. God reigns through people, especially one crucial person. Isaiah had much to say about the coming Messiah throughout this book.
Isaiah lived the early part of his life under the reign of King Uzziah. Uzziah was a good king, and he provided stability for the kingdom of Judah. But when Uzziah died, everyone had questions about the direction Judah would go. It was in the year that King Uzziah died that Isaiah saw his vision of the throne in heaven (6:1). He realized in a deeper way than ever before that the true king of Judah was Yahweh and that Yahweh was still firmly on His throne.
There are two things that mark God's throne: government and grace. Isaiah's contemporaries needed a deeper appreciation of God's government and His grace, and so do all the readers of this book. The fact that Yahweh rules and that He rules graciously were truths that were very familiar to God's people in Isaiah's time. In fact, when Isaiah spoke of God's government and His grace the Israelites mocked him for presenting such a simple message. Their taste ran to the more esoteric, and Isaiah's repetition of basic truth bored them. God told his prophet to expect rejection, and that proved to be Israel's characteristic response to Isaiah's ministry.
We also need a reminder of the basic principles of God's government and His grace. It is not because they are unknown to us but because people do not heed these truths that they are so needful today.
Let's consider first what Isaiah revealed about the government of God.
There are three principles by which God governs. These are holiness, righteousness, and justice. Holiness is the inspiration, righteousness the activity, and justice the result of God's government.
The most outstanding characteristic of God that this book reveals is His holiness. The title "the Holy One of Israel" was Isaiah's hallmark. The angelic beings that Isaiah saw assembled around God's heavenly throne ascribed perfect holiness to Him: "Holy, holy, holy is Yahweh of Hosts" (6:3). The holiness of God describes His "otherliness" from all His creation. God is different in His essence; He is spirit, whereas the creation is material. He is also different in His morality; He is absolutely upright, in contrast to the creation that has suffered from the Fall and its contacts with sin. When Isaiah saw the Lord, in chapter 6, what impressed him was his own uncleanness and the uncleanness of his people. All of God's government, how He governs, derives from His holiness. His holiness inspires all His government.
Because God is holy, He always does what is right. Conduct issues from and reflects character. Because God is holy in His character, He conducts Himself in righteousness. He always does what is right. There is a strong emphasis on righteousness in Isaiah, God's righteousness and the need for human righteousness. Isaiah's emphasis on righteousness is one of the reasons his book has been called the Romans of the Old Testament.
The result of righteous conduct is justice. God deals with His own people and all other people in justice. A holy God can do nothing else. He will do what is fair, what is straight, what is proper. We can see the justice of God in God's call to His people to reason with Him (1:18). Because God is just, sin inevitably brings punishment. Much of this prophecy is designed to help the people of God know how to avoid sin and its punishment and how to manage sin and its punishment. Justice in interpersonal and international affairs is an important motif in Isaiah.
Whereas the principles of God's government are holiness, righteousness, and justice, the methods by which He governs are revelation, explanation, and prediction.
According to Isaiah, the outstanding characteristic of God that distinguishes Him from all false gods (idols) is that He has revealed Himself; He has spoken. Isaiah referred to three primary revelations of God to humankind: general revelation, special revelation, and incarnate revelation. God has built a revelation of Himself into His creation so that everyone can see that a true God does exist (cf. Rom. 1). Second, He revealed His will as well as His existence. The revelation of His will came to the Israelites through what God taught them, the Torah (instruction). This revelation is what we have in Scripture, and it came to Israel for Israel to share with the world for the world's blessing, not to hoard to herself for her own blessing. Third, God revealed Himself through a person: the Messiah, the Servant of the Lord, the Divine Warrior. The revelation of how God would deal with the sin problem came through this person. Isaiah reveals that God would deliver Israel from destruction, from captivity, and from sin. He would make her in the future the servant of His that He always intended her to be but which she failed to become because of her sin.
God went beyond just giving revelations, however. He also provided explanations. This was one of the major ministries of the prophets in general and of Isaiah in particular. God explained through Isaiah why the Israelites and their neighbor nations were experiencing what they were going through. He gave these explanations so they could learn from their past, walk in His ways in the present, and enjoy His blessings in the future. God explained that He not only had the ability to save Israel, but He also had the desire to do so.
