READ: Isaiah 12-14
BACKGROUND: Isaiah 12 is a hymn of praise that closes of the section talking about the world that God will create one day. Chapter 13 kicks off a new theme of judgment and the ultimate destruction of the wicked – specifically the nations that oppressed God’s people.
12:5 – We ought to be a people of hope who share that hope with the world. If we really believe in Heaven then we should tell people about it.
13:3 – God isn’t talking about Israel here. He’s talking about the Medes and using “consecrated ones” to indicate that he is using them to accomplish his purposes.
12 – This verse is really scary, and it’s a powerful visual of God’s judgment.
16 – Why children? To eliminate the future military power of the nation. Destruction and punishment isn’t just a current thing , it’s a consequence for the future.
14:1 – Israel will ultimately return to her land. God’s promise is always a real, tangible place.
12 – A reference to Satan and his rebellion
13-14 – This details the fall of Satan. He wished to occupy heaven, God’s own dwelling place. He wished to exalt himself above all other creatures. He wanted the glory that belongs to God alone.
17 – Jesus says in Luke 4:18 that he came to set the captives free!
24-27 – The fulfillment of this prophecy is found in Isaiah 37:21-38.
THINK: Short thought today because I know that the passage was long. Again, I’m drawing from The Princess Bride because…well…it’s a brilliant movie! 🙂
There is a scene in The Princess Bride where Wesley, still too weak to actually fight, psychs out Prince Humperdink by throwing him off guard. Humperdink is prepared to fight “to the death” but Wesley refuses, demanding instead that they fight “to the pain” before unleashing a terrifying explanation of what that looks like. Check out the scene here.
The idea of being left “in anguish, wallowing in freakish misery forever” is unspeakably horrifying. The very idea is enough to defeat Humperdink in this scene. But here’s the harsh reality: that is exactly what an eternity without God will be. An existence in the punishment of hell, cut off entirely from the presence and love of the Creator will be nothing less than anguish and freakish misery. God doesn’t hold back when he describes that reality for us.
His day of judgment is coming. Are you ready? Do you know him? Have you accepted Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior? What about your friends and loved ones? If they don’t know him they need to, and you are God’s plan to reach them!
PRAY: Ask that God would forgive you for the wrong you’ve done, and thank him for the incredible salvation he has made freely available to us though we don’t deserve it. Ask God for the boldness and the courage to share him with all of your friends, classmates, neighbors, & coworkers who are headed for eternity without him.