Isaiah 14:3-27 – the Day of the LORD upon Babylon
Certainly, as has been the case heretofore, there are inferior fulfillments of this text manifest in historical Babylon. However, the vast majority of what is being spoken applies exclusively to the death & destruction of future Babylon. Evidencing this, a simple reading of the text provokes various questions that beg for answers.
For example, perhaps the most provocative part of the text compels the reader to ask, why is “the King of Babylon” (Isa. 14:4) also called “Lucifer” (Isa. 14:12)? Moreover, why does the perspective of observation change in beholding the cessation of the Kingdom of Babylon? For, we see the world rejoicing and being put at rest in Isaiah. 14:4-8, and then we see the galleries of Hell marveling at the fall of the King of Babylon in that he, from so great a height, was plunged into the same pit of torments as all other men (Isa. 14:9-11, 18-22). Certainly, the death & destruction of this Adversary, the one seated at the helm of the Babylonian Empire, is the focal point of this text, but whose pride is being unveiled in Isaiah 14:12-17?
Clearly, this is not the proud saying of a mere man that lived in any single generation of the past or the future. Right? Rather, this scene of observation was outside of time and removed from the world, taking place in the very abode of Heaven itself when Lucifer was “the Anointed Cherub” in the midst of the Stones of Fire (Ezekiel 28:12-19). The words spoken by Lucifer in Isaiah 14:13-14 were uttered while he was in Heaven, and these stout words were the reason for his expulsion from Heaven, an event also known as Lucifer’s fall from heaven (“How art thou fallen from Heaven” – Isa. 14:12).
Evidently, Isaiah 13-14 shifts from historical Babylon in the places heretofore described, and, consequentially, it is dominated by the foresight of future Babylon. Marvelously, in yet an another shift the onlooking eyes of readers are made to behold the fall of a human Adversary, here called the King of Babylon, and the fall of an angelic Adversary, here called Lucifer. No further explanation is provided. The prophecy presents both figures in one seamless utterance and without apology, and for good reason. For, this same method and pattern of prophesying is undertaken by the prophets from generation to generation. The matter is meant to be searched out and discovered through the combined witness of all the prophets! Thus, I entreat the reader, if such a method of prophecy is confounding to you, as I am sure it was confounding to the ancient readers of this prophecy, for starters I propose the study of Daniel 2, Daniel 7, Daniel 8, Daniel 9, & Daniel 10-12 in hopes to discover how diverse generational identities bear witness to one intergenerational identity.
All things considered, Isaiah’s prophecy could not be more precise and relevant to the overarching goal of Biblical Prophecy. Lofty divine purposes are herein unveiled, my reader, and this is but the tip of the iceberg of so grand a story of futurity it is unimaginable and incomprehensible, and by all means indescribable except by typological demonstrations of pastime events that stand as inferior examples of futurity!
“The LORD of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand: That I will break the Assyrian in My Land, and upon My Mountains tread him under foot: then shall his yoke depart from off them, and his burden depart from off their shoulders. This is the purpose that is purposed upon the whole earth: and this is the hand that is stretched out upon all the nations. For the LORD of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? and his hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back?” – Isa. 14:24-27
Fittingly, and as a close to this masterful prophecy (Isa. 14:24-27), I am compelled to direct the reader to behold one final shift back to historical Assyria amidst this prophecy of historical and future Babylon. Ah, the exactness! The divine perfection of Biblical Prophecy from beginning to end is absolutely marvelous! For, Assyria was the object of prophecy in the opening (Isa. 10:28-34) and closing (Isa. 14:25) of this divine utterance. This shocking revelation of historical and future Babylon began as a shift from Isaiah’s prophesying of historical Assyria (as was formerly addressed at length in this commentary), and in one final act of marvelous interchangeableness, lo, the fate of historical Assyria is foretold in Isaiah 14:25 indicating the soon-to-be victory recorded in Isaiah 36-38, 2 Chronicles 32, & 2 Kings 18-20; namely, that God would break Assyria in the Land of Judah and remove his yoke from off their shoulders, though their inglorious invasion is unstoppable in its approach to Jerusalem as described in Isaiah 10:28-34.