An Overview of the Book of Isaiah
Denouncing Materialism and Formalism
AUTHOR: Isaiah, the prophet . There are those who insist that there were two Isaiahs–one who wrote the first 39 chapters and one who wrote the last 27 chapters. The division between chapters 39 and 40 is used by foolish scholars to question the human authorship of the book (Gen. 3:1; 2 Cor. 2:17). The textual critics foolishly theorize a Second or Deutero-Isaiah, but the Lord Jesus stated a few times that Isaiah wrote the entire book (Matt. 3:3; 4:14; 8:17; 12:17; 13:14; 15:7; Luke 4:16-20; John 12:27-42). They are not DETACHABLE from each other and therefore they go TOGETHER to form the greatest Messianic POEM in the Bible. In other words, there is only one Isaiah who wrote the entire book, all 66 chapters.
There is very little known about Isaiah.
He was a man of the city and one born in the city who really loved the city of Jerusalem.
Tradition says that his father was Amos, brother of Amaziah the king. Amaziah was the father of Uzziah, the king.
He was cultured and refined because he moved in high places of government.
He knew the priesthood very well.
He lived in a day of prosperity and affluence.
He saw much of the sin of his city.
He was married to, “The prophetess,” and had two sons.
Tradition says that he was placed in a log and sawn in half by king Manasseh.
Isaiah has been called,
6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
KEY WORDS: The word SALVATION occurs 25 times, The HOLY ONE of Israel occurs 21 times, I Am THE LORD occurs 21 times, SAVED or SAVE 17 times, and SAVIOR 8 times.
Isaiah 6:1 indicates that it was around 740 B.C. around the reign of Uzziah
KINGS OF ISRAEL KINGS OF JUDAH
Northern Kingdom Southern Kingdom
THEME: “The Denouncing of Religious Formalism and Externality.”
Parallels of the Book of Isaiah to the Bible
|Old Testament Covers History and Sin of Israel||Isaiah 1-39 Covers History and Sin of Israel|
|New Testament Describes The Person and Ministry of Christ||Isaiah 49-66 Describes The Person and Ministry of Christ|
|New Testament Begins with the Ministry of John the Baptist||Isaiah 40 (Second Section) Begins By Predicting the Ministry of John the Baptist|
Isaiah 1:2-4 Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the Lord hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me.
3 The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib: but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider.
4 Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the Lord, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone away backward.
The book of Isaiah, a miniature Bible of the Bible, was written for all the world; so that, all nations learn from the rights and wrongs of the nation of Israel. Israel is the nation for all nations to observe in regards to the national blessings or curses of God (Prov. 14:34).
The easiest division of the book:
God’s Judgment (ch. 1-35)
History (ch. 36-39)
God’s Restoration (ch. 40-66)
Isaiah The Mini-Bible
66 chapters – – – 66 books in your Bible
Isaiah 1-39 = 39 books of the Old Testament
Judgment for Jerusalem 1-12
Isaiah sees the LORD – ch 6
God Sends a Sign – Emmanuel ch 7
Judgment for Israel’s Neighbors – 13-27
Rise and Fall of Jerusalem 28-38
Deliverance with Hezekiah 39
Isaiah 40-66 = 27 books of the New Testament
9 ch 9 ch 9 ch
Salvation of Israel Salvation of people Salvation of New Heaven
From Nations around Individually and New Earth
Ch 40-48 Ch 49-57 Ch 58 – 66
49-52 53 54-57
Another Outline of the Book
Accusations against Judah and Israel 1-12
Prophecies concerning foreign nations 12-35
History of Hezekiah 36-39
Coming restoration prophesied 39-48
Messiah Promised 49-58
The Restored Israel 59-66
You can also outline the book based on the Kings listed in Isaiah 1:1
Uzziah – ch 1-5
Jotham – ch 6
Ahaz – ch 7-14:27
1st half of Hezekiah – ch 14:28- ch 39.
