AM September 29th Isaiah 9

September 29th

Isaiah 9

1: Nevertheless the dimness shall not be such as was in her vexation, when at the first he lightly afflicted the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, and afterward did more grievously afflict her by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, in Galilee of the nations. 2: The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined. 3: Thou hast multiplied the nation, and not increased the joy: they joy before thee according to the joy in harvest, and as men rejoice when they divide the spoil. 4: For thou hast broken the yoke of his burden, and the staff of his shoulder, the rod of his oppressor, as in the day of Midian. 5: For every battle of the warrior is with confused noise, and garments rolled in blood; but this shall be with burning and fuel of fire. 6: For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counseller, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. 7: Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this. 8: The Lord sent a word into Jacob, and it hath lighted upon Israel. 9: And all the people shall know, even Ephraim and the inhabitant of Samaria, that say in the pride and stoutness of heart, 10: The bricks are fallen down, but we will build with hewn stones: the sycomores are cut down, but we will change them into cedars. 11: Therefore the LORD shall set up the adversaries of Rezin against him, and join his enemies together; 12: The Syrians before, and the Philistines behind; and they shall devour Israel with open mouth. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still. 13: For the people turneth not unto him that smiteth them, neither do they seek the LORD of hosts. 14: Therefore the LORD will cut off from Israel head and tail, branch and rush, in one day. 15: The ancient and honourable, he is the head; and the prophet that teacheth lies, he is the tail. 16: For the leaders of this people cause them to err; and they that are led of them are destroyed. 17: Therefore the Lord shall have no joy in their young men, neither shall have mercy on their fatherless and widows: for every one is an hypocrite and an evildoer, and every mouth speaketh folly. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still. 18: For wickedness burneth as the fire: it shall devour the briers and thorns, and shall kindle in the thickets of the forest, and they shall mount up like the lifting up of smoke. 19: Through the wrath of the LORD of hosts is the land darkened, and the people shall be as the fuel of the fire: no man shall spare his brother. 20: And he shall snatch on the right hand, and be hungry; and he shall eat on the left hand, and they shall not be satisfied: they shall eat every man the flesh of his own arm: 21: Manasseh, Ephraim; and Ephraim, Manasseh: and they together shall be against Judah. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still.

