Isaiah

Isaiah 30 The LORD’s Voice Will Be Heard.

Woe awaits those who seek counsel apart from the LORD’s word (vv. 1-2 Cf. 29:15; Dt. 29:19). They would rather trust in human powers such as Egypt, who had little regard for their pitiful petitioners (vv. 3-5 Cf. 31:1; Jer. 43:7). Such help was in vain, as they would be carried away into exile (vv. 6-7). Isaiah was told to write this prediction down, in effect to mark the LORD’s word (v. 8). They would go into exile because of their rebellion, they were liars who would “not hear the law of the LORD; who say to the seers, “Do not see,” and to the prophets, “Do not prophesy to us right things; speak to us smooth things, prophesy deceits. Get out of the way, turn aside from the path, cause the Holy One of Israel to cease from before us.” (vv. 9-11 Cf. 1:2-4; 5:20; 65:2; Dt. 32:20; Jer. 6:14; 23:17; 42:20; Ezek. 13:7; Mic. 2:6-7, 11; Rom. 16:18; II Tim. 4:3-4).

The covenanted nation despised the word, therefore destruction would come upon them suddenly. In rejecting the only means chosen by the potter to fashion them as his image bearers, the LORD will break the potter’s wheel-his work with them was done (vv. 12-14). They rejected his rest on his terms, and as a result they would flee from their enemies in defeat (vv. 15-16). This was the reverse of what should have been the history of the covenanted nation. What they were suffering was the curses for the breach of the covenant relationship (v. 17a Cf. Lev. 26:36; Dt. 28:25; 32:30; Josh. 23:10; Prov. 28:1). However, in the midst of this covenantal indictment, the promises of the covenant would find fulfillment in a remnant- “a pole on top of a mountain and as a banner on a hill” (v. 17b).

What set apart the remnant was not their works, but the grace and mercy of the LORD, therefore they would wait for him and his blessing (v. 18 Cf. 26:8; 33:2; Pss. 2:12; 34:8; Prov. 16:20; Jer. 17:7). The LORD will answer their prayers with grace (v. 19). “And though the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet your teachers will not be moved into a corner anymore, but your eyes shall see your teachers. Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” whenever you turn to the right hand or whenever you turn to the left hand” (vv. 20-21 Cf. I Kg. 22:27; Amos 8:11-12). The reciprocal of true repentance is in the destruction of their idols of silver and gold-their sin (v. 22 Cf. 2:20; 31:7). The blessings of the covenant relationship will flow in the harvest to come, including for their animals (vv. 23-24 Cf. Mt. 6:33; I Tim. 6:8).

Waters will flow from the mountains, watering the whole earth as they flowed down (v. 25). The light of the Lord would increase, and healing for his people (v. 26 Cf. 60:19-20; Rev. 21:23; 22:5). Assyria will be subject to the judgment of his word-a devouring fire and an overflowing stream. In their futility, they will oppose him in vain (vv. 27-28 Cf. 2:3; 8:8; 11:4; II Th. 2:8). On the other hand, there will be singing for the remnant who “come into the mountain of the LORD, to the Mighty One of Israel. The LORD will cause His glorious voice to be heard” (v. 29-30a Cf. 2:3; 28:2; 29:6). “There will be a highway for the remnant of His people who will be left from Assyria” (11:16). The voice of the LORD will shatter Assyria (vv. 30b-31 Cf. 14:25; 37:36). A staff of punishment will come from the LORD, a fire will burn, “the breath of the LORD, like a stream of brimstone, kindles it” (vv. 32-33).

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