2nd half of Hezekiah – ch 40-66
INTRODUCTION: Isaiah is the greatest of the prophetic writers. He is the first of the Major Prophets. Some have said that he is the major of the Major Prophets. Assyria dominated the world during this time. Jerusalem was a strong fortress along the trade route through which Assyria and Egypt passed. Isaiah prophesied the fall of the Northern Kingdom of Assyria. He also prophesied the fall of Judah by Babylon. Isaiah is generally regarded as one of the six greatest books of the Bible with the others being Genesis, Psalms, John, Romans, and Revelation. Isaiah the prophet, prophesied during the reign of five kings of Judah: Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, Hezekiah, and Manassah. The only other book in the Bible that gives more information about Christ is the book of Psalms. II Chronicles 26:22 makes reference to a book on the life of Uzziah that Isaiah wrote and is referred to in the Bible but God did not see fit to put it in His Word like many other things other prophets wrote that are not in the Bible also. Upon the death of Jehoshaphat, Judah entered into a long period of moral and religious decline. In the reign of Ahaz, Judah sank to a state of moral degradation out of which she was raised by Hezekiah, the pious son of Ahaz. Hezekiah was greatly aided in his work of revival by the prophet Isaiah, and one of the greatest revivals in history was the result of the joint efforts of the great king, Hezekiah, and the great prophet, Isaiah. Isaiah denounced the sins of his time. Especially did he expose the emptiness of religious formality and the offering of sacrifices and the performance of religious rites without the heart being right. Let us notice several things about the book of Isaiah.
THE BIRTH OF CHRIST IS PROPHESIED.
Isaiah 9:6‑7 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.
THE FACT THAT THIS BIRTH WOULD BE OF A VIRGIN IS PROPHESIED.
Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
III. THE DEATH OF CHRIST AND HOW HE WOULD DIE IS PROPHESIED.
Isaiah 53:1-10; 50:6; 52:14
More of Jesus Christ the coming Messiah
His Youth in Nazareth 11:1,2; 53:2; 7:15
His relation with the Father 42:1; 50:4,5
His Miracles 35:5,6
His Message 61:1,2
His Specific Ministry to Gentiles 9:1,2
His Gracious ministry to All 42:2,3
His Resurrection and Ascension 52:13; 53:10-12
His Reign in the Millennium 9:7; 42:4-7; 59:16-21; 11:3-5; 49:1-12; 32:1
SATAN”S FALL FROM HEAVEN IS RECORDED.
Isaiah 14:12‑15 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!
13 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:
14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.
15 Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.
As we examine this for a moment look back at verse 4:
Isaiah 14:4 “That thou shalt take up this proverb against the king of Babylon, and say, How hath the oppressor ceased! the golden city ceased!”
The king of Babylon historically was Belshazzar (Dan. 5), but prophetically the king will be the Antichrist with the kingdoms of the world (Zeph. 3:8; Rev. 17:1-5). The just damnation of the Antichrist will occur at the Tribulation (Rev. 19:19-21).
Isaiah 14:12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!
The public relations campaign required to transform the public’s image of Satan, from his true evil character to one which would inspire worship, is monumental. It pivots upon the transformation of his identity.
Historically, Isaiah 14 has been used as the singular biography of Lucifer, shedding unique light upon the “mystery of iniquity.” In verse twelve Lucifer is in heaven, in verse fifteen Satan is in hell. The intervening verses expose his pride in the five “I wills,” each a rung in his descent into hell. (“I will,” is also the official motto of the U.S. city sporting zip code 60606. In 1966, this same city hatched the NIV.)
These passages must be the object of Satan’s rancor and consequently his opposition. They reveal his arrogance (verse 13 and 14), his responsibility for much of the world’s misery (verse 17) and his end (verse 15 and 16). He is indicted as soundly in Ezekiel 28, but is unnamed and designated “the anointed cherub.”
His ambition is to be “like the most High” and these verses sweep away that illusion, presenting him transparently. To hold that he would not grapple with the word “Lucifer” until it was securely removed from such an unflattering context and replanted into a “like-the-most-High” context, is naiveté. Fait accompli, the feat is accomplished in all new bible versions; the KJV remains uncorrupted.
Twentieth century versions have removed the name Lucifer, thereby eliminating the only reference to him in the entire bible. The word Lucifer then falls to the realm of the poets and writers of mythology and ceases to be an identifiable character of biblical origin. He is thereby divorced from the truth concerning himself. In John 8:44 Jesus said, “the devil…is a liar, and the father of it.” He can now have whatever characteristics he desires.
“Morning Star” Not In Hebrew
The change in new versions does not spring from the original Hebrew language, but from the ‘theology’ of the new version editors. The NIV’s wording parallels exactly the view expressed by NIV committee member R. Lair Harris. He asserts that Isaiah 14 is not about “Lucifer” and his descent to “hell,” but about a king from Babylon and his interment in the “grave.”
The NIV’s version of Harris’ view is one link in a chain tied to New Age Luciferian H.P. Blavatsky, who like the new versions and new theologians, denies the fall of Lucifer. Blavatsky writes the script for the 20th century scribes saying:
“Now there are many passages in the Bible that prove on their face, exoterically, that this belief was at one time universal; and the two most convincing are Ezekiel 28 and Isaiah 14. Christian theologians are welcome to interpret the great War before Creation…if they so choose, but the absurdity of the idea is too apparent.”
