Judgment and Salvation
65 I was ready to be sought by those who did not ask for me;
I was ready to be found by those who did not seek me.
I said, “Here I am, here I am,”
to a nation that was not called by my name.
I spread out my hands all the day
to a rebellious people,
who walk in a way that is not good,
following their own devices;
a people who provoke me
to my face continually,
sacrificing in gardens
and making offerings on bricks;
who sit in tombs,
and spend the night in secret places;
who eat pig’s flesh,
and broth of tainted meat is in their vessels;
who say, “Keep to yourself,
do not come near me, for I am too holy for you.”
These are a smoke in my nostrils,
a fire that burns all the day.
Behold, it is written before me:
“I will not keep silent, but I will repay;
I will indeed repay into their lap
both your iniquities and your fathers’ iniquities together,
says the LORD;
because they made offerings on the mountains
and insulted me on the hills,
I will measure into their lap
payment for their former deeds.”
Thus says the LORD:
“As the new wine is found in the cluster,
and they say, ‘Do not destroy it,
for there is a blessing in it,’
so I will do for my servants’ sake,
and not destroy them all.
I will bring forth offspring from Jacob,
and from Judah possessors of my mountains;
my chosen shall possess it,
and my servants shall dwell there.
Sharon shall become a pasture for flocks,
and the Valley of Achor a place for herds to lie down,
for my people who have sought me.
But you who forsake the LORD,
who forget my holy mountain,
who set a table for Fortune
and fill cups of mixed wine for Destiny,
I will destine you to the sword,
and all of you shall bow down to the slaughter,
because, when I called, you did not answer;
when I spoke, you did not listen,
but you did what was evil in my eyes
and chose what I did not delight in.”
Therefore thus says the Lord GOD:
“Behold, my servants shall eat,
but you shall be hungry;
behold, my servants shall drink,
but you shall be thirsty;
behold, my servants shall rejoice,
but you shall be put to shame;
behold, my servants shall sing for gladness of heart,
but you shall cry out for pain of heart
and shall wail for breaking of spirit.
You shall leave your name to my chosen for a curse,
and the Lord GOD will put you to death,
but his servants he will call by another name,
so that he who blesses himself in the land
shall bless himself by the God of truth,
and he who takes an oath in the land
shall swear by the God of truth;
because the former troubles are forgotten
and are hidden from my eyes.
New Heavens and a New Earth
“For behold, I create new heavens
and a new earth,
and the former things shall not be remembered
or come into mind.
But be glad and rejoice forever
in that which I create;
for behold, I create Jerusalem to be a joy,
and her people to be a gladness.
I will rejoice in Jerusalem
and be glad in my people;
no more shall be heard in it the sound of weeping
and the cry of distress.
No more shall there be in it
an infant who lives but a few days,
or an old man who does not fill out his days,
for the young man shall die a hundred years old,
and the sinner a hundred years old shall be accursed.
They shall build houses and inhabit them;
they shall plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
They shall not build and another inhabit;
they shall not plant and another eat;
for like the days of a tree shall the days of my people be,
and my chosen shall long enjoy the work of their hands.
They shall not labor in vain
or bear children for calamity,
for they shall be the offspring of the blessed of the LORD,
and their descendants with them.
Before they call I will answer;
while they are yet speaking I will hear.
The wolf and the lamb shall graze together;
the lion shall eat straw like the ox,
and dust shall be the serpent’s food.
They shall not hurt or destroy
in all my holy mountain,”
says the LORD.
Isaiah 65 Commentary
by Hank Workman
The book of Judges sums up a people who did what they wanted, threw caution to the wind and reaped those benefits for generations. Story after story has the rising of judges to deliver Israel. Ironically, they returned to their ways after a victory. Throughout the book we read this phrase repeated over and over: Everyone did what was right in his own eyes.
The people relied on their own thinking and wisdom.
Scripture illustrates that our hearts bend toward our own reason. We make choices of which we pay dearly for. The cost of sin is horrific. As we are a people who usually do everything in our power to get something accomplished or done, many times we leave God behind us. We move forward in our own goals or by our own means and determine our steps. It makes me wonder when any of us will learn for it’s an ongoing cycle.
“There is a way which seems right to a man, but in the end is the way of death.”Proverbs 16:25
Many feel that living life according to their own thoughts and mindsets is freedom. We hear that from those who will not surrender their lives. This is one of their reasons for not giving themselves to Jesus. But we do this ourselves. We may serve God in some areas but in others, we are completely resistant to His Spirit working and wooing us. This is not freedom. It’s a mirage. Truly the lack of a surrendered life is bondage. That bondage can come within our mindset or even physically in the end.
Commentators call this prayer in Isaiah 65 one of the most beautiful and moving prayers. That said, it misses one thing: repentance. And so God answers back to the shallowness of their heart and lack of repentance.
When we walk with God in a way not pleasing, we are walking according to our own thoughts. We can’t trust our own wisdom and judgment. This is sheer rebellion against God. It’s a harsh truth as we battle against our will daily. Thoughts drive us. Our minds make plans which are not part of God’s purpose.
So what to do?
In Paul’s letter to the Romans, he gives some practical spiritual help. A part of our spiritual act of worship is presenting ourselves to Him completely. We must lay down every aspect of ourselves to Him. But he takes it one step further. We are not to let ourselves allow the world and all it’s thinking and ways seep into our following.
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.”Romans 12:2 NASB
Where does this hit you today? Where have you possibly been working ‘every possible scenario out’ in your own thinking to a crisis or decision? Taking things into our own hands based upon our thoughts will not be the best way. God’s will is there – but to discover it we must renew our mind daily in Him. We must seek Him. We must step away from ourselves and look to His direction for His will.
Isaiah 65 Commentary
by Brad Boyles
God has made Himself available. He is standing with arms outstretched ready to help His people. God says one thing, but the people say another. God offers His help, but the people will not budge. The people, just like us, want God on their terms instead of on His. Isn’t it ironic that when we want God to respond on our terms, and He doesn’t, we label Him unresponsive?
Just like in Isaiah 55, we must accept the fact that Gods ways are not our ways. His thoughts are so much higher than ours, and it takes humility and obedience to understand that. I really think that today, a lot of Christians do not want to meet God on His terms. Period.
No matter how many believers call it “legalistic,” there is a huge responsibility on our part to follow through with trust and faith. We have no excuses. God has given us the Holy Spirit to guide us with wisdom and discernment. He has sent His Son as an example of how to live and as a sacrifice for our sin. He has also recorded the way He desires for us to practically live our life through Scripture. What else do we need to follow through? What is stopping us today?
We should read this chapter and consider our ways. We are under the New Covenant and yet still struggle with demanding God meet us on our terms. Come to Him with humility and obedience utilizing the power He gave us!