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ISAIAH
The Gospel To Israel
Book 2

LESSON  ELEVEN
Isaiah 24:1 - 25:12

 

Isaiah 24:1-27:13
Judgment and Mercy

  Section one: Judgment Isaiah Chapters 24 - 23  
  Section two: Mercy Isaiah Chapters 25 - 27  
 

Isaiah 24:1-3
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(1) Behold, the Lord will strip the
earth bare, and lay it waste, and twist
its surface, and scatter its inhabitants.
Behold, the Lord is about to lay waste
the world, and will make it desolate,
and will lay bare the surface of it, and
scatter them that dwell therein.
Behold the Lord causeth the earth to be plundered, and delivered it unto its enemies; and shame shall cover the faces of its princes, because they have transgressed the law; and he shall scatter them that dwell therein.
(2)  Layman and priest shall fare alike,
slave and master, handmaid and mistress, buyer and seller, lender and
borrower, creditor and debtor.
And the people shall be as the priests,
and the servant as the lord, and the
maid as the mistress; the buyer shall
be as the seller, the lender as the
borrower, and the debtor as his
creditor.
And the layman shall be as the priest, the servant as his master, the maidservant as her mistress, the buyer as the seller, the borrower as the lender, the debtor as his creditor.
(3)  The earth shall be bare, bare; it
shall be plundered, plundered; for it
is the Lord who spoke this word.
The earth shall be completely laid
waste, and the earth shall be utterly
spoiled: for the mouth of the Lord
has spoken these things.
The earth shall be utterly spoiled, and utterly trampled under foot: for the Lord hath spoken this word.
From the NKJV
(1)  Behold, the LORD makes the earth empty and makes it waste, distorts its surface and scatters abroad its inhabitants.
(2)  And it shall be:
As with the people, so with the priest;
As with the servant, so with his master;
As with the maid, so with her mistress;
As with the buyer, so with the seller;
As with the lender, so with the borrower;
As with the creditor, so with the debtor.
(3)  The land shall be entirely emptied and utterly plundered, for the LORD has spoken this word.

It is thoroughly characteristic of  Isaiah,  that the commencement of  this prophecy,  like Isa 19:1,  places us at once in the very midst of  the catastrophe,  and condenses the contents of  the subsequent picture of  judgment into a few rapid,  vigorous,  vivid,  and comprehensive clauses

Behold
The question,  whether the prophet is speaking of  a past or future judgment,  which is one of  importance to the interpretation of  the whole,  is answered by the fact that with Isaiah  "hinneeh" (beholdalways refers to something future (Isa 3:1; 17:1; 19:1, etc.).
And it is only in his case,  that we do meet with prophecies commencing so immediately with hinneeh.
Those in Jeremiah,  which approach this,  the most nearly (viz., Jer 47:2; 49:35, cf., Isa 51:1, and Ezek 29:3) do indeed commence with hinneeh,  but not without being preceded by an introductory formula.

The opening  "behold"  corresponds to the confirmatory  "for Jehovah has spoken" (vs 3),  which is always employed by Isaiah at the close of  statements with regard to the future.

As with ... so with
This does not mean in moral character,  but in destiny.
It does not mean that the character of  the priest would have any influence on that of  the people, or that because the one was corrupt the other would be.
It means that

all would be involved in the same calamity
there would be no favored class that would escape

The prophet,  therefore,  enumerates the various ranks of  the people,  and shows that all classes would be involved in the impending calamity.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

It is a judgment which embraces all,  without distinction of  rank and condition;  and it is a universal one,  not merely throughout the whole of  the land of  Israel,  but in all the earth;  for as Arndt correctly observes,  haa'aarets (OT:776) signifies  "the earth"  in this passage,  including the ethical New Testament idea of
"the world"  (cosmos).

Isaiah 24:4-9
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(4)  The earth is withered, sear; the
world languishes, it is sear;  the most exalted people of the earth languish.
The earth mourns, and the world is
ruined, the lofty ones of the earth are
mourning.
The earth mourneth, and is desolate, the world is wasted and desolate, the might of the people of the land is at an end.
(5)  For the earth was defiled under
its inhabitants; because they
transgressed teachings, violated laws,
broke the ancient covenant.
And she has sinned by reason of her
inhabitants; because they have transgressed the law, and changed
the ordinances, even the everlasting
covenant.
The earth also is guilty beneath the inhabitants thereof; for they have transgressed the law, they have caused the fixed times (or, feasts) to cease, they have changed the everlasting covenant.
(6)  That is why a curse consumes
the earth, and its inhabitants pay
the penalty; that is why earthís
dwellers have dwindled, and but
few men are left.
Therefore a curse shall consume the
earth, because the inhabitants thereof
have sinned: therefore the dwellers in
the earth shall be poor, and few men
shall be left.
Therefore because of the false oaths the earth is desolate, and they that dwell therein are wasted; therefore the inhabitants of the earth are come to an end, and few men are left.
(7)  The new wine fails, the vine
languishes; and all the merry-hearted
sigh.
The wine shall mourn, the vine shall
mourn, all the merry-hearted shall sigh.
All that drink wine mourns, because the vines are dried up; all the merry hearted sigh.
8 Still is the merriment of tumbrels,
ended the clamor of revelers, and
stilled the merriment of lyres.
The mirth of tumbrels has ceased;
the sound of the harp has ceased.
The mirth of tabrets ceased, restrained is the tumult of the mighty, the joy of the lute ceased.
(9)  They drink their wine without
song; liquor tastes bitter to the
drinker.
They are ashamed, they have not
drunk wine; strong drink has become
bitter to them that drink it.
They shall not drink wine to the accompaniment of music; old wine shall be bitter to them that drink it.

From the NKJV

(4)  The earth mourns and fades away, the world languishes and fades away; the haughty people of the earth languish.  (5)  The earth is also defiled under its inhabitants, because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant.  (6)  Therefore the curse has devoured the earth, and those who dwell in it are desolate.  Therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men are left.
(7)  The new wine fails, the vine languishes,  all the merry-hearted sigh.  (8)  The mirth of the tambourine ceases, the noise of the jubilant ends, the joy of the harp ceases.  (9)  They shall not drink wine with a song; strong drink is bitter to those who drink it.

The world
"The world" (teebeel) is used here in verse 4  (always in the form of a proper name, and without the article),  as a parallel to  "the earth" (h‚'‚retz),  with which it alternates throughout this cycle of  prophecies.  It is used poetically to signify the globe,  and that without limitation  (even in Isa 13:11);  and therefore
"the earth"  is also to be understood here in its most comprehensive sense.

The earth is sunk in mourning,  and has become like a faded plant,  withered up with heat;  the high ones of the people of  the earth is used,  as in Isa 42:5; 40:7,  to signify humanity, i.e., man generally).

Languishes
'um™laaluw (OT:535) - stands in half pause,  which throws the subjective notion that follows into greater prominence.

