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Isaiah 26

INTRODUCTION TO ISAIAH CHAPTER 26

In this chapter you will see the redeemed saints singing and chanting a hymn of praise.  They are referred to as a righteous nation indwelt by the spirit of God.  They are a testimony of the righteousness of their God.  Their song is about a despised, persecuted people who suffered hardships and discrimination at the hand of tyrants and will see them crushed to the ground.  The song further reveals that the wicked reprobates who deny God will be crushed.  The hymn continues with the promise of and abundant increase in the population of the righteous and a promise of the resurrection of the dead.

EXPOSITION TO ISAIAH CHAPTER 26

 1In that day shall this song be sung in the land of Judah; We have a strong city; salvation will God appoint for walls and bulwarks.

Close your eyes—take a deep breath—and you can hear the song that they are singing—God has brought us back to our home land—restored Zion and surrounded us with the walls of salvation.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT MAKE THE CASE:

Rev 5:9  And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; Read:  Isa 27:1-2; Jdg 5:1-2; Rev 19:1-7; Eze 48:31-34

2Open ye the gates, that the righteous nation which  keepeth the truth may enter in.

The first verse of the song begins with the phrase that this nation is righteous—and that the gate keepers have removed the bar and swung open the gates to admit the keepers of truth.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT ILLUMINATE THE TEXT:

Isa 60:11  Therefore thy gates shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night; that men may bring unto thee the forces of the Gentiles, and that their kings may be brought.  Read:  Psa 118:20; Eze 48:31-34

 3Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.

This song progresses with the words that God will sustain a nation whose firm purpose is on the Lord and because it trusts in him.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT INDORSE THE TEXT:

Isa 57:19-21  I create the fruit of the lips; Peace, peace to him that is far off, and to him that is near, saith the LORD; and I will heal him.  But the wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt.  There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked.

Rom 5:1  Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:

Eph 2:14  For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;

 4Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength:

This song is about trusting—not in the arm of flesh—but in the everlasting strength of JEHOVAH.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES THAT

LEND EVIDENCE TO THE TEXT:

Isa 12:2  Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation.

2Ch 32:8  With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is the LORD our God to help us, and to fight our battles. And the people rested themselves upon the words of Hezekiah king of Judah.

 5For he bringeth down them that dwell on high; the lofty city, he layeth it low; he layeth it low, even to the ground; he bringeth it even to the dust.

Jehovah is able to bring down the high and mighty and bring a towing city to the ground and leave nothing but the dust.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES THAT

DEMONSTRATE THE TEXT:

Jer 50:31-32  Behold, I am against thee, O thou most proud, saith the Lord GOD of hosts: for thy day is come, the time that I will visit thee.  And the most proud shall stumble and fall, and none shall raise him up: and I will kindle a fire in his cities, and it shall devour all round about him.

Rev 18:2  And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.

 6The foot shall tread it down, even the feet of the poor, and the steps of the needy.

The scriptures picture the down trodden, poor and needy as tromping on the wicked.  Paul said in Romans 16:20 “And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly.”

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT AUTHENTICATE THE TEXT:

Isa 37:25  I have digged, and drunk water; and with the sole of my feet have I dried up all the rivers of the besieged places.  Read:  Jos 10:24; Mal 4:3; Luk 1:51-53; Rom 16:20

 7The way of the just is uprightness: thou, most upright, dost weigh the path of the just.

God is weighing us in the balances of justice and if we are upright and righteous then we will be victorious.  When we read the history of the martyrs we see the righteous being weighed and were not found wanting.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES THAT

ESTABLISH THE CERTAINTY OF THE TEXT:

Isa 35:8  And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein.

1Ch 29:17  I know also, my God, that thou triest the heart, and hast pleasure in uprightness. As for me, in the uprightness of mine heart I have willingly offered all these things: and now have I seen with joy thy people, which are present here, to offer willingly unto thee.

 8Yea, in the way of thy judgments, O LORD, have we waited for thee; the desire of our soul is to thy name, and to the remembrance of thee.

The key to this verse is that the righteous have waited for God to cause them to overcome and their motive was to see God glorified.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES THAT

PRESENT OVERWHELMING PROOF OF THE TEXT:

Job 23:10-12  But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.  My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined.  Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.

Luk 1:6  And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless.

 9With my soul have I desired thee in the night; yea, with my spirit within me will I seek thee early: for when thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.

We may warm church pews but if our soul does not desire God and seek him then the judgment of God and his righteous acts will be providentially hindered.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT ATTEST TO THE TEXT:

Psa 130:6  My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning.  Read:  Psa 63:1,6-7

  10Let favour be shewed to the wicked, yet will he not learn righteousness: in the land of uprightness will he deal unjustly, and will not behold the majesty of the  LORD.

The wicked show contempt for the grace of God.  The God haters and Christ deniers of our day are showing contempt for the goodness toward his people.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT ARE CONCLUSIVE AND FINAL:

Isa 63:9-10  In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them: in his love and in his pity he redeemed them; and he bare them, and carried them all the days of old.  But they rebelled, and vexed his holy Spirit: therefore he was turned to be their enemy, and he fought against them.

