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READING: Isaiah 13-14 – Against Babylon and Restoration of Israel

VERSE FOR THE DAY: I myself have commanded my consecrated ones, have summoned my warriors, my proudly exulting ones, to execute my anger. Listen, a tumult on the mountains as of a great multitude! Listen, an uproar of kingdoms, of nations gathering together! The LORD of hosts is mustering an army for battle. (Isaiah 13:3-4)

We do not understand how God works among the nations. As Habakkuk found when he asked God why He was putting up with Judean wickedness. God said he was bringing the Chaldeans to punish Judah, which Habakkuk found hard to understand.

Isaiah was given oracles about Babylon, Assyria, Moab, Damascus, Ethiopia, Egypt, Edom, Jerusalem, Tyre, and told him about an impending judgment on the entire earth. These are found in chapters 13-24. We will skip over chapters 15-24, as these are quite repetitive.

The oracle concerning Babylon said the LORD had called them to bring tumult and war against the nations of the Middle East, including Judah. “They come from a distant land, from the end of the heavens, the LORD and the weapons of his indignation. Wail, for the day of the LORD, is near; it will come like destruction from the Almighty!”

‘The Day of the LORD’ had two connotations. It could be disaster, or it could be redemption; disaster for those whom God wished to punish for past and present sin with a desire to bring those punished to repentance, or redemption for those who did repent. “The day of the LORD comes, cruel, with wrath and fierce anger.”.

The wrath and anger come from the LORD. But He is seeking to discipline His children who have refused to listen to His teachings or obey His instructions. “I will punish the world for its evil and the wicked for their iniquity; I will put an end to the pride of the arrogant and lay low the insolence of tyrants.” This day of the LORD was against Babylon. In a Psalm lamenting the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians, the Psalmist said, “O daughter Babylon, you devastator! Happy shall they be who pays you back what you have done to us. Happy shall they be who take your little ones and dash them against the rock!” That was what the Psalmist wrote from Babylonian captivity. Isaiah, many years before that captivity said, “Their infants will be dashed to pieces before their eyes, and their wives ravished. See, I am stirring up the Medes against them. And Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the splendor and pride of the Chaldeans, will be like Sodom and Gomorrah.”

However, the LORD will have compassion on Israel. Isaiah himself wrote, “Thus says the LORD to His anointed, to Cyrus, the God of Israel, who calls you by your name: For the sake of my servant Jacob, and Israel my chosen, I call you by your name.” Cyrus was the Persian king who in the first year of his reign was stirred up by the LORD to allow any who wanted to return to Jerusalem to do so and said God charged him to “build Him a house at Jerusalem” (2 Chronicles 36:22-23).

Israel was able to taunt Babylon’s king, “How the oppressor has ceased!” (Isaiah 14:4)

And “How you are fallen, O Day Star, cut down to the ground.” (Isaiah 14:12)



Almighty Father, I pray that I will be prepared for the final ‘day of the Lord,’ is my prayer, in Jesus’ holy Name, AMEN!

MY PRAYER FOR YOU (and for me)

Father, I pray for all who read these words that we may be humble before You, that You may bless us, and point us into the paths of righteousness for Your name’s sake, and that we may indeed live the newness of the abundant life that Christ gives. And it is in Jesus’ holy name that I pray, AMEN

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