To download a PDF of the notes, click the following link: NOTES Last Messages of Judgement and Hope Isaiah & Jeremiah
Last messages of judgment and hope before Judah’s Captivity
Isaiah, Jeremiah, Obadiah & Nahum
Yvon Prehn, Teacher
God’s patience with Israel and Judah
• Since they came out of Egypt, over 700 years of reminders of God’s covenant of blessings for obedience; judgment for disobedience
• Over 700 years of prophets preaching on the importance of obedience to God
• Of not worshipping other gods
• Repeated reminders that their personal lives needed to reflect the justice, mercy, and humility of their God
• Today we’ll look at some of God’s final messages—covering a lot—but the plan is overviews of history with coming lessons focusing on specific books that are less familiar
Importance of prophectic view of time
• ***Remember prophets speak for God and from his time view, present, near future, far future often combined sometimes in the same passage
• That means what they talk about often has something to do with what is happening in their NOW—but also what may in both the
– NEAR FUTURE –current deliverance from enemies
– FAR FUTURE –God’s ultimate deliverance and coming Messiah
• Their prophecies help us see God outside of and in control of history—there are no surprises to him
• VERY difficult for us to see, yet understand the whole picture—try to rest in God’s view of it
• What we learn from the prophets is obedience and trust
• But for us to get the correct message from the prophets to see the power of their words, we need to date them correctly
History & proper dating
• Importance of dating correctly—questions on this come from liberal scholarship in the 1800s that wanted to date much of it later than had been traditionally believed
• Currently discredited and shown to be far more a product of anti-supernatural basis than any true scholarship***But it is still repeated—but with NO true verification
• Wealth of material from archeology—Wealth of documentary evidence, historical writings and discoveries such as Dead Sea Scrolls
• IMPORTANT EXAMPLE: Theory of “Deutero-Isaiah” (or second Isaiah)
• Came about near the end of the eighteenth century. Supposedly, Isaiah himself wrote only the first 39 chapters before the Babylonian captivity, leaving one of his students to write the second part (chapters 40—66).
• This was done allegedly sometime after the Babylonian captivity started (after 586 BC). As such, this later date would explain explicit predictions of “Cyrus, King of Persia” in Isaiah 44:28—45:1
• Refuted by reputable scholarship, Jewish, secular, and Christian; some examples:
• The Dead Sea Scrolls contain a complete scroll of Isaiah dated from the second century BC. The book is one unit with the end of chapter 39 and the beginning of chapter 40 in one continuous column of text. This demonstrates that the scribes who copied this scroll never doubted the singular unity of the book. Neither did the New Testament authors, nor the early church, as quotations from both sections are attributed only to Isaiah.
• Jesus quoted Isaiah in the early part of the book, Isa.29:13 and then the later part, Isa. 42:1-4 and made no distinction, both by Isaiah.
• Excellent work by Gleason Archer, A Survey of Old Testament Introduction
Fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy
• Written approximately 150 years before Cyrus
• Also, Babylon not a power, no captivity yet
• Astounding when correctly dated and placed in historical context
• Isa.44:24 I am the Lord,
the Maker of all things,
who stretches out the heavens,
who spreads out the earth by myself,
25 who foils the signs of false prophets
and makes fools of diviners,
who overthrows the learning of the wise
and turns it into nonsense,
26 who carries out the words of his servants
and fulfills the predictions of his messengers,
• who says of Jerusalem, ‘It shall be inhabited,’
of the towns of Judah, ‘They shall be rebuilt,’
and of their ruins, ‘I will restore them,’
27 who says to the watery deep, ‘Be dry,
and I will dry up your streams,’
28 who says of Cyrus, ‘He is my shepherd
and will accomplish all that I please;
he will say of Jerusalem, “Let it be rebuilt,”
and of the temple, “Let its foundations be laid.”’