Is defiled
It is the punishment of  the inhabitants of  the earth,  which the earth has to share,  because it has shared in the wickedness of  those who live upon it:  ch‚naph  (defiled)  signifies

to be degenerate,
to have decided for what is evil (Isa 9:16),
to be wicked
and in this intransitive sense it is applied to the land,  which is said to be affected with the guilt of  wicked,  reckless conduct,  more especially of  blood-guiltiness.  (Ps 106:38; Num 35:33; compare the transitive use in Jer 3:9).
Psalm 106:38
And shed innocent blood, the blood of their sons and daughters, whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan; and the land was polluted with blood.     (NKJV)
Numbers 35:33
Do not pollute the land where you are.  Bloodshed pollutes the land,  and atonement cannot be made for the land on which blood has been shed,  except by the blood of the one who shed it.    (NIV)
Jeremiah 3:9
Because Israel's immorality mattered so little to her, she defiled the land and committed adultery with stone and wood.    (NIV)
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

defiled under its inhabitants
Because they have:

Transgressed the Laws Of God
Changed the Ordinance Of God
Broken the Everlasting Covenant With God

The wicked conduct of men,  which has caused the earth also to become defiled,  is described in three short,  rapid,  involuntarily excited sentences.
Understanding  "the earth"  as we do in a general sense,  "the law"  cannot signify merely the positive law of Israel.  The Gentile world had also a tor‚h or divine teaching within,  which contained an abundance of  divine directions (toorooth).

They also had a law written in their hearts;  and it was with the whole human race that God concluded a covenant in the person of  Noah,  at a time when the nations had none of  them come into existence at all.

Romans 2:12-16
For as many as have sinned without law will also perish without law, and as many as have sinned in the law will be judged by the law  (for not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the doers of the law will be justified;  for when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the things in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law to themselves,  who show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and between themselves their thoughts accusing or else excusing them)  in the day when God will judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ, according to my gospel.    (NKJV)

Therefore the curse
With the expression  "therefore"  the prophecy moves on  from sin to punishment,  just as in Isa 5:25, 'aalaah (OT:423) is the  curse of  God denounced against the transgressors of  His law (Dan 9:11; compare Jer 23:10).  The curse of  God devours,  for it is fire,  and that from within outwards.

Daniel 9:11
All Israel has transgressed your law and turned away, refusing to obey you.
"Therefore the curses and sworn judgments written in the Law of Moses, the servant of God, have been poured out on us, because we have sinned against you.    (NIV)
Jeremiah 23:10
The land is full of adulterers; because of the curse the land lies parched and the pastures in the desert are withered.    (NIV)

Our Covenant With God Through Noah.

The Covenant Established

Genesis 9:8-9
(8)  Then God spoke to Noah and to his sons with him, saying,
(9)  Behold, I establish My covenant or pledge with you and with your descendants after you.    (AMP)

The Token of the Covenant

Genesis 9:11-15
(11)  I will establish My covenant or pledge with you:
Never again shall all flesh be cut off  by the waters of a flood;
neither shall there ever again be a flood to destroy the earth and make it corrupt.
(12)  And God said,
This is the token of the covenant (solemn pledge) which I am making between Me and you and every living creature that is with you,  for all future generations:
(13)  I set My bow [rainbow] in the cloud,  and it shall be a token or sign of a covenant or solemn pledge between Me and the earth.
(14)  And it shall be that when I bring clouds over the earth and the bow [rainbow] is seen in the clouds,
(15)  I will [earnestly] remember My covenant or solemn pledge which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters will no more become a flood to destroy and make all flesh corrupt.     (AMP)

The Covenant Itself

Genesis 9:3-7
(3)  Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you;
and as I gave you the green vegetables and plants, I give you everything.
(4)  But you shall not eat flesh with the life of  it, which is its blood.
(5)  And surely for your lifeblood I will require an accounting;
from every beast I will require it;
and from man, from every man [who spills another's lifeblood] I will require a reckoning.
(6)  Whoever sheds man's blood; shall man shed his blood;
for in the image of  God He made man.
(7)  And you, be fruitful and multiply; bring forth abundantly on the earth and multiply on it.

And as far as I know, this covenant is still in force.
Paul the Learner.

Isaiah 24:10-13
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(10)  Towns are broken empty; every
house is shut, none enters;
All the city has become desolate:
one shall shut his house so that
none shall enter.
Their city is broken down, it is desolate; all the houses are shut up, so that no man can enter.
(11)  Even over wine, a cry goes up in
the street: the sun has set on all joy, the gladness of the earth is banished.
There is a howling for the wine
everywhere; all the mirth of the land
has ceased, all the mirth of the land
has departed.
They cry aloud because of the wine in the streets; all joy is at an end, gladness is departed from the land.
(12)  Desolation is left in the town
and the gate is battered to ruins.
And cities shall be left desolate, and
houses being left shall fall to ruin.
In the city is left desolation and tumult at the destruction of the gates.
(13)  For thus shall it be among the
peoples in the midst of the earth: as
when the olive tree is beaten out, like
gleaning when the vintage is over.
All this shall be in the land in the
midst of the nations, as if one should
strip an olive tree, so shall they strip
them; but when the vintage is done,
For thus shall the righteous be left solitary in the midst of the world among the kingdoms, like the plucking of an olive tree, as the gleaning after the vintage.

From the NKJV

(10)  The city of confusion is broken down; every house is shut up, so that none may go in.
(11)  There is a cry for wine in the streets, all joy is darkened, the mirth of the land is gone.
(12)  In the city desolation is left, and the gate is stricken with destruction.
(13)  When it shall be thus in the midst of the land among the people, it shall be like the shaking of an olive tree, like the gleaning of grapes when the vintage is done.

City of confusion
Keil & Delitzsch offer:
The world with its pleasure is judged.
The world's city is also judged,  in which both the world's power and the world's pleasure were concentrated.
The central city of  the world as estranged from God;  and it is here designated according to its end,  which end will be tohu (confusion),  even as its nature was confusion.
Its true nature was the breaking up of  the harmony of  all divine order;  and so its end will be the breaking up of  its own standing,  and a hurling back,  as it were,  into the chaos of  its primeval beginning.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Barnes says:
That Jerusalem is here intended there can be no doubt.
The name  'city of confusion'  is probably given to it by anticipation of  what it would be;  that is,  as it appeared in prophetic vision to Isaiah.  He gave to it a name that would describe its state when these calamities should have come upon it.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

According to JFB:
The city of confusion - what apostate Jerusalem and the world - city,  spiritual Babylon,  apostate Christendom,  would be:  by anticipation it is called so.
Babel means confusion:  the apostate Church,  which is spiritual Babylon,  is therefore rightly called  "The city of confusion,"  or  "emptiness,"  as the Hebrew, tohu, means.

Of  the literal Babylon, saith, the Lord  "shall stretch out upon it the line of confusion and the stones of emptiness:"
Of  the spiritual Babylon, the city of  the world,  the Lord (Jer 4:23) pronounces the doom,  "I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form (confusion or emptiness) and void."
The Hebrew, tohu vabohu (the same words as in Gen 1:2): reduced to its primitive chaos.
(from Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

It is God that brings all these calamities upon the earth.
The Lord that made the earth,  and made it fruitful and beautiful,  for the service and comfort of  man,  now makes it empty and waste,  for its Creator is and will be its  Judge>
He has an incontestable right to pass sentence upon it and an irresistible power to execute that sentence.
It is the Lord that has spoken this word,  and he will do the work.
It is his curse that has devoured the earth,  the general curse which sin brought upon the ground for man's sake (Gen 3:17),  and all the particular curses which families and countries bring upon themselves by their enormous wickedness.  See the power of God's curse,  how it makes all empty and lays all waste;  those whom he curses are cursed indeed.

