Isaiah

Isaiah 35-36

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(Chapter 36 is a really fun read!!)

If you are feeling “lost” on Isaiah.  I posted a “recap” video yesterday.  Scroll down to it, it might help.

Chapter 35

Pin by Shelly on an awesome God | End times timeline, Revelation ...

 

  • We are currently in the Church Age (since Acts 2)
  • Then we will have the Rapture of the Church (if you believe in a Rapture (I do)but if you don’t ignore that-all good)(Thessalonians 4:13-18)
  • Then we begin a 7 year period of Tribulation
  • Then Jesus will return to earth (called the 2nd coming)  This will be the Battle of Armageddon.  Satan will be tied up (literally) for 1,000 years.
  • The 1,000 years of Peace is called the Millennial Reign
  • After 1,000 years Satan will be released and there will be one final rebellion-he will quickly be defeated
  • The final judgment will occur and a New Heaven and New Earth are created and we enter into eternity!

Chapter 36- Time to change the channel back to 701 BC.

After the Kindgom divided we have:

  • 10 tribes-North called Israel
  • 2 tribes-South called Judah

Israel is captured by Assyria

Judah will be captured by Babylon (in 150 years)  Only Judah will survive and come back to Jerusalem because there is a covenant God must honor that He will bring a King through David’s Genealogy.

 

media babylonia assyria map - Google Search | Map, Ancient maps ...

If you look at this map you will see Assyria is a major world power.  The King of Assyria is Sennacherib.

(The King of Judah is Hezekiah.  He was the really good king that restored the Temple!)

The other world power is Egypt.  Well, Israel is stuck in the middle.  So if world powers are going to attack each other….Israel best call on the Lord for help, right?

Chapter 36-

In the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah’s reign, Sennacherib king of Assyria attacked all the fortified cities of Judah and captured them. Then the king of Assyria sent his field commander with a large army from Lachish to King Hezekiah at Jerusalem. 

So when the Assyrian Kings went to Judah they gave a speech in verses 4-10.  In summary they said…There is no deliverance in the Lord!  Teaming up with Egypt won’t save you.  You need to surrender to us because Assyria had the authority from God to attack Jerusalem. “The Lord himself told me to march against this country and destroy it.’”

WHAT…LIES????

The Assyrian army even said “C’mon fellas…we will even give you 2000 horses”.  They instructed them to speak Aramaic so that everyone listening would understand what they were saying, even the people on the wall.  Instead, the Assyrians address them in Hebrew making sure they can understand:

13 Then the commander stood and called out in Hebrew, “Hear the words of the great king, the king of Assyria! 14 This is what the king says: Do not let Hezekiah deceive you. He cannot deliver you! 15 Do not let Hezekiah persuade you to trust in the Lord when he says, ‘The Lord will surely deliver us; this city will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria.’

I am unglued over this!

So now what happen???

Commercial Break!


Fun Fact:  This story is true.  How do I know?  Because it is on your Bible.  Ha!

It is also rerecorded on a clay prism that was found in 1830 in Nineveh, dating to 701 BC

prism | British Museum

 

 

 

Isaiah

Isaiah 31-34

Today is Thursday (I think).  Hang in there.  Saturday is the end of the condemnation part of Isaiah…you can do it.

31 Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help,
    who rely on horses,
who trust in the multitude of their chariots
    and in the great strength of their horsemen,
but do not look to the Holy One of Israel,
    or seek help from the Lord.

Today:

31 Woe to those who go down to Egypt to the world for help,
    who rely on horses  man
who trust in the multitude of their chariots
    and in the great strength of their horsemen,
but do not look to the Holy One of Israel,
    or seek help from the Lord.


BUT….He is always waiting for us ❤

Return, you Israelites, to the One you have so greatly revolted against. For in that day every one of you will reject the idols of silver and gold your sinful hands have made.


Ch 32-The Kingdom of Righteousness

Maybe chapters like this stick out to me because I was an adult when I became a Christian and remember what it was like to not have Christ in my life:

See, a king will reign in righteousness
    and rulers will rule with justice.
Each one will be like a shelter from the wind
    and a refuge from the storm,
like streams of water in the desert
    and the shadow of a great rock in a thirsty land.

Then the eyes of those who see will no longer be closed,
    and the ears of those who hear will listen.
The fearful heart will know and understand,
    and the stammering tongue will be fluent and clear.
No longer will the fool be called noble
    nor the scoundrel be highly respected.

