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ISAIAH
The Gospel To Israel
Book 1

LESSON  FIVE
Isaiah 8:1-10:4

 

Isaiah 8:1, 2
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(1)  The Lord said to me, “Get yourself
a large sheet and write on it
A volume of a great new book, and write in it with a man’s pen. A large tablet, and write upon it in clear writing
common script  ‘For
Maher-shalal-hash-baz’;  (2)  and call
reliable witnesses,
Making a rapid plunder of spoils; for
it is near at hand.
Hastens to take the spoil and to carry off the booty
The priest Uriah and Zechariah son of Jeberechiah, to witness for Me.”    

From the NKJV

(1) Moreover the LORD said to me, "Take a large scroll, and write on it with a man's pen concerning Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz.  (2)  And I will take for Myself faithful witnesses to record, Uriah the priest and Zechariah the son of Jeberechiah."

A man’s pen = the carving tool of  the people.  The writing was to be

legible
in the language of  the common people
(not in the language of  the priests or educated classes)

Maher-shalal-hash-baz (Mohe-lemibbaz-bizza-ulemi’de ‘ada’ ah - Targum) = haste, spoil, speed, prey. These words are explained in v. 4, and may be connected thus:

he hastened [to take the] spoil,
he speeds [to seize] the prey.
This child was a sign,  as also the child in Isaiah 7:14.
Maher = Hasten; or, he shall hasten
shalal = Spoil, or prey
hash = Hasten, or make speed
baz = Spoil
The name used here is a repetition of the same idea - denoting haste in seizing prey, or spoil;
and is repeated to give emphasis, and to excite attention.
The idea is that the Assyrian would hasten to his plunder - that it would be accomplished with speed.
This name was to be given to a child of Isaiah;
and this child was to be a sign of the event which was signified by the name
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

In the midst of  the Syro-Ephraimitish war, which was not yet at an end,  Isaiah received instructions from God to perform a singular prophetic action.

Scroll gilaayown OT 1549  a tablet for writing (as bare); by analogy, a mirror (as a plate)

The slab or table (see Isaiah 3:23, where the same word is used to signify a metal mirror)

was to be large
to produce the impression of  a monument
and the writing upon it
was to be "a man's pen" (cheret 'enoosh), i.e.,
written in the vulgar,  and,  so to speak,  popular character
consisting of  inartistic strokes that could be easily read.

For the writing was simply to serve as a public record of  the fact,  that the course of  events was one that Jehovah had foreseen and indicated beforehand.  And when what was written upon the table should afterwards take place,  they would know that it was the fulfillment of  what had already been written,  and therefore was an event pre-determined by God.

For this reason Jehovah took to Himself witnesses.

Uriah the priest (Urijah) who afterwards placed himself at the service of Ahaz to gratify his heathenish desires (2 Kings 16:10 ff.).
Zechariah ben Yeberechyahu (Berechiah), possibly the Asaphite mentioned in 2 Chron 29:13. We do not further know him.

Isaiah 8:3, 4
From the Tanakh From the  LXX
(3)  I am intimate with the prophetess, and she conceived and bore
a son; and the Lord said to me,
“Name him Maher-shalal-hash-baz.
 (4)  For before the boy learns to call ‘Father’ and
His name Spoil quickly, plunder speedily.
‘Mother,’ the wealth of Damascus and the spoils of Samaria, and the
delights of Rezin and of the son of Remaliah, shall be carried off before the king of Assyria.”
 

From the NKJV

(3)  Then I went to the prophetess, and she conceived and bore a son. Then the LORD said to me, "Call his name Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz;  (4)  for before the child shall have knowledge to cry 'My father' and 'My mother,' the riches of Damascus and the spoil of Samaria will be taken away before the king of Assyria."

To his son Shear-yashub,  in whose name the law of  the history of  Israel,  as revealed to the prophet on the occasion of his call (ch. 6),  the restoration of only a remnant of the whole nation,  had been formulated,  there was now added a second son,  to whom the inscription upon the table was given as a name.  He was therefore the symbol of  the approaching chastisement of  Syria and the kingdom of  the ten tribes.

It is true that Tiglath-pileser only conquered Damascus,  and not Samaria;  but he took from Pekah,  the king of  Samaria,  the land beyond the Jordan,  and a portion of  the land on this side.

The trophies, which he took to Assyria were no less the spoil of  Samaria than if  he had conquered Samaria itself  (which Shalmaneser did twenty years afterwards).
The birth of  Mahershalalhashbaz took place about three-quarters of  a year later than the preparation of  the table;  and the time appointed,  from the birth of  the boy till the chastisement of  the allied kingdoms,  was about a year.

As the Syro-Ephraimitish war did not commence later than the first year of  the reign of Ahaz, i.e., the year 743,  and the chastisement by Tiglath-pileser occurred in the lifetime of  the allies,  whereas Pekah was assassinated in the year 739,  the interval between the commencement of  the war and the chastisement of  the allies cannot have been more than three years;  so that the preparation of  the table must not be assigned to a much later period than the interview with Ahaz.

The inscription upon the table,  which was adopted as the name of  the child,  was not a purely consolatory prophecy,  since the prophet had predicted,  a short time before,  that the same Asshur,  which devastated the two covenant lands,  would lay Judah waste as well.  It was simply a practical proof of  the omniscience and omnipotence of God,  by which the history of  the future was directed and controlled.

The prophet had,  in fact,  the mournful vocation to harden.
Hence the enigmatical character of  his words and doings in relation to both kings and nation.  Jehovah foreknew the consequences which would follow the appeal to Asshur for help,  as regarded both Syria and Israel.

This knowledge he committed to writing in the presence of witnesses. When this should be fulfilled,  it would be all over with the rejoicing of  the king and people at their self-secured deliverance.

Consolation of Immanuel in the Coming Darkness
( 8:5 - 9:7 )

Isaiah 8:5-7
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(5)  Again the Lord spoke to me, thus:   And the Memra of the Lord spake with me yet again saying,
(6)  “Because that people has spurned   Despised (or, rejected) the kingdom of the house of David
The gently flowing waters of Siloam” That goes softly, but wills to have Rassin, and the son of Romelias to be king over you.  
(7)  Assuredly,   Now therefore, behold
My Lord will bring up against them    
The mighty, massive waters of the Euphrates,   The armies of the nations, which are as numerous as
The king of Assyria and his entire multitude.
It shall rise above all its channels,
And flow over all its beds,
   

From the NKJV

(5)  The LORD also spoke to me again, saying:
(6)  "Inasmuch as these people refused the waters of Shiloah that flow softly, and rejoice in Rezin and in Remaliah's son;  (7)   now therefore, behold, the Lord brings up over them the waters of the River, strong and mighty — the king of Assyria and all his glory; he will go up over all his channels and go over all his banks.

The heading or introduction,  "And Jehovah proceeded still further to speak to me, as follows,"  extends to all the following addresses as far as chapter 12.  They all finish with consolation.
But consolation presupposes the need of consolation.
Consequently,  even in this instance the prophet is obliged to commence with a threatening of  judgment.

The waters of Shiloah that go softly
The name Siloah, or Siloam, is found only three times in the Scriptures as applied to waters

1. Once in this place, where it is spoken of a running water
2. As a pool in Nehemiah - bŞreekat   (Neh 3:15)
3. As a pool, in the account of the miracle of healing the man who was born blind  (John 9:7,11)

Josephus places the fountain and pool of  Siloah (Siloam) at the opening of  the Tyropoeon,  on the
south-eastern side of  the ancient city,  where we still find it at the present day (vid. Jos. Wars of the Jews, v. 4, 1; also Robinson, Pal. i. 504).  The clear little brook - a pleasant sight to the eye as it issues from the ravine which runs between the south-western slope of  Moriah and the south-eastern slope of  Mount Zion.

Davidic monarchy enthroned upon Zion,  which had the promise of  God,  who was enthroned upon Moriah,  in contrast with the imperial or world kingdom,  which is compared to the overflowing waters of  the Euphrates.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

The waters of the River, strong and mighty
The waters of the Euphrates.

The waters of Siloam Represented the government of  Yahweh small sweetly-flowing
The waters of the Euphrates Represented the government of Assyria violent, rapid, overflowing

The one they despised;  the other they sought and admired.
The power of the kingdom of  David was then feeble and decayed.
That of the Assyrian monarch was vigorous, mighty, vast.
They despised the one, and sought the alliance of the other.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

Isaiah 8:8
From the Tanakh From the Targum
(8)  And swirl through Judah like a flash flood reaching up to the neck. As far as Jerusalem shall he reach;
But with us is God, Whose wings are spread  
As wide as your land is broad! Of thy land, O Israel.

From the NKJV

(8)  He will pass through Judah, He will overflow and pass over, He will reach up to the neck; and the stretching out of his wings will fill the breadth of Your land, O Immanuel.

Not till then would this overflowing reach as far as Judah,  but then it would do so most certainly and incessantly.

The fate of  Judah would be different from that of  Ephraim.

Ephraim Ephraim would be laid completely under water by the river - would be utterly destroyed.
Judah In Judah the stream, as it rushed forward, would reach the most dangerous height;
but if a deliverer could be found, there was still a possibility of its being saved.