An examination of the original Hebrew will dispel any illusion that “morning star” is an acceptable substitute for the word “Lucifer.” The Hebrew is “helel, ben shachar,” which is accurately translated, “Lucifer, son of the morning.” The NIV and NASB give an English translation as if the Hebrew said, “shachar kikab, ben shachar” or morning star, son of the morning (or dawn). Yet the word for star (kokab) appears nowhere in the text. Also ‘morning’ appears only once, as the KJV shows, not twice as new versions indicate. The word kokab is translated as ‘star’ dozens of other times by NIV translators; morning or dawn is likewise used hundreds of times. New version editors know boqer kokab is ‘morning star’ since it is used in Job 38:7. If God had intended to communicate ‘morning star’, he could have repeated it here. The word he chose, helel, appears nowhere else in the Old Testament, just as “Lucifer” appears nowhere else.
Why “Morning Star”?
The matching of Lucifer with the morning star rises not from the Hebrew bible but from classical mythology, a fount of bitter water not intended by God as our “fountain of living waters” (Jeremiah 17:13). Reference works concede that the switch is based on “…classical mythology for the planet Venus.” Just because Satan has convinced the heathen world to connect him with Venus, the morning star, is no basis for the repetition of that “myth” by Christian scholars. But II Timothy 4:3,4 says the time for myths has come.
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. [muthos: from which we get the word ‘myths’]
Who is the “Morning Star”?
The ultimate blasphemy occurs when the “morning star” takes “Lucifer’s” place in Isaiah 14. Jesus Christ is the “morning star” and is identified as such in Revelation 22:16, 2:28 and II Peter 1:19. With this slight-of-hand switch, Satan not only slyly slips out of the picture but lives up to his name “the accuser” (Revelation 12:10) by attempting to make Jesus Christ the subject of the diatribe in Isaiah 14.
The NASB compounds its role as malefactor by placing the reference, II Peter 1:19, next to Isaiah 14:12 to solidify the notion that the passage refers to Jesus Christ rather than Lucifer. In using this reference the NASB becomes the willing marionette, costumed in sheep’s clothing, of ravenous wolves like New Age Rosicrucian leader R. Swineburn Clymer. His occult treatise concurs with the new versions’ perversions regarding the daystar. He concludes,
In this one short sentence is stated most clearly one of the greatest occult truths.
The word Lucifer is changed to morning star or day star in the snide bibles of Alexandria (Jer. 23:36), which implies that Lucifer is the Lord Jesus (2 Peter 1:19; Rev. 22:13-16). Or that Jesus Christ fell into sin and destruction (Matt. 5:22). This passage reveals the desire of Satan and his fivefold destruction (Ezek. 28:11-19; 31:10-17; Luke 10:18; 2 Cor. 2:9-11; Col. 2:15; rev. 12:7-10; 20:1-3).
Satan imitates God (2 Cor. 4:4). He counterfeits the ways of god. The Devil slightly twists the truths of God in order to deceive man (Gen. 3:1-5; Eph. 4:14). His most effective weapons are counterfeits of the written word of god with false apostolic signs and wonders (2 Cor. 11:13-15; 2 Thess. 2:9; Rev. 13:13-15). These signs and wonders will be accompanied with sensual music to motivate the flesh of deceived worshipers of the false god and idol (Dan. 3:1-7; Rev. 13:11-15). Luke 4:10-11 is a satanic translation of Psalm 91:11-12).
Isaiah 14:13-14 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:
14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.
God judges Satan by the words of his own mouth (Luke 19:22). Satan said, “I will,” five times in his desire to exalt himself, but God Almighty repeats the same words five times in Ezekiel 28:16-19 to complete the fivefold destruction of Satan. Satan was degraded from the anointed cherub from the third heaven to leviathan of the second heaven after creation (Job 26:13; 41:1). He was degraded from the second heaven to the prince of the power of the air of the first heaven during the ministry and crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ (Luke 10:18; Eph. 2:1-3; Col. 2:15). Michael will kick Satan down to earth during the Tribulation ( 1 Peter 5:8; Rev. 12:7-17) and Satan will indwell the Antichrist for 3 ½ years of the Great Tribulation (John 13:26-27; Rev. 17:8). The Lord Jesus will cast Satan into the bottomless pit at the beginning of the Millennium (Rev. 20:1-3). Satan will get permanently fired from his job of deception at the end of the Millennium (Rev. 20:7-10).