Isaiah 10

1: Woe unto them that decree unrighteous decrees, and that write grievousness which they have prescribed; 2: To turn aside the needy from judgment, and to take away the right from the poor of my people, that widows may be their prey, and that they may rob the fatherless! 3: And what will ye do in the day of visitation, and in the desolation which shall come from far? to whom will ye flee for help? and where will ye leave your glory? 4: Without me they shall bow down under the prisoners, and they shall fall under the slain. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still. 5: O Assyrian, the rod of mine anger, and the staff in their hand is mine indignation. 6: I will send him against an hypocritical nation, and against the people of my wrath will I give him a charge, to take the spoil, and to take the prey, and to tread them down like the mire of the streets. 7: Howbeit he meaneth not so, neither doth his heart think so; but it is in his heart to destroy and cut off nations not a few. 8: For he saith, Are not my princes altogether kings? 9: Is not Calno as Carchemish? is not Hamath as Arpad? is not Samaria as Damascus? 10: As my hand hath found the kingdoms of the idols, and whose graven images did excel them of Jerusalem and of Samaria; 11: Shall I not, as I have done unto Samaria and her idols, so do to Jerusalem and her idols? 12: Wherefore it shall come to pass, that when the Lord hath performed his whole work upon mount Zion and on Jerusalem, I will punish the fruit of the stout heart of the king of Assyria, and the glory of his high looks. 13: For he saith, By the strength of my hand I have done it, and by my wisdom; for I am prudent: and I have removed the bounds of the people, and have robbed their treasures, and I have put down the inhabitants like a valiant man: 14: And my hand hath found as a nest the riches of the people: and as one gathereth eggs that are left, have I gathered all the earth; and there was none that moved the wing, or opened the mouth, or peeped. 15: Shall the axe boast itself against him that heweth therewith? or shall the saw magnify itself against him that shaketh it? as if the rod should shake itself against them that lift it up, or as if the staff should lift up itself, as if it were no wood. 16: Therefore shall the Lord, the Lord of hosts, send among his fat ones leanness; and under his glory he shall kindle a burning like the burning of a fire. 17: And the light of Israel shall be for a fire, and his Holy One for a flame: and it shall burn and devour his thorns and his briers in one day; 18: And shall consume the glory of his forest, and of his fruitful field, both soul and body: and they shall be as when a standardbearer fainteth. 19: And the rest of the trees of his forest shall be few, that a child may write them. 20: And it shall come to pass in that day, that the remnant of Israel, and such as are escaped of the house of Jacob, shall no more again stay upon him that smote them; but shall stay upon the LORD, the Holy One of Israel, in truth. 21: The remnant shall return, even the remnant of Jacob, unto the mighty God. 22: For though thy people Israel be as the sand of the sea, yet a remnant of them shall return: the consumption decreed shall overflow with righteousness. 23: For the Lord GOD of hosts shall make a consumption, even determined, in the midst of all the land. 24: Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD of hosts, O my people that dwellest in Zion, be not afraid of the Assyrian: he shall smite thee with a rod, and shall lift up his staff against thee, after the manner of Egypt. 25: For yet a very little while, and the indignation shall cease, and mine anger in their destruction. 26: And the LORD of hosts shall stir up a scourge for him according to the slaughter of Midian at the rock of Oreb: and as his rod was upon the sea, so shall he lift it up after the manner of Egypt. 27: And it shall come to pass in that day, that his burden shall be taken away from off thy shoulder, and his yoke from off thy neck, and the yoke shall be destroyed because of the anointing. 28: He is come to Aiath, he is passed to Migron; at Michmash he hath laid up his carriages: 29: They are gone over the passage: they have taken up their lodging at Geba; Ramah is afraid; Gibeah of Saul is fled. 30: Lift up thy voice, O daughter of Gallim: cause it to be heard unto Laish, O poor Anathoth. 31: Madmenah is removed; the inhabitants of Gebim gather themselves to flee. 32: As yet shall he remain at Nob that day: he shall shake his hand against the mount of the daughter of Zion, the hill of Jerusalem. 33: Behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, shall lop the bough with terror: and the high ones of stature shall be hewn down, and the haughty shall be humbled. 34: And he shall cut down the thickets of the forest with iron, and Lebanon shall fall by a mighty one.
Today we are reading Isaiah chapters 8 & 9. In chapter 9 Isaiah continues the section he began in ch 8v11 – 9v7 where he describes Gods divine intervention of Immanuel. From v1-7 he describes the coming of Christ to his people. Part of these prophesies refer to Christ’s first coming and part of them to his second coming and they treat the whole thing as if the interregnum of the Church will never occur. (The time of the Church was at this time a mystery hidden in God awaiting the revelation to Paul.) Verse 2 is quoted by the Gospel writers saying - The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined. We see this in the life of Christ when he preached repentance to Israel in person. Then Isaiah speaks of a day to come when Israel will suffer under oppression. This is probably speaking of the Roman occupation is Christ’s day. Then Isaiah says that to Israel will be born a child and for Israel a son will be given. This summarises the life of Christ, from birth to death. Then seamlessly he says that government will be upon his shoulder and he will be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. This is of course still future. One day all government will be laid on the shoulders of Christ and he will be called by these names. This has not happened yet. His government and peace will increase to include the whole world and he will sit on David’s throne to order and establish his kingdom rule. It will be a rule of judgment and justice and it will go on forever. The Lord of hosts will bring this about but his own determination. From v8 – 10v32 Isaiah writes of The Confederacy of the LORD. It will be established with Israel’s enemies in judgment 9v8-10v4 but it will be broken with the enemies for Israel’s deliverance 10v5-32. From v8-9 we see that the Lord speaks of the sin of self confidence. They threaten to rebuild and to restore the land who the Lord has destroyed v9-10. So the Lord will not turn away his anger from them v12. The Lord will bring the Syrians and Philistines against Israel. In v13 he describes another sin an unwillingness to repent and seek the LORD of hosts. (The phrase the LORD of Hosts or God of heaven, is always the title given to God when addressing Gentiles.) The Lord v14-17 will kill the heads and tails of Israel. The heads are the Elders and the tails are False prophets and they are destroyed because they lead Israel astray. There will be no joy on the Lord for the young men, nor mercy for the orphans and widows, because their religion is a sham and they do evil and speak foolishness. In v18 he speaks of the sin of living without the Mosaic law. The wrath of the Lord v18-21 will go out against the people of the land. They will burn like chaff. They will eat each other for hunger. In chapter 10 Isaiah speaks of the sin of the leaders who pass unrighteous laws. Their laws oppress the poor and refuse justice to the weak and they rob the inheritance of the orphans. The Lord says who will come to your aid? v3-4. From v5-32 Isaiah speaks of the covenant broken with Israel’s enemies and their deliverance. He describes the Assyrian invasion v5-6 who he calls them, the rod of my anger. The Lord will use them to discipline Israel in their hypocrisy and godlessness. Israel will be spoiled and trodden down in the streets. In v7-11 The Lord says that the Assyrians intend to totally destroy Israel. However the Lord will punish Assyria for their invasion v12-15. Assyria will think that their invasion was the result of their might and skill but the Lord will deal with them in judgment. In v16-19 Isaiah describes the destruction of the Assyrian army. But from v20-27 we read of the LORD’s deliverance of Israel in her day of trouble. The Lord will save a remnant of Israel to return to the land. The Lord will bring the invasion to an end in Israel. The Lord encourages them not to be afraid of Assyria because he will only inflict Israel for a limited time. In v28-32 the Lord describes the coming of Sennacherib against Judah. It was at Nob a city of the priests where Sennacherib could see Jerusalem that he shook his fist at the city. Verse 33 is the beginning of a new section 10v33 – 12v6 in which Isaiah describes the Divine intervention of The Son of David. It is the Lord, the LORD of Hosts that will cut off the branch that has extended into the land bringing terror to the people. The high trees (men) of Assyria will be felled. The proud – humbled. The Lord will continue the analogy in the next chapter.