Such a deliverer was Immanuel, whom the prophet sees in the light of  the Spirit living through all the Assyrian calamities.  The prophet appeals to him that the land,  which is his land,  is almost swallowed up by the
world-power:  the spreading out of the wings of  the stream (of the large bodies of water pouring out on both sides from the main stream,  as from the trunk,  and covering the land like two broad wings)  have filled the whole land.  According to Norzi,  Immanuel is to be written here as one word, as it is in Isa 7:14; but the correct reading is 'Immânu El.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

From The Dead Sea Scrolls

1 For this, behold, the Lord will bri]ng up against them the [torrential and violent] water of the river, [the king of Assyria] 2 [and all his pomp. He will] come up through all the channels and overflow all its banks. [He will invade Judah, he will flood, he will brim over] 3 [and will reach right up to the neck.] The opening of his wings will cover the breadth of your land, [O Emmanuel! The interpretation of the word concerns] 4 […] …the law; he is Rezin and the son of [Romeliah…] 5 […as it is written in […] 6 […] and not […]
Fragment 2-3 1 [Isaiah 8:7-8]

Isaiah 8:9, 10
From the Tanakh From the Targum
(9)  Band together, O peoples – you shall be broken! In pieces (or dismayed}
Listen to this, you remotest parts of the earth:  
Gird yourselves – you shall be broken;
Gird yourselves – you shall be broken!
Strengthen yourselves and ye shall be broken in pieces;
(10)  Hatch a plot – it shall be foiled;
Agree on action – it shall not succeed.
 
For with us is God! God is our help.

From the NKJV

(9)  "Be shattered, O you peoples, and be broken in pieces!  Give ear, all you from far countries.
Gird yourselves, but be broken in pieces;  gird yourselves, but be broken in pieces.
(10)  Take counsel together, but it will come to nothing; speak the word, but it will not stand, for God is with us."

Gird yourselves ... Gird yourselves
Note the Figure of Speech (Repetition used for emphasis).

The prophet's imploring look at Immanuel does not remain unanswered.
We may see this from the fact that what was almost a silent prayer is changed at once into the jubilate of  holy defiance.

The second imperatives in verse 9 are threatening words of  authority,  having a future signification.  The prophet classes together all the nations that are warring against the people of  God,  pronounces upon them the sentence of  destruction,  and calls upon all distant lands to hear this ultimate fate of  the kingdom of  the world, - of the imperial power.  The world-kingdom must be wrecked on the land of  Immanuel.

"For with us," as the watchword of  believers runs,  pointing to the person of the Savior, "with us is God."
 


FEAR  GOD  -  HEED  HIS  WORD

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Isaiah 8:11, 12
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(11)  For this is what the Lord said to me, when He took me by the hand   When the prophecy was strong upon me,
And charged me not to walk in the path of that people:    
(12) “You must not call conspiracy It is hard A rebellion
All that that people calls conspiracy, People says, is hard: but fear not ye their fear,  
Nor revere what it reveres, nor hold
it in awe.
Neither be dismayed.  

From the NKJV

(11)  For the LORD spoke thus to me with a strong hand, and instructed me that I should not walk in the way of this people, saying:
(12)  "Do not say, 'A conspiracy,' concerning all that this people call a conspiracy, nor be afraid of their threats, nor be troubled.

There then follows in verse 11 an explanatory clause,  which seems at first sight to pass on to a totally different theme,  but it really stands in the closest connection with the triumphant words of verses. 9 and 10.

It is Immanuel whom believers receive,  constitute,  and hold fast as their refuge in the approaching times of  the Assyrian judgment.
He is their refuge and God in Him,  and not any human support whatever.

A strong hand - hayaad (OT:3027),  "the hand,"  is the absolute hand,  which is no sooner laid upon a man than it overpowers all perception,  sensation,  and thought.

It describes a condition in which the hand of  God was put forth upon the prophet with peculiar force,  as distinguished from the more usual prophetic state,  the effect of  a peculiarly impressive and energetic act of  God.

A conspiracy - Treason
The warning runs thus:  The prophet,  and such as were on his side,  were not to call that kesher which the great mass of  the people called kesher (2 Chron 23:13, "She said, Treason, Treason!" kesher, kesher);  yet the alliance of  Rezin and Pekah was really a conspiracy - a league against the house and people of David.

Nor can the warning mean that believers,  when they saw how the unbelieving Ahaz brought the nation into distress,  were not to join in a conspiracy against the person of the king;  they are not warned at all against making a conspiracy,  but against joining in the popular cry when the people called out kesher.

The true explanation has been given by Roorda, viz., that the reference is to the conspiracy, as it was called, of the prophet and his disciples. The same thing happened to Isaiah as to Amos (Amos 7:10 -Then Amaziah the priest of Bethel sent to Jeroboam king of Israel, saying, "Amos has conspired against you in the midst of the house of Israel.)  and to Jeremiah.

Whenever the prophets were at all zealous in their opposition to the appeal for foreign aid,  they were accused and branded as standing in the service of  the enemy,  and conspiring for the overthrow of  the kingdom.  In such perversion of  language as this,   the honorable among them were not to join.

The way of God was now a very different one from the way of  that people.  If the prophet and his followers opposed the alliance with Asshur,  this was not a common human conspiracy against the will of  the king and nation,  but the inspiration of  God,  the true policy of  Jehovah.
Whoever trusted in Him had no need to be afraid of  such attempts as those of  Rezin and Pekah,  or to look upon them as dreadful.

Isaiah 8:13-15
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(13)  None but the Lord of Hosts
Shall you account holy;
Sanctify ye the Lord himself  
Give reverence to Him alone,
Hold Him alone in awe
He shall be thy fear Let him be your fear and strength
(14)  He shall be for a sanctuary, And if thou shalt trust in him, he
shall be…
His Memra among you
A stone men strike against:
A rock men stumble over
Ye shall not come against him as against a stumbling-stone Against the falling of a rock:
For the two Houses of Israel,   House of Israel hath been separated from Judah
And a trap and a snare for those
Who dwell in Jerusalem.
  For a breaking, and for a stumbling,
(15)  The masses shall trip over these
And shall fall and be injured, shall
be snared and be caught.
Many among them shall be weak, and fall, and be crushed  

From the NKJV

(13)  The LORD of hosts, Him you shall hallow;  let Him be your fear, and let Him be your dread.
(14)  He will be as a sanctuary, but a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense to both the houses of Israel, as a trap and a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
(15)  And many among them shall stumble; they shall fall and be broken, be snared and taken."

The object of  their fear was a very different one. The logical comparison to verse 13 commences with v'hâhâh (Let Him be).
If you actually acknowledge Jehovah the Holy One as the Holy One,  and if  it is He whom ye fear,  and who fills you with dread (ma'ariitz,  used for the object of  dread,  as moorah is for the object of fear;  hence "that which terrifies" in a causative sense).

All who did not give glory to Jehovah would be dashed to pieces upon His work as upon a stone,  and caught therein as in a trap.  This was the burden of the divine warning,  which the prophet heard for himself and for those that believed.

For a stone of stumbling. Compare 1 Peter 2:7,8, Luke 20:17, Romans 9:32,33; 11:11.

1 Peter 2:7-8
Therefore,  to you who believe,  He is precious; but to those who are disobedient,
"The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone," and
"A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense."

Luke 20:17-19
Then He looked at them and said, "What then is this that is written:  'The stone which the builders rejected
Has become the chief cornerstone'?
Whoever falls on that stone will be broken; but on whomever it falls, it will grind him to powder
And the chief priests and the scribes that very hour sought to lay hands on Him, but they feared the people -for they knew He had spoken this parable against them.

Romans 9:32-33
Why? Because they did not seek it by faith,  but as it were,  by the works of the law.  For they stumbled at that stumbling stone.  As it is written:
"Behold, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone and rock of offense,
And whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame."

And many among them -Many by the invasion under the Assyrian.
Many were taken captive;  many killed,  and many were carried to Babylon.
The repetition here of so many expressions so nearly synonymous is emphatic, and shows that it would be certainly done.

However,  one must not conclude from this that the ancient Immanuel prophecy refers exclusively to Jesus.
The circumstances surrounding the prophecy demand a more immediate fulfillment as well.
The context of  Isaiah 7:14 indicates that a child would be born in the days of Ahaz who would serve as a sign to that generation of God's providential control of  international events and of  His people's destiny.
This child,  who was a sign of God's presence with His people,  foreshadowed Jesus,  who is  "God with us" in the fullest possible sense.
(from Holman Bible Handbook. (c) Copyright 1992 by Holman Bible Publishers. All rights reserved.)

Isaiah 8:16
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(16)  Bind up the message, seal the
instruction with My disciples.”
Then shall those who seal themselves that they may not learn the law be manifest Hide the law, for they do not wish to learn therein.

From the NKJV

(16)  Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples.

