ESV - 1 The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz, which he saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah.
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Who was Isaiah? Isaiah was the son of Amoz, and was one of the most prominent citizens of Jerusalem, having access to both the royal and priestly leadership of the nation of Judah. His Hebrew name "Yesha Yahu", means "Yahweh is Salvation". The significance of his name is revealed in his prophetic ministry, because he came at a time when it was important for the people to realize that salvation was of the Lord, and not merely by human efforts. He found himself standing at the peak of Assyria's rising imperialism and the emergence of a spirit of universalism which began to turn the people from the Lord. He was the literary genius of the prophets of Israel. His life spanned the rule of several kings from Uzziah (740 B.C.), Jotham (752-736 B.C.), Ahaz (736- 720 B.C.) and Hezekiah (729--699 B.C.). Isaiah was the prime figure during Hezekiah's reign when Hezekiah introduced a policy of reform in Judah by repairing and cleansing the temple, and returning to the Mosaic law to determine national ethics. How long the prophet lived after these years with Hezekiah is unknown.
Two Sections in Isaiah There is but one Author, the prophet Isaiah: but there are two distinct sections. SECTION 1 ––Chapters 1 to 39, corresponding to the 39 Books of the Old Testament, begins with Sin and Transgression in Ch.1 and ends with Punishment and Captivity in Ch.40 and ends with a New Heaven and a New Earth in Ch.66. CENTRAL CHAPTER OF SECTION 2 ––Ch.53 CENTRAL THEME OF THE NEW TESTAMENT––The Cross Section 2 has 3 Divisions each of 9 Chapters, each one punctuated by a warning––Chs.40:1-48:22 ‘There is no peace, saith the Lord, unto the wicked’. Chs.49:1-57:21 ‘There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked.’ Chs.58:1-66:24 ‘Their worm shall not die, neither shall their fire be quenched.’ A sample verse which comes from the CENTRAL CHAPTER OF SECTION 2 --Ch. 53, which Dr. Allen Ross, that I took Hebrew from @ Dallas Seminary, calls. "The Suffering Servant (Isaiah 52:13-53:12)," is Isaiah 53:5, "But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed." "O mighty cross, my soul's release; the stripes He bore have brought me peace." -- Keith Staten Such overarching and overwhelming shalom could be “brought” to us, God’s people (see NIV -- Isaiah 53:5 “But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed,” only by the atoning sacrifice of the One who was “wounded for our transgressions” (Is 53:5 KJV)/ “pierced for our transgressions” (Is 53:5, NIV) and ““bruised for our iniquities” (Isa 53:5, KJV)/ “crushed for our iniquities” (Is 53:5, NIV). After I trusted Jesus Christ as my own personal Savior, I was like a prisoner set free from jail and discovered that my new-found freedoms in Christ were a bit overwhelming at first!
The prophet Isaiah’s ministry spanned some 60 years, through the reigns of the Judahite kings, Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah. The book seems to correspond with the Bible division of the 39 books of the Old Testament, followed by the 27 books of the New Testament. Some see Isaiah as two parts: The Book of the King Who Judges in the Days of the Threat of Assyria, 1-39 The Book of the Servant who Comforts before the Days of the Threat of Babylon, 40-66 An interesting observation concerning the books of the prophets is that the meaning of the name of the prophet is related to his message. This is very evident with the book of Isaiah, whose name means, “the Lord (Yah) is salvation.” The book is full of many references to “save,” “deliver,” “savior,” and “salvation.” Of the 28 times “salvation” and “deliverance,” is found, 19 of them are “Yeshua,” the same name as Jesus. The theme is salvation or deliverance, for Israel and anyone who will hear. REQUIREMENT OF SALVATION, 1-35: In this section, Israel is indited for their sins and rebellion against God, Isaiah 1:4. This is the first of 25 times “the Holy One of Israel” is found in Isaiah. Also, in Isaiah 1:9, He is first called “the Lord of hosts,” found 62 times in the book, whereas in the rest of the Bible, it is found only 6 times. Israel is called to make peace with this awesome and powerful God, Isaiah 1:18, who will be their salvation, Isaiah 12:2. Yet, all the surrounding nations, 13-35 have not escaped judgment. God will defeat His enemies and bring a powerful deliverance. Within these chapters is the description of the Messiah, the anointed one, Isaiah 11:2, who will come and fulfill salvation, Isaiah 7:14, 9:6. When the apostle John quoted Isaiah 6:10 in John 12:40, he clarified that Isaiah spoke of Jesus Christ. He is just, righteous, and Spirit-filled, Isaiah 11:2-5. In God will be perfect peace, Isaiah 26:3. REHEARSAL OF SALVATION, 36-39. This historical section shows how God delivered His people under the leadership of Hezekiah, one of Judah’s greatest and godliest kings. They were “to stand still and see the salvation of the Lord,” II Chronicles 20:17. REALIZATION OF SALVATION, 40-66. Israel will be saved by God who displays his supreme greatness, 40-48, saving grace, 49-57, and sovereign glory, 58-66. Jesus is presented as the Servant and substitute, Isaiah 53:5, 6. In Acts 8:35, Philip preached to the Ethiopian eunuch about Jesus from Isaiah 53. Jesus is gentle, Isaiah 42:3, compassionate, Isaiah 53:4, sinless, Isaiah 53:9, the anointed One, Isaiah 61:1. Salvation will bring peace, Isaiah 52:7, new beginnings, and restoration to Israel and the world, when Christ comes again. But people must heed the invitations of God, Isaiah 45:22, 55:1, 2. Then they will be inscribed on the palms of His hands, Isaiah 49:15-16, and God will be their help and strength, Isaiah 40:31, 41:10.
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