In Historical context the passage is about after the Captivity when he rescues His people, but for me:

till the Spirit is poured on us from on high,
    and the desert becomes a fertile field,
    and the fertile field seems like a forest.
16 The Lord’s justice will dwell in the desert,
    his righteousness live in the fertile field.
17 The fruit of that righteousness will be peace;
    its effect will be quietness and confidence forever.
18 My people will live in peaceful dwelling places,
    in secure homes,
    in undisturbed places of rest.


Chapter 33- Are you struggling with 2020?

Lord, be gracious to us;
    we long for you.
Be our strength every morning,
    our salvation in time of distress.


Chapter 34:

2,885 Split Screen Videos and HD Footage - Getty Images

As we read you have to picture this:  The Scriptures having 2 views.  The historical context (the captivity) and the wrath that will come on forighn nations and in the other screen: The Great Tribulation in Revelation.  So as you read you can see they apply to both:

34 Come near, you nations, and listen;
    pay attention, you peoples!
Let the earth hear, and all that is in it,
    the world, and all that comes out of it!
The Lord is angry with all nations;
    his wrath is on all their armies.
He will totally destroy[c] them,
    he will give them over to slaughter.
Their slain will be thrown out,
    their dead bodies will stink;
    the mountains will be soaked with their blood.
All the stars in the sky will be dissolved
    and the heavens rolled up like a scroll;
all the starry host will fall
    like withered leaves from the vine,
    like shriveled figs from the fig tree.

Flip over to Matthew 24 when Jesus is describing the Great Tribulation:

29 “Immediately after the distress of those days

“‘the sun will be darkened,
    and the moon will not give its light;
the stars will fall from the sky,
    and the heavenly bodies will be shaken.’

Isaiah8 For the Lord has a day of vengeance,
    a year of retribution, to uphold Zion’s cause.
Edom’s streams will be turned into pitch,
    her dust into burning sulfur;
    her land will become blazing pitch!
10 It will not be quenched night or day;
    its smoke will rise forever.

Did the Great Tribulation begin in 70 A.D? Many teach that it did ...

 

Isaiah

Isaiah 28-30

Isaiah is divided into 2 parts.  The first section is 1-39.  The theme of the first 39 chapters is condemnation.  We have seen Isaiah bring multiple messages and warnings without any lasting repentance.  Overall, the next 8 chapters are to Judah, but he does use Israel as an example.  When he references Ephraim (since that is the largest tribe in the North, he is referring to Israel)


Isaiah gives a graphic description of how God is viewing His people.  They are “drunk” on themselves.  The materiality, their life, their politics…it is all gross to the Lord.  And the view from the people who hear Isaiah’s message is that they mock him-

“Who is it he is trying to teach?
    To whom is he explaining his message?
To children weaned from their milk,
    to those just taken from the breast?
10 For it is:
    Do this, do that,
    a rule for this, a rule for that;
    a little here, a little there.”

That is a harsh way to view God’s laws: “rule for this, rule for that”.  (And he is including the Priests in this conversation! How sad).  However, if you know any people that are not Christian that is EXACLTY how they view the Bible.

A warning of judgment that He will allow them to “fall backward” at the hands of a foreign nation.

I am enjoying the details in today’s read so hang with me.  Read this and break this down:

15 You boast, “We have entered into a covenant with death,
    with the realm of the dead we have made an agreement.
When an overwhelming scourge sweeps by,
    it cannot touch us,
for we have made a lie our refuge
    and falsehood our hiding place.”

I am not trying to upset anyone but just because someone is baptized, went camp, goes to church or said: “I decided”…can be a “lie of refuge”.  The Israelites believe that they can do whatever they want because of their ancestors.

Judah saw the Northern Tribe be taken by Assyria.  “That will not happen to us”…Oh it will.


However, there are many that will believe in the Covenant too.  Scripture quoted by both Peter and Paul in the New Testament:

“See, I lay a stone in Zion, a tested stone,
    a precious cornerstone for a sure foundation;
the one who relies on it
    will never be stricken with panic.
17 I will make justice the measuring line
    and righteousness the plumb line;
hail will sweep away your refuge, the lie,
    and water will overflow your hiding place.

He continues with a warning and says : LISTEN TO ME!!