These words appear at first sight to be a command of  God to the prophet,  according to such parallel passages as Dan 12:4,9; Rev 22:10, cf., Dan 8:26;  but with this explanation it is impossible to do justice to the words.  And so the prophet here prays that Jehovah would take his testimony with regard to the future,  and his instruction,  which was designed to prepare for this future - that testimony and torah which the great mass in their hardness did not understand,  and in their self-hardening despised - and lay them up well secured and well preserved,  as if by band and seal,  in the hearts of  those who received the prophet's words with believing obedience.

For it would be all over with Israel,  unless a community of  believers should be preserved,  and all over with this community,  if the word of  God,  which was the ground of  their life,  should be allowed to slip from their hearts.  We have here an announcement of  the grand idea,  which the second part of  the book of  Isaiah carries out in the grandest style.  It is very evident that it is the prophet himself who is speaking here,  as we may see from verse 17, where he continues to speak in the first person.

The testimony
The message;  especially that of which Uriah and Zechariah had been called to bear witness.

Seal
Books were made in the form of  rolls,  and were often sealed when completed - as we seal a letter.
The mode of sealing them was not by wax only,  but by uniting them by any adhesive matter,  as paste,  or glue.  Wax in warm climates would be generally rendered useless by the heat.
The meaning here is,  to secure,  to close up - perhaps by passing a cord or string around the volume,  and making it secure,  denoting that it was finished.

Among my disciples
Most of  the Jewish commentators suppose that the volume,  when completed by a prophet,  was given for safe keeping to his disciples, or to some employed to preserve it securely.
The word disciples means those who are taught,  and here means those who were taught by the prophet;  perhaps the pious and holy part of  the people who would listen to his instructions.
The Chaldee translates this verse,  'O prophet, preserve the testimony, lest ye testify to those who will not obey; seal and hide the law, because they will not learn it.'
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

Isaiah 8:17
From the Tanakh From the Targum
(17)  So I will wait for the Lord, who is hiding His face from the House of Jacob, and I will trust in Him. To remove his Shekinah from them

From the NKJV

(17)  And I will wait on the LORD,  Who hides His face from the house of Jacob; and I will hope in Him.

While offering this prayer,  and looking for its fulfillment,  he waits upon Jehovah.
A time of judgment had now commenced,  which would still last a long time;  but the word of  God was the pledge of  Israel's continuance in the midst of it,  and of  the renewal of  Israel's glory afterwards.
The prophet would therefore hope for the grace that was now hidden behind the wrath.

Wait on the LORD - Wait on Jehovah -
This phrase is found 3 times in the Old Testament, using 2 different words used for "wait.

Isaiah 8:17 WŞchikiytiy la-Yahweh OT 2442  
 
The KJV translates the word as "wait," except in 2 Kings 7:9.
In 2 Kings 9:3, it translates it as "tarry."
In Job 3:21 it translates it as "long for."
Bandits are said to wait in ambush (Hos 6:9).
Job speaks in despair of  those who wait for or yearn for death (Job 3:21).
 The book of  Daniel closes with a blessing for those who would wait for the fulfillment of the prophecies (Dan 12:12).
Habakkuk 2:3 urges believers to wait for the vision though it tarries.
The Lord declares, "Wait for me" (Zeph 3:8).
The expressions  "to wait for the Lord"  in Isaiah 8:17  and  "to wait for him" in Isaiah 64:4, connote an attitude of earnest expectation and confident hope.
Isaiah 40:31 WŞqowyee Yahweh OT 6960 This root means to wait or to look for with eager expectation.
Psalm 37:9 WŞqoweey Yahweh OT 6960

Psalm 37:9
Those who wait and hope and look for the Lord [in the end] shall inherit the earth.   (AMP)

Isaiah 40:31
But those who wait for the Lord [who expect, look for, and hope in Him] shall change and renew their strength and power; they shall lift their wings and mount up [close to God] as eagles [mount up to the sun]; they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint or become tired.   (AMP)

Isaiah 8:18
From the Tanakh From the Targum
(18)  Here stand I and the children the Lord has given me as signs and portents in Israel from the Lord of Hosts, who dwells on Mount Zion. Be carried into exile

From the NKJV

(18)  Here am I and the children whom the LORD has given me!
We are for signs and wonders in Israel from the LORD of hosts,  Who dwells in Mount Zion.

His home was the future,  and to this he was subservient,  even with his entire house.
He presents himself to the Lord with his children,  puts himself and them into His hands.  They were Jehovah's gift,  and that for a higher purpose than every-day family enjoyment.
They served the purpose of  signs and types in connection with the history of  salvation.

"Signs and wonders"  -  'oth (sign)  was an omen or prognostic in word and deed,  which pointed to and was the pledge of  something future  (whether it were in itself miraculous or natural).
"...has sent us as living messages to the people of Israel."   (Today's English Version)

He had selected these signs and types:  He who could bring to pass the future,  which they set forth,  as surely as He was Jehovah of  hosts,  and who would bring it to pass as surely as He had chosen Mount Zion for the scene of  His gracious presence upon earth.

Shear-yashub and Mahershalalhashbaz were indeed no less symbols of  future wrath than of  future grace;
but the name of  the father (YŞsha`yaahuw) was an assurance that all the future would issue from Jehovah's salvation,  and end in the same.  Isaiah and his children were figures and emblems of  redemption,  opening a way for itself through judgment.

The Epistle to the Hebrews (Hebrews 2:13) quotes these words as the distinct words of  Jesus,  because the spirit of  Jesus was in Isaiah - the spirit of  Jesus,  which in the midst of  this holy family,  bound together as it was only to the bands of  "the shadow,"  pointed forward to that church of  the New Testament which would be bound together by the bands of  the true substance.

Hebrews 2:10-13
In bringing many sons to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the author of their salvation perfect through suffering.  Both the one who makes men holy and those who are made holy are of the same family.  So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers.  He says,
"I will declare your name to my brothers; in the presence of the congregation I will sing your praises."
And again,
"I will put my trust in him."
And again he says,
"Here am I, and the children God has given me."     (NIV)

Isaiah,  his children,  and his wife,  who is called  "the prophetess" (nebi'ah) not only because she was the wife of  the prophet but because she herself possessed the gift of prophecy,  and all the believing disciples gathered round this family - these together formed the stock of  the church of  the Messianic future, on the foundation and soil of Israel.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Isaiah 8:19
From the Tanakh From the  LXX
(19)  Now, should people say to you, “Inquire of the ghosts and familiar spirits that chirp
and moan; for a people may inquire of its divine beings of the dead on behalf of the living.
Speak out of the earth

From the NKJV

(19)  And when they say to you, "Seek those who are mediums and wizards, who whisper and mutter," should not a people seek their God? Should they seek the dead on behalf of the living?

The appeal is supposed to be made by Judeans of  the existing stamp;  for we know from Isaiah 2:6; 3:2-3, that all kinds of  heathen superstitions had found their way into Jerusalem,  and were practiced there as a trade. The persons into whose mouths the answer is put by the prophet are his own children and disciples. The circumstances of  the times were very critical;  and the people were applying to wizards to throw light upon the dark future.

Familiar Spirits - 'Ob signified primarily the spirit of witchcraft, then the possessor of such a spirit (equivalent to Baal ob).

Wizards - Yidd'oni,  on the other hand,  signified primarily the possessor of  a prophesying or soothsaying spirit and then the soothsaying spirit itself (Lev 20:27), which was properly called yiddâ'oon (the much knowing).  These people,  who are designated by the LXX,  both here and elsewhere,  as eggastro'muthoi,  i.e.,  ventriloquists,  imitated the chirping of  bats,  which was supposed to proceed from the shadows of  Hades,  and uttered their magical formulas in a whispering tone.

Leviticus 20:27
A man or a woman who is a medium, or who has familiar spirits, shall surely be put to death; they shall stone them with stones. Their blood shall be upon them.      (NKJV)

(Note:  The Mishnah Sanhedrin 65 a gives this definition:  "Baal'ob is a python, i.e., a soothsayer ('with a spirit of divination'), who speaks from his arm-pit; yidd'oni, a man who speaks with his mouth." The baal ob, so far as he had to do with the bones of the dead, is called in the Talmud 'obâ' temayya', e.g., the witch of Endor (b. Sabbath 152 b).

Isaiah 8:20
From the Tanakh From the  LXX
(20)  for instruction and message,” surely, for one who speaks thus there shall be no dawn. For he has given the law for a help, that they should not speak according to this word, concerning which there are no gifts to give for it.

From the NKJV

(20)  To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.

All the individuals who did not adhere to the revelation made by Jehovah through His prophet formed one corrupt mass,  which would remain in hopeless darkness.

The law includes here the law of Moses, the 'Magna Charta' on which all prophecy rests:  also all Scripture.  Calvin and Grotius support the English version.  'If they turn from the word of God as the only infallible oracle, it indicates that, or it is because there is no light of  truth in any one of them; or, as Grotius explains the latter clause, 'it indicates that no light of prosperity shall attend any one of them.'
(from Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

According to this word - According to what God has revealed.
By this standard all their pretended revelations were to be tried.
By this standard all doctrines are still to be tried.

It is because - There has been a great variety of criticism upon this verse,  but our translation expresses,  probably,  the true idea.  The word rendered here 'because,' 'Şsher (OT:834),  commonly denotes  'which;' but it seems here to be used in the sense of the Syriac? "Dolath," or the Greek hoti (NT:3754) - as concerning that, as though, because.

