43 Isaiah / Part 1 (7)

In the truth of God

Isaiah 26:20 -21
Revelation 21:1-4
T The Apocalypse of Isaiah

 Chapters 13-23 in Isaiah are messages to many foreign countries. However, perhaps, as for us, it will not have interest what will happen to the Moab and Damascus. A summary edited that these 11 chapters surely took long time and heard it from God later. Because there are not so many prophets who sent interest to such foreign countries, this is going to let you feel size of prophet Isaiah again, but, this time, I want to skip here.

 It is from Chapter 24-27 called "the Apocalypse of Isaiah" this morning. Apocalypse is a meaning to "take away a cover", and most are translated as Apocalypse, but in it, the thing which was written the end and a scene of the country of God by special expression is called with "Revelation". The Apocalypse or the Apocalypse literature are many, the Apocalypse of John in New Testament, Ezekiel and Daniel in Old Testament etc, most of them are things after Persia, but this point of Isaiah is thought at in early stage of it.

 By the way, a plan of the salvation of God that Isaiah told had one route. It begins with an advice and anger of God for king Ahaz. And the message "Be calm, have no fear"(7:4) and the promise (7:14) of Immanuel who is called Messiah are told to him who is frightened by attack of the Silja/Ephraim allied forces, but, Ahaz persisted in the policy that was dependent on Assyria to the last, and could not clip out this critical situation without hearing such advice of Isaiah, and pressure by Assyria began at last. Perhaps attack of Silja/Ephraim allied forces, Assyria hating buttocks and an invasion upon Israel by circumference various country, Philistine so on in U Chronicles Chapter 28, they would showed the judgment of God for an Israeli crime concretely. The judgment of God is turned to Israel to the first, it is here "Behold, the Lord lays the earth waste, devastates it, distorts its surface, and scatters its inhabitants."(24:1), probably it will point that. However, people resisting God are not only Israel. It seemed to Isaiah that every countries in the world, every people was similar as for it, these messages to many foreign countries were told in Chapter 13-23, and it would be told by such eyes of prophet. Israel and the judgment to people of the whole world and remaining people having the salvation of God again were told by this Apocalypse of Isaiah.


U The present age, get thinner and decline

 Perhaps the judgment of God to south kingdom is said at 24:1-13. And "It will come about also in that day that a great trumpet will be blown; and those who were perishing in the land of Assyria and who were scattered in the land of Egypt will come and worship the Lord in the holy mountain at Jerusalem."(13), Israeli recovery are told, and this Apocalypse is completed. However, the central part begins "They raise their voices, they shout for joy. They cry out from the west concerning the majesty of the Lord"(24:14), from there and Chapter 25-26, and most of them are praise to God by people of the whole world. This apocalypse will be a message of the prophet who says the end holds an expanse to the whole world. I seem to strongly hear a message to the present age among other things from that.

 "But I say, 'Woe to me! Woe to me! Alas for me! The treacherous deal treacherously, And the treacherous deal very treacherously.'"(24:16) The end, the most of them are the time of a complicated dark phase of life swirls, but it will be the praise and peace of only for the people who is there. "Woe to me", this is the word only here, it means "I waste away."(口語訳), but a crop gradually decreases, don't you think it points at the present economic situation that the whole world is rolled up in recession? The word repeated five times "treacherous" means "betrayal"(口語訳・新共同訳), and it sounds the modern state goes astray. Can't you hear it will be the people who don't have God? Surely it is here, "and the foundations of the earth shake. The earth reels broke asunder, The earth is split through, The earth is shaken violently."(24:18 -19), and a phenomenon which is said as "The sky and the ground tremble." will happen on that day, but here, I can hear that the end as the judgment of God is caused above all by distrust between human beings. Economic downturns, the terrorism which expands in everywhere, and disputes, too, these will be thought the figure that is mown by lifestyle of the people who lived without God until now.

 "For Thou hast made a city into a heap, A fortified city in a ruin;"(25:2), and there is "And the unassailable fortifications of your walls He will bring down, Lay low, and cast to the ground, even to the dust."(12). Before a little, I introduced a picture of "the silent world" which an acquaintance of Takamatsu exhibited to an art museum of Tennoji. It was the thing which pictured the present with mineral matter as the world of a dead person without an expression, but I felt a symbolic meaning with that stage was a city. As for the full evil place, it is the virtual image of a city to look like quite bringing prosperity, but the age of the present day will be our own figure urbanized in search of that virtual image.


V In the truth of God

 However, you must not forget the salvation of God to be prepared for there, even if most of 6,000,000,000 people of the world will run for the urbanization that is a den of evil, God says against His people in there, "Come, my people, enter into your rooms, And close your doors behind you; Hide for a little while. Until indignation runs its course."(26:20). These "my people" will be "the remaining people" whom Isaiah made the subject of his message. It seems just like the time when Israel escaped from Egypt, the anger of God was passed and went over from the house which was painted the blood of the lamb. When we hear this message of prophet, we must do the preparation, too.

 Because "the Lord is about to come out from His place To puish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity; And the earth will reveal her bloodshed, And will no longer cover her slain"(21) is said, and the time is approaching just near here. As for the event of the end, it will begin from that God will impeach our crime. Jesus told to his disciples about the end right before when He was hung on the cross. At the time, "because lawlessness is increased, most people's love will grow cold." is said, and they heard the end would begin from the place where love was lost. It is felt that situation is realized more in our place as of now. It will be certainly that the end will get closer to all the time from the time of Isaiah and the time that the disciples heard it from Jesus. Or, it can feel to come just to front of our eyes.

 This Apocalypse of Isaiah sounds like declaration that the time comes surely. And the person who has a crime on that day must stand before the judgment of God. It will be heard that we should do the preparation for it like this, "enter into your rooms, and close your doors behind you;". That room is painted with the blood of Jesus of the cross. Isaiah praised it like this, "For Thou hast worked wonders, Plans formed long ago, with perfect faithfulness."(25:1). You had better hear that there is it with "wonder" here with "surprising"(新共同訳) and should hear "faithfulness" with "truth"(新共同訳). A plan of the salvation by cross of Jesus goes back to the older day than Moses' days in the old days, but this is a really surprising thing. Besides, God showed His truth in that salvation like this, "you will be gathered up one by one,"(27:12). How should we meet the truth of God? Our thanks and praise from heart will be offered to the Lord, it is here like this, "worships the Lord in the holy mountain at Jerusalem."(13). It was said here with "Come, my people, enter into your rooms,". That room is the church which our faith and truth were put in and is to keep worship together, and it is said like this, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He shall dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be among them, and He shall wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there shall no longer be any death; there shall no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away."(Revelation 21:3-4), it is the hope that we are received into God's country.