Chapter 29: He is directly talking to the nation of Judah referred to them as “Ariel”- (Ariel meaning Altar).  He is speaking to Jerusalem.  Jerusalem will become a blood-soaked altar by it’s surrounding nations.  BUT it will be from God’s hand-His judgment.  This will occur during the reign of Hezekiah.

NOW, let’s split this newscast screen:  We can also see the Tribulation in this read too!  This message is sealed in the scroll that only Jesus can open:

11 For you this whole vision is nothing but words sealed in a scroll. And if you give the scroll to someone who can read, and say, “Read this, please,” they will answer, “I can’t; it is sealed.” 


A scripture I want you to sit on a little is:

13 The Lord says:

“These people come near to me with their mouth
    and honor me with their lips,
    but their hearts are far from me.
Their worship of me
    is based on merely human rules they have been taught.


Chapter 30:  The message continues to the Souther Tribe, Judah.  As Assyria becomes stronger and stronger Judah continues to make alliances with foreign nations like Egypt RATHER than line up with God’s Ways.  As they turn to people or ‘the world” for their protection. The Lord says:

12 Therefore this is what the Holy One of Israel says:

“Because you have rejected this message,
    relied on oppression
    and depended on deceit,
13 this sin will become for you
    like a high wall, cracked and bulging,
    that collapses suddenly, in an instant.

They are rejecting the Lord.

15 This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says:

“In repentance and rest is your salvation,
    in quietness and trust is your strength,
    but you would have none of it.
16 You said, ‘No, we will flee on horses.’
    Therefore you will flee!

BUT HE WILL NEVER LEAVE THEM!!!’ BECAUSE HE LOVES US!!

18 Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you;
    therefore he will rise up to show you compassion.
For the Lord is a God of justice.
    Blessed are all who wait for him!

19 People of Zion, who live in Jerusalem, you will weep no more. How gracious he will be when you cry for help! As soon as he hears, he will answer you. 

Hosea

Hosea 8-14

Chapter 8-Israel’s Rebellion

Israel had usurped God’s sovereign authority to lead the nation, worshipped idols, depended on foreign treaties rather than God, adopted foreign systems of worship, Israel disregarded God’s Law.

As much as we can look at this and think: “Why would they think this would bring a “better” life…

When Canaanites and Philistines Ruled Ashkelon · The BAS Library

I am sure ancient Israelites would say the same thing about the things we use in place of God.


Chapter 9- This is a cool chapter.  V1-9 ends with how the Prophets’ words are considered “foolish”.  Then starting in verse 10 Hosea compares two examples of sins with the present situation in Israel.

Example 1:

“When I found Israel,
    it was like finding grapes in the desert;
when I saw your ancestors,
    it was like seeing the early fruit on the fig tree.
But when they came to Baal Peor,
    they consecrated themselves to that shameful idol
    and became as vile as the thing they loved.

In Number 25,  as the Hebrews entered the Promised land, they were instructed for MONTHS to set themselves apart and worship the Lord ONLY.  I don’t know if you remember Balaam: he was supposed to curse the Israelites but couldn’t, well plan B was to entice them to “fall” through “a man’s favorite hobby.

25- While Israel was staying in Shittim, the men began to indulge in sexual immorality with Moabite women, who invited them to the sacrifices to their gods. The people ate the sacrificial meal and bowed down before these gods. So Israel yoked themselves to the Baal of Peor. And the Lord’s anger burned against them. The Lord said to Moses, “Take all the leaders of these people, kill them and expose them in broad daylight before the Lord, so that the Lord’s fierce anger may turn away from Israel.”

Example 2:“Because of all their wickedness in Gilgal,
    I hated them there.
Because of their sinful deeds,
    I will drive them out of my house.
I will no longer love them;
    all their leaders are rebellious.

Gilgal was the beginning of their new life when they entered by Jericho.  It was where the first Passover was celebrated. Since the day they stepped into the land their sinful deeds began.


Ch.10- as they say they have “No King”- what a punch in the stomach.  God warned them when they asked for an earthly king, He said they will disappoint.. he reminded the: “I AM YOUR KING”.  And they said “no thanks”.  Well now look at where they are in History!! They have neither a king nor The King of Kings! 😢


CHapter 11 begins this a really cool vision of how God Loves Israel like a child.  Deeply!