Not only did God explain the past, He also predicted the future. He did this to prove that He is the only true God. In order to predict the future accurately, one must be able to control the future. Yahweh is the only true God. He is the only God who can create history in time as well as creating the material world in space. His ability to predict the future is the great testimony to His unique sovereignty. The outstanding predictions in this book concern those whom God would anoint for special ministries in the future. These individuals were Cyrus, who would be Israel's redeemer from Babylon's captivity, and the Servant, who would be Israel's redeemer from sin's captivity. The exodus motif is strong throughout Isaiah looking back to the Exodus from Egypt and forward to future exoduses.
The characteristics of God's government as revealed in Isaiah are also three: patience, persistence, and power.
God deals with people patiently. He allows them the opportunity to repent and to return to Himself. There is much emphasis in this book on the importance of returning to God. God had been very patient with Judah, but the day of His patience would end, so she needed to repent while there was still opportunity. The day of salvation would not last forever.
Second, God deals with people persistently. He does not disregard people's sin after a time, but He always deals with it righteously. Likewise He persists in blessing those who faithfully follow Him even though they live among a nation of apostates. God has a plan for Israel as a nation, and He also had a plan for the faithful among the apostates in the nation. His faithfulness to His promises is the mainspring that keeps the hands of His providence moving persistently.
Third, God ever demonstrates His supernatural power. What is natural does not bind Him. He can and does intervene to provide power that overcomes His sinful people and holds them in captivity. The expectation of more exoduses is strong throughout this book. Isaiah's audience looked forward to captivity in Babylon, but beyond that there was the promise of liberation, and beyond that there was the promise of liberation from sin. Fire is a fitting symbol of all these characteristics of God's government. It consumes patiently, it persists until it has run its full course, and it has great power. Isaiah pictured Yahweh as a consuming fire in relation to His people as well as in relation to unbelieving nations.
Parallel to these emphases on the government of God is an equally strong emphasis on the grace of God in Isaiah.
Along with the holiness, righteousness, and justice of God, we have an equally strong emphasis on the love, mercy, and goodness of God. Isaiah wrote that God's children had rebelled against Him. His wife had been unfaithful to Him. Those He had chosen to bless uniquely among all the nations of the earth had grieved His Holy Spirit. The breaking heart of God is as clear a revelation in Isaiah as are the broken commandments of God.
Similarly, God's revelations, His explanations, and His predictions arise out of His mercy. God has revealed Himself in nature so everyone can enter into relationship with a gracious God. He has explained Himself so His people can understand His dealings with them as being gracious. He has predicted the future so everyone will appreciate that His plans for humanity are gracious plans involving redemption from captivity and sin.
God's grace is the reason He is patient with people. His grace is the inspiration for His persistence with people. And His grace is the passion of His power on behalf of people. In short, all the outstanding characteristics of God in Isaiah trace back to His goodness. The Servant Songs, particularly the third one (52:13-53:12), overflow with the grace of God for His helpless and hopeless people. He is the key to their justification, sanctification, and glorification. Note again the similarity with Romans.
The living message of this book is that acknowledgment of God's sovereign rule is the key to successful human life on every level: individually, nationally, and historically. The only hope for human failure caused by enslavement to sin is divine redemption that a God of grace provides. God is not only able but also willing to save.
To enjoy the benefits of God's grace, people must submit to His government. To submit to His government, they must receive the benefits of His grace. Israel failed to enjoy the benefits of God's grace because she failed to submit to His rule. She failed to submit to His rule because she failed to trust His grace. God brings us into right relationship with His government through His grace. In order to enjoy the benefits of His grace, we must submit to His government. Both government and grace find their source in Yahweh and their expression in Jesus Christ.
