September 27th Isaiah 4
1: And in that day seven women shall take hold of one man, saying, We will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel: only let us be called by thy name, to take away our reproach.
Jerusalem made holy
2: In that day shall the branch of the LORD be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel. 3: And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem: 4: When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning. 5: And the LORD will create upon every dwelling place of mount Zion, and upon her assemblies, a cloud and smoke by day, and the shining of a flaming fire by night: for upon all the glory shall be a defence. 6: And there shall be a tabernacle for a shadow in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain.
Isaiah 5 The Parable of the Vineyard
1: Now will I sing to my wellbeloved a song of my beloved touching his vineyard. My wellbeloved hath a vineyard in a very fruitful hill: 2: And he fenced it, and gathered out the stones thereof, and planted it with the choicest vine, and built a tower in the midst of it, and also made a winepress therein: and he looked that it should bring forth grapes, and it brought forth wild grapes. 3: And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem, and men of Judah, judge, I pray you, betwixt me and my vineyard. 4: What could have been done more to my vineyard, that I have not done in it? wherefore, when I looked that it should bring forth grapes, brought it forth wild grapes? 5: And now go to; I will tell you what I will do to my vineyard: I will take away the hedge thereof, and it shall be eaten up; and break down the wall thereof, and it shall be trodden down: 6: And I will lay it waste: it shall not be pruned, nor digged; but there shall come up briers and thorns: I will also command the clouds that they rain no rain upon it. 7: For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah his pleasant plant: and he looked for judgment, but behold oppression; for righteousness, but behold a cry.
Judgement on the Wicked
8: Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place, that they may be placed alone in the midst of the earth! 9: In mine ears said the LORD of hosts, Of a truth many houses shall be desolate, even great and fair, without inhabitant. 10: Yea, ten acres of vineyard shall yield one bath, and the seed of an homer shall yield an ephah. 11: Woe unto them that rise up early in the morning, that they may follow strong drink; that continue until night, till wine inflame them! 12: And the harp, and the viol, the tabret, and pipe, and wine, are in their feasts: but they regard not the work of the LORD, neither consider the operation of his hands. 13: Therefore my people are gone into captivity, because they have no knowledge: and their honourable men are famished, and their multitude dried up with thirst. 14: Therefore hell hath enlarged herself, and opened her mouth without measure: and their glory, and their multitude, and their pomp, and he that rejoiceth, shall descend into it. 15: And the mean man shall be brought down, and the mighty man shall be humbled, and the eyes of the lofty shall be humbled: 16: But the LORD of hosts shall be exalted in judgment, and God that is holy shall be sanctified in righteousness. 17: Then shall the lambs feed after their manner, and the waste places of the fat ones shall strangers eat. 18: Woe unto them that draw iniquity with cords of vanity, and sin as it were with a cart rope: 19: That say, Let him make speed, and hasten his work, that we may see it: and let the counsel of the Holy One of Israel draw nigh and come, that we may know it! 20: Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! 21: Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight! 22: Woe unto them that are mighty to drink wine, and men of strength to mingle strong drink: 23: Which justify the wicked for reward, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him! 24: Therefore as the fire devoureth the stubble, and the flame consumeth the chaff, so their root shall be as rottenness, and their blossom shall go up as dust: because they have cast away the law of the LORD of hosts, and despised the word of the Holy One of Israel. 25: Therefore is the anger of the LORD kindled against his people, and he hath stretched forth his hand against them, and hath smitten them: and the hills did tremble, and their carcases were torn in the midst of the streets. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still. 26: And he will lift up an ensign to the nations from far, and will hiss unto them from the end of the earth: and, behold, they shall come with speed swiftly: 27: None shall be weary nor stumble among them; none shall slumber nor sleep; neither shall the girdle of their loins be loosed, nor the latchet of their shoes be broken: 28: Whose arrows are sharp, and all their bows bent, their horses' hoofs shall be counted like flint, and their wheels like a whirlwind: 29: Their roaring shall be like a lion, they shall roar like young lions: yea, they shall roar, and lay hold of the prey, and shall carry it away safe, and none shall deliver it. 30: And in that day they shall roar against them like the roaring of the sea: and if one look unto the land, behold darkness and sorrow, and the light is darkened in the heavens thereof.
Today we are reading Isaiah chapter 4 & 5. Verse 1 of chapter 4 is a continuation from the previous passage in which Isaiah describes the sins of the people of Judah. He had said that the women of the land had become so sexually promiscuous that there will come a day when seven women will ask one man to allow them to live under the shadow of his name. They will say that they want nothing from him but just to be able to be honourably attached to a man rather than unwanted. Then from 4v2-6 Isaiah continues to describe events related to The Day of the LORD. The first thing he says is that that day - The Day of the LORD will be beautiful and glorious, and the LORD will restore fruitfulness to the earth after the famines of the Tribulation. Those that remain alive of Judah in that day will be called holy. The Lord will have washed away the filth of Zion and cleansed Jerusalem of all the blood that cries to the Lord by bringing judgment and fire on the murderers. The Glory of the Lord will descend again on the children of Israel - a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. The Lord will also provide shade (A canopy) for Israel from the noonday sun and a place of refuge from the storm. Chapter 5 is all about - The song of the LORD. In the first seven verses Isaiah recounts a parable from the Lord in which Israel is the vineyard. In the second part of this chapter the interpretation is given, v8-30. The story is told in the form of a song, in which the Lord describes a vineyard that the LORD - Jehovah cares for. The hero of the parable is the owner of the vineyard. He planted it, sited it and fenced it and built a tower to look after it. And he built a wine press in hope of a fruitful harvest, however the vine brought forth wild grapes. Then he addresses the inhabitants of Jerusalem saying what should I do? Could I have done anything different? So why has it produced wild grapes? Then the owner says I know what I will do - I will break down the hedge and everything will be consumed by wild animals. I will break the wall and everything will be trodden down. It will be left uncultivated and even the clouds will not rain on it. Then he explains what the vineyard is. The vineyard is the house of Israel. The men of Judah are the plant. The Lord looked for fruit – judgment and righteousness, but he found a cry from the oppressed. (It’s interesting that the Lord Jesus takes exactly the same imagery in John 15 with exactly the same point.) Then from v8-30 Isaiah gives the interpretation of the parable. The prophet issues six woes.
- Woe to those who live in covetousness v8
- Woe to those who live to fleshly excess v11
- Woe to those who live in iniquity v18
- Woe to those who live to pervert truth v20
- Woe to those who live in pride v21
- Woe to those who live for alcohol v22
The men of Judah were not satisfied with one house they had to have more houses. The Lord will make these houses empty. They get up early to drink themselves stupid and are never sober. They feast every day but the Lord will take them all away. Death is made bigger to accommodate them. They practise sin and it has a very strong pull on men to commit it. They say that good is evil and evil is good. They are unable to make sound moral judgment. There is no hope for a people like this. They think they know everything. Those that are in places of responsibility are drunken fools. They use their position to increase their own sinfulness. The Lord will burnt them like stubble. They have cast away the word of the Lord and despised The HOLY ONE of Israel (Christ himself) This is why the judgment of God has come on Israel. One day he will lift up a banner to the nations far away and they will return to the Lord quickly. They will return without tiredness and come home to defend the land.