Bible Study: Isaiah 32:1-20
In today's lesson, we take a look at the future of Israel and a time when God will reign.
Isaiah Chapter 32
The Prosperity of the Wicked
Verse five says that the churl are called bountiful. In other words, those who do evil have all the money. How many times do we find ourselves jealous of somebody else, questioning why it is that they can lie and cheat and steal and God blesses them with material goods when we who are righteous have nothing. The answer is simple: they actually have nothing while we have everything.
When God comes back the wicked will be seen for what they are, as those who "destroy the poor with lying words." Although for a season they may appear to be doing well, all of the goods will perish because they are of this world. This passage of Scripture allows us to see that we must be very careful not to judge somebody's spiritual state by their outward appearance. The presence of material goods does not signify God's blessings. Instead, peace, quietness, and assurance (v17) marks God's blessings on the righteous.
What Is a Liberal?
Before I say anything else, know that I am not here talking about politics. That being said, let's look at how Webster defines a liberal.
Looking at this definition, a liberal from God's perspective is anyone who is willing to accept behaviors and ways of life that are not consistent with the traditional Christian, or Biblical, values. Bluntly put, this is someone who has compromised God's values for something else that they think is acceptable. The same-sex marriage activists are liberals because they have excepted the lifestyle of sodomy that God has decreed as unrighteous. The preachers who get up behind a pulpit and say that there is no hell because God is love are liberals because they have forsaken Jesus's teachings on eternal damnation.
What does God called these liberals? He calls them "vile."
From God's perspective, they are speaking error against the Lord and trying to take away the one thing that can feed those who are hungry and thirsty for righteousness, justice, and truth. They are like the Pharisees who do not know how to enter into heaven and who keep others from entering in (Mt 23:13).
Clearly, then, you don't want to be a liberal from God's perspective. So, don't be deterred the next time someone calls you close-minded or old fashion. Instead, remember that you are being faithful to God's values and have resisted the temptation to become a liberal.
Verse by Verse Commentary
1 This prophecy is fulfilled in the Millennial Reign. The Saints will be the princes. See Revelation 20:6.
2 When Christ reigns and man has been redeemed, then man will be a guardian and a provider rather then the destroyer that he currently is.
3 This is a direct reversal of the earlier prophecy that eyes would be darkened and the ears would be dimmed.
4-5 When God rules, everything is seen for what it is. For someone who could not speak, now he can speak. Those who appear to be well on the outside but inwardly were evil will be seen for what they are. A churl is a mean-spirited person.
6-8 God sees what is in one's heart, not the label society has placed on one. Although on the outside one may be called bountiful or liberal, God sees hypocrisy, error, and wicked devices. To be liberal means to expand from Scriptural principles by accepting doctrines and lifestyles that are not supported by God. It is, therefore, sin.
9-12 Being at ease is not being at rest. To be at ease is to be careless, or to not care about the condition of one's soul or the state of others. God warns that such a one needs to rise up and listen because trouble is coming.
13-14 Being careless, people were rejoicing despite their sin. Therefore God, through the deportation, will take away all the princes and the high members of society until the land is left barren.
15-16 The land will remain empty until the Spirit of God comes down from heaven to heal the land. In II Chronicles, God makes it clear that this will happen when his people turn from their wicked ways into seek Him (7:14). Then the judgment and righteousness of God will come back to the barren land, and it will become fruitful and healthy. God can and will bless that which is barren; all it takes is repentance.
17-18 Once in a right relationship with God, one can have peace and assurance. Righteousness works eternal life, and righteous is put on one when one believes in God (Rom 4:20-25). Once one has faith in Jesus Christ, then one gets the assurance of everlasting life.
19 Having been excepted as righteous before God, one will be protected from judgment. Even if God is raining down hail on those around one, one will be safe and secure.
20 God will bless one who does not hold back his hand to anyone but is willing to sow everywhere there is water. One is not to try to plant in the desert but wherever the spirit of God is moving (see Mt 7:6). One is also blessed when one allows those in one's care to rest and be refreshed. In other words, God rewards those who exhibit mercy and grace on others.
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