ISAIAH IS THE MOST QUOTED OF THE O.T. PROPHETS IN THE NEW TESTAMENT. The Book of Isaiah is quoted directly or indirectly 190 times in the New testament. In Luke 4:17-20 Jesus takes His text for His first sermon from Isaiah. In Matthew 3:3 John the Baptist begins his ministry and his text is from Isaiah. In Acts 8:28 the Ethiopian eunuch was reading from the prophet Isaiah. Again Isaiah is quoted in the great tenth chapter of Romans. See Romans 10:16 and 20.
THE TRINITY IS MENTIONED IN ISAIAH. Isaiah 6:3. Notice the words, “”Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts.”” Each “Holy”” represents another Person in the Trinity, which is the Lord of hosts.
VII. ISAIAH WAS A MEMBER OF THE ROYAL FAMILY. He was the son of Amoz. He was the father-in-law of Manasseh, by whom he was sawn asunder. No doubt Isaiah is mentioned in Hebrews 11:37. We stress very much the fact that a poor child can be used by God. We try to encourage those who have little and those who have wicked parents with the fact that they can be used by the Lord. This is true and it ought to be stressed. On the other hand, we stress today that God can use people of noble heritage. God can use people from rich homes and rich backgrounds. God can use people from the best homes. Isaiah is an example of this. Because so often the men of God come from undesirable backgrounds, we bypass the fact that God can use people who come from backgrounds of wealth and plenty. Such was the case with Isaiah.
The Biblical Purpose of Education
Isaiah 47:10 For thou hast trusted in thy wickedness: thou hast said, None seeth me. Thy wisdom and thy knowledge, it hath perverted thee; and thou hast said in thine heart, I am, and none else beside me.
11 Therefore shall evil come upon thee; thou shalt not know from whence it riseth: and mischief shall fall upon thee; thou shalt not be able to put it off: and desolation shall come upon thee suddenly, which thou shalt not know.
The purpose of education is to edify, not stupefy. Higher learning was a tool that Satan used to tempt Eve (Gen. 3:5-6). Education under any governmental control breeds globalism, hedonism, humanism, and socialism. Formal Christian education of higher learning breeds agnosticism, apostasy, and carnality (Ps. 62:9; Luke 16:15; 1 Cor. 3:18-20). Learning truth outside of any formal setting lessens the glorification of education (John 7:15; Acts 4:13) and it teaches one to reason and think rather than to just consume information (2 Tim. 3:4-7).
True wisdom begins with the fear of the Lord (Ps 119:120; Prov. 1:7), but worldly wisdom begins with the exaltation of man and his fleshly nature (Gen. 3:6; James 3:13-18). Heavenly wisdom perceives truth from its counterfeits (Isa. 14:14; I Cor. 2:14; 2 Cor. 11:13-15; I John 4;6).
VIII. THE CALL OF ISAIAH. One of the greatest things about Isaiah was his call. He is going to warn Israel of her sins and fight wickedness. He is going to prophesy some of the greatest things that would ever happen. He has a big task, and he needs a divine call. He sees the Lord in Isaiah 6:1-4 in a definite call. This call comes under three divisions:
Isaiah 6:1‑13 In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple.
2 Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.
3 And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.
4 And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke.
5 Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.
6 Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar:
7 And he laid it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged.
8 Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.
9 And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not.
10 Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed.
11 Then said I, Lord, how long? And he answered, Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land be utterly desolate,
12 And the LORD have removed men far away, and there be a great forsaking in the midst of the land.
13 But yet in it shall be a tenth, and it shall return, and shall be eaten: as a teil tree, and as an oak, whose substance is in them, when they cast their leaves: so the holy seed shall be the substance thereof.
Why did Isaiah think of himself as being unclean and undone? He did so for the same reason that anyone thinks of himself as being little and unworthy . Notice the words in Isaiah 6:5c, “For mine eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts.” When we see Him, we think little of ourselves, and the closer we walk with God, the less we will criticize others and the more we will criticize ourselves. The more one stays close to Christ, the more unclean he feels. (Teacher, take a garment that is just a little soiled, but that does not seen to be soiled when seen alone. Also, take a garment that is spotlessly clean. Two handkerchiefs would be good for this. Hold up the soiled handkerchief by itself. Then hold it up beside the clean one. The closer it gets to the clean one, the dirtier it looks. The closer we get to God, the dirtier we look to ourselves. Teacher, you might even take an off-white cloth and hold it up and ask the class what color it is . The answer, of course, is white. Then compare it to pure white. Ask the class what color it is . They will notice then that it is not pure white when it is compared to one which is.) It is vitally important that we walk with God and keep close enough to God so as to see our own weaknesses.
You will notice where the cleansing started. It started in verse 7 with his lips. Cleansing should start here. (Teacher, discuss with the class the way that our lips can sin. Discuss the awfulness of cursing, telling shady stories, talking about others, criticizing, slandering, gossiping, etc.)