• Archeological evidence of fulfillment in Cyrus Cylinder, now in the British Museum
Setting of Isaiah—kings who ruled
• Book begins with warnings to all nations
• Starts when Uzziah was king—lasts through rule of Manasseh—60+ years
• Hezekiah becomes king, Isaiah a key advisor
• Hezekiah, cleanses temple, destroys idols, revival in the land, that included some from Israel; Isaiah & Micah preaching
• Sennacherib of Assyria returns to conquer Judah—takes many cities including Lachish during Hezekiah’s reign
• Siege of Jerusalem, not God’s time for their judgement
• Another powerful archeological verification of scripture
• Portion of the Sennacherib relief, which depicts captives from Judah being led into captivity after the Siege of Lachish in 701 BC
But this did not happen to Jerusalem
• Isa. 36-37
• Sennacherib next turns to Jerusalem
• Army approaches with threats
• “Did the god of any nation ever deliver this land from the king of Assyria?”
• Hezekiah humbles himself and asks for Isaiah’s help—God answers and the army is destroyed
• Stele of Sennacherib, “I shut him up”
• Does not admit defeat, but does not talk about conquering Jerusalem
• Was killed afterwards
Isaiah shifts with transition between c. 39-c.40
• Not really like OT, NT
• Shift in life of Hezekiah—ill, granted longer life, shows off riches to Babylonian kings
• Rest of Isaiah:
• Specific prophecies about fall to Babylon, captivity, restoration under Cyrus
• Comfort, hope, messianic prophecies, salvation
• Also challenges to be God’s worthy people see Isa.58
• Ending of life, martyred by Manasseh, son of Hezekiah and one of the most evil kings of Judah—though he later repented
• Amon follows as king—evil also and did not repent
Eternal view of Isaiah (include some of the favs)
Passages from Isaiah showing the scope of eternity
• Humanity’s fall
Isa. 43:27 Your first father sinned;
those I sent to teach you rebelled against me.
Isa: 14: 12 How you have fallen from heaven,
morning star, son of the dawn!
You have been cast down to the earth,
you who once laid low the nations!
13 You said in your heart,
“I will ascend to the heavens;
I will raise my throne
above the stars of God;
I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly,
on the utmost heights of Mount Zaphon.[b]
14 I will ascend above the tops of the clouds;
I will make myself like the Most High.”
15 But you are brought down to the realm of the dead,
to the depths of the pit.
For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
7 Of the greatness of his government and peace
there will be no end.
He will reign on David’s throne
and over his kingdom,
establishing and upholding it
with justice and righteousness
from that time on and forever.
• Our Savior:
• Isa. 53 Surely he took up our pain
and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
stricken by him, and afflicted.
5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
and by his wounds we are healed.
6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to our own way;
and the Lord has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.
• Response of false worship: Isa: 29:13 The Lord says:
• “These people come near to me with their mouth
and honor me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me.
Their worship of me
is based on merely human rules they have been taught.
• Response of those who trust
• Isa. 26:3 You will keep in perfect peace
those whose minds are steadfast,
because they trust in you.
4 Trust in the Lord forever,
for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal.
The renewal of all things
• Isaiah 51:11 Those the Lord has rescued will return.
They will enter Zion with singing;
everlasting joy will crown their heads.
Gladness and joy will overtake them,
and sorrow and sighing will flee away.
• Isa. 65:17 “See, I will create new heavens and a new earth. . . . Before they call I will answer;
while they are still speaking I will hear.
25 The wolf and the lamb will feed together,
and the lion will eat straw like the ox,
and dust will be the serpent’s food.
They will neither harm nor destroy
on all my holy mountain,”
says the Lord.
NEXT: After Isaiah—Manasseh and Amon bad evil kings, then last time of Great Revival
• Low point of Manasseh & Amon
• Great revival under Josiah—but it wasn’t enough
• Zephaniah, Jeremiah, Huldah, instrumental in it (Jeremiah today, Zephaniah next time)
• Plus 2 shorter books directed to specific nations:
• Obadiah—fall of Edom—not certain of dating
• Nahum—final fall of Assyria
• From the
Obadiah & the destruction of Edom
More on Obadiah
• Because of the violence against your brother Jacob,
you will be covered with shame;
you will be destroyed forever.