Genesis 3:17-19
To Adam he said, "Because you listened to your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, 'You must not eat of it,'
"Cursed is the ground because of you;
through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life.
It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field.
By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground,
since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return."
(NIV)
(from Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible: New Modern Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Isaiah 24:14, 15
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(14)  These shall lift up their voices;
exult in the majesty of the Lord.
They shall shout from the sea:
These shall cry aloud; and they that
are left on the land shall rejoice together in the glory of the Lord: the
water of the sea shall be troubled.
These shall lift up their voice, they shall sing praises in the name of the Lord; they shall shout for joy as they shouted at the mighty deeds that were wrought for them by the sea.
(15)  Therefore, honor the Lord with
lights in the coastlands of the sea Ė
the name of the Lord, the God of
Israel.
Therefore shall the glory of the Lord
be in the isles of the sea; the name of
the Lord shall be glorious.
Wherefore, when light cometh to the righteous, they shall glorify before the Lord; in the coastlands of the sea shall they be giving thanks and blessing the name of the Lord, the God of Israel.

From the NKJV

(14)  They shall lift up their voice, they shall sing; for the majesty of the LORD they shall cry aloud from the sea.  (15)  Therefore glorify the LORD in the dawning light, the name of the LORD God of Israel in the coastlands of the sea.

They shall lift up their voice
There is now a church,  there refined by the judgment,  and rejoicing in its apostolic calling to the whole world.  The ground and subject of  the rejoicing is "the majesty of Jehovah,"  i.e.,  the fact that Jehovah had shown Himself so majestic in judgment and mercy  (Isa 12:5-6),  and was now so manifest in His glory (Isa. 2:11, 17).

From the sea
Therefore rejoicing was heard  "from the sea"  (the Mediterranean).
Turning in that direction,  it had the islands and coast lands of  the European West in front,  and at its back the lands of  the Asiatic East,  which are called  'urimthe lands of light,  i.e.,  of the sun-rising.
His  "name"  is His nature as revealed and made  "nameable"  in judgment and mercy.

From the isles and coasts of  the Mediterranean where they would have escaped,  and where they would find a refuge.  No doubt many of  the inhabitants adjacent to the sea,  when they found the land invaded,  would betake themselves to the neighboring islands,  and find safety there until the danger should be overpast.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

Glorify ye the Lord
The prophet calls upon the people to join in the praise of  Yahweh wherever they are scattered.
In the previous verse he describes the scattered few who were left in the land,  or who had escaped to the adjacent islands in the sea,  as celebrating the praises of God where they were.
Now he calls on all to join in this wherever they were scattered.

The Remnant

Here is mercy remembered in the midst of  wrath.  In Judah and Jerusalem,  and the neighboring countries,  when they are overrun by the enemy,  Sennacherib or Nebuchadnezzar,  there shall be a remnant preserved from the general ruin,  and it shall be a devout and pious remnant.
I. v. 13 The small number of this remnant
When all goes to ruin there shall be
as the shaking of an olive-tree,  and the gleaning grapes,
here and there one who shall escape the common calamity
(as Noah and his family when the old world was drowned),  that shall be able to sit down upon a heap of  the ruins of  all their creature comforts,  and even then rejoice in the Lord,  who,  when all faces gather blackness,  can lift up their heads with joy.
These few are dispersed,  and at a distance from each other,  like the gleanings of  the olive-tree;  and they are concealed,  hid under the leaves.
The Lord only knows those that are His.
II. v. 14 The great devotion of this remnant
   
1. They shall sing for joy in their deliverance.
When the mirth of carnal worldlings ceases
the joy of  the saints is as lively as ever.
When the merry-hearted do sigh because the vine languishes
the upright-hearted do sing because the covenant of grace, the fountain of their comforts and the foundation of their hopes, never fails.
Those that rejoice in the Lord can rejoice in tribulation,  and by faith may be in triumphs when all about them are in tears.
2. They shall sing to the glory and praise of God.
They shall sing not only for the mercy
but for the majesty of the Lord.
The majesty of the Lord,  which is matter of terror to wicked people,  furnishes the saints with songs of  praise.
They shall sing for the magnificence, or transcendent excellency, of the Lord,
shown both in his judgments and in his mercies;  for we must sing,  and sing unto him, of both.
It is much for the honor of  God if  those who fear him rejoice in him,  and praise him,  even in the most melancholy times.
III. v. 15 The holy zeal of  this remnant
 They encourage their fellow-sufferers to do likewise.
1. Those who are in the fires, in the furnace of affliction.
Those fires by which the inhabitants of the earth are burned, v. 6. Or in the valleys, the low, dark, dirty places.
2. Those who are in the isles of the sea, whither they are banished, or are forced to flee for shelter, and hide themselves remote from all their friends.
They went through fire and water (Ps 66:12); yet in both let them glorify the Lord, and glory him as the Lord God of  Israel.
Those who through grace can glory in tribulation ought to glorify God in tribulation,  and give him thanks for their comforts,  which abound as their afflictions do abound.  We must in every fire,  even the hottest,  in every isle,  even the remotest,  keep up our good thoughts of God.  When,  though he slay us,  yet we trust in him - when,  though for his sake we are killed all the day long,  yet none of these things move us - then we glorify the Lord in the fires.  Thus the three children,  and the martyrs that sang at the stake.
(from Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible: New Modern Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Psalm 66:12-20

You let men ride over our heads; we went through fire and water, but you brought us to a place of abundance.
I will come to your temple with burnt offerings and fulfill my vows to you ó vows my lips promised and my mouth spoke when I was in trouble.
I will sacrifice fat animals to you and an offering of rams; I will offer bulls and goats.
Selah
Come and listen, all you who fear God; let me tell you what he has done for me.
I cried out to him with my mouth; his praise was on my tongue.
If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened;  but God has surely listened and heard my voice in prayer.
Praise be to God, who has not rejected my prayer or withheld his love from me!     (NIV)
 