Constable: Isaiah (Garis Besar) Outline
I. Introduction chs. 1-5
A. Israel's condition and God's solution ch. 1
I. Introduction chs. 1-5
A. Israel's condition and God's solution ch. 1
1. The title of the book 1:1
2. Israel's condition 1:2-9
3. God's solution 1:10-20
4. Israel's response 1:21-31
B. The problem with Israel chs. 2-4
1. God's desire for Israel 2:1-4
2. God's discipline of Israel 2:5-4:1
3. God's determination for Israel 4:2-6
C. The analogy of wild grapes ch. 5
1. The song of the vineyard 5:1-7
2. The wildness of the grapes 5:8-25
3. The coming destruction 5:26-30
II. Isaiah's vision of God ch. 6
A. The prophet's vision 6:1-8
B. The prophet's commission 6:9-13
III. Israel's crisis of faith chs. 7-39
A. The choice between trusting God or Assyria chs. 7-12
1. Signs of God's presence 7:1-9:7
2. Measurement by God's standards 9:8-10:4
3. Hope of God's deliverance 10:5-11:16
4. Trust in God's favor ch. 12
B. God's sovereignty over the nations chs. 13-35
1. Divine judgments on the nations chs. 13-23
2. Divine victory over the nations chs. 24-27
3. The folly of trusting the nations chs. 28-33
4. The consequences of Israel's trust chs. 34-35
C. Tests of Israel's trust chs. 36-39
1. The Assyrian threat chs. 36-37
2. The Babylonian threat chs. 38-39
IV. Israel's calling in the world chs. 40-55
A. God's grace to Israel chs. 40-48
1. The Lord of the servant ch. 40
2. The servant of the Lord chs. 41:1-44:22
3. The Lord's redemption of His servant chs. 44:23-47:15
4. The servant's attention to her Lord ch. 48
B. God's atonement for Israel chs. 49-55
1. Anticipation of salvation 49:1-52:12
2. Announcement of salvation 52:13-53:12
3. Invitation to salvation chs. 54-55
V. Israel's future transformation chs. 56-66
A. Recognition of human inability chs. 56-59
1. The need for humility and holiness chs. 56-57
2. The relationship of righteousness and ritual chs. 58-59
B. Revelation of future glory chs. 60-62
1. Israel among the nations ch. 60
2. Israel under the Lord chs. 61-62
C. Recognition of divine ability chs. 63-66
1. God's faithfulness in spite of Israel's unfaithfulness 63:1-65:16
2. The culmination of Israel's future 65:17-66:24
Constable: Isaiah Isaiah
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Copyright 2003 by Thomas L. Constable
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Haydock: Isaiah (Pendahuluan Kitab) THE PROPHECY OF ISAIAS.
This inspired writer is called by the Holy Ghost, (Ecclesiasticus xlviii. 25.) the great prophet; from t...
THE PROPHECY OF ISAIAS.
This inspired writer is called by the Holy Ghost, (Ecclesiasticus xlviii. 25.) the great prophet; from the greatness of his prophetic spirit, by which he hath foretold, so long before, and in so clear a manner, the coming of Christ, the mysteries of our redemption, the calling of the Gentiles, and the glorious establishment, and perpeutal flourishing of the Church of Christ: insomuch that he seems to have been rather an evangelist than a prophet. His very name is not without mystery: for Isaias in Hebrew signifies the salvation of the Lord, or, Jesus is the Lord. He was, according to the tradition of the Hebrews, of the blood royal of the kings of Juda; an after a most holy life, ended his days by a glorious martyrdom; being sawed in two, at the command of his wicked son-in-law, king Manasses, for reproving his evil ways. (Challoner) --- He began to prophesy ten years before the foundation of Rome, and the ruin of Ninive. His style is suitable to his high birth. He may be called the prophet of the mercies of the Lord. Under the figure of the return from captivity, he foretells the redemption of mankind (Calmet) with such perspicuity, that he might seem to be an evangelist. (St. Jerome)
Gill: Isaiah (Pendahuluan Kitab) INTRODUCTION TO ISAIAH
This book is called, in the New Testament, sometimes "the Book of the Words of the Prophet Esaias", Luk 3:4 sometimes only t...
