Now that the ultimate Victor of the Jews has been more thoroughly introduced in Isaiah 11-12 (elaborating upon Isaiah 4:2) by way prophecy shifting from history to futurity in the reading of Isaiah 10:34-11:1 (indicating the presence of a greater adversary than historical Assyria), it is only meet that the prophet’s gaze is turned to look upon and name this future adversary over which the Messiah will be victorious: BABYLON.
On this wise, and for the undertaking of declaring “the burden of Babylon” (Isa. 13:1), the same pattern is used in that history is legitimately declared amidst the undeniable declarations of distant futurity. However, keep in mind that historical Babylon wasn’t a dominant empire at the time this prophecy was given to Isaiah. In fact, historical Babylon was a tributary to Assyria… and, yet, Isaiah was foreseeing the terrific acts of a Babylonian Empire and its eventual downfall, even before it rose to prominence on the world stage. Thus, at the giving of Isaiah 13:1-14:27 (sometime during Ahaz’s reign; Isa. 7:1, 14:28), the contemporaries of Isaiah would be astonished at the reading. Notwithstanding, in retrospect, we observe a greater scope in the reading of Isaiah 13:1-14:27 – namely, the woeful acts of historical Babylon being declared alongside like declarations of future Babylon, and, we observe the crushing overthrow of historical Babylon being declared alongside like declarations of future Babylon.