Isaiah 17

Isaiah 17

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An Oracle Concerning Damascus

17 An oracle concerning Damascus.

  Behold, Damascus will cease to be a city
    and will become a heap of ruins.
  The cities of Aroer are deserted;
    they will be for flocks,
    which will lie down, and none will make them afraid.
  The fortress will disappear from Ephraim,
    and the kingdom from Damascus;
  and the remnant of Syria will be
    like the glory of the children of Israel,
      declares the LORD of hosts.
  And in that day the glory of Jacob will be brought low,
    and the fat of his flesh will grow lean.
  And it shall be as when the reaper gathers standing grain
    and his arm harvests the ears,
  and as when one gleans the ears of grain
    in the Valley of Rephaim.
  Gleanings will be left in it,
    as when an olive tree is beaten—
  two or three berries
    in the top of the highest bough,
  four or five
    on the branches of a fruit tree,
      declares the LORD God of Israel.

In that day man will look to his Maker, and his eyes will look on the Holy One of Israel. He will not look to the altars, the work of his hands, and he will not look on what his own fingers have made, either the Asherim or the altars of incense.

In that day their strong cities will be like the deserted places of the wooded heights and the hilltops, which they deserted because of the children of Israel, and there will be desolation.

  For you have forgotten the God of your salvation
    and have not remembered the Rock of your refuge;
  therefore, though you plant pleasant plants
    and sow the vine-branch of a stranger,
  though you make them grow on the day that you plant them,
    and make them blossom in the morning that you sow,
  yet the harvest will flee away
    in a day of grief and incurable pain.
  Ah, the thunder of many peoples;
    they thunder like the thundering of the sea!
  Ah, the roar of nations;
    they roar like the roaring of mighty waters!
  The nations roar like the roaring of many waters,
    but he will rebuke them, and they will flee far away,
  chased like chaff on the mountains before the wind
    and whirling dust before the storm.
  At evening time, behold, terror!
    Before morning, they are no more!
  This is the portion of those who loot us,
    and the lot of those who plunder us.


Isaiah 17 Commentary

by Hank Workman

“Whatever it takes Lord, whatever it takes.”

These words come to me many times when praying for someone so lost spiritually in their determination to shut out the voice of the Holy Spirit.  For the lost, the reality is they need to come to an end of themselves to finally look to Jesus.  

There are many barriers they have which must be broken down for that to happen.  For the wayward, when the Holy Spirit is at work and calling us who are Believers forward in growth – we get in the way of that work.  Many times we don’t like what He’s saying or how He’s directing because it will bring a tremendous change and life adjustment.

“Whatever it takes Lord, whatever it takes.”

The beauty of such a request is it really is toward growth.  It is toward the breaking of human thought and will where there is nowhere to turn except to God.  But what also is so powerful praying such a phrase is it gives God freedom.  Of course, we all know He is God and can do what He needs and will to reach people.  

Yet, how often do we tell God what to do in regards to the lost or the burdens we carry? All. The. Time.  So praying this way truly sets us free in obedience with interceding for another but also brings our own trust in the situation that God will do whatever it takes to bring the lost and wayward home.

The prophecy against Damascus found in chapter 17 offers a mix of hard words coming to Syria. But it also speaks toward the punishment of Israel for their own waywardness.  Within the words against Israel what would take place they would become painfully aware of their choices that led to this position.  They would see just how they had trusted in the wrong things instead of God.  They would have to hit rock bottom before they turned and looked up.

Whatever it takes Lord, whatever it takes.

With the current burdens you bear; the people in your life that are following their own selfish ways or gain; for the ones who have slowly attempted to shut the Holy Spirit out – who do you need to begin praying such a statement over?

Isaiah 17 Commentary

by Brad Boyles
Mount Hermon
Mount Hermon was a massive ridge north of Damascus

After focusing on the nations to the south, this prophecy shifts to the northern borders.  As Hank mentioned, this prophecy speaks to both the northern kingdom of Israel as well as Damascus (nation of Syria). The city of Damascus was a very strategic area when compared to other cities of its size. The inflow of traffic was high because geographically it stood between Mount Hermon and basalt plateaus. It was really the only route to take if one was traveling from east to west – from Mesopotamia to Egypt.

The moral of the story here is that for every nation that seems to be all-sufficient and powerful, there always seems to be one that trumps it.  The only hope is in the ultimate power because nations will rise and fall on God’s hand alone. It also reminds me of the fact that so many people place their trust and security in their financial status – but what happens when there is no food or clothing to buy? What happens when the rivers dry up and natural disasters strike? What good will our money be then?

The judgments in this chapter represent the physical and agricultural – two blessings we commonly take for granted. When we fail to acknowledge the source of our physical and material provisions, we mock the Lord. We send a message that we are in control and He isn’t. We sit back and casually gorge ourselves, giving no credit to the Provider. The people of Syria and Israel would have nearly everything taken away. They would learn the hard way that each gift is a blessing from God, and that He alone is the source of all that is good.

Let us not fall into the same trap. Let us be gracious and thankful for all He has provided.

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Evil has looted us..Evil has plundered us. But GOD is almighty with power and He will do whatever it takes to be Glorified! He is the mind changer. He is the Waymaker. Thank you Guys again for your thoughts