“When Israel was a child, I loved him,
    and out of Egypt I called my son.
But the more they were called,
    the more they went away from me….

 

I led them with cords of human kindness,
    with ties of love.
To them I was like one who lifts
    a little child to the cheek,
    and I bent down to feed them.

So when did all this deception from the Hebrews begin? Chapter 12 reminds us it began in the womb.

The Lord has a charge to bring against Judah;
    he will punish Jacob according to his ways
    and repay him according to his deeds.
In the womb he grasped his brother’s heel;
    as a man he struggled with God.
He struggled with the angel and overcame him;
    he wept and begged for his favor.

God reminds them:  I HAVE TRIED EVERYTHING TO WARN YOU!!! I EVEN SENT PROPHETS!

10: I spoke to the prophets,
    gave them many visions
    and told parables through them.”


Oh my Stars!!!!  If you read nothing else, read this- This about sums up our 7 month read!!  So if you are behind, and read this…consider yourself caught up!!

“But I have been the Lord your God
    ever since you came out of Egypt.
You shall acknowledge no God but me,
    no Savior except me.
I cared for you in the wilderness,
    in the land of burning heat.
When I fed them, they were satisfied;
    when they were satisfied, they became proud;
    then they forgot me.

The rest of Chapter 13 reveals his discipline because he LOVES


Finally: Chapter 14:

Take words with you
and return to the Lord.
Say to him:
“Forgive all our sins
and receive us graciously,
that we may offer the fruit of our lips.


9 Who is wise? Let them realize these things.
    Who is discerning? Let them understand.
The ways of the Lord are right;
    the righteous walk in them,
    but the rebellious stumble in them.

Hosea

Hosea 1-7

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  • This is 7 chapters: it is a 15-minute read.  So make some coffee. So I will try to keep this really short and ONLY point out the stuff that maybe wasn’t clear.

Chapter 1:

Then the Lord said to Hosea, “Call him Jezreel, because I will soon punish the house of Jehu for the massacre at Jezreel, and I will put an end to the kingdom of Israel. In that day I will break Israel’s bow in the Valley of Jezreel.”

(In the Valley of Jezreel Jehu killed Ahab’s family and sort of a killing spree.  God said he would punish the Israel dynasty for their over-zealousness.  (is that a word, well you know what I mean).  (2 Kings 10)

11 The people of Judah and the people of Israel will come together; they will appoint one leader and will come up out of the land, for great will be the day of Jezreel.

Think of it like the split-screen newscast.  The same message twisted a few different says.  Jezreel means “to scatter”.  After the captivity, we know a remnant will come back to build the Temple (Reunited)….but no one ever asked me where the rest of them go?  Well, they scatter ALL around the Mediterranea Sea.  (God will use this in a mighty way…think how far Paul had to travel to deliver his letters to scatter the Gospel).

We too are scattered however we have been reunited through the life and death of Christ.

And the 3rd screen is the reuniting of HIS people through the 2nd coming.


Chapter 2-this is a beautifully written story about Hosea and Gomer.  How Gomer will go looking for something better but does not find it. When Gomer realizes the grass wasn’t greener on the other side and tries to come back…that is when a person is teachable!  God will restore the relationship with His people.

She will chase after her lovers but not catch them;
    she will look for them but not find them.
Then she will say,
    ‘I will go back to my husband as at first,
    for then I was better off than now.’
She has not acknowledged that I was the one
    who gave her the grain, the new wine and oil,
who lavished on her the silver and gold—
    which they used for Baal.

Israel wants to come back but will not acknowledge at Lord has provided for them.  They still rely on themselves, or treaties, or horses, and chariots…you get my point.

So God basically puts them in “Time Out” and takes away all their video games to show them that He was the buyer the whole time.  (He allows them be captured by another nation)  I think of it this way:  He took his hand of protection OFF of them.  Kind of like letting “natural consequences” happen to our children, so you can say “I told you so”.


Chapter 3- LOVE!  HE BUYS THEM BACK!  He pays a price for HIS people.


4-7 Are the charges against Israel-we have been reading for months and we will be able to put this in historical context.  We have seen the “cycle” of sin, and when HIs people return to him they never truly “go back”.  These chapters will receal the unfaithfulness of Gomer (HIS people) and the disciple (the captivity) that is coming.  Why?? So we they will return to HIM.  While you are reading this don’t miss the “inside message” that we are HIS priesthood.

