The Book of Isaiah Bible Study Chapter 41 Part 3

Isaiah

Our next portion is Isaiah 41:14-20

G-d is always faithful to His Word. If we want to know what G-d is about to do in this world the best place to check is prophecy. Prophecy informs us, perfectly, about what G-d is going to do, so that we can be a part of it – by praying into what is going on, praise G-d for the good things that He has already done and prepare our hearts for the things He is still going to do. 

v14: Worm: This is not a compliment. A worm is an unclean animal. It eats that which is decaying and that which is not appropriate. Even in their corrupted, decaying spiritual state G-d is telling the Jewish people not to fear because He is going to do something to bring about a change in their status. G-d does not bring about this change to the people because they deserve it – in fact, they do not. G-d brings about this change because of who He is – full of grace, mercy and compassion. 

  • Jacob: A textual clue that alerts us to the fact that G-d is speaking to the Jewish people.
  • (I have helped you): Although this is a future event it is written in the past tense. The past tense is used to show a sure promise – G-d is going to ensure that this is going to happen. 
  • Says: Declares. Another word of promise. If G-d says it, G-d does it. 

v15: Behold: A phrase that reminds us to pay attention. 

  • Threshing sledge: An instrument that is used for threshing grain or wheat.
  • Sharp: This instrument is sharp on two sides – like a double-edged sword. 
  • Mountains: Most scholars (Christian and Rabbinical) agree that a mountain prophetically represents a nation, an empire, a confederacy or perhaps a country.
  • Beat them small: Grind them up. Make them into a powder. This is another way of saying that Israel is going to destroy the nations, she is going to have victory over them. 
  • Hills: Smaller, less significant countries or empires. 
  • Like chaff: Chaff is so fine that when the wind blows it is easily blown away. These regions or empires will not be able to stand against or resist what G-d is going to do in and through Israel. 

v16: Winnow: A term similar to threshing.

  • Glory in: When Israel sees what G-d is doing, they are going to be overcome with praising G-d. A great joy and gladness will well up within them and this will manifest itself outwardly. 

v17: The poor and needy seek water: These are the ones who are spiritually thirsty – they are thirsty for righteousness (Matt 5:6, John 4:6-14). 

  • Their tongues fail for thirst: They are on the brink of perishing. Nothing has been found to satisfy them. 
  • (Answer): This is the word for ‘answer’ and not the word for ‘hear’. ‘Answer’ is a response word. G-d is going to respond to their thirst. 
  • I, the G-d of Israel, will not forsake (abandon) them: This is a promise. Yeshua told us that He can only come again to earth for His second coming once the Jewish people are right with Him (Matt 23:37-39. When Israel says…’Blessed is He (Yeshua) who comes in the Name of the L-rd’). We can be assured of this: The Kingdom will not come until Israel gets right with the L-rd (Roms 11:12). 

v18: Note: This verse speaks about the change that is coming to the land of Israel. The land is a very important barometer regarding the spiritual condition of the people of Israel. When G-d was displeased with the people the land physically wilted, became dry and desolate. When G-d was pleased with the people the land bloomed and blossomed and flourished. 

  • Desolate: Lacking vegetation. 
  • Fountains: Springs of water. Water in abundance. 
  • Wilderness: Desert 

Note: G-d will be the only One who will be able to meet the thirst (the needs) of His people. 

v19: These trees are not planted in fertile soil (according to our perspective) but G-d is going to cause them to grow into forest areas. 

v20: Together: Take note of this word – ‘together’. G-d’s faithfulness ensures that the trees all grow ‘together’ and, in the same way, His faithfulness is going to ensure that the (remnant of the) people of Israel are all enlightened ‘together’ (Zech 12:10-14). 

  • The Holy One of Israel: This phrase has been repeated a few times in this portion. Repetition shows emphasis. 

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