No light - 'Morning.'   Hebrew shaachar (OT:7837).
The word usually means the morning light;  the mingled light and darkness of the aurora;  daybreak.
It is an emblem of  advancing knowledge,  and perhaps,  also,  of prosperity or happiness after calamity,  as the break of day succeeds the dark night.
The meaning here may be , 'If their teachings do not accord with the law and the testimony, it is proof that they are totally ignorant,  without even the twilight of true knowledge;  that it is total darkness with them.'
Or it may mean,  'If they do not speak according to this word,  then no dawn will arise,  that is,  no prosperity will smile upon this people.' - Gesenius.  Lowth understands it of obscurity, darkness:
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

Isaiah 8:21-22
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(21)  And he shall go about in it wretched and hungry; and when he
is hungry, he shall rage
   
and revolt against his king and his divine beings. He may turn his face Speak ill of the prince and your
fathers’ ordinances:
Will curse and despise his false god and of his idol,
upward  (22)  or he may look below,
but behold,
  Seek help from inhabitants of the earth
Distress and darkness,  with no
daybreak;
Severe distress, and darkness,
affliction, and anguish,
 
Straitens and gloom, with no dawn. Darkness so that one cannot see;
and he that is in anguish shall not
be distressed only for a time.
 

From the NKJV

(21)  They will pass through it hard-pressed and hungry; and it shall happen, when they are hungry, that they will be enraged and curse their king and their God, and look upward.  (22)  Then they will look to the earth, and see trouble and darkness, gloom of anguish; and they will be driven into darkness.

The people would be brought to such a plight in the approaching Assyrian oppressions,  that they would wander about in the land pressed down by their hard fate (niksheh) and hungry (ya’ab),  because all provisions would be gone and the fields and vineyards would be laid waste.
As often as it experienced hunger afresh,  it would work itself into a rage,  and curse by its king and God, i.e., by its idol.

Consequently all this reaction of  their wrath would avail them nothing:

whether they turned upwards, to see if the black sky were not clearing,
or looked down to the earth,
everywhere there would meet them nothing but distress and darkness,  nothing but a night of anguish all around.

The judgment of  God does not convert them,  but only heightens their wickedness;  just as in
Rev 16:11,  after the pouring out of  the fifth vial of  wrath,  men only utter blasphemies,  and do not desist from their works.
After stating what the people see,  whether they turn their eyes upwards or downwards,  the closing participial clause of verse 22 describes how they see themselves  "thrust out into darkness.’
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Revelations 16:11
They blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores,  and did not repent of their deeds.    (NKJV)


THE  GOVERNMENT  OF  THE  PROMISED  SON

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Isaiah 9:1
From the Tanakh From the  LXX
(1)  For o- if there were to be any break of day for that [land] which is Drink this first. Act quickly,
in straits, only the former [king] would have brought abasement to the Rest inhabiting the sea-coast,
land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali – while the later one would. Galilee of the Gentiles.

From the NKJV

(1) Nevertheless the gloom will not be upon her who is distressed, as when at first He lightly esteemed the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, and afterward more heavily oppressed her, by the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, in Galilee of the Gentiles.

Nevertheless = For
This section (Isaiah 9:1-7)  relates to Messiah,  the Son,  referring back to Isaiah 8:9,10;
and carries to Isaiah 7:14 on to its future fulfillment.

After the prophet has thus depicted the people as without morning dawn,  he gives the reason for the assumption that a restoration of  light is to be expected,  although not for the existing generation.

The reason assigned for the fact that the unbelieving people of  Judah had fallen into a night without morning,  is,  that there was a morning coming,  whose light,  however,  would not rise upon the land of Judah first,  but upon other parts of the land.

Since the times of  the judges,  all these lands had been exposed,  on account of  the countries that joined them,  to corruption from Gentile influence and subjugation by heathen foes.

The northern tribes on this side,  as well as those on the other side,  suffered the most in the almost incessant war between Israel and the Syrians,  and afterwards between Israel and the Assyrians;  and the transportation of  their inhabitants,  which continued under Pul,  Tiglath-pileser,  and Shalmaneser,  amounted at last to utter depopulation.  But these countries would be the very first that would be remembered when that morning dawn of glory should break.

Matthew informs us (Matt 4:13 ff.) in what way this was fulfilled at the commencement of  the Christian times. On the ground of this prophecy of  Isaiah,  and the Messianic hopes of  the Jewish nation were really directed towards Galilee.
(Note: The Zohar was not the first to teach that the Messiah would appear in Galilee,  and that redemption would break forth from Tiberias;  but this is found in the Talmud and Midrash (see Litteratur-blatt des Orients, 1843, Col. 776).)

Matthew 4:13-16
And leaving Nazareth,  He came and dwelt in Capernaum,  which is by the sea,  in the regions of  Zebulun and Naphtali,  that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying:
"The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, by the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan,
Galilee of the Gentiles: The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light,
And upon those who sat in the region and shadow of death Light has dawned."      (NKJV)

Isaiah 9:2
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(2)  The people that walked in
darkness have seen a brilliant light;
O people walking in darkness, That walked in Egypt
On those who dwelt in a land of
gloom light has dawned.
In the region and shadow of death  

From the NKJV

(2)  The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light;  those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, upon them a light has shined.

The range of vision is here extended; not to the Gentiles,  however,  but to all Israel.
Salvation would not break forth

- till it had become utterly dark along the horizon of  Israel,  according to the description in Isa 5:30
- till the land of  Jehovah had become a land of  the shadow of  death on account of  the apostasy of  its inhabitants.

The apostate mass of  the nation is to be regarded as already swept away;  for if death has cast its shadow over the land,  it must be utterly desolate.

In this state of  things the remnant left in the land beholds a great light,  which breaks through the sky that has been hitherto covered with blackness.
The people,  who turned their eyes upwards to no purpose,  because they did so with cursing (Isa 8:21),  are now no more.

It is the remnant of  Israel,  which sees this light of spiritual and material redemption,  arises above its head.
In what this light would consist the prophet states afterwards,  when describing

first the blessings
and then the star of  the new time.

Luke 1:67-80
Now his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying:
"Blessed is the Lord God of Israel, For He has visited and redeemed His people,  and has raised up a horn of  salvation for us in the house of  His servant David, ... To give light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, To guide our feet into the way of peace."     (NKJV)

John 8:12
Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life."      (NKJV)

Isaiah 9:3
From the Tanakh From the Targum
(3)  You have magnified that nation, Even the house of Israel
Have given it great joy;  they have rejoiced before You  
As they rejoice at reaping time, as they exult when dividing spoil. Are victorious in battle,

From the NKJV

(3)  You have multiplied the nation and increased its joy; they rejoice before You according to the joy of harvest, as men rejoice when they divide the spoil.

The nation  (haggoi)  is undoubtedly Israel,  reduced to a small remnant.
That God would make this again into a numerous people,  was a leading feature in the pictures drawn of  the time of  glory  (Isa 26:15),  which would be in this respect the counterpart of  that of  Solomon (1 Kings 4:20).
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Past Glory 1 Kings 4:20 Judah and Israel were as numerous as the sand by the sea in multitude, eating and drinking and rejoicing.
Coming Doom Isaiah 8:4 The riches of Damascus and the spoil of Samaria will be taken away
Future Glory Isaiah 26:15 You have increased the nation, O LORD, You have increased the nation;  You are glorified;  You have expanded all the borders of the land.

This joy would be a holy joy,  as the expression  "before You"  implies:  the expression itself recalls the sacrificial meals in the courts of the temple  (Deut 12:7; 14:26).

Deuteronomy 12:7
And there you shall eat before the LORD your God, and you shall rejoice in all to which you have put your hand, you and your households, in which the LORD your God has blessed you.      (NKJV)

Deuteronomy 14:26
And you shall spend that money for whatever your heart desires: for oxen or sheep, for wine or similar drink, for whatever your heart desires; you shall eat there before the LORD your God, and you shall rejoice, you and your household.      (NKJV)

It would be a joy over blessings received,  as the figure of  the harvest indicates;  and joy over evil averted,  as the figure of  dividing the spoil presupposes: for the division of  booty is the business of  conquerors.
This second figure is not merely a figure:  the people that are so joyous are really victorious and triumphant.

Isaiah 9:4
From the Tanakh From the  LXX
(4)  For the yoke that they bore and the stick on their back –  
The rod of their taskmaster –
You have broken as on the day of Midian.
The rod of the exactors,

From the NKJV

(4)  For You have broken the yoke of his burden and the staff of his shoulder, the rod of his oppressor, as in the day of Midian.

The future deliverance,  which the prophet here celebrates,  would be the counterpart of  the Egyptian.
But as the whole of  the great nation of  Israel was then redeemed,  whereas only a small remnant would participate in the final redemption,  he compares it to the day of  Midian,  when Gideon broke the seven years' dominion of  Midian,  not with a great army,  but with a handful of resolute warriors, strong in the Lord (Judges 7).