  • What does Isaiah say regarding Christs Messianic kingdom?
  • How will Christ deal with the Assyrian invasion?
  • What will happen to the greatness of Assyria?  

AM September 29th 1 Thessalonians 2

September 29th 1 Thessalonians 2

1: For yourselves, brethren, know our entrance in unto you, that it was not in vain: 2: But even after that we had suffered before, and were shamefully entreated, as ye know, at Philippi, we were bold in our God to speak unto you the gospel of God with much contention. 3: For our exhortation was not of deceit, nor of uncleanness, nor in guile: 4: But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts. 5: For neither at any time used we flattering words, as ye know, nor a cloke of covetousness; God is witness: 6: Nor of men sought we glory, neither of you, nor yet of others, when we might have been burdensome, as the apostles of Christ. 7: But we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherisheth her children: 8: So being affectionately desirous of you, we were willing to have imparted unto you, not the gospel of God only, but also our own souls, because ye were dear unto us. 9: For ye remember, brethren, our labour and travail: for labouring night and day, because we would not be chargeable unto any of you, we preached unto you the gospel of God. 10: Ye are witnesses, and God also, how holily and justly and unblameably we behaved ourselves among you that believe: 11: As ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth his children, 12: That ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto his kingdom and glory.

Paul reminds the Thessalonian believers that when he came to Thessalonica that his visit was not pointless or unfruitful. He says that even after suffering greatly in Philippi and being shamefully treated – being flogged, we were full of courage in God to preach fearlessly in the face of much opposition. And our preaching was not a trick, nor was it a vile sin, nor was it a trap to catch men. But, says Paul, as we were placed in trust of the preaching the gospel and so we spoke. We were not trying to please men but trying to please God. He is the one who knows every secret motive. We didn’t try to butter you up and we had no secret desire for anything from you – we call on God as our witness. Nor did we see admiration from you or anyone else. And we lived in such a way that we were no burden on you as Apostles of Christ. We were tender like a nursing mother to her children. And we were willing not only to preach the Gospel but to lay down our lives for you because you became dear to us. I’m sure you remember brothers our hard work and struggles because we worked day and night so that you were not obliged to support us while we preached the Gospel to you. You will testify to us as God does how that we lived holy, righteously and without any blame and how we behaved ourselves among you. You know, says Paul, how we encouraged, strengthened and gave you a solemn duty as a father does his children that you should live in a manner honourable to the God who has called you unto his kingdom and glory. This is a lesson to us all in how missionary work should be carried out and the motives and thinking of its servants.

  • In what way did the Gospel come to Thessalonica?
  • How did the apostles behave when they went to Thessalonica?
  • How does Paul summarise the message of God to the Thessalonian Christians?


PM September 28th Isaiah 6

September 28th

Isaiah 6

1: In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. 2: Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. 3: And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory. 4: And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke. 5: Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts. 6: Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar: 7: And he laid it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged. 8: Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me. 9: And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not. 10: Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed. 11: Then said I, Lord, how long? And he answered, Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land be utterly desolate, 12: And the LORD have removed men far away, and there be a great forsaking in the midst of the land. 13: But yet in it shall be a tenth, and it shall return, and shall be eaten: as a teil tree, and as an oak, whose substance is in them, when they cast their leaves: so the holy seed shall be the substance thereof.

Isaiah 7

1: And it came to pass in the days of Ahaz the son of Jotham, the son of Uzziah, king of Judah, that Rezin the king of Syria, and Pekah the son of Remaliah, king of Israel, went up toward Jerusalem to war against it, but could not prevail against it. 2: And it was told the house of David, saying, Syria is confederate with Ephraim. And his heart was moved, and the heart of his people, as the trees of the wood are moved with the wind. 3: Then said the LORD unto Isaiah, Go forth now to meet Ahaz, thou, and Shear-jashub thy son, at the end of the conduit of the upper pool in the highway of the fuller's field; 4: And say unto him, Take heed, and be quiet; fear not, neither be fainthearted for the two tails of these smoking firebrands, for the fierce anger of Rezin with Syria, and of the son of Remaliah. 5: Because Syria, Ephraim, and the son of Remaliah, have taken evil counsel against thee, saying, 6: Let us go up against Judah, and vex it, and let us make a breach therein for us, and set a king in the midst of it, even the son of Tabeal: 7: Thus saith the Lord GOD, It shall not stand, neither shall it come to pass. 8: For the head of Syria is Damascus, and the head of Damascus is Rezin; and within threescore and five years shall Ephraim be broken, that it be not a people. 9: And the head of Ephraim is Samaria, and the head of Samaria is Remaliah's son. If ye will not believe, surely ye shall not be established. 10: Moreover the LORD spake again unto Ahaz, saying, 11: Ask thee a sign of the LORD thy God; ask it either in the depth, or in the height above. 12: But Ahaz said, I will not ask, neither will I tempt the LORD. 13: And he said, Hear ye now, O house of David; Is it a small thing for you to weary men, but will ye weary my God also? 14: Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. 15: Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good. 16: For before the child shall know to refuse the evil, and choose the good, the land that thou abhorrest shall be forsaken of both her kings. 17: The LORD shall bring upon thee, and upon thy people, and upon thy father's house, days that have not come, from the day that Ephraim departed from Judah; even the king of Assyria. 18: And it shall come to pass in that day, that the LORD shall hiss for the fly that is in the uttermost part of the rivers of Egypt, and for the bee that is in the land of Assyria. 19: And they shall come, and shall rest all of them in the desolate valleys, and in the holes of the rocks, and upon all thorns, and upon all bushes. 20: In the same day shall the Lord shave with a rasor that is hired, namely, by them beyond the river, by the king of Assyria, the head, and the hair of the feet: and it shall also consume the beard. 21: And it shall come to pass in that day, that a man shall nourish a young cow, and two sheep; 22: And it shall come to pass, for the abundance of milk that they shall give he shall eat butter: for butter and honey shall every one eat that is left in the land. 23: And it shall come to pass in that day, that every place shall be, where there were a thousand vines at a thousand silverlings, it shall even be for briers and thorns. 24: With arrows and with bows shall men come thither; because all the land shall become briers and thorns. 25: And on all hills that shall be digged with the mattock, there shall not come thither the fear of briers and thorns: but it shall be for the sending forth of oxen, and for the treading of lesser cattle.