Isaiah 24:16-20
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(16)  From the end of the earth we
hear singing: glory to the righteous!
And I said:
I waste away! I waste away!
Woe is me!
The faithless have acted faithlessly;
The faithless have broken faith!
O Lord God of Israel, from the ends
of the earth we have heard wonderful
things, and there is hope to the godly:
but they shall say,
Woe to the despisers,
that despise the law.
From the sanctuary, whence joy is about to come forth unto all the inhabitants of the earth, we have heard a song of praise for the righteous. The prophet said, The mystery of the reward of the righteous hath been shewn unto me; the mystery of the punishment of the wicked hath been revealed to me. Woe to the oppressors, for they shall be oppressed, and to the spoiling of the spoilers, for behold they shall be spoiled.
(17)  Terror, and pit, and trap upon
you who dwell on earth!
Fear, and a pit, and a snare, are
upon you that dwell on the earth.
Fear, and the pit, and the snare, are upon thee, O inhabitant of the earth.
(18)  He who flees at the report of
the terror shall fall into the pit; and
he who climbs out of the pit shall be
caught in the trap. For sluices are
opened on high, and earthís
foundations tremble.
And it shall come to pass, that he that
flees from the fear shall fall into the
pit; and he that comes up out of the
pit shall be caught by the snare: for
windows have been opened in
heaven, and the foundations of
the earth shall be shaken,
And it shall come to pass, that he who fleeth from before the fear shall fall into the midst of the pit, shall be taken in the net: for mighty deeds have been wrought in heaven, and the foundations of the earth have trembled.
(19)  The earth is breaking, breaking;
the earth is tottering, tottering;
The earth shall be utterly confounded,
and the earth shall be completely
perplexed.
The earth shall tremble greatly, the earth shall shake to and fro, the earth shall be utterly torn asunder.
(20)  The earth is swaying like a
drunkard; it is rocking to and fro like
a hut. Its iniquity shall weigh it down,
and it shall fall, to rise no more.
It reels as a drunkard and one
oppressed with wine, and the earth
shall be shaken as a storehouse of
fruits; for iniquity has prevailed upon
it, and it shall fall, and shall not be
able to rise.
The earth shall stagger about like a drunken man, and shall swing to and fro like a booth; and her transgressions shall be heavy upon her, and she shall fall and not rise again.

From the NKJV

(16)  From the ends of the earth we have heard songs: "Glory to the righteous!" But I said, "I am ruined, ruined! Woe to me! The treacherous dealers have dealt treacherously, indeed, the treacherous dealers have dealt very treacherously."
(17)  Fear and the pit and the snare are upon you, O inhabitant of the earth.   (18)  And it shall be
That he who flees from the noise of the fear shall fall into the pit, and he who comes up from the midst of the pit shall be caught in the snare; for the windows from on high are open, and the foundations of the earth are shaken.
(19)  The earth is violently broken, the earth is split open, the earth is shaken exceedingly.  (20)  The earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall totter like a hut; its transgression shall be heavy upon it, and it will fall, and not rise again.

We have heard songs
Songs to God come in together to Palestine from distant lands,  as a grand chorus.
When God begins to execute His judgments on the apostate world,  the faithful remnant who survive amidst the persecutions glorify the God of  Israel in anticipation of  His approaching intervention for them.
Compare Luke 21:28, "When these things begin to come to pass, then look up and lift up your heads, for your redemption draws near."
 

Adam Clarke suggests verse 16 is speaking of  total destruction:
The prophet speaks in the person of  the inhabitants of  the land still remaining there,  who should be pursued by divine vengeance,  and suffer repeated distresses from the inroads and depredations of their powerful enemies.  Agreeably to what he said before in a general denunciation of these calamities: Isaiah 6:13 "Though there be a tenth part remaining in it; even this shall undergo a repeated destruction."
(from Adam Clarke's Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Biblesoft)

The prophet all at once becomes aware of  the sufferings which will have first of  all to be overcome,  and which he cannot look upon without sharing the suffering himself.
The expression  "Then I said"  stands here in the same apocalyptic connection as in Rev 7:14, for example.

Revelations 7:14
I replied, Sir, you know. And he said to me, these are they who have come out of the great tribulation (persecution), and have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. [Gen 49:11; Dan 12:1.]      (AMP)

But I said
He said it at that time in a state of ecstasy;  so that when he committed to writing what he had seen,  the saying was a thing of  the past.
The final salvation follows a final judgment;
and looking back upon the latter,  he bursts out into the exclamation of  pain: r‚zii-lii,  consumption,  passing away,  to me (see Isa 10:16; 17:4), i.e., I must perish (r‚zi).

Fear and the pit
The exclamation, "Fear and the pit," etc. (which Jeremiah applies in Jer 48:43-44, to the destruction of Moab by the Chaldeans  "Fear and the pit and the snare shall be upon you"),  is not an invocation,  but simply a deeply agitated utterance of  what is inevitable.

They who should flee as soon as the horrible news arrived would not escape destruction,  but would become victims to one form if  not to another  (the same thought which we find expressed twice in Amos 5:19,  and still more fully in Isa 9:1-4, as well as in a more dreadfully exalted tone).

Amos 5:19
It will be as though a man fled from a lion, and a bear met him!
Or as though he went into the house, leaned his hand on the wall, and a serpent bit him!     (NKJV)

Windows from on high are open
The idea that the judgment is a direct act of Jehovah stands in the foreground and governs the whole.
For this reason it is described as a repetition of  the flood  (for the opened windows or trap-doors of  the firmament,  which let the great bodies of  water above them come down from on high upon the earth,  point back to Gen 7:11 and 8:2, cf., Ps 78:23);  and this indirectly implies its universality.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

The earth is violently broken
It is also described as an earthquake.
"The foundations of the earth"  are the internal supports upon which the visible crust of  the earth rests.
The way in which the earth in its quaking first breaks,  then bursts,  and then falls,  is painted for the ear by the three reflective forms in v. 19,  which keep each stage in the process of  the catastrophe vividly before the mind.
The threefold play upon the words would be tame,  if the words themselves formed an anti-climax.
The earth first of all

receives rents;
then gaping wide,
it bursts asunder;
and finally sways to and fro once more, and falls.
It is no longer possible for it to keep upright.
Its wickedness presses it down like a burden,
so that it now reels for the last time like a drunken man,
until it falls never to rise again.

Isaiah 24:21-23
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(21)  In that day, the Lord will punish the host of heaven in heaven and the kings of the earth on earth. And God shall bring his hand upon the host of heaven, and upon the kings of the earth. And it shall come to pass at that time, that the Lord shall punish the mighty hosts that dwell in the stronghold, and the kings of the sons of men that dwell on the earth.
(22)  They shall be gathered in a dungeon as captives are gathered; and shall be locked up in a prison. But after many days they shall be remembered. And they shall gather the multitude thereof into prisons, and they shall shut them into a strong hold: after many generations they shall be visited. And they shall be gathered together to the prison house, and be incarcerated in the prison, and after many days they shall be remembered.
(23)  Then the moon shall be ashamed, and the sun shall be abashed. For the Lord of Hosts will reign On Mount Zion and in Jerusalem, and the Presence will be revealed to His elders. And the brick shall decay, and the wall shall fall; for the Lord shall reign (in) from out of Sion, and out of Jerusalem, and shall be glorified before his elders. And they that serve the moon shall be put to shame, and they that worship the sun shall be confounded; for the kingdom of the Lord of hosts shall be revealed in the mountain of Zion, and in Jerusalem, and before the elders of his people in glory.

From the NKJV

(21)  It shall come to pass in that day that the LORD will punish on high the host of exalted ones, and on the earth the kings of the earth.  (22)  They will be gathered together, as prisoners are gathered in the pit, and will be shut up in the prison; after many days they will be punished.
(23)  Then the moon will be disgraced and the sun ashamed; for the LORD of hosts will reign on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem and before His elders, gloriously.

