Isaiah 8 Commentary
Isaiah is full of symbols and teaching aids. Chapter 8 introduces another symbol. Isaiah’s wife conceives and the LORD orders Isaiah to name the boy ‘Quick Loot, Fast Plunder’. It is a message against Samaria and Damascus. Both nations would be scattered soonest – right before your own eyes!
The LORD uses a real-life event in real time to emphasize the timing of His judgment against Samaria and Damascus. The name suggested that the end had come for both nations. They didn’t have time.
In the same breath, the LORD announces that Judah too will be attacked by Assyria. But there is a thought that Immanuel has the last word.
The LORD’s judgment causes fear amongst the people. Isaiah is warned never to share in this fear. “Don’t fear what they fear.” It is similar to the LORD’s earlier message to the righteous: “Go tell the righteous, it is well.”
The world is ruled by fear. We stock up fearing the worst. Those who don’t have fear they won’t make it when a crisis hits. Those who have fear they might lose what they have, and face the same problems that the poor fear. It is the same fear throughout the entire human spectrum. But Isaiah shouldn’t fear like them. Let the saint react differently to issues of life. Immanuel, God-with-us, has the final word. After all, it is the LORD behind it all!
Then Isaiah seems to write to his own disciples – his followers. He wants them to keep the messages of the LORD through the prophet. Probably this book exists because of this instruction here.
It is these messages that should direct the thoughts of the remnant. Don’t consult the dead. For us, the dead could be anything dead like men’s ideas and predictions. Only the word of the LORD stands. Forget the fortunetellers and mediums.
False peace and false success; false messages; the only real stuff is fear. Men and women curse their leaders. Unfortunately, they also curse the LORD God. Behind it all is the call to humanity to get back to the message of the LORD God, remembering at all times that He is Immanuel, regardless.
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