Isaiah 8

1: Moreover the LORD said unto me, Take thee a great roll, and write in it with a man's pen concerning Maher-shalal-hash-baz. 2: And I took unto me faithful witnesses to record, Uriah the priest, and Zechariah the son of Jeberechiah. 3: And I went unto the prophetess; and she conceived, and bare a son. Then said the LORD to me, Call his name Maher-shalal-hash-baz. 4: For before the child shall have knowledge to cry, My father, and my mother, the riches of Damascus and the spoil of Samaria shall be taken away before the king of Assyria. 5: The LORD spake also unto me again, saying, 6: Forasmuch as this people refuseth the waters of Shiloah that go softly, and rejoice in Rezin and Remaliah's son; 7: Now therefore, behold, the Lord bringeth up upon them the waters of the river, strong and many, even the king of Assyria, and all his glory: and he shall come up over all his channels, and go over all his banks: 8: And he shall pass through Judah; he shall overflow and go over, he shall reach even to the neck; and the stretching out of his wings shall fill the breadth of thy land, O Immanuel. 9: Associate yourselves, O ye people, and ye shall be broken in pieces; and give ear, all ye of far countries: gird yourselves, and ye shall be broken in pieces; gird yourselves, and ye shall be broken in pieces. 10: Take counsel together, and it shall come to nought; speak the word, and it shall not stand: for God is with us. 11: For the LORD spake thus to me with a strong hand, and instructed me that I should not walk in the way of this people, saying, 12: Say ye not, A confederacy, to all them to whom this people shall say, A confederacy; neither fear ye their fear, nor be afraid. 13: Sanctify the LORD of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread. 14: And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 15: And many among them shall stumble, and fall, and be broken, and be snared, and be taken. 16: Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples. 17: And I will wait upon the LORD, that hideth his face from the house of Jacob, and I will look for him. 18: Behold, I and the children whom the LORD hath given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the LORD of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion. 19: And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? for the living to the dead? 20: To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. 21: And they shall pass through it, hardly bestead and hungry: and it shall come to pass, that when they shall be hungry, they shall fret themselves, and curse their king and their God, and look upward. 22: And they shall look unto the earth; and behold trouble and darkness, dimness of anguish; and they shall be driven to darkness.
Today we are reading Isaiah 6, 7 & 8. In chapter 6 Isaiah states that in the year that King Uzziah died he had a clear vision of the LORD Adonai sitting on his throne in the temple. (This we later come to understand to be Christ himself in his Millennial temple. There is no throne in any previous temple) He is described as high and lifted up. There is no greater position that Christ could ever hold over this world. The train of his garments fill the temple floor and above him six seraphims each with six wings cry to each other saying Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord of hosts the whole earth is full of his glory. This is a temple with a throne from which the glory of God extends from sea to sea. (It describes a time when the glory of the Lord will fill the earth as the waters cover the sea. This can only be in the Millennial kingdom.) The temple door posts tremble at the voice of those who speak and the whole house is filled with smoke. The Prophet who in the Spirit is transported right into the future to see this amazing sight is struck with a sense of his own unworthiness. He says Woe is me, because I am undone or unworthy. Then he gives his reason because I have unclean lips and my eyes have seen the King, The LORD of hosts. Then a seraphims flew to touch his lips with a live coal from the altar and touched him and thus covered his iniquity and cleansed him of his sin. Then the Lord said, who will I send and who will go for us? Isaiah said I am here – send me. (Isaiah’s mission was not a divine fate it was an invitation accepted.) Then The LORD commissions Isaiah to go to tell the people so that they would hear but not understand they would see by not comprehend. This was a message that would bring the judgment of God on the hearers. The message would make them lazy and blind so that they will not respond to the Lord and the Lord would convert them and they would be healed. Isaiah then asked how long this would continue and the Lord answered that it would be until the cites of Israel were totally destroyed. And all the people had forsaken the Lord. Yet a tenth of the holy seed would be secured and would return. From Chapter 7v1 – ch 12v6 Isaiah gives us a series of historical events and prophesies during the time of Ahaz. In 7v1-9 he describes the confederacy between Syria and Israel. This union will not stand v7. The Syrian invaded Israel but were unable to conquer the land. Then when the house of David heard of the confederacy they were greatly moved. Isaiah was sent by the Lord to Ahaz to warn him and to comfort him in his hour of danger, because the union will not stand. From 7v8 – 8v8 The Lord tells the king that he will intervene in the day of danger. The Lord invited Ahaz to ask for a sign but he said I will not tempt you. The Lord would give Israel a sign – A Virgin will conceive and bear a son and his name will be Immanuel. And so we think immediately of Matthew ch 1. Israel’s ultimate hopes will be in the child of Bethlehem. He will be a man of moral character. There will come a day (yet future) when the Lord will call for the flies of Egypt and the bees of Asia to come and they will come into the land. In ch 8 we have very remarkable prophesies that focus on Isaiah’s own son. Isaiah is told to write in the language of the ordinary man in the street. Isaiah is to write about his own son Maher-shalal-hash-baz. His name means, Haste, spoil, speed, prey. And his name given from the Lord was a sign of coming judgment. The Assyrian army will haste to take the spoil and with speed will fall on the nation as a prey. Then from v5-8 he describes the actual invasion. From v9 the call will go out make friends with one another because the invaders will be smashed because God is with us v10. From v11-9v7 Isaiah says that the LORD will intervene. The false confederacy will be destroyed but trust in God will be rewarded. The Lord will bring signs and wonders on the earth and all the mediums and wizards and those that mutter will cease. If they do not speak according to the word of the LORD it is because there is no light in them. Judgment will come on the false prophets.

