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Isaiah 5

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ch. 5:1-7     ch. 5:8-30

The Song Of The Vineyard (ch. 5:1 - 7)


In my introduction I stated that Isaiah was the Shakespeare of Bible writers.  He used all aspects of writing styles.  Here, in verse 1, we see Isaiah wrote  a song.  I suggest that since this is a song, Isaiah might well have been a singer and actually sang this as a song.  Many Bible teachers believe this to be true. 


Isaiah says, "I will sing this for the one I love".  Clearly, this is a love song.  The pronoun "I" refers to God in this verse.  It is God singing this love song through the lips of Isaiah.


In verse 2 we see that the song is about someone who purchased afield for a vineyard.  He went all out.  He bought the best of plants, tilled the soil, built a wine press, but ended up with a bad crop. 


We note that in verse 3 that God is now addressing those in Jerusalem and Judah .  When God says "judge between me and my vineyard", He is asking Judah to seriously consider what this song is all about, because, it is all about Judah being the vineyard that God loves.  It was God who did all He could to produce a good vineyard with a good crop.  God asked, "what more could have been done for my vineyard"?  The answer is clearly, "nothing".  Nothing more could be done.  God did all that could possibly be done. 


In verses 5 and 6 God states what He will do with His vineyard.  He'll take away the hedge of protection.  He'll let the wild animals at the plants.  He'll stop the rain from falling on it.  He'll simply let the land go desolate.  This is exactly what happened to the land of Israel .  For most of the last two thousand years that part of the middle east has been a desolate desert.  It has only recently been revived with the arrival of Jews to the land in fulfillment of prophecy. 


Verse 7 clearly states who the vineyard symbolized.  It is the house of Israel and Judah.  Because  Judah is mentioned separately here from the house of Israel, the house of  Israel most likely refers to the northern kingdom of Israel.  Judah clearly refers to the southern kingdom of Israel.  Both the northern kingdom and the southern kingdom became desolate as I've have mentioned.  It's just a fact of history, a fact that many secular historians miss.



Woes And Judgment (ch. 5:8 - 30)


Verse 8 seems to be God's condemnation of man building cities for the sole purpose of commerce and making money.  The expensive, sprawling huge homes that satisfies our lust virtually destroys the beauty of God's creation, and for that, this deserves a "woe". 


The word "woe" tells us so soon coming judgment.  Woe to those who will experience this judgment.


In verses 9 and 10 the woe are expressed in terms of economic collapse.   Houses will be desolate, and vineyards will produce next to nothing.  Six bushels of seed will produce a half bushel of crop.


In the economic collapse of 2008 we see that the nice houses became desolate.  For sale signs were seen all over the place in the U. S. because banks foreclosed on families that could no longer afford their homes, that were far too costly for them in the first place.


The next "woe" is seen inverses 11 and 12.  People whose lives are all about drinking and partying.  This sure fits much of the modern entertainment culture of today.  The excessive lifestyle of the rock star is clearly portrayed here.  For this reason, Judah will go into captivity, which she did in 586 B. C. when Babylon attacked her.


Verse states that one real reason why Judah will collapse is because of lack of knowledge.  This is one major theme throughout the prophetic books of the Old Testament.  Biblical understanding is just as important today as it was back then.  We get understanding by first obtaining knowledge.  It's this lack of Biblical knowledge that I believe is inflicting the church today.  Without knowledge there can be no understanding.


Verse 14 speaks of death, both the death of a nation and the death of individual.  The apostle Paul said that the wages of sin was death, and here we see that to be true.  In this death, both mankind and the mankind will be humbled, as seen in verse 15.  It's clear that the men spoken of here refers to the men of Judah.  When Isaiah uses the word "mankind", he might well be using it in a general sense, as in all of mankind.  The arrogant will be humbled, as Isaiah says, and it does not matter who the arrogant are.  It could you be or I today.


What becomes apparent, as seen in verse 16, is that when God brings a nation down, He is left standing.  He is in fact exalted.  This is yet another result of God's judgment.  This will surely be the case when Jesus returns to this planet. 


Verse 17 states what comes after judgment, and, what comes after God is exalted.  The sheep will graze.  This is speaking of prosperity, and yes, prosperity after judgment and a repented nation always comes next.  This is the future for Judah at the end of this age.  Again, these prophecies are meant to encourage Judah to come back to their Lord.  And, for those future Israelis who are in exile, they should be encouraged, because the prophets predict better days ahead.


In my thinking, the woes of verses 18 and 19 are directed to the arrogant sinner, who, in the face of God openly sin.  Along with their sin, they dare God to judge them, thinking we won't.  What these sinners are really saying is that there is no God who will judge them. 


The "woe" of verse 20 is against those that change the definition of things from God's definition to their own sinful definition.  They obviously did that in Isaiah's day and we're doing it today.  We're calling things we once considered to be sin as no sin, and, what was no sin, we're calling sin.  Homosexuality was once called sin in our culture, but not any more.  Christian thinking was once called true and right but is now seen as sin, something that is wrong and outdated.


The same applies to the "woe" of verse 21, and again, we see this in western culture today.  We are wise in our own eyes but our wisdom is foolishness to God.  There is a "woe" waiting for us.


Verse 22 states, "woe to them who are heroes of drinking".  Judgment will come on those whose lives are seen as one big party, much like our entertainment culture of today.  The prophet goes on to include those who do not practice justice in society.  Their whole culture will collapse, right down to the root.  This is what happened to Judah, and not only Judah, but to every society and nation in human history who continues to reject the Lord God Almighty.  It can happen to us today, and I believe it will.


Note in verse 25 that for all that happens to these people by God judging them, they do not repent.  The same is seen by those at the end of this age as seen in Revelation 16:11.


From verse 26 to the end of this chapter seems to be speaking of the end of this age.  It can be noted that often times in Old Testament prophecies, the prophecies skip from the present situation to the end of the age.  I believe this is the case here.  The wording tells me this. The words "distant nations", and, God "whistles for those at the ends of the earth".  This sounds like that Battle of Armageddon to me.  The darkness, the disaster seen in the closing verses here suggests to me that this is an end time event, not just the fall of Judah .

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