The Book of Isaiah Bible Study Chapter 27 Part 2

Our next reading is Isaiah 27:7-13

(Literally) Verse 7: “Is it according to the blow that (they) were hit? Or is it according to the ones of him who have been killed that are killed?

Note: Because of the grammatical constructions, this is a difficult verse to translate literally into English. Translators have added their own words in an attempt to translate/interpret it. For example: The word “Israel” does not even appear in the original Hebrew text. 

  • They: This is written in the singular (‘he’) but it is referring to the enemies of G-d/Israel.

Note 1: What this verse is speaking about is that the enemy is not like G-d. The enemy cannot strike like G-d strikes. It cannot kill like G-d can kill. Some of the scholars see this verse as making a contrast between how G-d deals with Israel and how He deals with the nations. Israel has received blows (striking, punishment – Hosea 6:1, Prov 13:24, Heb 12:7-11) from the L-rd, but they are not like the blows that G-d gave to Pharaoh and the Egyptians. Even though many children of Israel died, they were not like the dead of the enemies. 

Note 2: This verse speaks about the uniqueness, superiority and sovereignty of G-d. The enemy cannot act as G-d acts. He cannot bring about death as G-d brings about death. This verse also teaches us that G-d does not deal with Israel in the way that He deals with the nations. Why not? Because G-d has a covenant with Israel, which He does not have with the nations. If the nations entered into a covenant with G-d (like we have done through Messiah) then G-d would deal with them in the same way that He deals with Israel – like sons. 

(Literally): Verse 8: “In the same measure that He sent her, He will contend for her. And He will remove with a harsh breath in the day of judgment.”

In the same measure: This again shows the uniqueness of how G-d deals with His covenant people.

  • Sent her: G-d sent Israel into exile in order to punish her. 
  • Her: Referring to Israel
  • Remove: This is also a word that can mean to enunciate, say or declare something. G-d is either going to remove something or He is going to declare something with a harsh breath. 
  • Harsh breath: Some commentators say that this is imagery speaking of a harsh storm that G-d is going to bring against Israel from out of the east. 
  • Judgment: The word used for judgment here is the word ‘east’. Judgment is often depicted as coming out of the east (Gen 41:27, Ex 10:13, Ps 48:7). 

v9: The iniquity of Jacob will be covered (atoned): In the last days G-d is going to do something to atone for/cover up Jacob’s sins. 

  • The fruit: The outcome/all the implications of his sin. The fruit of his sin will be removed. 
  • Wooden images and incense altars: Things related to idolatry or false worship are going to be shattered in that day. 

Note: When Jacob experiences G-d’s atonement and forgiveness then he, by G-d’s grace, is going to be changed. When this change happens to Jacob (Israel) he is going to rise up and make the stones of the altar like powder, he is going to destroy idolatry in the midst of the children of Israel in the last days. 

v10: The fortified city (the stronghold) will be desolate (alone): The empire is going to be destroyed.

  • Forsaken: Abandoned. Nobody will live in this place.
  • Consume its branches: There will be nothing left in this place that could give nourishment. Any resemblance of life or vegetation is going to be done away with. 

v11: Note: This verse speaks about the fact that if we do not have faith in the promises of G-d, we are going to act in a way that is going to bring about our own demise.

  • Boughs are withered: This is speaking about the dryness of the harvest. When things become dry, they become very fragile and are easily broken. 
  • The women come and set them on fire: The women burn up what, in their minds and from their own perspectives, appears to be dead. They have no faith in the resurrection. They are not thinking about the age to come, but they completely destroy the potential that is in front of them. By their actions they participate in their own punishment. They act in such a way as to bring the judgment of G-d upon themselves. 

v12: Thresh: This is a word for beating or hitting wheat (grain) in order to get rid of the chaff so that the kernel, the nourishing part of the grain, can be utilised. 

  • From the channel of the river unto the brook of Egypt: Some scholars say that this speaks of a threshing from the Nile River to a smaller, lesser-known river in Egypt. 
  • You will be gathered (gleaned): Israel is going to go through a threshing – a time of affliction, trials and hardship at the hand of their enemy (a time known as Jacob’s trouble). G-d is going to use this time of trouble for Israel in order to bring her to repentance. The remnant, who are going to survive this time of threshing, are going to be gathered up by G-d – one by one. 

v13: Trumpet (Shofar): The ram’s horn. The ram’s horn speaks of G-d’s provision, it speaks of Kingdom victory (Gen 22:13-14). 

  • Assyria … Egypt: G-d is not going to forget the outcasts of His people who are in Assyria and Egypt – two places that represent great suffering and exile. This is very similar to what we read about in Matt 24:31. When Messiah returns, He is going to gather up His elect from the four corners – north, south, east and west. 
  • Worship: Bow down
  • The holy Mount at Jerusalem: Jerusalem was holy in the past (Neh 11:1, Dan 9:24) and it has a holy and glorious future.

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