  • Why did King Uzziah die?
  • Who did Isaiah see?
  • What were the circumstances of the vision?

AM September 28th 1 Thessalonians 1

September 28th 1 Thessalonians 1

A. Prologue Greetings from – Paul, Silvanus & Timothy

1: Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

B. The Christians Patience Thanksgiving for your faith

2: We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers; 3: Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father; 4: Knowing, brethren beloved, your election of God. 5: For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake. 6: And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost: 7: So that ye were ensamples to all that believe in Macedonia and Achaia. 8: For from you sounded out the word of the Lord not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place your faith to God-ward is spread abroad; so that we need not to speak any thing. 9: For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; 10: And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.

This letter of Paul to the Thessalonians is one of the earliest, if not the first letter he wrote, that is recorded in scripture. Paul had been in Thessalonica only for a few weeks and they had heard Paul say that the coming kingdom was near. But in the mean while some believers had died and they didn’t know whether they might miss out on the coming kingdom. So they wrote to Paul asking him to clear up their questions. So Paul writes this letter in part to explain what will happen to those who have died as believers. Paul begins this letter including his co-workers Silas and Timothy and his customary greeting. (Both of these men were with him (and Luke) on his second missionary journey when the church was founded) Then he begins by telling them, that whenever he thinks of the believers at Thessalonica he always thanks God. And he always makes mention of them in his prayers. He says l am constantly reminded of your faithful work for God, your loving service and you patient assurance in Gods future blessing. Paul says, God has chosen you to serve him like this. Then he reminds them that the Gospel that he brought to them was not just words and speeches but it was a wonderful demonstration of the power of the Holy Spirit at work. And our preaching was not expressed in any doubt but was full of confidence in God. And you became our disciples in the Lord because you received the gospel in the middle of great troubles but full of joy in the Holy Spirit. Then Paul goes on to say, you became great examples to all the christians of Greece because from you the gospel rang out clear and true in the whole area were your faith to God became known. And because of this we did not need to go and preach there. Your hearers tell us how successful our ministry was and how that you turned away from idolatry to serve the living true God and to wait for his Son from heaven, who he raised from the dead – Jesus. Who delivered us from the wrath to come.

  • Why is Paul writing this letter?
  • How does he describe their Christian lives and witness?
  • How does he describe the coming of his gospel to Thessalonica? 


PM September 27th Isaiah 4

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. 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

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. 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.
  1. Woe to those who live in covetousness v8
  2. Woe to those who live to fleshly excess v11
  3. Woe to those who live in iniquity v18
  4. Woe to those who live to pervert truth v20
  5. Woe to those who live in pride v21
  6. 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.

  • In the Messianic kingdom, what will the nations want to do with Israel?
  • Name some of the events of the Day of the LORD?
  • What is the vineyard?

AM September 27th Colossians 4

September 27th Colossians 4

1: Masters, give unto your servants that which is just and equal; knowing that ye also have a Master in heaven.

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2: Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving; 3: Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds: 4: That I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak. 5: Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time. 6: Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.