The question suggests itself here,  who is the hero,  Gideon's antitype,  through whom all this is to occur?
The prophet does not say;  but building up one clause upon another he gives first of  all the reason for the cessation of  the oppressive dominion of  the imperial power - namely,  the destruction of  all the military stores of  the enemy.

Isaiah 9:5
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(5)  Truly, all the boots put on to
stamp with
For they shall compensate for every garment All their dealings were with wickedness; they were polluted with transgressions, even as a garment rolled in blood
And all the garments donned in
infamy
That has been acquired by deceit, and all raiment with restitution  
Have been fed to the flames,
Devoured by fire.
Shall be willing, even if they were
burnt with fire.
Fit for nothing except to be burnt in the fire, so the peoples who are as strong as fire shall come against them, and slay them.

From the NKJV

(5)  For every warrior's sandal from the noisy battle, and garments rolled in blood, will be used for burning and fuel of fire.

The noise made by a warrior coming up proudly in his war-boots,  nor with Luzzatto in the sense of the
war-boot itself,  for which the word is too strong,  but as referring to the noise or tumult of  battle,  in the midst of  which the man comes up equipped or shod for military service.

The prophet names the boot and garment with an obvious purpose.  The destruction of  the hostile weapons follows as a matter of  course,  if even the military shoes,  worn by the soldiers in the enemies' ranks,  and the military cloaks that were lying in dâmim, i.e., in blood violently shed upon the battle-field,  were all given up to the fire.

The Chaldee renders it 'For every gift of  theirs is for evil.'
The Syriac renders it 'For every tumult (of battle) is heard with terror.'
Hengstenberg renders it 'For all war-shoes put on at the noise of  battle,  all garments dipped in blood,  shall be burnt,  shall be the food of fire.'
The idea,  according to Hengstenberg,  is,  that the great future redemption will be like the deliverance under Gideon;  'because,  far from being accomplished by force of  arms,  with it all contention and war shall cease.' Gesenius regards the figurative expression as a general designation of that peace which shall never end.  All the armor used in war shall then be burned, as being of  no further use.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

Psalm 46:9
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two;
He burns the chariot in the fire.          (NKJV)

Ezekiel 39:9-10
Then those who dwell in the cities of Israel will go out and set on fire and burn the weapons, both the shields and bucklers, the bows and arrows, the javelins and spears; and they will make fires with them for seven years.          (NKJV)

Isaiah 9:6
From the Tanakh From the  LXX
(6)  For a child has been born to us,  
A son has been given us. Is given to us
And authority has settled on his shoulders. The Messenger of great counsel
He has been named  “The Mighty God is planning grace;  
The Eternal Father, a peaceable ruler” [I will bring peace upon the princes, and health to him.

From the NKJV

(6)  For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Upon the two sentences with  ci  the prophet now builds a third.

The reason for the triumph is the deliverance effected
   - and -
The reason for the deliverance is the new great King
The reason for the destruction of  the foe
The reason for all the joy
The reason for all the freedom
The reason for all the peace

Is born - is given
Not that he was born when the prophet spoke.  But in prophetic vision,  as the events of  the future passed before his mind,  he saw that promised son,  and the eye was fixed intently on him.

Romans 4:17
... God ...  Who gives life to the dead and speaks of  the nonexistent things that [He has foretold and promised] as if they [already] existed.     (AMP)

John 1:1-14
In the beginning was the Word,  and the Word was with God,  and the Word was God ... And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.      (NKJV)

The same person whom the prophet foretold in chapter 7 as the son of  the virgin who would come to maturity in troublous times,  he here sees as born,  and as having already taken possession of  the government.

There he appeared as a sign,
here as a gift of grace.
The prophet does not expressly say that he is a son of  David in this instance any more than in chapter 7 but this followed as a matter of  course,  from the fact that he was to bear the government,  with all its official rights  (Isa 22:22)  and godlike majesty,  upon his shoulder;  for the inviolable promise of eternal sovereignty,  of  which the new-born infant was to be the glorious fulfillment,  had been bound up with the seed of  David in the course of  Israel's history.

Isaiah 22:22-23
The key of the house of David I will lay on his shoulder; so he shall open, and no one shall shut;  and he shall shut, and no one shall open.
I will fasten him as a peg in a secure place, and he will become a glorious throne to his father's house.    (NKJV)

The words in their strict meaning point to the Messiah,  whom men may for a time,  with pardonable error,  have hoped to find in Hezekiah,  but whom,  with unpardonable error,  men refused to acknowledge,  even when He actually appeared in Jesus.

The name Jesus is the combination of  all the Old Testament titles used to designate the Coming One according to His nature and His works.  The names contained in Isa 7:14 and 9:6 are not thereby suppressed;  but they have continued,  from the time of  Mary downwards,  in the mouths of all believers. There is not one of these names under which worship and homage have not been paid to Him.  But we never find them crowded together anywhere else,  as we do here in Isaiah;  and in this respect also our prophet proves himself  the greatest of  the Old Testament evangelists.

His name shall be called: Pele' WONDERFUL

Just as the angel of  Jehovah,  when asked by Manoah what was his name  (Judges 13:18),  replied peliy (pilŞ'iy ),  and indicated thereby his divine nature - a nature incomprehensible to mortal men;  so here the God-given ruler is also pele',  a phenomenon lying altogether beyond human conception or natural occurrence.

Judges 13:18
And the Angel of the LORD said to him, "Why do you ask My name, seeing it is wonderful?"     (NKJV)

He Himself is throughout a wonder - paradoxasmo's, as Symmachus renders it.

This word is derived from the verb paalaa' (OT:6381),  to separate, to distinguish, or to make great.
It is applied usually to anything that is great or wonderful, as a miracle.
It is applied here to denote the unusual and remarkable assemblage of qualities that distinguished the Messiah.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

His name shall be called: Yow`eets COUNSELOR

By virtue of the spirit of  counsel which He possesses (Isa 11:2),  He can always discern and given counsel for the good of  His nation.  There is no need for Him to surround Himself with counselors;  but without receiving counsel at all,  He counsels those that are without counsel,  and is thus the end of  all want of  counsel to His nation as a whole.

The name "counselor" here denotes

one of  honorable rank;
one who is suited to stand near princes and kings as their adviser.

It is expressive of

great wisdom, and of
qualifications to guide and direct the human race.

The Septuagint translates this phrase, 'The angel of  the mighty counsel.'
The Chaldee, 'The God of  wonderful counsel.'
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

His name shall be called: Eel Gibowr MIGHTY  GOD

El gibbor attributes divinity to Him.

But all these renderings, and others of a similar kind, founder, without needing any further refutation,
on Isa 10:21, where He, to whom the remnant of  Israel will turn with penitence, is called El gibbor.

Isaiah 10:21
The remnant will return, the remnant of Jacob,  to the Mighty God.

There is no reason why we should take El in this name o  the Messiah in any other sense than in Immânu-El;  not to mention the fact that El in Isaiah is always a name of God,  and that the prophet was ever strongly conscious of  the antithesis between El and âdâm.
And finally, El gibbor was a traditional name of  God.
The name gibbor is used here as an adjective,  like Shaddai in El Shaddai.
The Messiah,  then,  is here designated  "mighty God."

It stands written once for all,  just as in Jer 23:6 Jehovah Zidkenu (Jehovah our Righteousness) is also used as a name of the Messiah - a Messianic name,  which even the synagogue cannot set aside (vid. Midrash Mishle 57 a, where this is adduced as one of the eight names of the Messiah).

The Syriac has, 'The mighty God of ages.'
This is one,  and but one out of many,  of  the instances in which the name God is applied to the Messiah;
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

His name shall be called: `Ad 'Abiy EVERLASTING  FATHER

Eternal Father - for what is divine must be eternal.
The title Eternal Father designates Him,  however,  not only as the possessor of eternity,  but as the tender,  faithful,  and wise trainer,  guardian,  and provider for His people even in eternity.
He is eternal Father,  as the eternal,  loving King.

The phrase may either mean the same as the Eternal Father,  and the sense will be,

the Messiah will not,  as must be the ease with an earthly king,  however excellent,  leave his people destitute after a short reign,  but will rule over them and bless them forever;
or it may be used in accordance with a custom usual in Hebrew and in Arabic,  where he who possesses a thing is called the father of it.

This is rendered by

The Chaldee 'The man abiding forever.'
The Vulgate 'The Father of the future age.'
Lowth 'The Father of  the everlasting age.'

Literally,  it is the Father of eternity.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

His name shall be called: Sar-Shaalowm PRINCE  OF  PEACE

The Prince of prosperity,  the Giver of all blessings.

Now,  if  He is mighty God,  and uses His divine might in eternity for the good of  His people,   He is also,   as the fifth name affirms,  sar-shalom,  a Prince who removes all peace-disturbing powers, and secures peace among the nations (Zech 9:10).  To exalt the government of  David into an eternal rule of  peace,  is the end for which He is born;  and moreover He proves Himself  to be what He is not only called, but what he actually is.

