Saturday, 25 July 2015

Isaiah 41-45

Here's how the study works: Read the chapters mentioned in the heading during the week and share any words, thoughts, verses that stood out to you. Having a week for several chapters creates the opportunity to revisit them and make additional comments as you feel inclined as well as make comments on other people's insights.


Susan said...

41:22-23 Tell us, you idols, what is going to happen. Tell us what the former things were, so that we may consider them and know their final outcome. Or declare to us the things to come, tell us what the future holds, so we may know that you are gods. Do something, whether good or bad, so that we will be dismayed and filled with fear.

Isaiah challenges Israel's idols to prophesise the future! When they can't God does and prophesises the coming of Cyrus and calls him by name in 44:28 & 45:1. If this prophecy was written after Cyrus came to power (as some commentators state) Isaiah's whole argument makes no sense.

Susan said...

42:3 A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out.
42:24-25 Who handed Jacob over to become loot, and Israel to the plunderers? Was it not the LORD, against whom we have sinned? For they would not follow his ways; they did not obey his law. So he poured out on them his burning anger, the violence of war. It enveloped them in flames, yet they did not understand; it consumed them, but they did not take it to heart.

God who would not break a bruised reed or snuffed out a smouldering wick has poured out his burning anger on Israel. But they did not take it to heart, they did not reflect on their condition (of being unfaithful), did not consider their ungodly ways, and therefore did not understand.

Susan said...

43:19-21 See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. The wild animals honor me, the jackals and the owls, because I provide water in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland, to give drink to my people, my chosen, the people I formed for myself that they may proclaim my praise.

God's people were made to proclaim God's praise and in this purpose God's people find meaning and purpose for their lives.

Susan said...

44:28…who says of Cyrus, ‘He is my shepherd and will accomplish all that I please; he will say of Jerusalem, “Let it be rebuilt,” and of the temple, “Let its foundations be laid.”’

God used a pagan king, Cyrus to rebuild Jerusalem and temple. According to Josephus, Cyrus read the prophesy and desired to fulfil it. It was unprecedented and unexpected. God has also kept his people separate from the Babylonians so that they could return.

Susan said...

45:15 Truly you are a God who has been hiding himself, the God and Savior of Israel.

God hides so that he can be found by those who consider the evidence – his mighty acts in the past. God is not found by the casual seeker but by those who carefully observe and consider what He his deeds.