The Controversy of Zion

Table of Contents

1. The Controversy of Zion
2. Sketch of Isaiah, Chapters 1-35
3. Isaiah 1
4. Isaiah 2
5. Isaiah 3
6. Isaiah 4
7. Isaiah 5
8. Isaiah 6
9. Isaiah 7
10. Isaiah 8
11. Isaiah 9
12. Isaiah 10
13. Isaiah 11
14. Isaiah 12
15. Isaiah 13
16. Isaiah 14
17. Isaiah 15 and 16
18. Isaiah 17
19. Isaiah 18
20. Isaiah 19
21. Isaiah 20
22. Isaiah 21
23. Isaiah 22
24. Isaiah 23
25. Isaiah 24
26. Isaiah 25
27. Isaiah 26
28. Isaiah 27
29. Isaiah 28
30. Isaiah 29
31. Isaiah 30
32. Isaiah 31
33. Isaiah 32
34. Isaiah 33
35. Isaiah 34
36. Isaiah 35

The Controversy of Zion

The coming glory of our Lord Jesus Christ as set forth in the Scriptures is of profound interest to every believer who loves His appearing. There has never been a time so filled with foreshadowings as this very moment. We do not look at these as signs, because before any can be fulfilled, the true church, composed of all believers, shall be safe at home in the Father's house, having taken part in the rapture or first resurrection. Moral and spiritual decline give surer predictions.
Could we speak of the sufferings of Christ without thinking of the full, final results so gloriously set forth in the inspired Word of God? Prophecy gives the dignities of the Son of man who took a low place to have us for Himself. These dignities shall be shared by the companion of the King. (See the account of Joseph and Asenath in Gen. 41:45.) The Scriptures teach that since Christ shall be manifested, a Man supreme in the government and administration of all created things, as Man He is to have a bride to share His throne and be His helpmeet. (Eph. 1:10.)
In the light of these grand truths we become increasingly interested in the development of the teachings concerning that which introduces the coming age as outlined in the prophets.
The portion of the church is one glorious theme in itself, and these are family secrets. Another subject is the heavenly blessings of others who are in Christ, the "friends of the Bridegroom". Also, angels will have their place as servants who keep the gates of the heavenly city, and lastly, Israel and the nations. This last is not a secret but has been revealed in the Old Testament prophets, the background, setting, and developing of the theme being found in Isaiah. These blessings shall last for one thousand years on earth, and the church shall reign with Christ over it all from heaven.
The coming age is sometimes spoken of as "Solomon's Porch", the entrance to the eternal state for earth. The change which takes place in heaven and earth before the millennial day is of a moral character, although there will be some physical changes of the land, climate, bent of all creatures, etc. Before the eternal state the change will be physical in the sense that the elements will melt with a fervent heat.
The prophets were sent after failure came into Israel, Samuel being the first. They gave prophecies which were applicable not only to the time in which they lived, but also to the last days as to a kingdom yet to come. Thus we have Isaiah's prophecy, which is one of the richest and fullest that have been given to us. Isa. 7:14 shows that in order for blessing to come to man, the virgin's Son had to die and be raised so that a new life on the basis of resurrection should be the portion of those blessed. The Messiah would have restored all to Israel upon their obedience at His first coming, but He was rejected. (The church is heavenly—not spoken of in the prophets.)
Isaiah's prophecies, for the most part, seem to be concerned with the time when the Lord deals with His people in restoring them physically and morally to their land the second time. The first was in the days of Ezra and Nehemiah. This will magnify the grace, wisdom, patience, love, righteousness, justice, and majesty of their God when "He is known by the judgment which He executeth" upon His and their enemies. (Psa. 9:16.)
Having rejected the Messiah, the house of David in responsibility was set aside, but a remnant shall be called out to wait for their Messiah to return. His return to the earth will be under different circumstances from the first advent. He shall break the power of the Gentiles who hold His people in captivity. Riding on a swift cloud He shall make a short work in the consumption which shall put down all pride, power, pleasure, and resource of man in order to establish His kingdom on a secure basis of righteousness and happiness. His feet shall then stand on the Mount of Olives. Also He shall have aroused the conscience of His people. Later He will appear, to the wonder and terror of the whole world. Sitting between the cherubim to rule Zion, then founded, and manifesting His heavenly saints as associated with Himself, at His appearing, He will show to His people Israel His hands and His feet that they might know "that the LORD of hosts hath sent Me unto thee." (Zech. 2:11.) The showing of His hands and His feet will identify Him as Jesus. While "He rests in His love," Israel will go out in rule and blessing to the whole world.
In the first thirty-nine chapters, Isaiah gives the scope of God's ways with Israel and the nations of the prophetic earth, from the time of the apostasy of the nation under their last kings until the time of their Messiah when the desert blossoms as the rose (narcissus). (Isa. 35.) Chapters 40-66 will be used, we believe, to restore the remnant morally by bringing before them their past conduct so as to arouse their consciences.
The events concerning the beast are not set forth by Isaiah because our prophet presents, in the main, what concerns Israel when owned of Jehovah as His people. The kingdom of the beast and Babylon are then in ruins. Thus it is the Assyrian who is the principal enemy in Isaiah.
The question may arise in our minds, "What interest have we, the church, in prophecy, since our portion is heavenly and we will already be at home in the Father's house when these things take place?" The answer to this is found in Rev. 19:10, "For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy." Paul teaches that the saints shall judge the world. "Know ye not that we shall judge angels? " Eph. 1 tells us that in Christ we have an inheritance. Isaiah shows the development of the earthly part of this inheritance until the appearing when we shall reign with Christ. The subject at hand is "The Controversy of Zion," with which no mystery is connected. That we shall be coheirs with Christ when He reigns is made known to us through the revelations given to the Apostle Paul—the mystery, Christ and the church. God has made known to us the mystery of His will. (Eph. 1:9.)