Zechariah 9:10
I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim
And the horse from Jerusalem;
The battle bow shall be cut off.
He shall speak peace to the nations;
His dominion shall be 'from sea to sea,
And from the River to the ends of the earth.'    (NKJV)

That this passage refers to the Messiah has been generally conceded.
The Messiah, MŞshiyach (OT:4899),  whose peace shall be multiplied upon us in his days.'
Thus rabbi Jose,  of  Galilee,  says,

'The name of the Messiah is Shaalowm, as is said in Isaiah 9:6, "Father of Eternity, Prince of Peace."
Ben Sira (fol. 40, of the Amsterdam Edition, 1679)
numbers among the eight names of  the Messiah those also taken from this passage, Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God, Prince of Peace.
The later Jews, however,
have rejected this interpretation, because the Messiah is here described as God.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

Isaiah 9:7
From the Tanakh From the  LXX
(7)  In token of abundant authority and of peace without limit
Upon David’s throne and kingdom, that it may be firmly established
in justice and in equity now and evermore.
The zeal of the Lord of Hosts shall bring this to pass.
Support it with judgment and with righteousness,

From the NKJV

(7 ) Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.

No end - Compare the angelic message (Luke 1:32,33).

Luke 1:31-33
And behold,  you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son,  and shall call His name Jesus.  He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David.  And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end."
(NKJV)

The sublime and lofty King’s Son will bring in ever extending dominion and endless peace,  when He sits upon the throne of  David and rules over David's kingdom.  He is a semper Augustus, i.e., a perpetual increaser of the kingdom;  not by war,  however,  but with the spiritual weapons of peace.

And within He gives to the kingdom

"judgment" (mishpât) which He pronounces and ordains
"righteousness" (zedâkâh) which He not only exercises Himself, but transfers to the members of His kingdom

This new epoch of  Davidic sovereignty was still only a matter of  faith and hope.
But the zeal of  Jehovah was the guarantee of  its realization.
The accentuation is likely to mislead here, inasmuch as it makes it appear as though the words  "from henceforth even for ever"  (me'attâh v'ad 'oolâm) belonged to the closing sentence,  whereas the eternal perspective which they open applies directly to the reign of  the great Son of  David,  and only indirectly to the work of  the divine jealousy.

"Zeal,"  or jealousy,  kin'âh, literally - glowing fire,  from qaanee', Arab. Kanaa, - to be deep red
(Deut 4:24 - For the Lord your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God),  is one of the deepest of  the Old Testament ideas,  and one of the most fruitful in relation to the work of  reconciliation.
It is two-sided.

The fire of  love has for its obverse the fire of wrath.
Jealousy contends for the object of its love against everything that touches either the object or the love itself.

Jehovah loves His nation.
That He should leave it in the hands of  such bad Davidic kings as Ahaz,  and give it up to the imperial power of  the world,  would be altogether irreconcilable with this love,  if continued long.
But His love flares up,  consumes all that is adverse,  and gives to His people the true King,  in whom that which was only foreshadowed in David and Solomon reaches its highest antitypical fulfillment.
With the very same words,  "the zeal of Jehovah of hosts," etc., Isaiah seals the promise in Isa 37:32.

Isaiah 37:32
For out of Jerusalem will go forth a remnant,  and a band that survives out of Mount Zion.  The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.      (AMP)


THE  PUNISHMENT  OF  SAMARIA

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Jehovah's Outstretched Hand
( 9:8-10:4 )

The great light would not arise till the darkness had reached its deepest point.  The gradual increase of  this darkness is predicted in this second section of  the esoteric addresses.  Many difficult questions suggest themselves in connection with this section.

1. Is it directed against the northern kingdom only, or against all Israel?
2. What was the historical standpoint of the prophet himself?

The majority of commentator’s reply that the prophet is only prophesying against Ephraim here,  and that Syria and Ephraim has already been chastised by Tiglath-pileser.
The former is incorrect.  The prophet does indeed commence with Ephraim,   but he does not stop there.
The fates of  both kingdoms flow into one another here,  as well as in Isaiah 8:5 ff.,  just as they were causally connected in actual fact.

And it cannot be maintained,  that when the prophet uttered his predictions Ephraim had already felt the scourging of  Tiglath-pileser. 

The prophet takes his stand at a time when judgment after judgment had fallen upon all Israel without improving it.

Isaiah 9:8-12
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(8) But all the people noted   This people is puffed up all of them,
Ephraim and the inhabitants of
Samaria –
   
In arrogance and haughtiness:   With pride and with stoutness of heart,
(9) “Bricks have fallen –   Our leaders have been carried into exile,
We’ll rebuild with dressed stone;   We will appoint better:
Sycamores have been felled – Cut down sycamores and cedars, Our possessions have been plundered,
We’ll grow cedars instead!” And let us build for ourselves a tower. Will obtain finer.
(10) So the Lord let the enemies
of Rezin
Shall dash down them that rise up against him Strengthened the enemy of Israel, even Rezin
Triumph over it On mount Sion  
And stirred up its foes – Shall scatter his enemies;  
(11) Aram from the east Even Syria from the rising of the sun  
And Philistia from the west – The Greeks from the setting of the sun, Philistines from the west,
Who devoured Israel   Plundered the possessions of Israel in every place:
With greedy mouths.   Have not turned from their transgressions,
Yet His anger has not turned back,   They still persist in (make strong) their rebellion
And His arm is outstretched still.   His stroke about to take vengeance on them.
(12) For the people has not turned back   Returned to the service of him
To Him who struck it Until they were smitten, Brought the stroke upon them, and instruction
And has not sought   From before the Lord of hosts have they not sought.
The Lord of Hosts.    

From the NKJV

(8)  The LORD sent a word against Jacob,  and it has fallen on Israel.
(9)  All the people will know —  Ephraim and the inhabitant of Samaria —  who say in pride and arrogance of heart:
(10) 'The bricks have fallen down, but we will rebuild with hewn stones;  the sycamores are cut down,  but we will replace them with cedars."
(11)  Therefore the LORD shall set up the adversaries of Rezin against him,  and spur his enemies on,
(12)  The Syrians before and the Philistines behind; and they shall devour Israel with an open mouth.
For all this His anger is not turned away, but His hand is stretched out still.

The word  (dâbâr)  is both in nature and history the messenger of  the Lord:

(Psalm 147:15) It runs quickly through the earth
He sends his command to the earth; his word runs swiftly.
(Psalm 107:20) When sent by the Lord, comes to men to destroy or to heal
He sent forth his word and healed them;  he rescued them from the grave.
(Isaiah 55:11) It never returns to its sender void
So is my word that goes out from my mouth:  it will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.

Thus does the Lord now send a word against Jacob (Jacob, as in Isa 2:5);  and this heavenly messenger descends into Israel,  taking shelter,  as it were,  in the soul of the prophet.

Its immediate commission is directed against Ephraim,  which has been so little humbled by the calamities that have fallen upon it since the time of  Jehu,  that the people are boasting that they will replace bricks and sycamores,  that wide-spread tree (1 Kings 10:27 - "and cedar as plentiful as sycamore-fig trees in the foothills"),  with works of  art and cedars.

"We put in their place:"  nachaliph is as in Isa 40:31; 41:1,  where it is construed with koach (OT:3581) (strength), and signifies to renew.

The poorest style of  building in the land is contrasted with the best;  for  "the sycamore is a tree which only flourishes in the plain, and there the most wretched houses are still built of bricks dried in the sun, and of knotty beams of sycamore."

These might have been destroyed by the war,  but more durable and stately buildings would rise up in their place.  Ephraim,  however,  would be made to feel this defiance of  the judgments of  God  (to "know," as in Hos 9:7; Ezek 25:14).  Jehovah would give the adversaries of  Rezin authority over Ephraim,  and instigate his foes: sicseec, as in Isa 19:2 ("I will stir up Egyptian against Egyptian").

Hosea 9:7
The days of punishment are coming, the days of reckoning are at hand.
Let Israel know this. Because your sins are so many and your hostility so great, the prophet is considered a fool, the inspired man a maniac.    (NIV)

Ezekiel 25:14
... they will know my vengeance, declares the Sovereign LORD.    (NIV)

The adversaries of Rezintzâree Retziin
A simple play upon the words -  are the Assyrians, whose help had been sought by Ahaz against Rezin;  though perhaps not these exclusively,  but possibly also the Trachonites,  for example,  against whom the mountain fortress Rezîn appears to have been erected,  to protect the rich lands of eastern Hauran.

In verse 12 the range of  vision stretches over all Israel.
It cannot be otherwise,  for the northern kingdom never suffered anything from the Philistines;  whereas an invasion of  Judah by the Philistines was really one of  the judgments belonging to the time of Ahaz  (2 Chron 28:16-19).  Consequently by Israel here we are to understand all Israel,  the two halves of which would become a rich prize to the enemy.

Ephraim would be swallowed up by Aram - namely, by those who had been subjugated by Asshur, and were now tributary to it
Judah would be swallowed up by the Philistines.

