Thursday, July 26, 2012

THE BOOK OF ISAIAH // Chapters 13-14: God's Anger and Wrath

Chapter 13
-       Shift back now to Isaiah foretelling the coming destruction of Babylon, or Assyria.
o   Assyria can be assumed as the subject when the text says Babylon. Assyria has been talked about previously in Isaiah and intermixed within this coming section about being the subject of the Lord’s anger 14:24-27. Also, the kings of Assyria commonly took the title, “king of Babylon.”
-       Verse 3: God uses armies, warriors, and warfare to accomplish His purposes.
-       Verse 6: God’s anger and wrath are terrifying. This is not something to be taken lightly.
-       Verse 8: We are helpless in response to God’s wrath.
-       Verse 11: God withholds the right and the power to punish the wicked for their sin. He has every right to be the just, righteous judge of the world.
-       Verse 16: Children killed, homes sacked, and wives raped. God’s wrath is rough.

Chapter 14
-       Chapter 14 is entitled ‘A taunt for Babylon’s King.’ Literally the whole chapter talks about the coming fall of Babylon, and that’s about it.
-       Verse 2: As God is calling his chosen nation of Israel back to Him; he is also bringing in many people of other nations to join them, so called Gentiles.
o   Bringing outsiders into the covenant community.
-       Verse 14: describes what selfish ambition looks like that leads one to this type of fall. The kings of Babylon/Assyria desired to be like God, they wanted power and control, and instead they were destroyed.
-       Verse 27: God is omnipotent. No one can stop Him. When He desires to do something, it will be done. 

It's chapters like these two that often aren't so fun to read. Here you see God taking his anger and frustration out on nations of people that have chosen not to follow Him and to ignore Him. You see God punishing people for their sin. You see Him bringing the justice for our sins down that we deserve, instead of the grace that He has shown for us through Jesus. In Chapter 14 you see God destroying the Kings of Babylon because of their desire for power and control and their will to follow after their own ambition. Ooooo Jesus that hurts. Thats me. Thats so many of us going after our own selfish ambitions. But you see God's response to that right here. It's not fun. It's not pretty to read. But it's God's word. It is how he dealt with those people in that time. God give me the humility and the selflessness to not chase after my own ambition. Help me chase after you instead. Thank you for sending Jesus to die on the cross for my sins so that I could be seen as righteous in Your eyes, and not as the wicked who deserve your wrath and anger. Help me to look more and more like Him each day.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

THE BOOK OF ISAIAH // Chapter 12: God came to save me

Chapter 12
-       Chapter 12 is a resulting song of praise from what Isaiah promised in the previous chapter, the coming servant of the Lord out of the line of King David that would come bearing the Spirit of the Lord in all wisdom, understanding, counsel, might, knowledge, and fear of the Lord. Jesus the Christ. 
-       Verse 2: Jesus’ coming will be with the purpose of a personal salvation.
o   “God has come to save me.”
-       Verse 4: Our response from that is to rejoice, and tell the world what he has done.

Jesus came to save me. It's that simple. So often I forget that. So often I get caught up thinking about the world and how big it is. The billions of people in the world. Those who know Jesus, those who don't know Jesus, and those who have heard about Him and decidedly turned away from Him. The world is huge. I think about my own life, the place I grew up, the people I used to know, the people I meet each day. It's hard to for me to wrap my mind around the fact that God has made each and every person on this earth, that He loves each and every person on this earth, and that He desires each and every person on this earth to know Him and love Him in return. But what a reminder about those truths than what you find here in Isaiah chapter 12, than the fact that as it says in verse 2, Jesus came to save each and every person on this earth. If Isaiah could sit there 700 years before Jesus even came, and praise God for coming to save him personally, through Jesus, before it even happened, then I can sit here however many years after it happened and praise Jesus for coming to save me personally. And if I can sit here and say it, a man with a sinful heart that constantly struggles in his flesh every day, then you can sit there and say it, regardless of who you are, where you live, what you've done, or whatever other reason you can think of. Jesus came to save me. And He came to save you... Wow. I don't know what else you or I could need, want, or desire. I Praise You Jesus. I Praise You. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