D. Epilogue Personal greetings

7: All my state shall Tychicus declare unto you, who is a beloved brother, and a faithful minister and fellowservant in the Lord: 8: Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that he might know your estate, and comfort your hearts; 9: With Onesimus, a faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you. They shall make known unto you all things which are done here. 10: Aristarchus my fellowprisoner saluteth you, and Marcus, sister's son to Barnabas, (touching whom ye received commandments: if he come unto you, receive him;) 11: And Jesus, which is called Justus, who are of the circumcision. These only are my fellowworkers unto the kingdom of God, which have been a comfort unto me. 12: Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, saluteth you, always labouring fervently for you in prayers, that ye may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God. 13: For I bear him record, that he hath a great zeal for you, and them that are in Laodicea, and them in Hierapolis. 14: Luke, the beloved physician, and Demas, greet you. 15: Salute the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church which is in his house. 16: And when this epistle is read among you, cause that it be read also in the church of the Laodiceans; and that ye likewise read the epistle from Laodicea. 17: And say to Archippus, Take heed to the ministry which thou hast received in the Lord, that thou fulfill it.

Farewell and blessing

18: The salutation by the hand of me Paul. Remember my bonds. Grace be with you. Amen.

Having given instruction to wives, husbands, children and servants Paul now brings this portion to an end with instruction for masters. (Verse 1 should really be part of chapter 3) He says, masters are to be fair to their servants because they too have a master in heaven. This instruction applies as much to employers as much as slave masters. The Apostles and the church never undermined slavery in the Roman Empire, except that Paul said if a slave can win his freedom he is recommended to do so. And so therefore the church lived in peace with the politics of Rome on this issue. Paul encourages them to continue in prayer and to be watchful in thanksgiving. And he says pray for us that God would give us opportunities to preach the word – to speak of the mystery of Christ – because it is for this reason that he is in chains. And he asks that they might pray that he will preach this truth as he aught to preach it. Paul says, live wisely in the world using your time to the best advantage. He says let your speech be always with kindness, and tastefully done so that you might know how to answer every people who questions you regarding your faith. Lastly Paul brings a number of personal messages. He says Tychicus will tell you how l am getting along. He is a much loved brother in the Lord, a faithful minister and fellow-servant. Paul says, l sent him to you so that he might find out how you are getting along and to bring comfort to you. He also says that he is sending Onesimus who is a faithful and much loved brother and who is from your church. They will both tell you how things are done here. Aristarchus who is also in prison with me sends you greetings and Marcus the nephew of Barnabas. (This is the Mark that left Paul on his first missionary journey and who was the cause of a great rift between Paul and Barnabas. Paul had sent an apostolic commandment to the Colossians that they must receive Mark when he comes.) Paul includes a man originally called Jesus who is now called Justus who is a Jew. (Many of the people he was working with were Gentiles) Then he says these men at the moment are my fellow workers unto the Kingdom of God and they have been a strength to me. Paul says that Epaphras who is from Colossi and who is a servant of Christ sends you greetings. He works very hard in prayer that you might stand mature and complete in Gods will. He says l bear witness before God that he has a great zeal for you and for the church of Laodicea and Hierapolis. Luke the much loved doctor and Demus send their greetings. Then Paul says will you greet on out behalf the church at Laodicea and brother Nymphas and the that meets in his house. And Paul says when you read this letter out in the church will you cause it to be read at Laodicea too. And will you also read the letter that has been written to Laodicea. Tell Archippus that he pay attention to the he has received from the Lord to bring it to completion. This last part of the letter was written by Pauls own hand. He closes with the touching plea. Remember my chains.

  • How should Christian bosses treat their employees?
  • What does Paul ask for in their prayers?
  • What else do you notice in the personal remarks of Paul at the end of this letter?


PM September 26th Isaiah 1

September 26th

Isaiah 1

1: The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz, which he saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah. 2: 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. 3: The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master's crib: but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider. 4: Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the LORD, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone away backward. 5: Why should ye be stricken any more? ye will revolt more and more: the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint. 6: From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in it; but wounds, and bruises, and putrifying sores: they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither mollified with ointment. 7: Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire: your land, strangers devour it in your presence, and it is desolate, as overthrown by strangers. 8: And the daughter of Zion is left as a cottage in a vineyard, as a lodge in a garden of cucumbers, as a besieged city. 9: Except the LORD of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and we should have been like unto Gomorrah. 10: Hear the word of the LORD, ye rulers of Sodom; give ear unto the law of our God, ye people of Gomorrah. 11: To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the LORD: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats. 12: When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts? 13: Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting. 14: Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them. 15: And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood. 16: Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil; 17: Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow. 18: Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. 19: If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land: 20: But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it. 21: How is the faithful city become an harlot! it was full of judgment; righteousness lodged in it; but now murderers. 22: Thy silver is become dross, thy wine mixed with water: 23: Thy princes are rebellious, and companions of thieves: every one loveth gifts, and followeth after rewards: they judge not the fatherless, neither doth the cause of the widow come unto them.24: Therefore saith the Lord, the LORD of hosts, the mighty One of Israel, Ah, I will ease me of mine adversaries, and avenge me of mine enemies: 25: And I will turn my hand upon thee, and purely purge away thy dross, and take away all thy tin: 26: And I will restore thy judges as at the first, and thy counsellers as at the beginning: afterward thou shalt be called, The city of righteousness, the faithful city. 27: Zion shall be redeemed with judgment, and her converts with righteousness. 28: And the destruction of the transgressors and of the sinners shall be together, and they that forsake the LORD shall be consumed. 29: For they shall be ashamed of the oaks which ye have desired, and ye shall be confounded for the gardens that ye have chosen. 30: For ye shall be as an oak whose leaf fadeth, and as a garden that hath no water. 31: And the strong shall be as tow, and the maker of it as a spark, and they shall both burn together, and none shall quench them.