But if the old earth passes away in this manner out of  the system of  the universe,  the punishment of  God must fall at the same time both upon the princes of  heaven and upon the princes of  earth (the prophet does not arrange what belongs to the end of  all things in a "chronological" manner).

The host of exalted ones
There have been various interpretations of this expression.

Jerome understands it of  the host of heaven
And thinks it refers to the fact that in the day of  judgment God will judge not only earthly things but celestial,  and especially the sun and moon and stars,  as having 'been the objects of idolatrous worship (see Deut 4:19; Dan 8:10; 11:13).
Compare Ps 18:17; Jer 25:30, where the words 'on high' are used to denote heaven.
Aben Ezra supposes that by the phrase is meant angels,  who preside over the governors and kings of the earth,  in accordance with the ancient opinion that each kingdom was under the tutelage of  guardian angels.
Rosenmuller says that the beings thus referred to were evil spirits or demons to whom the kingdoms of  the world were subject.
Grotius suggests that the reference is to the images of the sun, moon, and stars, which were erected in high places, and worshipped by the Assyrians.
Keil & Delitzsch offer the following:  the host on high will refer to the angels of  the nations and kingdoms;  and the prophecy here presupposes what is affirmed in Deut 32:8 (LXX),  and sustained in the book of  Daniel,  when it speaks of a sar of  Persia,  Javan,  and even the people of  Israel.  In accordance with this exposition,  there is a rabbinical saying,  to the effect that  "God never destroys a nation without having first of all destroyed its prince,"  i.e.,  the angel who,  by whatever means he first obtained possession of the nation,  whether by the will of God or against His will,  has exerted an ungodly influence upon it.
Just as,  according to the scriptural view,  both good and evil angels attach themselves to particular men,  and an elevated state of  mind may sometimes afford a glimpse of this encircling company and this conflict of  spirits;  so do angels contend for the rule over nations and kingdoms,  either to guide them in the way of  God or to lead them astray from God;  and therefore the judgment upon the nations which the prophet here foretells will be a judgment upon angels also.  The kingdom of spirits has its own history running parallel to the destinies of men.
Barnes thinks that the reference is probably to those who occupied places of  power and trust in the ecclesiastical arrangement of  Judea,  the high priest and priests,  who exercised a vast dominion over the nation,  and who,  in many respects,  were regarded as elevated even over the kings and princes of  the land.  The comparison of  rulers with the sun,  moon,  and stars,  is common in the Scriptures;  and this comparison was supposed especially to befit ecclesiastical rulers,  who were regarded as in a particular manner the lights of the nation.


PRAISE  TO  GOD

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The Fourfold Melodious Echo
Ch. 25:1-27:6

First Echo (25:1-8) Salvation of the Nations after the Fall of the Imperial City
Second Echo (25:9-12) The Humiliation of Moab
Third Echo (26:1-21) Israel Brought Back,  or Raised from the Dead
Fourth Echo (27:2-6) The Fruit-Bearing Vineyard under the Protection of  Jehovah

Isaiah 25:1-5
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(1) O Lord, You are my God; I will extol You, I will praise Your name. For You planned graciousness of old, counsels of steadfast faithfulness. O Lord God, I will glorify thee, I will sing to thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things, even an ancient
and faithful counsel. So be it.
O Lord, thou art my God; I will exalt thee, I will give thanks to thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; counsels which thou didst promise to bring of old now hast thou brought and established.
2 For You have turned a city into a stone heap, a walled town into a ruin, the citadel of strangers into rubble, never to be rebuilt. For thou hast made cities a heap,
even cities made strong that their foundations should not fall: the city
of ungodly men shall not be built
for ever.
For thou hast made the unfortified cities into heaps, the strong city into ruins; an idol temple of the nations shall never be built in the city of Jerusalem.
3 Therefore a fierce people must honor You, a city of cruel nations must fear You. Therefore shall the poor people bless thee, and cities of injured men shall bless thee. Therefore shall the strong people glorify before thee, the city of the terrible nations shall fear before thee.
4 For shelter for the needy man in his distress Ė shelter from rainstorm, shade from heat. When the fury of tyrants was like a winter rainstorm. For thou hast been a helper to every lowly city, and a shelter to them that were disheartened by reason of poverty: thou shalt deliver them from wicked men: thou hast been a shelter of them that thirst, and a refreshing
air to injured men.
For thou hast been a stronghold to the poor, a help to the needy in the time of distress, as men take shelter from before the rainstorm, as a shadow from the heat; so are the words of the wicked to the righteous, as a rainstorm which beats against a wall.
5 The rage of strangers like heat in the desert, You subdued the heat with the shade of clouds, the singing of the tyrants was vanquished. We were as faint-hearted men
thirsting in Sion, by reason of
ungodly men to whom thou didst
deliver us.
As the heat in a thirst land shalt thou bring down the tumult of the mighty; as the shadow of a cool rock in a weary land, so is the peace of mind of the righteous, when the wicked are brought low.

From the NKJV

(1) O LORD, You are my God. I will exalt You, I will praise Your name, for You have done wonderful things; Your counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.   (2)  For You have made a city a ruin, a fortified city a ruin, a palace of foreigners to be a city no more; it will never be rebuilt.
(3)  Therefore the strong people will glorify You; the city of the terrible nations will fear You.  (4)  For You have been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shade from the heat; for the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall.  (5)  You will reduce the noise of aliens, as heat in a dry place; as heat in the shadow of a cloud, the song of the terrible ones will be diminished.

The First Echo:
Salvation of the Nations after the Fall of the Imperial City
25:1-8

There is not merely reflected glory,  but reflected sound as well.
The melodious echoes commence with Isa 25:1.  The prophet,  transported to the end of  the days,  commemorates what he has seen in psalms and songs.  These psalms and songs not only repeat what has already been predicted;  but,  sinking into it,  and drawing out of it,  they partly expand it themselves,  and partly prepare the way for its further extension.

The first echo is Isa 25:1-8.  The prophet,  whom we already know as a psalmist from ch. 12,  now acts as choral leader of  the church of  the future,  and praises Jehovah for having destroyed the mighty imperial city,  and proved Himself a defense and shield against its tyranny towards  His oppressed church.

The introductory clause is to be understood as in Ps 118:28:  Jehovah (voc.),  my God art Thou.

"You have wrought wonders:"  this is taken from Ex 15:11 - "Who is like You, O LORD, among the gods? Who is like You, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?"
The wonders which are now actually wrought are  "counsels from afar"  (meer‚chook),  counsels already adopted afar off,  i.e.,  long before,  thoughts of  God belonging to the olden time.  It is the manifold "counsel"  of  the Holy One of  Israel that displays its wonders in the events of  time.

What He has executed is the realization of  His faithfulness,  and the reality of  His promises.
The imperial city is destroyed.  Jehovah,  as the first clause,  has removed it away from the nature of  a city into the condition of  a heap of  stones.  The sentence has its object within itself,  and merely gives prominence to the change that has been effected.
The fall of  the imperial kingdom is followed by the conversion of  the heathen;  the songs proceed from the mouths of  the remotest nations.