THE BOOK OF ISAIAH // Chapter 11: A Branch from David's Line

Chapter 11

-       Immediately following a string of writing foreshadowing all of the destruction that is to come from the Lord’s anger, chapter 11 serves as quite the contrast of hope for the future King.
-       Verse 1: A new Branch (Capitol B) will grow out of the stump of the line of Jesse, bearing new fruit.
-       Verse 2: The spirit of the Lord will rest on Him, a Spirit of wisdom, understanding, counsel, might, knowledge, and fear of the Lord.
-       Verses 3-5: He will be obedient, just, powerful, righteous, and true.
-       Verse 9: There will be no hurt or destruction in God’s creation on that day.
-       Verse 10: Jesus will bring a “banner of salvation.”
o   Ancient armies during warfare carried a banner with them to communicate with and rally troops. It announced their central message, why they were there. Jesus’ banner was that of salvation.
-       Verse 11: We see Isaiah again mention the remnant of His people, as he did in Chapter 10 verse 20-22. Last time he was talking about how only that remnant will return to God, even though everyone else goes the other way, and now he talks about how God will reach out his hand to that remnant that returns.
-       Verse 15: Isaiah makes reference to the Israelites initial exodus from bondage in Egypt to create an analogy to the coming exodus that will be from their sin and wickedness that will be through this new Branch of Jesse. 

Sunday, June 3, 2012

THE BOOK OF ISAIAH // CHAPTERS 9-10: Hope in the Messiah

Chapters 9 and 10
-       Verses 2-7: Isaiah opens this chapter speaking of a future time to come where there will be a shift from darkness to light. During this time there will be:
o   Joy verse 3
o   Peace verse 5
o   That time will come when:
§  Verse 6: A Son is given to us, he will be a king and rule and he will come from the line of David.
§  Verse 6: also provides the names of Jesus
·      The name “Mighty God” literally translates as “God is a warrior.”
-       Verses 9:8-10:19: Isaiah begins now to shift back to talking about how God’s judgment will fall on Israel for their turning their backs to God.
o   They were arrogant towards God (verse 9-10)
o   Verse 13: even though God punished them and warned them, Israel still would not repent and change their foolish ways.
o   Four times Isaiah says that God’s anger will not be satisfied and he still has His fist ready to strike. Verse 12, 17, and 21, and in chapter 10 verse 4.
o   Chapter 10 Verse 1-4: In Israel there were Judges and lawmakers that were abusing the people and taking advantage of them.
§  God loves Justice. He desires for us to act justly.
-       Verses 5-19: Isaiah shifts now to talking about the judgment that will fall on Assyria.
o   Verse 5: God says that he will use Assyria to express His anger.
o   Verse 12: God says however that though he used Assyria to express His anger, they were acting unjustly, being proud and arrogant.  God will then punish Assyria for their arrogance just like Israel.
-       Verse 15: I love verse 15. Verse 15 speaks to me. Be humble. Give the glory in your life to the person who is worthy of all glory. You deserve nothing.
-       Verse 20: when the Lord’s anger is done destroying Israel, the only ones who will remain are those who put their trust in God.
-       Verse 22: Out of all of the people of Israel, only a small number will return to God; a remnant.
-       Verses 28-34: Isaiah basically predicts how the Assyrian army will advance upon Israel and destroy them. But then he closes by saying that God will then turn his anger on Assyria. 

Sunday, May 27, 2012


Chapter 8
-       Verse 1-5: We see the first mention of God’s using of Isaiah’s children as prophecies, with the name of his son that foretold the fall of Israel and Aram to the Assyrian army.
-       Verses 11-17: Amidst the plundering of the nation from foreign invaders however, Isaiah gives this call that God gave him to trust in the Lord.
o   Verse 11: Not to think like everyone else, to be different.
o   Verse 13: Make God holy in your life, he is the one you should fear because He will keep you safe.
o   Verse 14: He will make those that turn away from Him stumble.
o   Verse 16: Preserve God’s word, and teach it to others.
-       Verse 19-22: Isaiah talks about people’s tendency to look to psychics and other forms for comfort and knowledge. Then he says so clearly to instead look to God’s instructions and teachings.
o   “Look to God’s instructions and teachings! People who contradict His word are completely in the dark.”

Isaiah is so to the point in this chapter. He begins by foretelling the coming invasion of Israel by Assyria, something that becomes a major topic of discussion in the early stages of Isaiah. Then he gives the call in verses 12-17 to trust in God through this invasion. That He would deliver the nation of Israel from this tragic war that was about to happen, that He had a purpose in it for them. And then immediately after that call to trust in the Lord, Isaiah answers the most logical question those affected by this invasion would have, that being, "Where do I turn to find God's instruction?" "How do I know what He wants me to do?" Isaiah said it in verse 16, and then he says it again in verse 20. "Look to God's word." Open the Bible dude! It's right there in front of you, its been written in every language you could imagine, its been recorded on audiotape for people who don't read. It's God's word. It's His instruction. It's what He has given us here on earth so that we can see what He says. It is the most important thing you will ever read. Isaiah says that people who contradict God's word are "completely in the dark." Read the word. Dissect it. Chew it over before you swallow it. Pick it apart. Search for what it means. Search for how it relates to your life. Challenge it. Question it. Build your Life around it.  And then (verse 16) preserve it, and teach it to others.