But this strait would be very far from being the end of  the punishments of  God.  Because Israel would not turn  -  the wrath of God would not turn away.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Isaiah 9:13-17
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(13)  For the people has not turned back   Returned to the service of him
To Him who struck it Until they were smitten, Brought the stroke upon them, and instruction
And has not sought the Lord of Hosts.   From before the Lord of hosts have they not sought.
(14)  So the Lord will cut off from
Israel head and tail,
The great and small Head and leader,
Palm branch and reed,   Ruler and tyrant,
In a single day.    
(15)  Elders and magnates Them that respect persons, Ancient, honorable man,
Such are the heads; this is the head;  
Prophets who give false instruction, Teaching unlawful things, The scribe that teacheth lies, he is the feeble one.
Such are the tails    
(16)  That people’s leaders have
been misleaders,
They that pronounce this people blessed  
So they that are led have been confused. Shall mislead them; they may
devour them.
The nobles of this people were causing it to err, and its princes were causing it to perish.
(17)  That is why my Lord Therefore the Lord  
Will not spare their youths,   Not cause their young men to rejoice,
Nor show compassion
To their orphans and widows;
For all are ungodly and wicked,
For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is yet exalted.  
And every mouth speaks impiety    

From the NKJV

(13)  For the people do not turn to Him who strikes them,  nor do they seek the LORD of hosts.
(14)  Therefore the LORD will cut off head and tail from Israel,  palm branch and bulrush in one day.
(15)  The elder and honorable, he is the head;  the prophet who teaches lies, he is the tail.
(16)  For the leaders of this people cause them to err,  and those who are led by them are destroyed.
(17)  Therefore the Lord will have no joy in their young men,  nor have mercy on their fatherless and widows; for everyone is a hypocrite and an evildoer, and every mouth speaks folly.  For all this His anger is not turned away,
But His hand is stretched out still.

As the first stage of  the judgments has been followed by no true conversion to Jehovah the almighty judge, there comes a second. `ad (OT:5704) shuwb (OT:7725) (to turn unto) denotes a thorough conversion,  not stopping half-way.

There was coming now a great day of punishment (in the view of  the prophet,  it was already past),  such as Israel experienced more than once in the Assyrian oppressions,  and Judah in the Chaldean,  when head and tail,  or,  according to another proverbial expression,  palm-branch and rush,  would be rooted out.
We might suppose that the persons referred to were the high and low;  but verse 15 makes a different application of  the first double figure,  by giving it a different turn from its popular sense.

The Head The Rulers The chiefs of the nation were the head of the national body;
The Tail The False Prophets and behind, like a wagging dog's tail, sat the false prophets with their flatteries of the people, loving.

The allusion here is to the rulers of  the nation and the dregs of the people.
The basest extremity was the demagogues in the shape of prophets.
For it had come to this, as verse 16 affirms,  that those who promised to lead by a straight road led astray,  and those who suffered themselves to be led by them were as good as already swallowed up by hell
(cf., Isa 5:14; 3:12).

Therefore the Sovereign Ruler would not rejoice over the young men of  this nation;  that is to say,  He would suffer them to be smitten by their enemies,  without going with them to battle,  and would refuse His customary compassion even towards widows and orphans,  for they were all thoroughly corrupt on every side.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Isaiah 9:18-21
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
Already wickedness has blazed forth like a fire devouring thorn and thistle. Devour all that is round about the
hills.
The guilty ones shall it destroy: yea, it shall rule over the remnant of the people, and destroy the multitude of their armies.
It has kindled the thickets of the
wood, which have turned into
billowing smoke.  (19)  By the fury
of the Lord of Hosts,
The whole earth is set on fire  
The earth was shaken.    
Next, the people became like
devouring fire
As men burnt by fire:  
No man spared his countryman.    
(20)  They consumed on the left
without being sated.
But one shall turn aside to the right hand, for he shall be hungry; and
shall eat on the left, and a man shall
by no means be satisfied
And one has plundered from the south, and is hungry; and he has destroyed from the north, and is not satisfied
Each devoured the flesh of his own kindred With eating the flesh of his own
arm.
Shall plunder everyone the goods of his neighbour.
(21)  Manasseh Ephraim’s, and
Ephraim Manasseh’s,
Shall eat the flesh of  
And both of them against Judah! Shall besiege Juda together. Have not turned from transgressions
Yet His anger has not turned back,    
And His arm is outstretched still. Is yet exalted. About to take vengeance on them

From the NKJV

(18)  For wickedness burns as the fire; it shall devour the briers and thorns, and kindle in the thickets of the forest; they shall mount up like rising smoke.
(19)  Through the wrath of the LORD of hosts the land is burned up, and the people shall be as fuel for the fire; no man shall spare his brother.
(20)  And he shall snatch on the right hand and be hungry; he shall devour on the left hand and not be satisfied; every man shall eat the flesh of his own arm.
(21)  Manasseh shall devour Ephraim, and Ephraim Manasseh; together they shall be against Judah.
For all this His anger is not turned away, but His hand is stretched out still.

From The Dead Sea Scrolls

Frags. 4-6 col. I 14 [Isaiah 9:17-20 Because evil is burning like a fire] which consumes thistles [and brambles;] it catches fire  [in the dense wood and the height] of the smoke coils upwards. [By the wrath of the God] of Hosts devastated is] 16 [the land and the people is fuel for the fire.] No-one [forgives] his brother,] 17 [he destroys to the right and remains hungry, he consumes] to the left and is not replete; 18 [a man eats the flesh of his arm. Manasseh against] Ephraim and Ephraim against 19 [Mana]sseh; [the two] together [against Judah. And with all this] his wrath is not mollified.

The standpoint of  the prophet is at the extreme end of  the course of  judgment,  and from that he looks back.  The curse, which the apostasy of  Israel carries within itself,  now breaks fully out.

Wickedness,  i.e.,  the constant thirst of and for evil,  is a fire that a man kindles in himself.
And when the grace of God, which damps and restrains this fire,  is all over,  it is sure to burst forth:  the wickedness bursts forth like fire (the verb is used here, as in Isa 30:27, with reference to the wrath of God). And this is the case with the wickedness of  Israel,  which now consumes first of  all thorns and thistles,  i.e.,  individual sinners who are the most ripe for judgment,  upon whom the judgment commences,  and then the thicket of the wood - the entire nation.

The fire,  into which the wickedness bursts out,  seizes individuals first of all;  and then,  like a forest fire,  it seizes upon the nation at large in all its ranks and members,  who "whirl up (roll up) ascending of smoke." This fire of  wickedness was no other than the wrath ('ebrâh) of God:  it is God's own wrath,  for all sin carries this within itself as its own self-punishment.

This fire of wrath gradually but thoroughly burns out, the soil of the land and the people of the land utterly consumed.

Isaiah 10:1-4
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
Ha! Woe to them That decree decrees of extortion,
Those who write out evil writs   Write vexatious enactments;
And compose iniquitous documents, When they write they do write wickedness,  
(2)  To subvert the cause of the poor, Perverting the cause of the poor, violently  
To rob of there rights the needy of
My people;
Wresting the judgment of the needy ones  
That widows may be their spoil,   That the goods of the widows may be their spoil
And fatherless children their booty!   Plunder the possessions of the fatherless.
(3)  What will you do on the day of punishment,   Your transgressions are visited upon you,
When the calamity comes from afar?
To whom will you flee for help,
   
And how will you save your
carcasses   (4)   from collapsing under [fellow] prisoners, from falling beneath the slain?
Yet His anger has not turned back,
And his arm is outstretched still.
   

From the NKJV

(1)  "Woe to those who decree unrighteous decrees, who write misfortune, which they have prescribed
(2)  To rob the needy of justice, and to take what is right from the poor of My people, that widows may be their prey, and that they may rob the fatherless.
(3)  What will you do in the day of punishment, and in the desolation which will come from afar?  To whom will you flee for help?  And where will you leave your glory?
(4)  Without Me they shall bow down among the prisoners, and they shall fall among the slain." 
For all this His anger is not turned away, but His hand is stretched out still.

This is directed against the unjust authorities and judges.
The woe pronounced upon them is, as we have already frequently seen.

Poor persons who wanted to commence legal proceedings were not even allowed to do so,  and possessions to which widows and orphans had a well-founded claim were a welcome booty to them.

For  (because of ) all this they could not escape the judgment of  God.
This is announced to them in verse 3,  in the form of  three distinct questions.

What will you do in the day of punishment? The day of reckoning - coming as a rushing tempest.
To whom will you flee for help? There was no help or assistance of  any kind.
Where will you leave your glory? It was irrecoverably lost..

For all this ... anger not turned ... hand stretched out still
Five times this is repeated in Isaiah.

Isaiah 5:25 His hand is raised and he strikes them down.  The mountains shake,  and the dead bodies are like refuse in the streets.
Yet for all this, his anger is not turned away,  his hand is still upraised.
Isaiah 9:12 Arameans from the east and Philistines from the west have devoured Israel with open mouth.
Yet for all this, his anger is not turned away,  his hand is still upraised.
Isaiah 9:17 Therefore the Lord will take no pleasure in the young men, nor will he pity the fatherless and widows, for everyone is ungodly and wicked, every mouth speaks vileness.
Yet for all this, his anger is not turned away,  his hand is still upraised.
Isaiah 9:21 Manasseh will feed on Ephraim, and Ephraim on Manasseh; together they will turn against Judah.
Yet for all this, his anger is not turned away,  his hand is still upraised.
Isaiah 10:4 Nothing will remain but to cringe among the captives or fall among the slain.
Yet for all this, his anger is not turned away,  his hand is still upraised.


