August 2

Read Isaiah 5 -- 9

In Today's Reading:

God's judgment upon sinners; Isaiah's vision of God's holiness; his message for King Ahaz; Christ's birth and Kingdom foretold

The prophet Isaiah foretold the judgment of God against the kingdom of Judah for six specific sins. The first was for their selfishness and greed: Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place (Isaiah 5:8). Second, He judged them for their drunkenness: Woe unto them that rise up early in the morning, that they may follow strong drink; that continue until night, till wine inflame them! (5:11). Third, they refused to recognize themselves as sinners and arrogantly flaunted their sins before God: Woe unto them that draw iniquity with cords of vanity (5:18). Fourth, they suffered from self-deception, and hypocrisy: Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil (5:20). The fifth was pride, the basis of all sin: Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight! (5:21). Sixth, their judicial system was perverted by judges who took bribes and denied the innocent their due justice (see 5:22-23).

Ahaz, king of Judah, was facing war. The prophet appealed to him, saying: Ask thee a sign of the LORD (7:11). Although Ahaz refused, Isaiah spoke a glorious prophecy of the true King of kings Who was yet to come. The sign Isaiah offered was the declaration of a special Child: A virgin shall conceive, and bear a Son, and shall call His Name Immanuel (7:14). Seven hundred years later, the Angel Gabriel confirmed to the Virgin Mary: The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God (Luke 1:35). In fulfillment of Isaiah's prophecy, Jesus, the Son of God, was born. To reject the virgin birth and question either the deity or the humanity of Jesus of Nazareth is to miss the significance that Jesus was both Holy God and sinless Man, for both were necessary to atone for the sins of man and redeem what Adam had forfeited.

The prophet Isaiah received another glorious revelation of the eternal King of kings of Whom he foretold: Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His Name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace (9:6). We recognize the fulfillment of that prophecy in Jesus, Who was born as a baby and later crucified. Not only was His first advent declared, but also His second. We can rejoice as we look forward to the time when He will reign in righteousness on earth as the most Wonderful Counsellor, providing eternal life to all believers by dying on the cross for our sins, and by His triumph over death.

The same Jesus is the Second Person of the Godhead. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by Him; and without Him was not any thing made that was made (John 1:2-3; also Hebrews 1:3).

Christ Revealed:

In Him was Life; and the Life was the Light of men (John 1:4). Other prophecies concerning Jesus Christ are also found in Isaiah 8:14; 9:2,6-7. Isaiah 9:6 reveals that a Child shall be born; a Son shall be given (crucifixion); and the government shall be upon His shoulder (His Second Coming). The Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God (I Thessalonians 4:16).

Word Studies:

5:1 vineyard = the Israelites; 5:5 go to = listen to Me; 5:23 reward = bribes; 7:16 abhorrest = hate; 8:21 hardly bestead = sorely distressed; 9:9 stoutness = arrogance.

Prayer Needs:

BP Staff: Benjamin Wallace · Pray for the Bible Pathway Internet Outreach and the Bible Pathway devotions in Arabic, English, French, German, Hindi, Hungarian, Indonesian, Norwegian, Russian, Spanish, and Swedish that are now on line on our website. Let friends and missionaries overseas know that the devotional commentary is now available in these languages · Country: Malta (381,000) about 60 miles south of Sicily · Major languages: Maltese and English · Religious freedom · 97% Roman Catholic; 2% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Boldly and confidently go to God in prayer through Jesus' Name (Ephesians 3:12).

Optional Reading: Hebrews 10

Memory Verse for the Week: Romans 3:24