This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
(2 Timothy 3: 1-5)
Not much good news is in our introductory verse—perilous times and selfish, boastful, angry people. New diseases, multiplied natural disasters, food supply chain disruptions, and pestilences are identified every day. The nightly news can scare the strongest of believers with the sketchy economy, wars and threats of war, political corruption, murders, thefts, and so much more.
If we are only seeing things through the lens of the world, anxiety and depression are inevitable. The cares of this life and the current situation of the world are troubling, but they are not new. In fact, many scriptural accounts show God’s people bearing up under far worse conditions and more perilous events, including Isaiah’s prediction of captivity within an ungodly, merciless nation. Isaiah prophesied about the consequences of the nation of Israel turning away from God to false idols. They neglected their obligations to the poor and widowed, and they were called out on their lack of belief and respect for their creator God.
In today’s lesson, Isaiah shares words of hope and encouragement. God is faithful, and His word is true. Although they will suffer consequences for their disobedience, God will not forget them or leave them without the promise of redemption. This scripture brings hope and encouragement. These words produce a yearning and longing for a day when the children of God will experience the replacement of the perilous with the glorious. Let’s turn our eyes to look at the inerrant Holy Spirit-inspired Word of God. He brings the ultimate Good News to the nation of Israel and to us.
How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!
The apostle Paul quotes this verse in Romans 10:15. What are the glad tidings of good things Paul mentions and the good tidings that publish both peace and salvation in Isaiah? THY GOD REIGNETH! He is in control; He has a divine plan. This is extremely good news. Who carries the message that God does not forget his people and His son, the savior, died, was buried, and arose from the dead to pay our sin debt? How do others know that once you come into contact with Him, old things pass away, and all things become new? The world has an abundance of skeptics. They scoff at the very idea of God, a creator, or the need for redemption. Knowing God reigns gives peace in uncertain times. The Church brings comfort by reminding everyone everywhere that God Reigneth! Share the good news, the gospel of Christ. It is part of your whole armor of God. Get your shoes on!
Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: (Ephesians 6:15-17).
He is not asleep. He is not far away. He is as close to you as you want Him to be, and He is ever ready to make intercession on our behalf. Come closer to God in the mountains of life and share your good news! Get busy and bring in as many as possible!
Thy watchmen shall lift up the voice; with the voice together shall they sing: for they shall see eye to eye, when the Lord shall bring again Zion.
He is coming! The prophets watched for the coming of the Messiah. The church watches for His return. Isaiah reminds us that in God alone there is peace and joy, and gladness. Isaiah reminds Israel that the Lord has not forgotten them, and He will not forget those that have accepted Him and have a personal relationship with the King of Kings. Zion is Jerusalem- the highest place spiritually on earth, the most holy city. Isaiah prophesied that the temple would be destroyed, and it was by the nation of Babylon. God assures them that He will indeed restore the city of Zion. Jesus prophesied the destruction of the temple by the Romans, which was fulfilled in 70 AD, however, when Jesus returns, He’ll reign from Zion. There will be rejoicing, and we shall see Him as he really is.
Break forth into joy, sing together, ye waste places of Jerusalem: for the Lord hath comforted his people, he hath redeemed Jerusalem.
What a mighty God we serve! In that joy is our strength. The God of Israel will not leave them without hope. He will fix the destroyed places (telling them this before they are destroyed), He will comfort His people (when taken far away from their land), and He will remember His promises to Israel. This same God, through Jesus, has said He will never leave us nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5) nor put upon us more than we can bear (1 Corinthians 10:13). Being redeemed, purchased, and sealed is good news. Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: (I Peter 1:18-19) And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; (Revelation 5:9).
The Lord hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God.
This phrase is more commonly known as rolling up your sleeve to get busy in the work. All will see what God will do both for Israel and for us. No one is left out, from the ends of the earth, all will see Jesus and His strength and saving power.
Depart ye, depart ye, go ye out from thence, touch no unclean thing; go ye out of the midst of her; be ye clean, that bear the vessels of the Lord. For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the Lord will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your reward.
Until the day that we see the Lord in His glory, Isaiah reminds the nation of Israel to remember who they are despite their current situation. They are chosen vessels of the Lord. They are not to panic or run away scared. They are to remember the promises that God will keep to the faithful. The same holds true for God’s church today. We have no need to panic or become anxious. God goes with us and before us as believers and protects us from behind. He has not lost power, or might, or glory, or stamina. He reigns triumphant. All the excuses will fade. All the skeptics will see. All the knees will bow, and every tongue will confess. The promises made to the nation of Israel through Isaiah were 100% accurate and completely fulfilled. Is there any reason to believe any less in His promises to us? Are you ready? He’s coming!
Thank you for studying with us! God bless!