11 On the day you stood aloof
while strangers carried off his wealth
and foreigners entered his gates
and cast lots for Jerusalem,
you were like one of them.
12 You should not gloat over your brother
in the day of his misfortune,
nor rejoice over the people of Judah
in the day of their destruction,
nor boast so much
in the day of their trouble.
. . . . .
14 You should not wait at the crossroads
to cut down their fugitives,
nor hand over their survivors
in the day of their trouble.
• 15 “The day of the Lord is near
for all nations.
As you have done, it will be done to you;
your deeds will return upon your own heads
• But on Mount Zion will be deliverance;
it will be holy,
and Jacob will possess his inheritance.
18 Jacob will be a fire
and Joseph a flame;
Esau will be stubble,
and they will set him on fire and destroy him.
There will be no survivors
The Lord has spoken.
• . . . . .
• 21 Deliverers will go up on Mount Zion
to govern the mountains of Esau.
And the kingdom will be the Lord’s.
Edom remains Today—famous in movies
• 1st Edomites,
• Then Nabateans
• Under Rome
• As many as 30,000 people may have occupied Petra during the 1st century A.D. A large earthquake in 363 A.D. destroyed at least half of the city. Petra never recovered from this destruction.
• Final destruction of Nineveh foretold
• Under Jonah great revival
• But doesn’t seem anyone followed up
• And they returned to tremendous cruelty
• Finally destroyed so completely ruins not found for almost 3,000 years
• Nahum 1:3 The Lord is slow to anger but great in power; the Lord will not leave the guilty unpunished. . . . .
• 7 The Lord is good,
a refuge in times of trouble.
He cares for those who trust in him,
8 but with an overwhelming flood
he will make an end of Nineveh;
he will pursue his foes into the realm of darkness.. . . . . .
• 12 This is what the Lord says:
• “Although they have allies and are numerous,
they will be destroyed and pass away.
Although I have afflicted you, Judah,
I will afflict you no more.
13 Now I will break their yoke from your neck
and tear your shackles away.”
• 14 The Lord has given a command concerning you, Nineveh:
“You will have no descendants to bear your name.
I will destroy the images and idols
that are in the temple of your gods.
I will prepare your grave,
for you are vile.”. . . . .
• 2:5 Nineveh summons her picked troops,
yet they stumble on their way.
They dash to the city wall;
the protective shield is put in place.
6 The river gates are thrown open
and the palace collapses.
7 It is decreed that Nineveh
be exiled and carried away.. . . . .
• Where now is the lions’ den,
the place where they fed their young,
where the lion and lioness went,
and the cubs, with nothing to fear?
. . . . .
• 13 “I am against you,”
declares the Lord Almighty.
“I will burn up your chariots in smoke,
and the sword will devour your young lions.
I will leave you no prey on the earth.
The voices of your messengers
will no longer be heard.”
• . . . . 3:19 Nothing can heal you;
your wound is fatal.
All who hear the news about you
clap their hands at your fall,
for who has not felt
your endless cruelty?
• One of the longest books in the Bible
• Preached through several kings and deportations (see following)
• Passages/messages not in order
• “Hospice nurse to a dying nation.”
• Called when young, reluctant, but served faithfully
• Preached that the people submit to judgment, surrender to Babylon and live
• In Jerusalem for final fall—wrote Lamentations
• Stayed with exiles, forced to go to Egypt
• God will later fulfill all words and promises
• “the weeping prophet”
• Little to no success-but served God faithfully for decades
• Most important lesson—FAITHFULNESS in our calling is what is important to God
• You never truly know the results….story of Sunday School teacher to led D.L. Moody to the Lord
Last kings and deportations
Jeremiah witnessed and preached through all of this, told in last chapters of
2 Kings and 2 Chronicles
1. Neco (Necho), king of Egypt, came up out of Egypt to make war at Carchemish. Josiah, king of Judah, went out to stop him. 609 BC. (35:20).