Isaiah 2

1: the word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem. 2: And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD's house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it. 3: And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. 4: And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. 5: O house of Jacob, come ye, and let us walk in the light of the LORD. 6: Therefore thou hast forsaken thy people the house of Jacob, because they be replenished from the east, and are soothsayers like the Philistines, and they please themselves in the children of strangers. 7: Their land also is full of silver and gold, neither is there any end of their treasures; their land is also full of horses, neither is there any end of their chariots: 8: Their land also is full of idols; they worship the work of their own hands, that which their own fingers have made: 9: And the mean man boweth down, and the great man humbleth himself: therefore forgive them not. 10: Enter into the rock, and hide thee in the dust, for fear of the LORD, and for the glory of his majesty. 11: The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down, and the LORD alone shall be exalted in that day. 12: For the day of the LORD of hosts shall be upon every one that is proud and lofty, and upon every one that is lifted up; and he shall be brought low: 13: And upon all the cedars of Lebanon, that are high and lifted up, and upon all the oaks of Bashan, 14: And upon all the high mountains, and upon all the hills that are lifted up, 15: And upon every high tower, and upon every fenced wall, 16: And upon all the ships of Tarshish, and upon all pleasant pictures. 17: And the loftiness of man shall be bowed down, and the haughtiness of men shall be made low: and the LORD alone shall be exalted in that day. 18: And the idols he shall utterly abolish. 19: And they shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, for fear of the LORD, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth. 20: In that day a man shall cast his idols of silver, and his idols of gold, which they made each one for himself to worship, to the moles and to the bats; 21: To go into the clefts of the rocks, and into the tops of the ragged rocks, for fear of the LORD, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth. 22: Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils: for wherein is he to be accounted of?

Isaiah 3

1: For, behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, doth take away from Jerusalem and from Judah the stay and the staff, the whole stay of bread, and the whole stay of water, 2: The mighty man, and the man of war, the judge, and the prophet, and the prudent, and the ancient, 3: The captain of fifty, and the honourable man, and the counseller, and the cunning artificer, and the eloquent orator. 4: And I will give children to be their princes, and babes shall rule over them. 5: And the people shall be oppressed, every one by another, and every one by his neighbour: the child shall behave himself proudly against the ancient, and the base against the honourable. 6: When a man shall take hold of his brother of the house of his father, saying, Thou hast clothing, be thou our ruler, and let this ruin be under thy hand: 7: In that day shall he swear, saying, I will not be an healer; for in my house is neither bread nor clothing: make me not a ruler of the people. 8: For Jerusalem is ruined, and Judah is fallen: because their tongue and their doings are against the LORD, to provoke the eyes of his glory. 9: The shew of their countenance doth witness against them; and they declare their sin as Sodom, they hide it not. Woe unto their soul! for they have rewarded evil unto themselves. 10: Say ye to the righteous, that it shall be well with him: for they shall eat the fruit of their doings. 11: Woe unto the wicked! it shall be ill with him: for the reward of his hands shall be given him. 12: As for my people, children are their oppressors, and women rule over them. O my people, they which lead thee cause thee to err, and destroy the way of thy paths. 13: The LORD standeth up to plead, and standeth to judge the people. 14: The LORD will enter into judgment with the ancients of his people, and the princes thereof: for ye have eaten up the vineyard; the spoil of the poor is in your houses. 15: What mean ye that ye beat my people to pieces, and grind the faces of the poor? saith the LORD GOD of hosts. 16: Moreover the LORD saith, Because the daughters of Zion are haughty, and walk with stretched forth necks and wanton eyes, walking and mincing as they go, and making a tinkling with their feet: 17: Therefore the LORD will smite with a scab the crown of the head of the daughters of Zion, and the LORD will discover their secret parts. 18: In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of their tinkling ornaments about their feet, and their cauls, and their round tires like the moon, 19: The chains, and the bracelets, and the mufflers, 20: The bonnets, and the ornaments of the legs, and the headbands, and the tablets, and the earrings, 21: The rings, and nose jewels, 22: The changeable suits of apparel, and the mantles, and the wimples, and the crisping pins, 23: The glasses, and the fine linen, and the hoods, and the vails. 24: And it shall come to pass, that instead of sweet smell there shall be stink; and instead of a girdle a rent; and instead of well set hair baldness; and instead of a stomacher a girding of sackcloth; and burning instead of beauty. 25: Thy men shall fall by the sword, and thy mighty in the war. 26: And her gates shall lament and mourn; and she being desolate shall sit upon the ground.
Today’s bible reading is the first three chapters of the book of Isaiah. This book is one of the largest books of the Bible with 66 chapters. Isaiah was a prophet during the life of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah. His ministry seems to have ended with the Babylonian servitude. There were other prophets at the same time as Isaiah – Hosea, Micah and Nahum. The book could be described as follows…
A. Exhortations – Prophetic 1v2-5v30
B. The Voice from the temple – The Scatterings 6v1-13
C. Historic – Events and Prophesies (Ahaz) 7v1-12v6
D. Burdens – Israel’s blessings 13v1-27v13
D. Woes – The LORD’s glories 28v1-35v10
C. Historic – Events and Prophesies (Hezekiah) 36v1-39v8
B. The Voice from the wilderness – The Gathering 40v1-11
A. Exhortations – Prophetic 40v12-66v24

