Bible Knowledge Commentary said, “Isaiah noted the kind of people who will be saved (Isaiah 33:13–16) and then described the land in which they will live (Isaiah 33:17–24).”
In Isaiah 33:14 we read of sinners and hypocrites who will dwell in devouring fire, in everlasting burnings. May we never forget what we’ve been saved from!
Those who are saved will see the King in His beauty (Jesus in His glory).
Isaiah 33:22 (NKJV) “(For the LORD is our Judge, the LORD is our Lawgiver, the LORD is our King; He will save us).”
Back in the “day” the nations viewed the gods as local deities. The Jews revealed the fact that there is only one God, and He rules the whole-wide-world. One day, and it sure seems like it’s going to be soon, God will judge the world…we read that vividly in Isaiah 34.
Isaiah 34:1–2 (NKJV) “Come near, you nations, to hear; and heed, you people! Let the earth hear, and all that is in it, the world and all things that come forth from it. 2 For the indignation of the LORD is against all nations, and His fury against all their armies; He has utterly destroyed them, He has given them over to the slaughter.”
The world will be judged for their sins against God – AND – for their sins against Israel (Zion). God has blessed the United States of America for its support of Israel; if we turn our back on Israel…we will pay the price.
Isaiah 34:8 (NKJV) “For it is the day of the LORD’s vengeance, the year of recompense for the cause of Zion.”
Isaiah 35 speaks of the future glory of Zion and at the same time describes the future ministry of the Messiah, Jesus Christ, who gave us glimpses of what will happen under His rule.
Isaiah 35:5–6 (NKJV) “Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. 6 Then the lame shall leap like a deer, and the tongue of the dumb sing. For waters shall burst forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert.”
Isaiah 36 chronicles the threat and arrogance of the Assyrian army as they surrounded Jerusalem. You can also read this account in 2 Chronicles 32 and 2 Kings 18-19. Some people wonder why this story is repeated in three books of the Bible and the answer would have to be that God wanted to emphasize it – He wants us to know this emphatically.
Assyria was the world power in that day. they had conquered the northern kingdom of Israel, and they were 100% certain that they were about to completely devour Jerusalem and finish off the southern kingdom of Judah. Assyria foolishly thought that it was all by their own strength. They tried to strike fear into the hearts of the Jews, speaking to them in their own language, attempting to make them surrender to their enemy. Rabshakeh boasted how Assyria had defeated the gods of all the other nations. If he would have stopped there, perhaps he and his army would have survived, but Rabshakeh boasted against the one true living God, the LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He attempted to undermine the faith of the Jews, specifically warning them not to let King Hezekiah persuade them to trust in the LORD their God.
Hezekiah was a good leader. He had commanded the people not so say a word. Rabshakeh, King Sennacherib, and all the Assyrian army was on the verge of discovering that there’s only one God, Who was about to put them in their place.
Our Christian life should be a blessing not a burden. God wants us to be free, to travel light, to rest assured, to walk in peace. God has granted us liberty – but – we are not to use this liberty as a license to sin. What beautiful words we read in Galatians 5:13, “…but through love serve one another.” That’s it, that’s what we’ve been set free to do – to love God and to love everyone else!
This type of love cannot be manufactured in our own strength or effort. Agape (Divine) love is only possible if we walk in the Spirit (function under His influence – Ephesians 5:18). The contrast would be if we walked in the flesh – referring to our own fallen nature which is inclined to sin.
How can you tell if you’re walking in the flesh or walking in the Spirit? There will be evidence, there will be fruit.
As I read Galatians 5:19-21 I do so reverently and honestly…does any of this describe me? If it does, if any of these characteristics describe a person consistently, wherein this is their unrepentant practice, then Paul says such a person will NOT inherit the kingdom of God! I thank the Lord that He’s set me free from the sins of immoral sex, drugs, and rock and roll parties of my b.C. days, but what about hatred, strife, quarreling, outbursts of wrath, envy?
What about love? Does that describe me? How about you? This is the eevidence of a Christian. This is definitely an emphasis in this chapter (see Galatians 5:6, 13-14, 22). Pastor Chuck Smith taught that love is the fruit of the Spirit and the other eight qualities listed in Galatians 5:22-23 are simply manifestations of love. If we’re truly Christians then we live in the Spirit, we must now do our best to be led by the Spirit, and hence walk in the Spirit…under His influence (Ephesians 5:18; Proverbs 1:23).
In this Psalm, David prays for God’s protection from the slander of his enemies. It’s painful to think that others would speak bad of us, and at times it’s even more than painful – it’s harmful. The lies Saul was spreading about David mustered up a movement against a man who was completely innocent of those accusations (Psalm 64:4).
David was confident that God would speak on his behalf (Psalm 64:7) and as we see so frequently in the Psalms, he ends on a high note:
Psalm 64:10 (NKJV) “The righteous shall be glad in the LORD, and trust in Him. And all the upright in heart shall glory.”
We’ve probably all had those days or seasons of slander against us; one passage that has helped me time and time again is:
Isaiah 54:17 (NKJV) “‘No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises against you in judgment You shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is from Me,’ says the LORD.”
Proverbs 23:23 (NKJV) “Buy the truth, and do not sell it, also wisdom and instruction and understanding.”
Not that truth, wisdom, and understanding costs actual money, but it does “cost.” We must pray, study God’s Word, and be willing to say “no” to sin. Some people are not willing pay the price, or they sell out to whatever the devil deals them.
A related Proverb is:
Proverbs 17:16 (NKJV) “Why is there in the hand of a fool the purchase price of wisdom, since he has no heart for it?”
O Lord, please give us a heart for wisdom.
If you have any questions or comments on today’s reading, or you’d like to share something the Lord showed you, feel free to leave a reply below. I’d love to hear from you as we grow forward in 2021.