Daily reading

Today’s reading is: Isa. 18-23


YouTube video

Isaiah Chapter Eighteen

  1. In the context of the Lord’s second advent victory (Isa. 17:12-14), another land is addressed—the land of whirring wings (Isa. 18:1-7).  The land is not identified by a specific proper name—a very important distinction.
    1. The הוֹי hoy of 18:1 links the passage to the הוֹי hoy of 17:12.
    2. “Beyond the rivers of Cush” references a distant land beyond the limits of known geography (Isa. 18:1; Zeph. 3:10).  It is not a reference to Cush (Ethiopia) itself.
    3. Israel will return to Zion from this region at the second advent of Jesus Christ (Isa. 18:7; Zeph. 3:11).
  2. The people tall and smooth, feared far and wide, is a powerful and oppressive nation, which will be humbled and worship the Lord in His millennial kingdom (Isa. 18:2,7; Matt. 25:34-40; Zech. 14:16).
    1. NIV: a people tall and smooth-skinned, a people feared far and wide, an aggressive nation of strange speech, whose land is divided by rivers.
    2. Like the land in which they live, these people are not identified by a specific proper name.
  3. The angelic and human participants in the Tribulation of Israel come into ultimate destruction (Isa. 18:3-6).

Isaiah Chapter Nineteen

  1. Isaiah’s next מַשָּׂא massā’ oracle centers on Egypt (Isa. 19:1-25).
  2. The time-frame for this prophecy is the arrival of the Lord on his cloud chariot (second advent of Jesus Christ) (Isa. 19:1a; Ps. 104:3; Matt. 26:64; Rev. 1:7).
  3. The demonic powers behind the human kingdom are thrown into turmoil ahead of the Lord’s second advent (Isa. 19:1b,3).
  4. This plunges them into a civil war (Isa. 19:2), and subjection to a cruel master (Isa. 19:4).
  5. The hopeless nature of Egypt’s affliction is then described (Isa. 19:5-15).
  6. This Divine judgment will result in Egypt’s dread of the land of Judah, and their Godly fear of the Lord (Isa. 19:16-22).
  7. The eschatological theocratic kingdom of the Lord will feature a godly axis from Egypt to Assyria (Isa. 19:23-25).

Isaiah Chapter Twenty

  1. The Lord returns His attention to the present time with a three year narrative of Isaiah’s humiliation (Isa. 20:1-2).
  2. The year is 711BC when Assyria captured the Philistine city of Ashdod (Isa. 20:1).
  3. Isaiah is instructed to go naked and barefoot for three years as a sign and token against Egypt & Cush (the sign was for Judah) (Isa. 20:3,5).
    1. Egypt & Cush will experience the literal naked captivity that Isaiah demonstrated (Isa. 20:4).
    2. “The inhabitants of this coastland” includes the Philistines, and ultimately Judah (Isa. 20:6).
  4. The message is loud and clear: do not place your trust in man (cf. Isa. 31:1-3; Ps. 118:8-9).

Isaiah Chapter Twenty-One

  1. Isaiah’s next מַשָּׂא massā’ oracle centers on the wilderness of the sea (Isa. 21:1-10).  Like chapter eighteen, this oracle does not specify a land by its proper name (Isa. 21:1).
    1. In the near context, Elam & Media are called as the adversaries (Isa. 21:2).
    2. Babylon is determined as the conquered political body—Babylon and all the images of her gods (Isa. 21:9).
  2. Isaiah is terrified by the vision he receives (Isa. 21:2-3; cf. Jer. 4:19; Dan. 7:15,28; 8:27; 10:16-17; Ezek. 9:8; 11:13).
  3. Isaiah the watchman sees the riders come with their news—Fallen, fallen is Babylon (Isa. 21:5-10; Rev. 14:8; 18:2).
    1. Isaiah sees the banquet night of Belshazzar, and the fall of historical Babylon (Dan. 5).
    2. Isaiah sees the eschatological fall of mystery Babylon.
  4. Isaiah’s next מַשָּׂא massā’ oracles address Edom (Isa. 21:11-12), & Arabia (Isa. 21:13-17) specifically by their proper names, as the Lord returns His message back to Isaiah’s present time.

Isaiah Chapter Twenty-Two

  1. Isaiah’s next מַשָּׂא massā’ oracle addresses the valley of vision (Isa. 22:1-25).  Once again, a descriptive name is given rather than a specific proper name.
    1. The destruction of the daughter of my people (Isa. 22:4) indicates that this is an oracle against Jerusalem itself.
    2. In the near context, Elam & Kir are identified as the adversaries (Isa. 22:6).
    3. Judah (Isa. 22:8), and specifically Jerusalem (Isa. 22:9-10) is determined as the conquered political body.
  2. This oracle describes a people that are defeated and captured without military conflict (Isa. 22:3).
  3. Isaiah prophetically sees the fall of Jerusalem, much as Jeremiah will physically see the fall of Jerusalem (Isa. 22:1-14; Jer. 39:1-10).
    1. It is not clear, however, that Isaiah saw the fall of Jerusalem to Babylon in 586BC.
    2. It is more likely that Isaiah actually saw the fall of Jerusalem in the Tribulation of Israel (Matt. 24:15-20; Dan. 8:13; Rev. 11:2).
  4. The Lord returns His attention to Isaiah’s generation, and pronounces a rebuke upon Shebna the steward (Isa. 22:15-25).
    1. It is required of stewards to be faithful (1st Cor. 4:2).
    2. Faithfulness is rewarded with greater opportunities (Lk. 16:10-12).

Isaiah Chapter Twenty-Three

  1. Isaiah’s final מַשָּׂא massā’ oracle, in this section of the Book (Isa. 13-23) addresses the Phoenician city of Tyre (Isa. 23:1-25).
  2. Tyre becomes the object of the Lord’s judgment (Isa. 23:1-14; cf. Ezek. 26:1-28:11).
  3. Tyre becomes the means by which the Lord blesses His godly ones (Isa. 23:15-18; Job 27:16-17; Prov. 13:22; Eccl. 2:26).