My words will be italicized wherever they appear. Should the Bible be italicized near my words, I’ll do something to differentiate them.
Holy, Holy, Holy!
1-8 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Master sitting on a throne—high, exalted!—and the train of his robes filled the Temple. Angel-seraphs hovered above him, each with six wings. With two wings they covered their faces, with two their feet, and with two they flew. And they called back and forth one to the other,
Holy, Holy, Holy is God-of-the-Angel-Armies.
His bright glory fills the whole earth.
The foundations trembled at the sound of the angel voices, and then the whole house filled with smoke. I said,
“Doom! It’s Doomsday!
I’m as good as dead!
Every word I’ve ever spoken is tainted—
And the people I live with talk the same way,
using words that corrupt and desecrate.
And here I’ve looked God in the face!
The King! God-of-the-Angel-Armies!”
Then one of the angel-seraphs flew to me. He held a live coal that he had taken with tongs from the altar. He touched my mouth with the coal and said,
“Look. This coal has touched your lips.
Gone your guilt,
your sins wiped out.”
And then I heard the voice of the Master:
“Whom shall I send?
Who will go for us?”
I spoke up,
Reading the first part of this made me smile. I’ve read it multiple times before. This version just hits differently than the King James (KJV) I was raised on. After I smiled, I was in awe. I CANNOT imagine experiencing this. His reaction is perfection. It is amazing to think of let alone be present for.
9-10 He said, “Go and tell this people:
“‘Listen hard, but you aren’t going to get it;
look hard, but you won’t catch on.’
Make these people blockheads,
with fingers in their ears and blindfolds on their eyes,
So they won’t see a thing,
won’t hear a word,
So they won’t have a clue about what’s going on
and, yes, so they won’t turn around and be made whole.”
11-13 Astonished, I said,
“And Master, how long is this to go on?”
He said, “Until the cities are emptied out,
not a soul left in the cities—
Houses empty of people,
countryside empty of people.
Until I, God, get rid of everyone, sending them off,
the land totally empty.
And even if some should survive, say a tenth,
the devastation will start up again.
The country will look like pine and oak forest
with every tree cut down—
Every tree a stump, a huge field of stumps.
But there’s a holy seed in those stumps.”
God is promising to cleanse the land. Buuuuuuuuuut. There is a promise of growth. Granted, I dunno if stumps grow into trees again. I didn’t take the time to research it. I mean, the roots are still there so why not, right? Regardless, God says there will be a SEED in the stump. Where there is a seed life, growth is promised.
A Virgin Will Bear a Son
1-2 During the time that Ahaz son of Jotham, son of Uzziah, was king of Judah, King Rezin of Aram and King Pekah son of Remaliah of Israel attacked Jerusalem, but the attack sputtered out. When the Davidic government learned that Aram had joined forces with Ephraim (that is, Israel), Ahaz and his people were badly shaken. They shook like trees in the wind.
3-6 Then God told Isaiah, “Go and meet Ahaz. Take your son Shear-jashub (A-Remnant-Will-Return) with you. Meet him south of the city at the end of the aqueduct where it empties into the upper pool on the road to the public laundry. Tell him, Listen, calm down. Don’t be afraid. And don’t panic over these two burnt-out cases, Rezin of Aram and the son of Remaliah. They talk big but there’s nothing to them. Aram, along with Ephraim’s son of Remaliah, have plotted to do you harm. They’ve conspired against you, saying, ‘Let’s go to war against Judah, dismember it, take it for ourselves, and set the son of Tabeel up as a puppet king over it.’
7-9 But God, the Master, says,
“It won’t happen.
Nothing will come of it
Because the capital of Aram is Damascus
and the king of Damascus is a mere man, Rezin.
As for Ephraim, in sixty-five years
it will be rubble, nothing left of it.
The capital of Ephraim is Samaria,
and the king of Samaria is the mere son of Remaliah.
If you don’t take your stand in faith,
you won’t have a leg to stand on.”
Reminds me of Hebrews 11:6 (KJV): But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
10-11 God spoke again to Ahaz. This time he said, “Ask for a sign from your God. Ask anything. Be extravagant. Ask for the moon!”
12 But Ahaz said, “I’d never do that. I’d never make demands like that on God!”
13-17 So Isaiah told him, “Then listen to this, government of David! It’s bad enough that you make people tired with your pious, timid hypocrisies, but now you’re making God tired. So the Master is going to give you a sign anyway. Watch for this: A girl who is presently a virgin will get pregnant. She’ll bear a son and name him Immanuel (God-With-Us). By the time the child is twelve years old, able to make moral decisions, the threat of war will be over. Relax, those two kings that have you so worried will be out of the picture. But also be warned: God will bring on you and your people and your government a judgment worse than anything since the time the kingdom split, when Ephraim left Judah. The king of Assyria is coming!”
18-19 That’s when God will whistle for the flies at the headwaters of Egypt’s Nile, and whistle for the bees in the land of Assyria. They’ll come and infest every nook and cranny of this country. There’ll be no getting away from them.
20 And that’s when the Master will take the razor rented from across the Euphrates—the king of Assyria no less!—and shave the hair off your heads and genitals, leaving you shamed, exposed, and denuded. He’ll shave off your beards while he’s at it.
21-22 It will be a time when survivors will count themselves lucky to have a cow and a couple of sheep. At least they’ll have plenty of milk! Whoever’s left in the land will learn to make do with the simplest foods—curds, whey, and honey.
23-25 But that’s not the end of it. This country that used to be covered with fine vineyards—thousands of them, worth millions!—will revert to a weed patch. Weeds and thornbushes everywhere! Good for nothing except, perhaps, hunting rabbits. Cattle and sheep will forage as best they can in the fields of weeds—but there won’t be a trace of all those fertile and well-tended gardens and fields.
Um. Wow. Just wow. Utter devastation. Utter isolation. Failing to live up to what God requires is death. Literally. I mean. No vineyards. No life for much of anything including crops. Sheesh. This was judgment while living. I’m striving to live right so I can complete my purpose but also so I don’t end up with a death sentence in hell. Man.