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 1 Peter 2:9


Note: Chapter 6 verse 2

 

After two days he will revive us;
    on the third day he will restore us,
    that we may live in his presence.
Let us acknowledge the Lord;
    let us press on to acknowledge him.
As surely as the sun rises,
    he will appear;
he will come to us like the winter rains,
    like the spring rains that water the earth.”


If that did not make any sense…let me know.

Book Overviews · Hosea

Hosea Overview

The theme of this book is easy.  God has a covenant relationship with the people of Israel (and you).  God loves His people and has promised to bless them (and you).   BUT they (we) must love God and be faithful to the Word.  The book will present a marriage (covenant) and the spouse becomes unfaithful (Israel).

Reasons for the unfaithful wife (Israel, us) will be clearly spelled out.  See if any are applicable today:

  • Israel does not really know God because they have not read the Scriptures (or taught them to their children)
  • They display no concrete loyalty, breaking the covenant (what the scriptures say) in many different ways.  Instead of trusting God, they trust in others or themselves for security.
  • They are not truthful with God-they rationalize their sin or are deceptive, claim one thing but do another.

Like a wife who deceived her husband and loves two men.  The Israelites claim to be with God but act like they don’t.


Hosea means Salvation.   The prophet Hosea is instructed by God to marry an unfaithful woman, and he found in his own life a vivid illustration of the unfaithfulness of God’s people and the faithfulness of God.

I believe this story to be Historical to show an analogy.  (Some think it is just an Allegory, but I think if it wasn’t historical, God would have noted that)

This book is: Love, God’s Covenant, Relationship with His people, Judgement, and Hope.

  • Hosea was the only prophet to come from Israel (northern kingdom).
  • This book is written after the fall of their capital Samaria.
  • After the judgment on God’s people, Israel didn’t turn towards Him, instead, they went further away from the Lord.  The country was in a rapid decline morally and politically. (ummmmm)
  • The past 200 years the Golden Calf has been the official national god, and God has sent prophet after prophet preaching to the people to change their ways.
  • In the meantime, other world powers (Rome and India) are growing, and they are not even noticing.
  • Buddhism is a new religion and beginning to grow.

The book of Hosea is a one-sided story of faithfulness that represents the relationship between Israel and God.  Gomer is married to Hosea, like Israel is married to God, like the Church is married to God. (We are HOMER in the story).  The story has two characters, the faithful husband and the adulterous wife.  She chases after other gods, idolatry, and materialism. 

If you have read the book “Redeeming Love’ by Francine Rivers you know how it ends.  But if you know God you already know how it ends.

-with Forgiveness

2 Chronicles · 2 Kings · Psalm

2 Kings 18:1-8 and 2 Chonicles 29-31 and Psalm 48

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THIS IS ONE OF MY FAVORITE READS TODAY!  I hung on every word.  Two reasons:

  1. I get to take som many details and see if the ‘make sense’ to the whole story.  I truly think you are going to read this and realize you have absorbed a lot more than you thought.
  2. This read is not about Hezekiah.  It is about God’s Mercy, Grace, Patience, Love, and Forgiveness!!

OK…I am pumped!  2 kings the first 8 verses only.   Hezekiah King of Judah.  (refresh: The nation that has the Davidic Covenant, the nation that will be exiled BUT a remnant of people will survive, the nation that every once in a while has a good King).

I am Team Hezekiah!!

He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, just as his father David had done. He removed the high places, smashed the sacred stones and cut down the Asherah poles. He broke into pieces the bronze snake Moses had made, for up to that time the Israelites had been burning incense to it. (It was called Nehushtan.)

Nehushtan - Sunset Church of Christ in Springfield MO

I could make a sermon out of this!  What God made for good, man made evil.  Anything that we worship, even in the “Church world” is idolatry.    (You can skip this part if you remember the story)

On March 4th (that was 136 days ago!)—wait, that was when the Pandemic started.  Oh, the irony of this story!

Numbers 22

They traveled from Mount Hor along the route to the Red Sea,[c] to go around Edom. But the people grew impatient on the way; they spoke against God and against Moses, and said, “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? There is no bread! There is no water! And we detest this miserable food!”

Then the Lord sent venomous snakes among them; they bit the people and many Israelites died. The people came to Moses and said, “We sinned when we spoke against the Lord and against you. Pray that the Lord will take the snakes away from us.” So Moses prayed for the people.

