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ISAIAH - CHAPTER 24
PROPHECIES CONCERNING THE ENDING OF THE AGE
(Isaiah 24:1 to Isaiah 27:13)
JEHOVAH JUDGES A SINNING WORLD
Isaiah 24 describes a time of fearful judgment through which the earth must pass before "the Lord of hosts shall reign in Mt Zion and in Jerusalem". So severe will be this judgment that only a remnant will be left. Then Chapter 25 will describe the actual reign of Messiah, on the earth, over a restored and re-united Israel, and an unspecified number of Gentile nations.
1. Though the picture of the Lord’s emptying the earth (land) may refer to Judah first, it may also be applied universally, (Verse 1, Isaiah 19-20; Isaiah 2:19; Isaiah 13:13); its inhabitants will be scattered without respect of persons - priest and people, buyer and seller, servant and master, etc., (Verse 2; comp. Ezekiel 7:12-13; Hosea 4:9; Revelation 6:15).
2. Emptied and laid waste at the word of Jehovah, the land and its lofty inhabitants are pictured as mourning, languishing and fading away, (Verse 3-4; Isaiah 6:11-12; Isaiah 3:26; Isaiah 33:9; Isaiah 2:12; comp. Revelation 18:22-23).
3. Judgment has come upon the earth that was polluted by the sins of men, (Verse 5; 10:6; Genesis 3:17; Numbers 35:33).
a. They have "transgressed" (cut across, or turned aside from) the fulfilling of God’s purpose as set forth in His Word, (Isaiah 58:1; Isaiah 59:12; Ezra 9:5-7).
b. They have perverted the ordinances, (Isaiah 10:1-2; Isaiah 29:21; Isaiah 59:4; Isaiah 59:13; Psalms 94:20).
c. They have also "broken the everlasting covenant", (Genesis 9:16; Genesis 17:13; Leviticus 24:8; Deuteronomy 31:16-20; Joshua 23:16; 2 Samuel 23:5; 1 Chronicles 16:17; Psalms 105:10; Jeremiah 11:10). This should cause those who assume that "the everlasting covenant" is a one-sided (unconditional) affair, wherein God assumes all the responsibility, to re-examine both their philosophy and the scriptures.
4. Thus, the earth is cursed for the sins of its inhabitants who are scorched by the fire of divine indignation, (Verse 6; comp. Isaiah 34:5; Isaiah 43:28; Zechariah 5:3-4).
5. Verses 7-12 depict the result of this curse:
a. The vineyards are dried up so that there is no new wine -bringing sighs from those who were once merry-hearted.
b. No longer does the sound of music cheer the heart.
c. Strong drink produces no song; it is bitter to those who drink it.
d. The city is broken down, desolate; its houses closed up that none may enter - its very gates battered down, (comp. Isaiah 34:11).
e. In the streets there is mourning because there is no wine, (Jeremiah 14:2; Jeremiah 46:12; comp. Isaiah 16:10; Isaiah 32:13).
f. The picture is one of desolation, darkness and utter hopelessness, (comp. Isaiah 14:31; Isaiah 45:2).
Verse 13-16a: A RAY OF HOPE
1. The earth is pictured as so depopulated, by God’s judgments, that relatively few, a remnant, are left, (Verse 13; Matthew 24:22).
2. Out of the gloom and confusion of judgment there arises a distant song of praise - a holy remnant exults in the majesty of the Lord, (Verse 14; Isaiah 12:6; Isaiah 52:8-10; Isaiah 54:1).
3. From East to West, the isles of the sea to the ends of the earth, are heard psalms of glory of the Righteous One, (Verse 14b-16a; Isaiah 28:5; Isaiah 42:10-12; Isaiah 60:9; Malachi 1:11 a).
Verse 15-23: MOURNING TURNED TO JOY
1. The prophet mourns over what is to befall his people through deceit and treachery.
a. The leaders of his people have turned from the true God to make a covenant with the man of sin, (Daniel 9:27; John 5:43).
b. But, Daniel foresees the antichrist breaking that covenant -attempting to exterminate the Jewish people, (Daniel 11:28-32).
2. Upon sin, which culminates in such deceitful teaching, comes the judgments set forth in verses 17-22.
a. There is no escape for sinful men; fear, the pit and a snare await all - as the windows on high are opened, and the foundations of the earth tremble, (Verse 17-18; Luke 21:25-26.)
b. In verses 19-20 the intensity of judgment is likened unto an earthquake, (Isaiah 1:28; Numbers 16:31-33; Isaiah 66:24).
c. "The host of the high ones on high" (Verse 21, R.V.) are identical with the myriads of wicked spirits who have joined the satanic rebellion against God - "principalities and powers in the heavenlies", and "the powers of the heavens" that shall be shaken, (Ephesians 6:12; Matthew 24:29; Luke 21:26; Revelation 12:7-9; 2 Thessalonians 2:6-10; Hebrews 12:14-29).
d. These will be imprisoned with Satan for 1,000 years, in a bottomless pit, before receiving their final punishment, (Verse 22; Revelation 20:1-3; Revelation 20:7-10).
3. The last verse is an allusion to the coming of Messiah, the Christ, to rule gloriously from Mt Zion, as King of kings and Lord of lords.
a. So gloriously brilliant will be His appearance that the sun and moon are pictured as,being confounded and ashamed, (Isaiah 13:10; Isaiah 60:1-5; Isaiah 60:19-20; Joel 2:10; Zechariah 14:6-9; Malachi 4:1-3; Luke 21:27-28; Revelation 21:23; Revelation 22:5).
b. He comes to establish His kingdom on the earth - a day of triumph, joy and praise for the faithful of all ages, (Micah 4:6-8; Isaiah 25:9; Malachi 3:16-17; Revelation 22:20).
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Blessed Hope Foundation and the Baptist Training Center.
Garner, Albert & Howes, J.C. "Commentary on Isaiah 24". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/
the Fourth Week after Epiphany