The Book of Isaiah Bible Study Chapter 64 Part 2

Isaiah

Our next reading is Isaiah 64:2-7

v2: Fire causes water to boil: This is a physical law. Once water reaches a certain temperature it begins to bubble. In the same way, spiritual laws also have an effect or influence – which often manifest in a physical way. When Messiah comes there is going to be an outcome – an effect – His name is going to be made known. 

  • Name: Character. 
  • Make Your name known: G-d makes known His name among His enemies through His judgment or wrath. It is through His wrath that a Kingdom change is brought about. This is what Isaiah is desiring. We need to agree with Isaiah. We want G-d’s judgment to come, as it produces a transformation in authority. It shakes the governments and produces a new authority, a new government – Messiah’s Kingdom.
  • Nations…tremble: The mountains will shake (the authorities of this world) but so will the nations shake with fear when Yeshua comes again. 

v3: Awesome things: Things which reveal the awesome power of G-d. Things that show the supremacy and sovereignty of G-d. 

  • Things for which we did not look: This is literally a word for hope. Hope is related to expectation. The people did not have the right expectation (they did not recognise what G-d had done). Therefore, they were not able to participate with G-d, which means that they were not able to respond faithfully to what G-d had done. 
  • You came down: This is referring to G-d having come down in the person of Messiah.
  • The mountains shook at Your presence: Most scholars see this as referring to what took place at Mount Sinai (Ex 20:18-21). At Mount Sinai, G-d was moving to bring about a wonderful change in the people. The people however did not want this change and nor did they want to participate in what G-d was doing. Instead, they chose to stand afar off. 

v4: Men have not heard nor perceived: People, from the beginning, have not wanted to hear or know about what G-d is up to. They have not wanted to listen to G-d. This is why they cannot respond correctly to what G-d is doing. 

Note: They did not know that it was G-d who was acting in a certain way. They did not have an expectation about how G-d would reward those who were faithfully waiting for Him to act. Not hearing and not seeing was their problem. 

v5: You meet: The implication here is that G-d meets or enters into a relationship with those who rejoice in righteousness, those who find G-d’s ways important. 

  • Him who rejoices and does righteousness: The source of joy is found in doing righteousness. 
  • Remembers You in Your ways: These people anticipate or expect that what G-d has said will be carried out. They understand the faithfulness of G-d to do what He has said He is going to do. 
  • You are indeed angry, for we have sinned— In these ways we continue: The problem is that most people do not have an expectation of the faithfulness of G-d and so they continue on in their own ways. This attitude causes G-d to be angry with them. 
  • We need to be saved: Salvation means being restored to the purposes of G-d (ie becoming the faithful people of G-d). G-d was willing to save His people. He did awesome things to bring about His salvation, but the people were not listening and nor did they see and so they did not respond appropriately. G-d did what they did not expect. Their incorrect response to G-d’s plan and workings for salvation led to them sinning – instead of receiving G-d’s workmanship in their lives they received His anger. The people did not experience what G-d wanted to bring about. Instead, they experienced uncleanness. 

v6: We are all… unclean: Instead of knowing G-d’s salvation, victory and restoration the people found themselves in this condition – unclean. 

  • Filthy rags: Beggars wear filthy rags. These are garments which are revolting and rejected because of the defilement that is upon them. 
  • Fade as a leaf: The people are withering away. They are in a state of decay because of their spiritual defilement.
  • Taken us away: Their sins have led to them being easily moved, easily blown away. Instead of being positioned where they need to be, where G-d desires them to be, the consequence of sin has caused them to become weak, easily moved by the forces of this world.

v7: No one…calls on Your name…(no one)…stirs himself up to take hold of You: There is no one who is truly interested in G-d. Each one has turned aside to their own ways. 

  • Consumed us because of our iniquities: Our sin is causing us to be dissolved, to melt away, to be consumed in the way that fire eats up vegetation. There is nothing that is seen spiritually among the people that leads them to believe that there’s any hope for them, any redeeming influence that’s coming. This sets the stage for them to realise that it’s only by G-d’s grace, mercy and faithfulness that they can be saved. Salvation is not dependant on people and their actions or lack of actions. Salvation can only come about through G-d who is faithful to His covenant commitment.

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