The Lord said to Moses, “Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live.” So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, they lived.

Enigma Of Nehushtan – The Biblical Copper Snake | Ancient Pages

Well, who has John 3:16 memorized besides Tim Tebow?  Well what is the scripture JUST before it??

14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up,15 that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.”

16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 

The Crucifiction of Jesus and the Nehushtan (serpent staff of ...

What was a beautul foreshadow of healing through FAITH became an act of idolatrous worship.  And YES every time I see an ambulance I am reminded to PRAY for Healing through my Faith (even though the copied symbol is from Greek mythology, Asclepius, the god of medicine and healing)

Free Stock photo of Ambulance showing the snake and staff ...

Sorry, I fell down a rabbit hole on that.


2 Chronicles 29- Same story…a lot more words.  Why?  Who wrote it?  (Yes I know God wrote it silly) I mean who did God use to write it?  Ezra.  Ezra was a priest, and the Chronicles were written for the remnant people that return after the captivity to rebuild the Temple.  So look for all the beautiful details in this chapter:

  • He brought in the priests and the Levites (we had kings bring “anyone” in to be a priest years ago.  ONLY the Levites were priests.   (Trivia: Which Levite family was the High Priest from?)
  • They also shut the doors of the portico and put out the lamps. They did not burn incense or present any burnt offerings at the sanctuary to the God of Israel.
    • All of the Temple has been ignored.  Hezekiah is resorting the Cross Temple.
    • Focus 1Tabernacle #2 Polson. The Tabernacle is the most complete ...
  • 10 Now I intend to make a covenant with the Lord, the God of Israel so that his fierce anger will turn away from us. 
    • What is needed for a “covenant”?  The shedding of blood.  The New Testament Covenant is the shedding of Jesus’ blood,
  • The king commanded the priests, the descendants of Aaron, to offer these on the altar of the Lord. (Now do you remember the above Trivia question?  The descendants of Aaron are the High Priests.)

So the service of the temple of the Lord was reestablished. 36 Hezekiah and all the people rejoiced at what God had brought about for his people, because it was done so quickly.


Chapter 30.-The Passover.

It feels like we have read 1000 names in the Bible.  Who are the 12 tribes again?  Who are the enemies?  Who are the Kings?.  When you read the Passover and who is being invited to celebrate God’s deliverance from Egypt, here is a reminder of who The Tribes of Israel are:

  • Reuben
  • Simeon
  • Ephraim
  • Judah
  • Issachar
  • Zebulun
  • Dan
  • Naphtali
  • Gad
  • Asher
  • Manasseh
  • Benjamin

18 Although most of the many people who came from Ephraim, Manasseh, Issachar and Zebulun had not purified themselves, yet they ate the Passover, contrary to what was written. But Hezekiah prayed for them, saying, “May the Lord, who is good, pardon everyone 19 who sets their heart on seeking God—the Lord, the God of their ancestors—even if they are not clean according to the rules of the sanctuary.” 20 And the Lord heard Hezekiah and healed the people.


chapter 31-  Read the ABOVE IN BLUE and then read this.  I could write a book on this topic (I won’t, I promise).  I actually started writing quite a bit BUT it may have translated wrong (my biggest fear) so I deleted it.  Maybe I will try again in the comments.

When all this had ended, the Israelites who were there went out to the towns of Judah, smashed the sacred stones and cut down the Asherah poles. They destroyed the high places and the altars throughout Judah and Benjamin and in Ephraim and Manasseh. After they had destroyed all of them, the Israelites returned to their own towns and to their own property.

The chapter ends with:

20 This is what Hezekiah did throughout Judah, doing what was good and right and faithful before the Lord his God. 21 In everything that he undertook in the service of God’s temple and in obedience to the law and the commands, he sought his God and worked wholeheartedly. And so he prospered.

Can 1 person make a difference??


A perfect ending for a Sunday Morning.  Finally, the Sons of Kora write this to be sung in the Temple:  Click here for Psalm 48.

 

Isaiah

Isaiah 23-27

Tyre (and Sidon)-You can find Tyre on the coast just above Israel.  Tyre was a trading city that was very wealthy and very evil.  They controlled much of the trading through the port of the Mediterranean Sea.

Map of Nineveh in the Ancient Near East | Ancient near east, Bible ...

