Verse 1 – “Hear this, O house of Jacob, who are called by the name of Israel, and have come forth from the wellsprings of Judah; who swear by the name of the Lord, and make mention of the God of Israel, but not in truth or in righteousness;
The people of Judah felt confident because they lived in Jerusalem, the city of God’s temple. They depended on their genealogical descent for their relationship with God. Our families heritage or going to church does not constitute a relationship with Christ. We must truly commit and spend time with Him.
Verse 2 – For they call themselves after the holy city, and lean on the God of Israel; the Lord of hosts is His name:
Verse 3 – “I have declared the former things from the beginning; they went forth from My mouth, and I caused them to hear it. Suddenly I did them, and they came to pass.
Verse 4 – Because I knew that you were obstinate, and your neck was an iron sinew, and your brow bronze, (Nothing can get through a bronze forehead and an iron neck will not turn. God’s people simply refused to repent!)
Verse 5 – even from the beginning I have declared it to you; before it came to pass I proclaimed it to you, lest you should say, ‘My idol has done them, and my carved image and my molded image have commanded them.’
Verse 6 – “You have heard; see all this. And will you not declare it? I have made you hear new things from this time, even hidden things, and you did not know them.
Up to this point God has been announcing judgment, but now He will announce “New things” – message of grace after judgment. S,o why did God keep a message of restoration hidden from them? Because He knew they would abuse its foreknowledge. The new thing included using Cyrus to deliver them.
Verse 7 – They are created now and not from the beginning; and before this day you have not heard them, lest you should say, ‘Of course I knew them.’
Verse 8 – Surely you did not hear, surely you did not know; surely from long ago your ear was not opened. For I knew that you would deal very treacherously, and were called a transgressor from the womb.
God’s people had closed their ears to God’s commandments for a long time, so God put out a call for them to listen through Isaiah. To hear, means more than just listening, it implies acting on what is heard.
Verse 9 – “For My name’s sake I will defer My anger, and for MY praise I will restrain it from you, so that I do not cut you off.
There was nothing in Israel’s actions, or accomplishments to compel God to love and to ave them. But for His name’s sake, He would save them. Keep in mind: Christ didn’t come to seek and save that which was “Good!” He came to seek and to save that which was lost! for while we were yet sinners, He died and rose again “For US!”
Verse 10 – Behold I have refined you, but not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.
Pure silver is subjected to high temperatures to remove the dross – impurities. This is often used in the Bible as an example of sin being removed in a person’s life. Without testing I don’t think any of us would change. Can you imagine having the job you’ve always wanted; all the money you need for anything; and being married to the perfect spouse? If you never have any needs, would you really draw as close to God as those who “Need Him” for everything.
I have been through some of the most hardest trials and testing in the last 16 years that you can’t even imagine. I went deeper than I ever have with my Savior instead of giving up. These testings will help you develop your spirit of discernment; get selfishness out of you and help you replace your desires for His desires. It’s much better that way. After the testing, you can be used for His purpose and His kingdom. The latter is better than the former part of your life! We learn through adversity.
Verse 11 – For My own sake, for My own sake, I will do it; for how should My name be profaned? And I will not give My glory to another.
Verse 12 – “Listen to Me, O Jacob, and Israel, My called: I am He, I am the First, I am also the Last. (“Whom I have called out of the world to be My peculiar people.”)
Verse 13 – Indeed My hand has laid the foundation of the earth, and My right hand has stretched out the heavens; when I call to them, they stand up together.
Verse 14 – “All of you, assemble yourselves, and hear! Who among them has declared these things? The Lord loves him; He shall do His pleasure on Babylon, and His arm shall be against the Chaldeans.
Isaiah is telling the people this. They must have been shocked to think God would use a pagan King – Cyrus – to deliver the Israelites from the Babylonians Chaldeans. Please don’t ever mock or discredit whom God uses to deliver you. He knows what He is doing.
Verse 15 – I , even I, have spoken; yes, I have called him, I have brought him, and his way will prosper.
Verse 16 – “Come near to Me, hear this: I have not spoken in secret from the beginning; from the time that it was, I was there. And now the Lord God and His Spirit have sent Me.”
Zechariah 4:6 – “Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,” says the Lord of hosts.
Verse 17 – Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: “I am the Lord your God, who teaches you to profit, who leads you by the way you should go.
Verse 18 – Oh, that you had heeded My commandments. Then your peace would have been like a river, and your righteousness like the waves of the sea.
Do you know what that “Nudging” or that “umption,” in your stomach is, at times? Is the Holy Spirit nudging you? When you are familiar with God’s Word, your decisions you make pertaining to life are much easier.
Verse 19 – Your descendants also would have been like the sand, and the offspring of your body like the grains of sand; his name would not have been cut off nor destroyed from before Me.”
Isaiah had announced earlier that Israel’s population was going to be reduced to a remnant. None of what Isaiah described, had to happen, but it did because the people refused to follow God.
How many heartaches could God have saved us from, if we’d had only listened?
Verse 20 – Go forth from Babylon! Flee the Chaldeans! With a voice of singing, declare, proclaim this, utter it even to the end of the earth; say, “The Lord has redeemed His servant Jacob!”
Verse 21 – And they did not thirst when He led them through the deserts; He caused the waters to flow from the rock for them; He also split the rock, and the waters gushed out.
Verse 22 – “There is no peace,” says the Lord, “for the wicked.”
Many people cry out for help, comfort and relief, but they are not willing to forsake their sin and submit to the One who can wipe it all away! When you submit to Jesus Christ, you start a new beginning and that in tales being led through life by His Spirit!