Words Of Truth
"That I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth..." (Proverbs 22:21).
An Overview Of The Old Testament
Part 269 – Awake Through They’ll Consider What They’ve Not Heard (Isaiah 52:1-15)
1. Who was told to awake?
Zion, which was in the holy city of Jerusalem: “Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city: for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean” (Isaiah 52:1).
Š This instruction is the same as in Isaiah 51:9; 51:17.
Š Now the correction is over, time to get strong (Hebrews 12:5-14).
Š Time to change the garments (Isaiah 61:1-3 and Luke 15:11-24).
Š Jerusalem was again to become the holy city (Nehemiah 11:1 and Joel 3:17).
Š Zion was in Jerusalem (Psalms 135:21).
Š The reason the city was going to be holy included the fact that the unclean were not there (Isaiah 26:1-2 and Nahum 1:15; cf. II John 1:9-11).
Š Food for thought, which causes some thoughts in this study, there could also be a hint to the future [as in the New Testament] here (Hebrews 12:22-23).
2. Once awakened, would they go into captivity?
No, they were going to be being freed from captivity: “Shake thyself from the dust; arise, and sit down, O Jerusalem: loose thyself from the bands of thy neck, O captive daughter of Zion” (Isaiah 52:2).
Š There was a promise of deliverance that once realized, they needed to come forth (Zechariah 2:6-7) and be free (Isaiah 58:6).
3. What did Zion gain from selling themselves?
Nothing: “For thus saith the LORD, Ye have sold yourselves for nought; and ye shall be redeemed without money” (Isaiah 52:3).
Š They gained nothing by selling themselves (Isaiah 1:21) into physical and spiritual captivity (Jeremiah 15:10-14).
Š They played the harlot, but for free (Ezekiel 16:29-34).
Š Jesus asked what a man would exchange for his soul (Mark 8:34-37). Sadly, some sell for nothing.
Š Their redemption, it would not be financial. This very well could be looking forward to the ultimate redemption (I Peter 1:18-19; cf. Colossians 1:12-14). With God, the ransom is not able to be paid by things of this world (Psalms 49:7-8).
4. When God’s people were oppressed, what was happening to the name of the Lord?
His name was continually blasphemed: “(4) For thus saith the Lord GOD, My people went down aforetime into Egypt to sojourn there; and the Assyrian oppressed them without cause. (5) Now therefore, what have I here, saith the LORD, that my people is taken away for nought? they that rule over them make them to howl, saith the LORD; and my name continually every day is blasphemed” (Isaiah 52:4-5).
Š They were in Egypt and redeemed out of there (I Chronicles 17:21-22).
Š The Assyrian’s oppressed them for God’s will, but no cause of their own (Isaiah 10:5-7).
Š Now, God is taking this personally as they are His people (Jeremiah 50:17-20).
Š His name was being blasphemed and that meant something to God (Ezekiel 36:20-29).
Š Consider something, our actions can effect the reputation of our Lord (Romans 2:19-24).
5. Was God going to allow His name to be unknown among His people?
No: “Therefore my people shall know my name: therefore they shall know in that day that I am he that doth speak: behold, it is I” (Isaiah 52:6).
Š The identifier of “my people” here is Israel (Exodus 3:10, I Kings 16:1-2, Isaiah 1:3, and Jeremiah 12:14).
Š He would be known among His people then (Ezekiel 20:41-44 and Ezekiel 39:27-29) and among in the 1st century (Hebrews 8:10-13; cf. Colossians 1:23).
6. Did Jerusalem have good or bad news coming to them at this time?
Good news: “(7) How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth! (8) Thy watchmen shall lift up the voice; with the voice together shall they sing: for they shall see eye to eye, when the LORD shall bring again Zion” (Isaiah 52:7-8).
Š The message of salvation is one of peace (Acts 10:33-37).
Š This is a statement that Paul used in application even now (Romans 10:14-17).
Š Thy God reigneth (Psalms 99:1-3).
Š The watchmen had failed (Isaiah 56:10-12 and Jeremiah 6:17), but would obviously change for the better (Isaiah 62:6 and Jeremiah 31:6-7).
7. What reasons were there for Jerusalem to break forth into joy?
“(9) Break forth into joy, sing together, ye waste places of Jerusalem: for the LORD hath comforted his people, he hath redeemed Jerusalem. (10) The LORD hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God” (Isaiah 52:9-10).
Š Break forth in joy (Isaiah 66:10-14).
Š Comfort (Isaiah 49:13).
Š Redemption (Psalms 71:23 and Isaiah 44:23).
Š God showed forth His strength (Psalms 21:13 and Psalms 59:17).
Š All shall see salvation and this is reason to praise Him in song (I Chronicles 16:23, Psalms 95:1, and Psalms 96:2).
8. When the Lord would lead them from captivity, what did He instruct them not to do?
Don’t touch the unclean things: “(11) Depart ye, depart ye, go ye out from thence, touch no unclean thing; go ye out of the midst of her; be ye clean, that bear the vessels of the LORD. (12) For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the LORD will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your rereward” (Isaiah 52:11-12).
Š Their departure was a brisk one, though they were not running away in an escape (Jeremiah 51:6).
Š If they touched anything unclean, they would be too (Leviticus 5:2-3).
Š They needed to know what was clean and what was unclean (Ezekiel 44:23).
Š This teaching applies spiritually (II Corinthians 6:14-18; cf. Ephesians 5:11).
Š God had them protected upfront (cf. Exodus 13:21-22) and in their rear (cf. Exodus 14:19-20).
9. Was the Lord’s servant going to leave an impression on the nations?
For sure: “(13) Behold, my servant shall deal prudently, he shall be exalted and extolled, and be very high. (14) As many were astonied at thee; his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men: (15) So shall he sprinkle many nations; the kings shall shut their mouths at him: for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they consider” (Isaiah 52:13-15).
Š Seemingly, up to this point, it appeared we were talking about captivity and deliverance from Babylon. It is slightly possible the references could be made the deliverance from the captivity of sin (Romans 6:1-23).
Š Now, the water gets a bit muddier. Cyrus is a servant of God we’ve discussed (Isaiah 44:28-45:4). The things could apply to him.
Š We could also begin talking about Jesus, whom we will discuss clearly in the next chapter.
Š The servant of the Lord here would deal prudently [wisely].
o Jesus (Matthew 12:39-42).
o Or could be said of a king like Cyrus (Psalms 2:10).
Š The servant would be exalted.
o Jesus (Philippians 2:3-10).
o Or Cyrus (Ezra 1:2).
Š Astonishment could be of Cyrus (II Chronicles 36:22-23) and definitely at Jesus (Mark 7:32-37).
Š The part of his visage [sight; appearance] being marred [disfigured; corrupt] is confusing at best. It could have references to Christ (Matthew 27:29-30). However, I cannot definitively put a Scripture to a conclusion here either.
Š His form more than sons of men could be cited against it being Christ (Romans 8:3, Philippians 2:7, and Hebrews 2:9-14).
Š Sprinkle many nations infers physical destruction (cf. Isaiah 63:1-6).
Š The response of kings doesn’t clarify this possibly being Cyrus (Isaiah 45:1) or Jesus (Isaiah 49:5-7 and Ephesians 1:20-23). They were warned of both too!
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