Bible Map | Tyre and Sidon | Bible mapping, Bible, Daily bible study

These cities will fall and the event will devastate the other world powers who depend on their ports for profit.  Their evil ways will be disciplined and Isaiah warns them to flee!  Get on your boat and go to Tarshish!

Who planned this against Tyre,
    the bestower of crowns,
whose merchants are princes,
    whose traders are renowned in the earth?
The Lord Almighty planned it,
    to bring down her pride in all her splendor
    and to humble all who are renowned on the earth.

Tyre will be restored as an image of how wealth should properly be managed by God’s people.

18 Yet her profit and her earnings will be set apart for the Lord; they will not be stored up or hoarded.


The Next 4 chapters might be titled “The Apocolypse of Isaiah” or “God’s Purpose in Judgement”.

Think of it like a movie camera focused in and slowly pulled back.  It is focused on Judah, then Israel, then surrounding nations, and finally the whole world.  There is NO DOUBT you will see End Time Prophecies as you read this.  God’s universal judgment on sin and his victory over evil in the end.

I am going to pull out a few verses BUT the whole read (worth hitting “listen” at the top too) is worth hanging on every word.

The earth is defiled by its people;
    they have disobeyed the laws,
violated the statutes
    and broken the everlasting covenant.

True story BUT…

The floodgates of the heavens are opened,
    the foundations of the earth shake.
19 The earth is broken up,
    the earth is split asunder,
    the earth is violently shaken.
20 The earth reels like a drunkard,
    it sways like a hut in the wind;
so heavy upon it is the guilt of its rebellion
    that it falls—never to rise again.

When God conquers he will open the New Heaven and the defiled earth will be gone!  (I can’t wait for Revelation!)

I basically underlined the rest of the read, but here are a few: (maybe one, is the one you need today)

Isaiah 25:1 | joshtinpowers | Flickr

 

That Day – Isaiah 25:9 | The Bottom of a Bottle

Free Isaiah 26:3 eCard - eMail Free Personalized Encouragement Online

Isaiah 25:8 he will swallow up death forever. The Sovereign LORD ...

Trust-in-the-Lord-Isaiah-26-4 - Parker United Methodist Church

Chapter 27 ends with a Double Reference both “near’ and “far” prophecy.  The judgment of the lost and the restoration of his people from the Babylonian Captivity, and the gathering of HIs people after the apocalypse:

12 In that day the Lord will thresh from the flowing Euphrates to the Wadi of Egypt, and you, Israel, will be gathered up one by one. 13 And in that day a great trumpet will sound. Those who were perishing in Assyria and those who were exiled in Egypt will come and worship the Lord on the holy mountain in Jerusalem.

 

 

 

 

Isaiah

Isaiah 18-22

Chapter 18.  OK, so I read it and it was like reading Japanese.  Let’s look at it:

Woe to the land of whirring wings[
    along the rivers of Cush,
which sends envoys by sea
    in papyrus boats over the water.

Go, swift messengers,
to a people tall and smooth-skinned,
to a people feared far and wide,
an aggressive nation of strange speech,
whose land is divided by rivers.

OK, Cush is modern-day Etheopia….who are the smooth-skinned people (what product are they using??) who’s male is divided by rivers???

Ancient Egypt Map

Ohhh it is the Egyptians!!!  That makes sense…IN my head Cleopatra had great skin!

Cush had actually conquered Egypt so we know this is another world power.  The Promised Land is surrounded by them (just like today).  Cush is now seeking an alliance with Judah to overcome Assyria.  But it is in God’s timing that any nation is destroyed…

THIS CHAPTER IS HARD.  The lesson is…God doesn’t need Cush to ally with Judah to take Assyria…this is not HIS first Rodeo.


Chapter 19- Egypt- very interesting chapter:

  • v1-4 it the collapse of the Egyptian religion and they turn on each other.  Chaos erupts. Is this about Egypt of America?
  • v5-10 the Nile stops providing for food as well as exporting goods.  The economy crashes.  Ummmm
  • v 11-15 The “intellects’  can’t fix this disaster.  Ha!
  • 16-25 we see a repeated phrase: “In that day”- this is the time that terror will overtake the county.  (Lord I hope that’s not 2021)
  • 5 cities are mentioned.  One of them is the city they would worship the Sun.  Always look for the Hope.  God’s Love.  Not just for his chosen nation but for the Gentiles too.