Verse 3 runs parallel with Rev 15:3-4.  Nations hitherto rude and passionate now submit to Jehovah with decorous reverence,  and those that were previously oppressive with humble fear.

Revelations 15:3-4
They sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying:
"Great and marvelous are Your works, Lord God Almighty!
Just and true are Your ways, O King of the saints!
Who shall not fear You, O Lord, and glorify Your name? For You alone are holy. For all nations shall come and worship before You, for Your judgments have been manifested."     (NKJV)
The cause of this conversion of  the heathen is the one thus briefly indicated in the Apocalypse,  "for thy judgments are made manifest".
dal (OT:1800)  and 'eb™yown (OT:34) are names well known from the Psalms,  as applying to the church when oppressed.  To this church,  in the distress which she had endured (low (OT:3807 a ) batsar (OT:6862),  Jehovah had proved Himself
a strong castle (m‚'ooz),
a shelter from storm and a shade from heat
so that the blast of the tyrants was like a wall-storm,  i.e.,  a storm striking against a wall,  sounding against it and bursting upon it without being able to wash it away,  because it was the wall of  a strong castle,
and this strong castle was Jehovah Himself.

As Jehovah can suddenly subdue the heat of  the sun in dryness (tz‚yoon, abstract for concrete),  and it must give way when He brings up a shady thicket,  namely of clouds,  so did He suddenly subdue the thundering (sh‚'on)  of  the hordes that stormed against His people;  and the song of  triumph (z‚miir)  of the tyrants,  which passed over the world like a scorching heat,  was soon  "brought low" ('‚n‚h,  in its neuter radical signification  "to bend,"  related to kaana` (OT:3665)).

Isaiah 25:6
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(6)  The Lord of Hosts will make on this mount for all the peoples a banquet of  rich viands, a banquet
of choice wines Ė of rich viands seasoned with marrow, of choice
wines well refined.
And the Lord of hosts shall make
a feast for all the nations: on this
mount they shall drink gladness,
they shall drink wine:
And the Lord of hosts shall make for all nations in this mountain a feast and a festival; they shall consider that it is given for honor, but it shall be unto them for shame, even plagues from which they cannot escape, plagues wherein they will perish.

From the NKJV

(6)  And in this mountain the LORD of hosts will make for all people a feast of choice pieces, a feast of wines on the lees, of fat things full of marrow, of well-refined wines on the lees.

This mountain
"This mountain"  is Zion,  the seat of  God's presence,  and the place of  His church's worship.
The feast is therefore a spiritual one.
The figure is taken, as in Ps 22:27,  from the sacrificial meals connected with the shel‚mim  (the peace-offerings).

Psalm 22:27-28
All the ends of the earth will remember and turn to the LORD, and all the families of the nations will bow down before him,  for dominion belongs to the LORD and he rules over the nations.   (NIV)

Feast of wines
Shem‚rim mezukk‚kim are wines which have been left to stand upon their lees after the first fermentation is over,  which have thus thoroughly fermented,  and have been kept a long time  (from sh‚mar,  to keep,  spec. to allow to ferment),  and which are then filtered before drinking,  hence

wine both strong and clear

Full of marrow
Memuch‚yiim
- to grease or make fat
The meaning is therefore  "mixed with marrow,"  made marrowy.
The thing symbolized in this way is the full enjoyment of  blessedness in the perfected kingdom of God.
The heathen are not only humbled so that they submit to Jehovah, but they also

take part in the blessedness of His church,
and are abundantly satisfied with the good things of His house,
and made to drink of pleasure as from a river.

The ring of the verse is inimitably pictorial.
It is like joyful music to the heavenly feast.
The more flexible form is intentionally chosen in the place of  m™muchiym.
It is as if we heard stringed instruments played with the most rapid movement of the bow.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Isaiah 25:7, 8
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(7)  And He will destroy on this
mount the shroud that is drawn over
the faces of all the peoples and the
covering that is spread over the
nations:
They shall anoint themselves with
ointment in this mountain. Impart
thou all these things to the nations;
for this is Godís counsel upon all
the nations.
And there shall be destroyed in this mountain the face of the mighty man, who is lord over all the nations, and the face of the king who rules over all the kingdoms.
(8)  He will destroy death forever.
My Lord God will wipe the tears away
from all faces and will put an end to
the reproach of His people-g over all
the earth Ė for it is the Lord who has
spoken.
Death has prevailed and swallowed
men up; but again the Lord God has
taken away every tear from every face.
He has taken away the reproach of
his people from all the earth: for the
mouth of the Lord has spoken it.
They shall forget death forever, and the Lord God shall wipe away tears from off all faces; and the reproaches of his people shall be removed from off all the earth; for by the Memra of the Lord is it so decreed.

From the NKJV

(7)  And He will destroy on this mountain the surface of the covering cast over all people, and the veil that is spread over all nations.  (8)  He will swallow up death forever, and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from all faces; the rebuke of His people He will take away from all the earth; for the LORD has spoken.

Although the feast is one earth,  it is on an earth which has been transformed into heaven;  for the party wall between God and the world has fallen down:  death is no more,  and all tears are for ever wiped away.

What Jehovah bestows is followed by what He puts away.
The  "veil"  and  "covering" are not symbols of  mourning and affliction,  but of spiritual blindness,  like the "veil" upon the heart of  Israel mentioned in 2 Cor 3:15 (Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts.)
The penee halloot  (surface of the covering)  is the upper side of the veil,  the side turned towards you,  by which Jehovah takes hold of the veil to lift it up.

The veil that is spread
The second halloot stands for halaaT,  and is written in this form,  according to Isaiah's peculiar style,  merely for the sake of  the sound - a play on words.
The only difference between the two nouns is this:

halloot covering the leading idea is that of  the completeness of  the covering
masseec‚h veil the leading idea is that of  the its thickness
The two together speaking of the completeness:
Totally covered - nothing outside of the covering
Totally hidden - nothing visible through the covering
indicating the total darkness and absence of light of any kind.

Swallow up death
The removing of  the veil,  as well as of death,  is called bila` (OT:1104).
Swallowing up is used elsewhere as equivalent to making a thing disappear,  by taking it into one's self;  but here,  as in many other instances, t he notion of  receiving into one's self is dropped,  and nothing remains but the idea of  taking away,  unless,  indeed,  abolishing of  death may perhaps be regarded as taking it back into what hell shows to be the eternal principle of  wrath out of  which God called it forth.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

God will abolish death,  so that there shall be no trace left of  its former sway.
Paul gives a free rendering of this passage in 1 Cor 15:54

1 Corinthians 15:54-57
When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: "Death has been swallowed up in victory."
"Where, O death, is your victory?  Where, O death, is your sting?"
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.  But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.    (NIV)

The Syriac combines both ideas,  that of  the Targum and that of  Paul.
But the abolition of  death is not in itself the perfection of  blessedness.
There are sufferings that force out a sigh,  even after death has come as deliverance.  But all these sufferings,  whose ultimate ground is sin,  Jehovah sweeps away.

