The Book of Isaiah Bible Study Chapter 57 Part 2

Isaiah

Next up is Isaiah 57:14-21

Only G-d can make a righteous and good change in our lives (ie a Kingdom change, whereby we are no longer bound to this dark world and its power but are liberated/freed to belong to the Kingdom of G-d – having an eternal hope). G-d wants to make this change in our lives, but the question is whether we will submit to the spiritual laws that G-d has established so that these changes can be experienced in our lives.

v14: Heap it up: Literally: Build up. This is a form of a commandment. It means to establish something which is going to have a good outcome – a G-dly purpose. 

  • Prepare (clear) the way: This passage is speaking about G-d wanting to bring a transition/change to people. 
  • Stumbling block: Obstacles
  • Take the stumbling block out of the way: Most scholars see this as meaning that this obstacle that needs to be removed is their idolatrous spirit, that desire that wants what it wants at any cost. This stumbling block is people wanting their own ways rather than the way of G-d. 

v15: I dwell in the high (exalted) and holy place: G-d, being omnipresent, is everywhere – in all places. However, in a unique way, He is manifested/revealed in those things which are high and exalted – those things which are holy. 

  • Contrite: A word that is related to humility. Due to failure or difficulty (a realisation of one’s own inadequacy) this one has been broken to the point where he has had a heart change. These people realise that they are unable to achieve what is proper, right or satisfying. They are therefore in a position whereby G-d can lift them up (James 4:10)
  • Humble spirit: Referring to one who has been brought low, one who has been humiliated. This humiliation happened to them because they set their life on a specific course and this path caused them to experience humiliation. This humiliation brought about a change in their thinking processes and attitudes. 

v16: Note: G-d is angry with His people, but He is willing to forgive. 

  • Contend: To be in conflict with. G-d is not going to be in conflict with people forever. 
  • I will not contend forever: A time is coming when G-d is going to change the way He deals with people. 
  • Spirit: Referring to the spirit of mankind
  • The spirit would fail (faint) before Me: If G-d was angry and contended with man forever, mankind would all be wiped out. There would be no hope for us. 
  • The souls which I have made: G-d has made man, and He knows man’s limit. G-d loves man, and He desires to help and bless man. G-d cannot help man if there is no man left to be helped. 

v17: Covetousness: Profit. This one functioned in an evil way to gain profit for himself. His desire for profit produced iniquity in his life. 

  • I hid: When G-d hides His face from people it can mean that He hides His blessing, help and assistance from them. G-d hid because He was angry with His people. 
  • Backsliding: This is a word related to rebelliousness – going in the contrary direction of the will of G-d.
  • The way of his heart: His heart was previously not contrite. It was rebellious and led to him having a backsliding nature. These are against everything that G-d stands for, everything that is related to His will. 

v18: I have seen his ways: G-d took notice of the ways of His people, He looked to see how they were behaving. 

  • Will heal him: Many scholars believe (although this is written in the past tense in the original text, and +- 800 years before Messiah did His work on the cross) that this is talking about G-d having done the work of redemption (Rev 13:8). G-d transcends time. He is not bound or limited to past, present or future. 
  • Restore: (literally: Pay) G-d is going to provide them with compensation, and this compensation is going to be in the form of abundant comfort. 

Note: We all falter and stumble at times, but G-d is available to do His work of healing and to pay out abundant comfort to all of those who repent. 

  • Mourners: Individuals who are grieved about their disobedience or grieved about the disobedience of those around them (family, friends, children etc). 

v19: The fruit of the lips: This speaks about an utterance, something that is said which is pleasing to G-d – it produces fruit (this is fruit that is pleasing to G-d, something which is in accordance to His will). 

  • Peace: Peace (unity with G-d – a broken relationship that has been healed) is the end result of G-d’s will being fulfilled. When G-d proclaims peace, it is a good utterance.  

v20: The wickedThose who persist in their idolatry – those who persist in doing things their own way or make decisions only for themselves. Seeking G-d’s will and ways should always be our desire (Matt 6:33). His will should become our will. 

  • Troubled: Agitated.
  • It cannot rest: We cannot bring calm, peace and tranquillity to a raging sea. Only G-d can do that, but the wicked will not receive it. They do not want to know peace or the Prince of peace (Isaiah 9:6)
  • Mire and dirt: These things are worthless and are not pleasing to the L-rd. satan does not pay well. There are only worthless dividends in store for us if we work for him. Anything that he gives turns out to be counterfeit and will not satisfy. 

v21: There is no peace…for the wicked: This is an authoritative statement from G-d. It is a promise. Those who reject the will of G-d will never experience peace. This is an eternal consequence of choosing wickedness. 

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