Monday, February 6
Today, we continue on to Isaiah 4-6. In this section, there is one of the most well-known passages in the whole Bible, Isaiah’s vision of the LORD in chapter 6. Before we get there though, we will talk briefly about chapters 4 and 5.
There are essentially two main purposes to the book of Isaiah: “to assure Judah that God would surely judge them for their sins… [And] to assure God’s people of God’s wonderful plan for their future,” (The 5Ws and 1H of Genesis Through Malachi, Robert Jones). In the first three chapters, we got a sense of the first purpose, to assure Judah/Israel that God does not leave the guilty unpunished. However, starting in chapter 4, we get a sense of God’s wonderful plan for their future. After ridding the place of evil, God will establish a place (The Kingdom of God) that shall be “beautiful and glorious.”
Chapter 5 deals with the wicked, once again. Verse 24 and 25 sums it up fairly well: “for they have rejected the law of the LORD of hosts, and have despised the word of the Holy One of Israel. Therefore, the anger of the LORD was kindled against his people.” We have two things happening here. One, the people are rejecting the LORD and despising Him. On the other hand, we see that the anger of the LORD is put against his own chosen people. The people sin, and God responds by getting angry. However, we know that God is slow to anger as he describes himself in Exodus 34:6, 7. God’s chosen people kept sinning with no signs of repentance. What Isaiah is describing is not a sin here or there. Rather, Isaiah is describing a people, whom God loves very much, living a life of sin. God’s chosen people of Israel, the same people He has performed many miracles for, were forsaking the LORD. God does not leave the guilty unpunished, also found in Exodus 34:6, 7.
The beginning of chapter 6 sets the scene of when this was going on. Isaiah 6:1 states, “In the year that King Uzziah died.” King Uzziah was one of the Kings of Judah after the split of Israel, and he died in the year 740 BC. This is not long after the Golden Age of Israel when it was a unified nation under kings Saul, David, and Solomon. It is also before the Israelites were exiled into the Babylonian land. Therefore, the ministry and writing of Isaiah took place before books such as Ezra and Nehemiah. Isaiah’s ministry is taking place at the same time many of the events in 1st and 2nd Kings and Chronicles are taking place.
As mentioned before, Isaiah 6 is one of the most well-known passages in the whole Bible. It paints a beautiful picture as to what the Throne of God looks like. You can compare this picture to the description of God’s Throne in Revelation 4. In Isaiah’s vision, as he approaches the throne of God, he humbles himself by basically saying he was not worthy to be seeing what he was seeing. Then, God asks Isaiah whom He shall send. Isaiah then wonderfully replied by stating, “Here I am! Send me.” We can learn a lot from this simple statement. The attitude that Isaiah displayed here should be the same attitude we express in our lives. The harvest indeed is plenty and the workers few. The LORD is seeing who he can send to do His work. Are you willing to do his work?
My name is Kyle McClain, and I am currently attending the Atlanta Bible College. It is my second year at the Bible college and I will receive my bachelor’s degree in pastoral ministry next year. I am excited to be able to go through the first third of the book of Isaiah with you all (or y’all as they say down here in Georgia).