All tears
There is something very significant in the use of the expression dim™`aah (OT:1832) (a tear),  which the Apocalypse renders pa'n (NT:3956) da'kruon (NT:1144) (Rev 21:4).
Wherever there is a tear on any face whatever,  Jehovah wipes it away;  and if  Jehovah wipes away,  this must be done most thoroughly:

He removes the cause along with the outward symptom,
the sin as well as the tear.

It is self-evident that this applies to the church triumphant.  The world has been judged,  and what was salvable has been saved.  There is therefore no more shame for the people of  God.
Over the whole earth there is no further place to be found for this;  Jehovah has taken it away.
The earth is therefore a holy dwelling-place for blessed men.
The New Jerusalem is Jehovah's throne,  but the whole earth is Jehovah's glorious kingdom.
The prophet is here looking from just the same point of  view as Paul in 1 Cor 15:28,  and John in the last page of the Apocalypse.

Revelations 7:17
For the Lamb Who is in the midst of the throne will be their Shepherd,  and He will guide them to the springs of  the waters of  life;  and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.     (AMP)
Revelations 21:4
God will wipe away every tear from their eyes;  and death shall be no more,  neither shall there be anguish (sorrow and mourning) nor grief nor pain any more,  for the old conditions and the former order of  things have passed away.     (AMP)
1 Corinthians 15:54
And when this perishable puts on the imperishable and this that was capable of  dying puts on freedom from death,  then shall be fulfilled the Scripture that says,  Death is swallowed up (utterly vanquished forever) in and unto victory.     (AMP)

Isaiah 25:9
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(9)  In that day they shall say: this is
our God; we trusted in Him, and He
delivered us. This is the Lord, in
whom we trusted; let us rejoice and
exult in His deliverance!
And in that day they shall say,
Behold our God in whom we have
trusted, and he shall save us: this is,
the Lord; we have waited for him,
and we have exulted, and will rejoice
in our salvation.
And one shall say at that time, Behold, this is our God for whom we have waited, and he will save us; this is the Lord for whose Memra we have waited, we will rejoice and be glad in his salvation.

From the NKJV

(9)  And it will be said in that day:
"Behold, this is our God; we have waited for Him, and He will save us. This is the LORD; we have waited for Him; we will be glad and rejoice in His salvation."

The Second Echo:
The Humiliation of Moab
25:9-12

After this prophetic section,  which follows the first melodious echo like an interpolated recitative,  the song of  praise begins again;  but it is soon deflected into the tone of  prophecy.
The shame of  the people of  God,  mentioned in verse. 8,  recalls to mind the special enemies of  the church in its immediate neighborhood,  who could not tyrannize over it indeed,  like the empire of  the world,  but who nevertheless scoffed at it and persecuted it.
The representative and emblem of  these foes are the proud and boasting Moab.
All such attempts as that of  Knobel to turn this into history are but so much lost trouble.
Moab is a mystic name.  It is the prediction of the humiliation of  Moab in this spiritual sense,  for which the second echo opens the way by celebrating Jehovah's appearing.
Jehovah is now in His manifested presence the conqueror of  death,  the drier of  tears,  the savior of  the honor of  His oppressed church.

It will be said
The undefined but self-evident subject to v'‚mar ("they say") is the church of  the last days.

"Behold:"  hinneeh and zeh  (behold, this) belong to one another, as in Isa 21:9.
The waiting may be understood as implying a retrospective glance at all the remote past,  even as far back as Jacob's saying,  "I wait for Thy salvation, O Jehovah" (Gen 49:18).

This is the Lord
This is Yahweh.  It is Yahweh that has brought this deliverance.  None but he could do it.
The plan of redeeming mercy comes from him,  and to him is to be traced all the benefits which it confers on man.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)

Zechariah 12:10
And I will pour out upon the house of  David and upon the inhabitants of  Jerusalem the Spirit of  grace or unmerited favor and supplication.  And they shall look [earnestly] upon Me Whom they have pierced.     (AMP)
John 19:36-37
For these things took place,  that the Scripture might be fulfilled (verified, carried out),  Not one of His bones shall be broken.  And again another Scripture says,  They shall look on Him Whom they have pierced.     (AMP)
Revelations 1:5-7
To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood,  and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father - to him be glory and power for ever and ever!  Amen.
Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him,  even those who pierced him.   (AMP)

Isaiah 25:10-12
From the Tanakh From the  LXX From the Targum
(10)  For the hand of the Lord shall
descend upon this mount, and Moab
shall be trampled under Him as straw
is threshed to bits at Madmenah.
God will give rest on this mountain,
and the country of Moab shall be
trodden down, as they tread the floor
with wagons.
For the might of the Lord shall be revealed in this mountain, and the Moabites shall be trodden down in their place, as straw is trodden down in the mud.
(11)  Then He will spread out His hands in their homeland, as a swimmer spreads his hands out to swim, and He will humble their pride along with And he shall spread forth his hands, even as he also brings down man to destroy him: and he shall bring low his pride in regard to the thing on which he has laid his hands. And he shall spread forth the smiting of his might among them, as a swimmer spreadeth forth his hands to swim; and he shall lay low their glory together with the supports of their hands.
(12)  Yea, the secure fortification of their walls He will lay low and humble, will raze to the ground, to the very dust. And he shall bring down the height of the refuge of the wall, and it shall come down even to the ground. And the strong city, even the cities of the nations, shall be overthrow, cast down and bring to the ground, even to the dust.

From the NKJV

(10)  For on this mountain the hand of the LORD will rest, and Moab shall be trampled down under Him, as straw is trampled down for the refuse heap.  (11)  And He will spread out His hands in their midst as a swimmer reaches out to swim, and He will bring down their pride together with the trickery of their hands.  (12)  The fortress of the high fort of your walls He will bring down, lay low, and bring to the ground, down to the dust.

In the land of  promise there is rejoicing,  but on the other side of  the Jordan there is fear of  ruin.
Two contrasted pictures are placed here side by side.

Upon Zion Jehovah
descends in mercy
The Jordan is the same as
the "great gulf" in the
parable of the rich man.
Upon the highlands of  Moab
He descends in His wrath.

Jehovah brings down His hand upon Zion,  not only to shelter,  but also to avenge.

Israel,  that has been despised,  He now makes glorious
For contemptuous Moab He prepares a shameful end.

In the place where it now is,  "in its own place,"  (its own land)  Moab is threshed down,  stamped or trodden down,  as straw is trodden down into a dung-pit to turn it into manure. Since madmeen‚h (refuse),  by itself,  means the dunghill,  and not the tank of  dung water

A man cannot swim in a manure pond;  but Moab attempts it,  though without success,  for Jehovah presses down the pride of  Moab in spite of  its artifices like the Arabic urbe, irbe, cleverness, wit, sharpness), i.e., the skilful and cunning movement of  its hands.
Hitzig renders it "machinations," i.e.,  twisting and turnings,  which Moab makes with its arms,  for the purpose of  keeping itself up in the water.