Rom 2:5  But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God;

 11LORD, when thy hand is lifted up, they will not see: but they shall see, and be ashamed for their envy at the people; yea, the fire of thine enemies shall devour them.

The works of God are ignored by the wicked but the day will come when they will see and be ashamed but it will be too late for their salvation.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT RATIFY THE TEXT:

Mic 5:9  Thine hand shall be lifted up upon thine adversaries, and all thine enemies shall be cut off.

Jer 5:3  O LORD, are not thine eyes upon the truth? thou hast stricken them, but they have not grieved; thou hast consumed them, but they have refused to receive correction: they have made their faces harder than a rock; they have refused to return.

 12LORD, thou wilt ordain peace for us: for thou also hast wrought all our works in us.

True peace comes from the Lord.  Jesus said: “my peace I give unto you.”

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT BEAR OUT THE TEXT:

Joh 14:27  Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

Deu 30:6  And the LORD thy God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live.

 13O LORD our God, other lords beside thee have had dominion over us: but by thee only will we make mention of thy name.

They had been ruled over by the gods of Egypt, Assyria, and Babylonia but now the time has arrived when they can sing a new song.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES THAT

SPEAK VOLUMES ABOUT THE TEXT:

Jos 23:7  That ye come not among these nations, these that remain among you; neither make mention of the name of their gods, nor cause to swear by them, neither serve them, nor bow yourselves unto them:  Amo 6:10

 14They are dead, they shall not live; they are deceased, they shall not rise: therefore hast thou visited and destroyed them, and made all their memory to perish.

God had cut off their enemies and destroyed their gods and sent all their idols to the garbage dump.  Their leaders had been destroyed and their posterity wiped out.  The prophet sees the future demise of Israel’s enemies.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT SHED LIGHT ON THE TEXT:

Psa 109:13  Let his posterity be cut off; and in the generation following let their name be blotted out.  Read:  Isa 51:12-13;  Psa 106:28; Isa 14:19-22

 15Thou hast increased the nation, O LORD, thou hast increased the nation: thou art glorified: thou hadst removed it far unto all the ends of the earth.

God had given them a population explosion and they had been scattered unto the ends of the earth and were now coming back to their homeland.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT VERIFY THE TEXT:

Gen 13:16  And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered.

Deu 10:22  Thy fathers went down into Egypt with threescore and ten persons; and now the LORD thy God hath made thee as the stars of heaven for multitude.

  16LORD, in trouble have they visited thee, they poured out a prayer when thy chastening was upon them.

The pronoun (they) refers to the Israelites who had been scattered to all nations and were being chastised for their unfaithfulness.  In their distress they poured out a prayer unto God for deliverance.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT GIVE COUNTEREVIDENCE

TO THE TEXT:

Deu 4:29-30  But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.  When thou art in tribulation, and all these things are come upon thee, even in the latter days, if thou turn to the LORD thy God, and shalt be obedient unto his voice;

 17Like as a woman with child, that draweth near the time of her delivery, is in pain, and crieth out in her pangs; so have we been in thy sight, O LORD.

The prophet likens their crying out to that of a woman having labor pains.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT CONFIRM THE TEXT:

1Th 5:3  For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.

 18We have been with child, we have been in pain, we have as it were brought forth wind; we have not wrought any deliverance in the earth; neither have the inhabitants of the world fallen.

This metaphor describes their crying out but instead of a birth it was nothing but false labor.  All their years in exile they had not been delivered neither had the nations that had conquered them fallen.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES THAT GIVE AUTHORITIVE DATA TO THE TEXT:

Isa 37:3  And they said unto him, Thus saith Hezekiah, This day is a day of trouble, and of rebuke, and of blasphemy: for the children are come to the birth, and there is not strength to bring forth.

 19Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead.

Isaiah assures them that the dead shall arise from the graves.

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES THAT

CARRY WEIGHT REGARDING THE TEXT:

Hos 13:14  I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death: O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction: repentance shall be hid from mine eyes.

Joh 5:28-29  Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,  And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.  Read:  Isa 25:8; 1Co 15:22-23; Act 24:15

20Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast.

The indignation is the ruling over them by brutal tyrants─the prophet tells them to go into their chamber and pray.  (Jesus tells us to go to our closet and pray).  He calls this a “little moment” as in one of our hymns “it won’t be very long.”

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT MAKE THE CASE:

Eze 11:16  Therefore say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Although I have cast them far off among the heathen, and although I have scattered them among the countries, yet will I be to them as a little sanctuary in the countries where they shall come.

Psa 27:5  For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock.  Read:  Psa 31:20

 21For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain.

The blood of the people slain will bear testimony against these wicked tyrants and it will be like the blood of righteous Abel crying out against them.  Genesis 4:10

CROSS REFERENCE SCRIPTURES

THAT ILLUMINATE THE TEXT:

Mic 1:1-3  The word of the LORD that came to Micah the Morasthite in the days of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, which he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem.  Hear, all ye people; hearken, O earth, and all that therein is: and let the Lord GOD be witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple.  For, behold, the LORD cometh forth out of his place, and will come down, and tread upon the high places of the earth.

 2Th 1:7-9  And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels,  In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:  Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;

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