So the first section after the title of verse 1, Isaiah begins a series of exhortations in the context of the deplorable spiritual state of the nation. Then he calls on heaven and earth to hear ‘The Word of the LORD’ because The LORD has spoken. Isaiah does not enter into debate or discussion he declares what God has to say. The whole book is summarised by the first few lines. ‘I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me’. Then he goes on to describe a terrible state of affairs. He says the ox knows his master but Israel has forgotten the LORD. They are a sinful nation loaded down with iniquity. They have provoked the LORD to anger. He describes a nation as a patient that is sick from head to toe. The country has come under the judgments of the LORD already making everywhere a wasteland. Just a small remnant is left that the LORD has preserved otherwise they would have been no more like Sodom. The message comes to the rulers saying listen to me what good are all your sacrifices? I have had my full of them – so don’t bring any more to me. They disgust me, I don’t even want your assemblies. Your religious celebrations are a burden to me. When you pray, I shut my eyes and ears. Your hands are covered in blood. Wash yourself and make yourself clean and put away the evil things that you do. Cease to do evil. Learn to do well. Seek righteous judgments, relive the oppressed, judge the fatherless. (Provide the inheritance for sons without fathers) Plead the case of widows. The LORD speaks in the most friendly terms, he says come on lets sit down and talk about it. Even though your sins are like a red stain I can make them white as snow. But there is one obstacle – IF you are willing to be obedient – to the Mosaic Law. Because if you are will then you will be blessed by fruitful crops. BUT if you rebel against me then you will be killed in war. I the Lord has spoken this. We see what it was like to live in Israel under the law. If the people rebelled the Lord took their lives but if they obeyed they lived and were blessed in fruit for food. Then the LORD says how has the ‘faithful city’ become a prostitute? Once id was a place of righteousness and fair judgment but now it is full of murderers. He says I will turn my hand against you but (In a future day) I will restore the judges and advisors that you had in your early years and the city will be called the city of righteousness – the faithful city. The Lord just before the Millennium and at the end of the Tribulation will judge Israel. Only the righteous will enter the Kingdom. They will be ashamed of their idolatry and at their Oaks and Groves. Because you will be like an oak without leaves and a garden without water. The wicked will be burnt with unquenchable fire. In chapter 2 v1-5 Isaiah has a vision of Israel’s future glory. He says that one day the mountain of the LORD’s house will be established in the top of the mountains. There will be a major geographic transformation of topography. In that day All nations will flow into it. It seems that Israel will be the major thoughfare for the worlds commerce. All the peoples of the world will go up to Zion to request the knowledge of the LORD so that they will be enabled to live under law before God. The law of the Lord will go out of Zion. The LORD will settle national disputes and he will rebuke nations and all nations will turn all of their arms into instruments of agriculture. There will be no more war nor will anyone learn the arts of war anymore. And Israel will live righteously before the LORD in the light of his knowledge. Then from v6-22, the rest of the chapter, Isaiah describes the sin of the men of Judah and pronounces judgment on them. He says they have forsaken the LORD and filled the city with mediums and soothsayers – the demon possessed. When the religious leaders are addicted to demonic influence then look out. The land is full of idolatry and images are everywhere. The high and low bow down to the work of their own hands. Then Isaiah speaks of a day of judgment, called ‘The Day of the LORD. In which he will raise up the humble and put down the proud. All men on the day will be brought to kneel before the LORD. And all images will be destroyed forever. Men will try to escape the wrath of God. Even the earth will tremble before him. All the images of brass and gold will be thrown down mole hills and caves, before the fear of the LORD and the glory of his majesty. In chapter 3v1-15 he describes the political ruin of Judah. The LORD himself will smash the food economy, by drought, of Judah. Every level of Judah’s society will be destroyed. Children and babies will be the leaders. Jerusalem will be destroyed and the nation ruined. They have brought the judgment of God on themselves. From v16-4v1 Isaiah pronounces the judgment. Because the daughters of Jerusalem are sexually provocative the Lord will bring sore skin diseases to them from head to toe. Instead of sweet perfume their bodies will stink. They will walk bald and in rags. The men of war will be killed in battle.

  • How does Isaiah face bringing the word of God to the difficult days in which he lived?
  • Why does the Lord tell Israel not to do?
  • What does the Lord say that they are to do?