What verse 11 affirms in figure, verse 12 illustrates without any figure.
As the text stands,  we are evidently to understand by it the strong and lofty walls of  the cities of  Moab in general.
(From Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

The Blessings of the Gospel

Here we find:
I (v. 9) The welcome which the church shall give to these promised blessings
1. God himself must have the glory of all
"Behold, this is our God"
2. The longer it has been expected the more welcome it is
"We have waited for Him, and He will save us...We have waited for Him"
3. It is matter of joy unspeakable
"We will be glad and rejoice in His salvation"
II (v. 10-12) A prospect of further blessings for the securing and perpetuating of  these
1. The power of God shall be engaged
"For on this mountain the hand of the LORD will rest"
2. The power of their enemies shall be broken
"And Moab shall be trampled down under Him"
"He will bring down their pride"
"Along with the trickery of their hands"
The fortress of the high fort...He will bring down...to the ground

There is no fortress impregnable to Omnipotence,  no fort so high but the arm of  the Lord can overtop it and bring it down.  This destruction of  Moab is typical of

Christ's victory over death  (spoken of verse 8)
He will swallow up death forever     (NIV)
His spoiling principalities and powers in his cross  (Colossians 2:15),
And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.     (NIV)
His pulling down Satan's strong-holds by the preaching of his gospel (2 Corinthians 10:4)
The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.     (NIV)
His reigning till all his enemies be made his footstool  (Psalm 110:1)
The LORD says to my Lord: "Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet."     (NIV)
(from Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible: New Modern Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)
 


LESSON  11  FROM  THE  AMPLIFIED  VERSION

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Isaiah 24:1 - 25:12 - from the Amplified Version

24:1  BEHOLD, THE Lord will make the land and the earth empty and make it waste and turn it upside down (twist the face of it) and scatter abroad its inhabitants.
(2)   And it shall be--as [what happens] with the people, so with the priest; as with the servant, so with his master; as with the maid, so with her mistress; as with the buyer, so with the seller; as with the lender, so with the borrower; as with the creditor, so with the debtor.
(3)   The land and the earth shall be utterly laid waste and utterly pillaged; for the Lord has said this.
(4)   The land and the earth mourn and wither, the world languishes and withers, the high ones of the people [and the heavens with the earth] languish.
(5)   The land and the earth also are defiled by their inhabitants, because they have transgressed the laws, disregarded the statutes, and broken the everlasting covenant. [Gen 9:1-17; Deut 29:20.]
(6)   Therefore a curse devours the land and the earth, and they who dwell in it suffer the punishment of their guilt. Therefore the inhabitants of the land and the earth are scorched and parched [under the curse of God's wrath], and few people are left. [Rom 1:20.]
(7)   The new wine mourns, the vine languishes; all the merrymakers sigh.
(8)   The mirth of the timbrels is stilled; the noise of those who rejoice ends, the joy of the lyre is stopped.
(9)   No more will they drink wine with a song; strong drink will be bitter to those who drink it.
(10)  The wasted city of emptiness and confusion is broken down; every house is shut up so that no one may enter.
(11)  There is crying in the streets for wine; all joy is darkened, the mirth of the land is banished and gone into captivity.
(12)  In the city is left desolation, and its gate is battered and destroyed.
(13)  For so shall it be in the midst of the earth among the peoples, as the shaking and beating of an olive tree, or as the gleaning when the vintage is done [and only a small amount of the fruit remains].
(14)  [But] these [who have escaped and remain] lift up their voices, they shout; for the majesty of the Lord they cry aloud from the [Mediterranean] Sea.
(15)  Wherefore glorify the Lord in the east [whether in the region of daybreak's lights and fires, or in the west]; [glorify] the name of the Lord, the God of Israel in the isles and coasts of the [Mediterranean] Sea.
(16)  From the uttermost parts of the earth have we heard songs: Glory to the Righteous one [and to the people of Israel]! But I say, emaciated I pine away, I pine away. Woe is me! The treacherous dealers deal treacherously! Yes, the treacherous dealers deal very treacherously.
(17)  Terror and pit [of destruction] and snare are upon you, O inhabitant of the earth!
(18)  And he who flees at the noise of the terror will fall into the pit; and he who comes up out of the pit will be caught in the snare. For the windows of the heavens are opened [as in the deluge], and the foundations of the earth tremble and shake. See Page 4 Gen. 9:11 Never again. Possibly a figure of speech?
(19)  The earth is utterly broken, the earth is rent asunder, and the earth is shaken violently.
(20)  The earth shall stagger like a drunken man and shall sway to and fro like a hammock; its transgression shall lie heavily upon it, and it shall fall and not rise again.
(21)  And in that day the Lord will visit and punish the host of the high ones on high [the host of heaven in heaven, celestial beings] and the kings of the earth on the earth. [1 Cor 15:25; Eph 3:10; 6:12.]
(22)  And they will be gathered together as prisoners are gathered in a pit or dungeon; they will be shut up in prison, and after many days they will be visited, inspected, and punished or pardoned. [Zech 9:11,12; 2 Peter 2:4; Jude 6.]
(23)  Then the moon will be confounded and the sun ashamed, when [they compare their ineffectual fire to the light of] the Lord of hosts, Who will reign on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem, and before His elders will show forth His glory.

25:1  O LORD, You are my God; I will exalt You, I will praise Your name, for You have done wonderful things, even purposes planned of old [and fulfilled] in faithfulness and truth.
(2)   For You have made a city a heap, a fortified city a ruin, a palace of aliens without a city [is no more a city]; it will never be rebuilt.
(3)   Therefore [many] a strong people will glorify You, [many] a city of terrible and ruthless nations will [reverently] fear You.
(4)    For You have been a stronghold for the poor, a stronghold for the needy in his distress, a shelter from the storm, a shade from the heat; for the blast of the ruthless ones is like a rainstorm against a wall.
(5)   As the heat in a dry land [is reduced by the shadow of a cloud, so] You will bring down the noise of aliens [exultant over their enemies]; and as the heat is brought low by the shadow of a cloud, so the song of the ruthless ones is brought low.
(6)   And on this Mount [Zion] shall the Lord of hosts make for all peoples a feast of rich things [symbolic of His coronation festival inaugurating the reign of the Lord on earth, in the wake of a background of gloom, judgment, and terror], a feast of wines on the lees--of fat things full of marrow, of wines on the lees well refined.
(7)   And He will destroy on this mountain the covering of the face that is cast over the heads of all peoples [in mourning], and the veil [of profound wretchedness] that is woven and spread over all nations.
(8)   He will swallow up death [in victory; He will abolish death forever]. And the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces; and the reproach of His people He will take away from off all the earth; for the Lord has spoken it. [1 Cor 15:26,54; 2 Tim 1:10.]
(9)   It shall be said in that day, Behold our God upon Whom we have waited and hoped, that He might save us! This is the Lord, we have waited for Him; we will be glad and rejoice in His salvation.
(10)  For the hand of the Lord shall rest on this Mount [Zion], and Moab shall be threshed and trodden down in his place as straw is trodden down in the [filthy] water of a [primitive] cesspit.
(11)  And though [Moab] stretches forth his hands in the midst of [the filthy water] as a swimmer stretches out his hands to swim, the Lord will bring down [Moab's] pride in spite of the skillfulness of his hands and together with the spoils of his hands.
(12)  And the high fortifications of your walls [the Lord] will bring down, lay low, and bring to the ground, even to the dust.

(End of  Lesson 11)


  

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