Behold, the LORD will empty the earth and make it desolate,
and He will twist its surface and scatter its inhabitants. And it shall be:
as with the people, so with the priest;
as with the slave, so with the master;
as with the maid, so with her mistress;
as with the buyer, so with the seller;
as with the creditor, so with the debtor.
The earth shall be utterly empty and utterly plundered;
for the LORD has spoken this word.
Most of today’s reading is an exposition of the coming day when the LORD “will punish the host of heaven… and the kings of the earth.” In that day, “The moon will be confounded, and the sun ashamed, for the LORD of hosts reigns on Mount Zion in Jerusalem, and His glory will be before His elders.” In that day Judah will sing, “We have a strong city; He sets up salvation as walls and bulwarks…” In that day, “Leviathan” will be punished; in that day, “A pleasant vineyard” will be kept by the LORD.
The middle chapters today read more like a psalm than a vision. Often referring to the LORD in the second person, the prophet sings to Him, “You have done wonderful things, plans from of old, faithful and sure.” The prophet implores his hearer to “Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD God is an everlasting rock.”
Let the words of the prophet wash over you today. After an oracle against Tyre and Sidon in which the LORD informs them that it is He who has wrought their destruction, Isaiah’s attention looks wholly beyond Tyre, and Assyria, and the Chaldeans, to his great central concern: “O LORD our God, other lords have ruled over us, but Your name alone we bring to remembrance.”
Our verse for this week is James 1:22: But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
Isaiah 23 through 27. Now let’s read it!
But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.