Thursday, May 24, 2012


Chapter 7
-       Verses 1-2: Somewhere between 736-734 B.C, Israel and Syria have set out to make war against Judah, and the king of Judah, Ahaz, is freaking out.
-       Verse 3-9: God sends Isaiah out to meet Ahaz and deliver a message to him, telling him to stop worrying, and that he doesn’t need to fear, for regardless of what mere men say, the Lord says that he is safe, the invasion will not happen.
o   Verse 9: The last part of Isaiah’s message is the most important: “Unless your faith is firm, I cannot make you stand firm.”
§  God can’t/won’t physically make us do things. He can assure us that something is happen, and then depending on our level of faith in him we will react.
-       Verse 10: A second message goes out to Ahaz from God, this one challenging Ahaz to ask God to prove what He said is true so that Ahaz will believe. But he responds that he can’t test God like that. Ahaz puts his trust in his own armies and neglects God.
-       Verse 13: Isaiah gets frustrated with Ahaz’s disbelief.
-       Verse 14: Isaiah says there will be a sign anyways, and here is a prophecy about the coming Messiah:
o   Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and we will call him Immanuel.
-       Verse 17: Because of Ahaz’s choice, God is going to destroy Judah.

God is all powerful, ever present, ever in control, He's sovereign, He's running the show, He is the First and the Last, and Creator of all things, God does a lot.  But one thing God does not do, is He does not physically force us to do something. He says it right here in Isaiah, "Unless your faith is firm, I cannot make you stand firm." We have to choose, we have that decision to make for ourselves. Are you going to stand firm and say "Yes" to Jesus, or are you going to waiver, as Ahaz does in this passage? I want to stand firm.

Later in this passage is a Messianic Prophecy concerning the coming birth of Jesus. In this prophecy Isaiah makes the claim that He will be called Immanuel, which means "God with us." That is one of my favorite names for Jesus, because that is literally what He was. He was God with us here on Earth.  One of my favorite songs from one of my favorite Christian bands talks about Immanuel and the meaning of that name, so I thought it would be a cool time to share it here. It's not their official video but its the best one I could find of the song.

Thursday, May 17, 2012


i don't really want it but it's callin my name, "David come and get me I can take away the pain, come a little closer you got everything to gain," but i got to much to lose i'm bout to go insane. I been here too many times got my head low. if i gave a dime for every time i'd be dead broke. i feel that battle in my soul the pressure closing in. my passions asking for a pass an i can't hold it in. there i go again. no self control again. i'm too good at giving in. feeling like throwing in the towel the guilt is closing in. sometimes i climb the heights, but i'm at my lowest sin. cloaked in deception and overlooking on potent sin. i'm so gone baby wanna be home again, wanna feel home again, come feel this hole again. now i'm doubled over with my face in my knees and decide its where i wanna be, but there i go again i'm falling.

face to the pavement, once again faced with the same sin, there i go again i'm falling, i don't think imma make it. don't know how much longer i can take it, there i go again i'm falling, so i'm caught up in this sin, i wonder if i see Your face again there i go again i'm falling, falling, falling.. there i go.

trying to keep it cool I don't wanna lead em playing. but its hard to block out everything that she be sayin, look like, "keep coming baby just reach out an take my hand, there's no need to fear me all i wanna do is dance." i believe the lie, now i'm headed for a door. they have finally got me locked and i'm bout to be the song. feeling like i'm watched by everybody in the room, cause they know imma fake and if not they will soon. have you ever felt like the walls finna close in, shackles on your hands and your feet and your dozing, sleep til the logic you possessed, before all of the mess, sound so be headed mess with the rest, whats left it's a schizophrenic shell where a man once was, now you get to see the damage your lust does, so now i'm doubled over with my face in my knees and decide it's where I wanna be, but there I go again I'm falling.

face to the pavement, once again faced with the same sin, there i go again i'm falling, i don't think imma make it. don't know how much longer i can take it, there i go again i'm falling, so i'm caught up in this sin, i wonder if i see Your face again there i go again i'm falling, falling, falling.. there i go.

every time i fall, He gone pick me up, the Lord is my sheperd homie He gone pick me up, I fell into the trap again but He gone pick me up, remind me of His promises in Him i put my trust. i don't never have to give in to the lies, i'm feastin on his word all my sin i do despise. so now i'm down here before His throne praying on my knees, asking Lord give me grace please, i don't wanna be falling. 

so i gotta face this but i kno theres nothing that He can't fix. i don't wanna be falling. looking to the corss where they placed Him cause I know His grace is amazing. i don't wanna be falling. He's covered all my sin. it's gone never to be seen again. so You're calling, calling calling... me to You.