Isaiah 5:1-10:27

As is the duty of prophets, Isaiah 5:1-30 directly confronts the rampant sin of the Jewish People while vindicating the impending doom of divine wrath. Marvelously, he opens with a song about Israel and Judah in Isaiah 5:1-7, one that is later answered by another song in Isaiah 27:1-11, while both speak of the Jews as a Vineyard. Suffice it to say, Jehovah-Sabaoth isn’t happy with the “wild grapes” of the Vineyard (Isa. 5:2). Even so, the LORD of Hosts said: “…I will tell you what I will do to My Vineyard” (Isa. 5:5).

All metaphors aside, God would have the Jews to know about Jehovah-Shaphat’s angry plans - here called a “Captivity” for the first time in the Book of Isaiah (Isa. 5:13, 25; Heb. 10:31). So far in Isaiah the prophetic indictments are descriptive of the Kingdom of Judah during Uzziah’s reign after his apostasy and before his death, as his death is recorded in Isaiah 6:1. Also, understandably, the foretold “Captivity” being spoken of in Isaiah 5:13 speaks primarily of the Assyrian Captivities, as is directly identified by the prophet in Isaiah 6:11-13, 7:17-25, 8:1-8, 10:5-15, & 10:28-34. This historical context pervades the ongoing prophecies in Isaiah 5-10.

Nevertheless, in the latter part of Isaiah 5, the prophecy veers into another dimension to unveil the Celestial Army that is the real power behind the Terrestrial Armies of Assyria. The shocking description of this otherworldly Army is given in Isaiah 5:26-30. Harmoniously, a similar description is given in Joel 2:1-11. Why? These revelations indicate a judgment of God far worse than the likes of historical Assyria, as Trumpet #5 & Trumpet #6 do alarmingly declare in Revelation 9:1-19.

In accordance with this greater scope of prophecy, Isaiah hears of God’s Glory as it will exist in the Millennial Reign of Christ (“the whole earth is full of His glory” - Isa. 6:3), as it will be accomplished by the virgin-birth incarnation of “Immanuel” (Isa. 7:14), “the Branch” (Isa. 4:2), the same One also called “the Light” (Isa. 9:2), whose acts are described in Isaiah 9:6-7 in no uncertain terms. Albeit, to the astonishment of the ancient observers of these prophecies (those who lived through the Assyrian Captivities), it became evident that these prophecies transcended the historical situation herein contextualized. Indeed, the first yet-to-be-born child (one of a three-part series of signs and wonders according to Isaiah 8:18) foretold in this prophecy does marvelously transcend history even though God was directly speaking to wicked king Ahaz in reference to the confederacy being made between Syria and Israel (Isa. 7:1-16). Meanwhile, Isaiah’s two children are entirely historical, their names being Shear-jashub (Isa. 7:3, 10:20-22) and Maher-shalal-hash-baz (Isa. 8:1-4).

“…but they regard not the work of the LORD, neither consider the operation of His hands” - Isa. 5:12

God “looked for judgment” in the backslidden Church, and because the Jews refused to do the judgment that was divinely committed to their charge (1 Cor. 5:12-13), the LORD decided to act in answer to the cry (Isa. 5:16). This speaks of an extraordinary divine action of God! Something only possible when the longsuffering of God runs out. Only upon patiently waiting in vain for the saints to arise and do judgment, will God give the decree that makes the darkness thicken over the people (Isa. 6:9-10) to maneuver them into position for a mighty purging as the LORD asserts the divine power of a King to do judgment (Isa. 6:5, 11-13). In this case, the darkness is a minister of Jehovah whose end goal is the dawning of light; the unholy Armies of Assyria are used as ministers of God (Isa. 7:17-18) to make the Jews a “holy seed” in the end (Isa. 6:13).