INTRODUCTION TO ISAIAH
This book is called, in the New Testament, sometimes "the Book of the Words of the Prophet Esaias", Luk 3:4 sometimes only the "Prophet Esaias", Act 8:28 and sometimes, as here, the "Book of the Prophet Esaias", Luk 4:17. In the Syriac version the title is, "the Prophecy of Isaiah the Son of Amos": and in the Arabic version, "the Beginning of the Prophecy of Isaiah the Prophet". It stands first of all the prophets; though the order of the prophets, according to the Jews a, is, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Isaiah, and the twelve. But it is here placed first, not because Isaiah prophesied before the other prophets; for Joel, Jonah, Hosea, and Amos, begun before him, namely, in or before the days of Jeroboam the Second; but because of the excellency of the matter contained in it. Isaiah is called by Ben Syra b the great prophet, and by Eusebius c the greatest of the prophets; and Jerom d a says, he should rather be called an evangelist than a prophet, since he seems rather to write a history of things past, than to prophesy of things to come; yea, he styles him an apostle, as well as an evangelist e: and certain it is that no one writes so fully and clearly of the person, offices, grace, and kingdom of Christ; of his incarnation and birth of a virgin; of his sufferings and death, and the glory that should follow, as he does. John, the forerunner of Christ, began his ministry with a passage out of him concerning himself, Mat 3:3. Our Lord preached his first sermon at Nazareth out of this book, Luk 4:17 and it was in this the eunuch was reading when Philip came up to him, who from the same Scripture preached to him Christ, Act 8:28. And there are more citations in the New Testament made out of this prophecy than any other book, excepting the book of Psalms, as Musculus observes. To which may be added, as another reason, the elegance and sublimity of his style in which he exceeds the greatest of orators, Demosthenes among the Greeks, and Tully among the Romans; and this is observed both by Jews and Christians. Abarbinel f says, that the purity, and elegance of his diction is like that of kings and counsellors, who speak more purely and elegantly than other men: hence their Rabbins, he says, compare Isaiah to a citizen, and Ezekiel to a countryman. And Jerom g observes, that Isaiah is so eloquent and polite, that there is nothing of rusticity in his language; and that his style is so florid, that a translation cannot preserve it. Moreover, another reason of this book being placed first may be the bulk of it; it being larger, and containing more chapters, than any of the greater prophets, and almost as many as all the lesser prophets put together. That Isaiah was the writer of this book is not to be questioned; many of the prophecies in it are by name ascribed to him, Mat 13:14 though some others might be the compilers of it, collect his prophecies, and digest them in order: so the Jews say h, that Hezekiah and his company wrote Isaiah, &c. At what time, and in whose days he prophesied, may be learnt from Isa 1:1 by which it appears that he prophesied long, and lived to a good old age. He began to prophesy about A. M. 3236, and about seven hundred and seventy years before Christ. Abulpharagius, an Arabic writer, says i, he lived an hundred and twenty years, eighty five of which he prophesied. It is a generally received tradition with the Jews, that he lived to the time of Manasseh, and that he was sawn asunder by him; and which has been embraced by the ancient Christian writers, and is thought to be referred to in Heb 11:37. See Gill on Heb 11:37. But Aben Ezra on Isa 1:1 observes, that had he lived to the time of Manasseh, it would have been written, and is of opinion that he died in Hezekiah's time. According to the Cippi Hebraici k, he was buried at Tekoah, over whose grave a beautiful monument was erected; though Epiphanius l, or the author of the Lives of the Prophets that go by his name, says he was buried under the oak of Rogel, near the fountain of Siloam; and it is a tradition with the Syriac writers, that his body lay hid in the waters of Siloah; See Gill on Joh 5:4 but these are things not to be depended on; and alike fabulous are all other writings ascribed to him, besides this prophecy; as what are called the ascension of Isaiah, the vision of Isaiah, and the conference of Isaiah. This book contains some things historical, but chiefly prophetic; of which some relate to the punishment of the Jews, and other nations; but for the most part are evangelical, and concern the kingdom and grace of Christ; of which some are delivered out more clearly and perspicuously, and others more obscurely, under the type of the deliverance of the Jews from the Babylonish captivity.
Gill: Isaiah 20 (Pendahuluan Pasal) INTRODUCTION TO ISAIAH 20
This chapter contains a prophecy of the destruction of the Egyptians and Ethiopians by the Assyrians, which had been prop...
INTRODUCTION TO ISAIAH 20
This chapter contains a prophecy of the destruction of the Egyptians and Ethiopians by the Assyrians, which had been prophesied of separately in the two preceding chapters Isa 18:1, and now conjunctly in this: the time of it is given, Isa 20:1 the sign of it, the prophet's walking naked, and barefoot, Isa 20:2 the explanation and accommodation of the sign to the captivity of Egypt and Ethiopia, Isa 20:3 the use of this to the Jews, and the effect it had upon them; shame for their trust and dependence on the above nations, and despair of deliverance from the Assyrians by their means, Isa 20:5.