2. Josiah was wounded in battle and was returned to Jerusalem where he died. 609 BC. (35:24).
3. Jehoahaz, his son, was placed on the throne and reigned three months. 609 BC. (36:1,2).
4. Neco took him into Egypt and replaced him with Jehoiakim. 609 BC. (36:4).
5. Jehoiakim reigned eleven years. 609-598 BC. (36:5).
First deportation: Daniel and friends were included in this
6. Nebuchadnezzar came up against him and bound him in chains to carry him to Babylon. 598 BC. (36:6).
7. Nebuchadnezzar took ‘some of the vessels’ of the temple to Babylon. 598 BC. (36:7).
8. Jehoiachin was made king and reigned three months. 598-597 BC. (36:9)
Second Deportation: Ezekiel taken to Babylon at this time.
9. At the turn of the year Nebuchadnezzar returned, captured Jerusalem and replaced Jehoiachin with Zedekiah. Jehoiachin was taken to Babylon ‘with the vessels’ from the temple. 597 BC. (36:10).
10. Zedekiah reigned eleven years. 597-586 BC. (36:11).
11. Zedekiah rebelled against Nebuchadnezzar. 588 BC. (36:13).
12. The Lord brought against them the king of the Chaldeans who killed the young men with the sword in the sanctuary and had no compassion on young or old. They were all given into his hand. 586 BC. (36:17).
13. ‘All the articles’ of the house of God, the treasures of the house of the Lord, and the treasures of the king and his officers, he took to Babylon. 586 BC. (36:18).
14. He burned the house of God, broke down the wall of Jerusalem and burned its fortified buildings. 586 BC. (2 Chron. 36:19).
Jeremiah also wrote Lamentations
• Discipline never pleasant for us as growing believers
• Heb. 12: 7 Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? 8 If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. 9 Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! 10 They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. 11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.
• Lamentations – discipline for a nation
• Lam. 3:19 I remember my affliction and my wandering,
the bitterness and the gall.
20 I well remember them,
and my soul is downcast within me.
21 Yet this I call to mind
and therefore I have hope:
• 22 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion;
therefore I will wait for him.”
• 25 The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him,
to the one who seeks him;
26 it is good to wait quietly
for the salvation of the Lord. Lamentations 3:19-26
• If nothing else these books of the prophets challenge us with the realization that much of the current view of Christianity that it should make life easy and comfortable and that God should always do what we want Him to do is so far off.
• God has standards that go far beyond “religious” observations
• Micah 6:8 a good summary—do justice, love mercy, walk humbly with God
• No matter what the circumstances, God is in control and we never have an excuse not to do what He asks us to do
• Like Jeremiah—follow your calling, no matter what the circumstances—for us today Great Commission given to all.
Jesus Great Commission to us all
• Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
• “disciples?” how can I do that
• MSG helps
• “God authorized and commanded me to commission you: Go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in this way of life, . . . . .instruct them in the practice of all I have commanded you.
• Great Commission circles back to the truth of the prophets. As God’s redeemed people he wants us to live in a way that shows we worship only Him (not money, status, job, hobby, etc.) and as we grow in our relationship with Him that it is also reflected in how we treat others (do justice, love kindness, walk humbly).
• Great Commission flows from the Great Commandment Love God, love others
• Deut. 6:4-5, Lev. 19:17-18, Matt. 22:38-40
• Message the same throughout the Bible
You are writing a gospel
A Chapter each day
By the things that you do
And the things that you say.
People read what you write,
Distorted or true.
What is the gospel,
According to you?
• May it be the true one that leads people to Jesus.