Why?  The answer goes back to the "Woes" in Lesson 3, and the "wasted opportunities" for forgiveness and restoration:
Isaiah 5:24 They have rejected the law of the LORD Almighty and spurned the word of the Holy One of Israel.
Isaiah 8:13-14 The LORD Almighty is the one you are to regard as holy, he is the one you are to fear, he is the one you are to dread, and he will be a sanctuary.
Isaiah 9:10 The people have not returned to him who struck them, nor have they sought the LORD Almighty.


LESSON  5  FROM  THE  AMPLIFIED  VERSION

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Isaiah 8:1-10:4 - from the Amplified Version

8:1  THEN THE Lord said to me, Take a large tablet [of wood, metal, or stone] and write upon it with a graving tool and in ordinary characters [which the humblest man can read]: Belonging to
Maher-shalal-hash-baz [they (the Assyrians) hasten to the spoil (of Syria and Israel), they speed to the prey].
(2)   And I took faithful witnesses to record and attest [this prophecy] for me, Uriah the priest and Zechariah son of Jeberechiah.
(3)   And I approached [my wife] the prophetess, and when she had conceived and borne a son, the Lord said to me, Call his name Maher-shalal-hash-baz [as a continual reminder to the people of the prophecy],
(4)   For before the child knows how to say, My father or my mother, the riches of Damascus [Syria's capital] and the spoil of Samaria [Israel's capital] shall be carried away before the king of Assyria.
(5)   The Lord spoke to me yet again and said,
(6)   Because this people [Israel and Judah] have refused and despised the waters of Shiloah [Siloam, the only perennial fountain of Jerusalem, and symbolic of God's protection and sustaining power] that go gently, and rejoice in and with Rezin [the king of Syria] and Remaliah's son [Pekah the king of Israel],
(7)   Now therefore, behold, the Lord brings upon them the waters of the River [Euphrates], strong and many--even the king of Assyria and all the glory [of his gorgeous retinue]; and it will rise over all its channels, brooks, valleys, and canals and extend far beyond its banks; [Isa 7:17.]
(8)   And it will sweep on into Judah; it will overflow and go over [the hills], reaching even [but only] to the neck [of which Jerusalem is the head], and the outstretched wings [of the armies of Assyria] shall fill the breadth of Your land, O Immanuel [Messiah, God is with us]! [Num 14:9; Ps 46:7.]
(9)   Make an uproar and be broken in pieces, O you peoples [rage, raise the war cry, do your worst, and be utterly dismayed]! Give ear, all you [our enemies] of far countries. Gird yourselves [for war], and be thrown into consternation! Gird yourselves, and be [utterly] dismayed!
(10)  Take counsel together [against Judah], but it shall come to naught; speak the word, but it will not stand, for God is with us [Immanuel]!
(11)  For the Lord spoke thus to me with His strong hand [upon me], and warned and instructed me not to walk in the way of this people, saying,
(12)  Do not call conspiracy [or hard, or holy] all that this people will call conspiracy [or hard, or holy]; neither be in fear of what they fear, nor [make others afraid and] in dread.
(13)  The Lord of hosts--regard Him as holy and honor His holy name [by regarding Him as your only hope of safety], and let Him be your fear and let Him be your dread [lest you offend Him by your fear of man and distrust of Him].
(14)  And He shall be a sanctuary [a sacred and indestructible asylum to those who reverently fear and trust in Him]; but He shall be a Stone of stumbling and a Rock of offense to both the houses of Israel, a trap and a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. [Isa 28:6; Rom 9:33; 1 Peter 2:6-8.]
(15)  And many among them shall stumble thereon; and they shall fall and be broken, and be snared and taken.
(16)  Bind up the testimony, seal the law and the teaching among my [Isaiah's] disciples.
(17)  And I will wait for the Lord, Who is hiding His face from the house of Jacob; and I will look for and hope in Him.
(18)  Behold, I and the children whom the Lord has given me are signs and wonders [that are to take place] in Israel from the Lord of hosts, Who dwells on Mount Zion.
(19)  And when the people [instead of putting their trust in God] shall say to you, Consult for direction mediums and wizards who chirp and mutter, should not a people seek and consult their God? Should they consult the dead on behalf of the living?
(20) [Direct such people] to the teaching and to the testimony! If their teachings are not in accord with this word, it is surely because there is no dawn and no morning for them.
(21)  And they [who consult mediums and wizards] shall pass through [the land] sorely distressed and hungry; and when they are hungry, they will fret, and will curse by their king and their God; and whether they look upward
(22)  Or look to the earth, they will behold only distress and darkness, the gloom of anguish, and into thick darkness and widespread, obscure night they shall be driven away.

9:1   BUT [in the midst of judgment there is the promise and the certainty of the Lord's deliverance and] there shall be no gloom for her who was in anguish. In the former time [the Lord] brought into contempt the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the latter time He will make it glorious, by the way of the Sea [of Galilee, the land] beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the nations.
(2)   The people who walked in darkness have seen a great Light; those who dwelt in the land of intense darkness and the shadow of death, upon them has the Light shined. [Isa 42:6; Matt 4:15,16.]
(3)   You [O Lord] have multiplied the nation and increased their joy; they rejoice before You like the joy in harvest, as men rejoice when they divide the spoil [of battle].
(4)   For the yoke of [Israel's] burden, and the staff or rod for [goading] their shoulders, the rod of their oppressor, You have broken as in the day of [Gideon with] Midian. [Judg 7:8-22.]
(5)   For every [tramping] warrior's war boots and all his armor in the battle tumult and every garment rolled in blood shall be burned as fuel for the fire.
(6)   For to us a Child is born, to us a Son is given; and the government shall be upon His shoulder, and His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father [of Eternity], Prince of Peace. [Isa 25:1; 40:9-11; Matt 28:18; Luke 2:11.]
(7)   Of the increase of His government and of peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from the [latter] time forth, even forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this. [Dan 2:44; 1 Cor 15:25-28; Heb 1:8.]
(8)   The Lord has sent a word against Jacob [the ten tribes], and it has lighted upon Israel [the ten tribes, the kingdom of Ephraim].
(9)   And all the people shall know it--even Ephraim and the inhabitants of Samaria [its capital]--who said in pride and stoutness of heart,
(10)  The bricks have fallen, but we will build [all the better] with hewn stones; the sycamores have been cut down, but we will put [costlier] cedars in their place.
(11)  Therefore the Lord has stirred up the adversaries [the Assyrians] of Rezin [king of Syria] against [Ephraim], and He will stir up their enemies and arm and join them together,
(12)  The Syrians [compelled to fight with their enemies, going] before [on the east] and the Philistines behind [on the west]; and they will devour Israel with open mouth. For all this, [God's] anger is not [then] turned away, but His hand is still stretched out [in judgment].
(13)  Yet the people turn not to Him Who smote them, neither do they seek [inquire for or require as their vital need] the Lord of hosts.
(14)  Therefore the Lord will cut off from Israel head and tail [the highest and the lowest]--[high] palm branch and [low] rush in one day;
(15)  The elderly and honored man, he is the head; and the prophet who teaches lies, he is the tail.
(16)  For they who lead this people cause them to err, and they who are led [astray] by them are swallowed up (destroyed).
(17)  Therefore the Lord will not rejoice over their young men, neither will He have compassion on their fatherless and widows, for everyone is profane and an evildoer, and every mouth speaks folly. For all this, [God's] anger is not turned away, but His hand is still stretched out [in judgment].
(18)  For wickedness burns like a fire; it devours the briers and thorns, and it kindles in the thickets of the forest; they roll upward in a column of smoke.
(19)  Through the wrath of the Lord of hosts the land is darkened and burned up, and the people are like fuel for the fire; no man spares his brother.
(20)  They snatch in discord on the right hand, but are still hungry [their cruelty not diminished]; and they devour and destroy on the left hand, but are not satisfied. Each devours and destroys his own flesh [and blood] or his neighbor's.
(21)  Manasseh [thirsts for the blood of his brother] Ephraim, and Ephraim [for that of] Manasseh; but together they are against Judah. For all this, [God's] anger is not turned away, but His hand is still stretched out [in judgment].

10:1    WOE TO those [judges] who issue unrighteous decrees, and to the magistrates who keep causing unjust and oppressive decisions to be recorded,
(2)   To turn aside the needy from justice and to make plunder of the rightful claims of the poor of My people, that widows may be their spoil, and that they may make the fatherless their prey!
(3)   And what will you do in the day of visitation [of God's wrath], and in the desolation which shall come from afar? To whom will you flee for help? And where will you deposit [for safekeeping] your wealth and with whom leave your glory?
(4)   Without Me they shall bow down among the prisoners, and they shall fall [overwhelmed] under the heaps of the slain [on the battlefield]. For all this, [God's] anger is not turned away, but His hand is still stretched out [in judgment].

(End of  Lesson 5)


  

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