19 In that day there will be an altar to the Lord in the heart of Egypt, and a monument to the Lord at its border. 20 It will be a sign and witness to the Lord Almighty in the land of Egypt. When they cry out to the Lord because of their oppressors, he will send them a savior and defender, and he will rescue them. 21 So the Lord will make himself known to the Egyptians, and in that day they will acknowledge the Lord. They will worship with sacrifices and grain offerings; they will make vows to the Lord and keep them. 22 The Lord will strike Egypt with a plague; he will strike them and heal them. They will turn to the Lord, and he will respond to their pleas and heal them.


Chapter 20- Look at the Map.  Ashdod is on the coast near Israel (and Judah).  It is in the Philistine nation.    You will see the world powers in a triangle around it.  Egypt (and Cush), Babylon, Assyria, Phoenicians. Well as they fight each other, they use Israel as the travel route.  We surly this is going to scare the bajeebees out of them so they try to make alliances.  (That was SPECIFICALLY told by in the law, that they should NOT do that).

Map of Middle East at 3500BC | TimeMaps

So if I honed in on the map you can now see the city that Assyria is coming to attack.  Ashdod. (LOL, are you ready to kill me with all these maps…at least they are not genealogies)

The Ancient Levant With Map

So what should God’s people do?  TRUST HIM!  Nope…they make the alliances as usual.  God asks Isaiah to walk naked for 3 years as a symbol of what he is going to do Egypt and Cush.   He will strip them of their world power.


Isaiah 21-

In all this, I forget how hard a task Isaiah has been called to.  (I was LITERALLY just thinking in my head…how hard it is to read Isaiah when we are on a tight schedule, as I have my feet on a coffee table with my coffee….so suck it up buttercup)

At this my body is racked with pain,
    pangs seize me, like those of a woman in labor;
I am staggered by what I hear,
    I am bewildered by what I see.
My heart falters,
    fear makes me tremble;
the twilight I longed for
    has become a horror to me.

The from the watchtower the message:

Look, here comes a man in a chariot
    with a team of horses.
And he gives back the answer:
    ‘Babylon has fallen, has fallen!
All the images of its gods
    lie shattered on the ground!’”

In the Double reference, who/what is Babylon??  Revelation 18:

After this I saw another angel coming down from heaven. He had great authority, and the earth was illuminated by his splendor. With a mighty voice he shouted:

“‘Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great!’
    She has become a dwelling for demons
and a haunt for every impure spirit,
    a haunt for every unclean bird,
    a haunt for every unclean and detestable animal.
For all the nations have drunk
    the maddening wine of her adulteries.
The kings of the earth committed adultery with her,
    and the merchants of the earth grew rich from her excessive luxuries.”


Chapter 21- Look at the map again.  It makes sense that Edom and Arabia are in distress since they also fall into a category of fighting for land and trade routes.  (or robbing and looting on those trade routes).  BUT they too get their answer:

16 This is what the Lord says to me: “Within one year, as a servant bound by contract would count it, all the splendor of Kedar will come to an end. 17 The survivors of the archers, the warriors of Kedar, will be few.” The Lord, the God of Israel, has spoken.

(MIc Drop!)


Chapter 22- read or re-read this chapter and stop at verse 11.  Jerusaemamm is under attack.  They have their horses, chariots, water, bows and arrows but what is the ONE thing they are not relying on?

Your choicest valleys are full of chariots,
    and horsemen are posted at the city gates.

The Lord stripped away the defenses of Judah,
    and you looked in that day
    to the weapons in the Palace of the Forest.
You saw that the walls of the City of David
    were broken through in many places;
you stored up water
    in the Lower Pool.
10 You counted the buildings in Jerusalem
    and tore down houses to strengthen the wall.
11 You built a reservoir between the two walls
    for the water of the Old Pool,
but you did not look to the One who made it,
    or have regard for the One who planned it long ago.

 

The end of the chapter- I read a ton of stuff and I am going to leave it blank.  Is it a Messianic passage is it not a Messianic passage?  Much debate.  I am going to say it is not.  It is just that Eliakim (the finance manager for king Hezekiah) will be put in a place of royalty…but he too will eventually fall with Jerusalem.

I could be totally wrong..a lot of info out there that supports me being wrong, but I really am ok with not figuring it all out.

(might be a lot of typos…not proofreading today 😂)