Sketch of Isaiah, Chapters 1-35

Isaiah 1

The accusation of Israel's unfaithfulness and ungratefulness is told out to heaven and earth by the Lord. The moral condition of the nation, as having lost all sense of righteousness and understanding, is contrasted with the natural instincts of the brute beasts. (Isa. 1:2,3.)
If blessing is to come upon the remnant of Israel, it must be on the basis of forgiveness through the atoning work of Christ. Sacrifices will not do, although the "many" will set up the system again as a form. The sheltered remnant will not be aware of all that transpires, until the time that the Lord shows them His hands and feet. They will be spared only because God said, "When I see the blood, I will pass over you." This is the Passover aspect of the feasts of Jehovah, which comes before the Red Sea in type. (Lev. 23:1-9; Isa. 10:24-26.) Although the Passover feast is long past, historically, the remnant will know nothing of this but will be sheltered, nevertheless, because of it. (Rom. 3:25,26.) On this basis, through God's providence, they will return to the Land, though in unbelief, and will become the objects of mercy. (Rom. 11:25-32.) I speak of the time of Isaiah, chapter 1. Isa. 1:19 gives the remnant of faith—verse 20, the apostates.
The Lord will ease Himself of all of His adversaries, without or within.
As He turns His hand upon the remnant, it is for their purging. The dross and tin of the people shall be purged as the silver is refined in a furnace. Following this refining process, the judges shall be restored as at the first. (Judg. 2:16-23.) "Afterward thou shalt be called, The city of righteousness, the faithful city." How complete will be the restoration for the city that shall command in dignity the tribute of the earth. This shall first be in the remnant of Judah. The order will be as formerly—judges, then the king.
Such are the firm but gracious ways of a holy, righteous God with His people Israel whom He has now undertaken to restore, personally coming out of His place and "making bare His arm." This is the announcement of the day of the Lord, the tribulation under the antichrist and the beast having come to an end.

Isaiah 2

Events preceding, and connected with, this restoration are outlined in slightly broader terms in chapters 2 (after verse 6) through chapter 4. These chapters are introductory.
(In this vision of the future of God's people, verses 1-6, the prophet sees the city of Zion as the head of the nations in the last days (millennium). Then the nations shall beat their swords into plowshares, their spears into pruning hooks, neither shall they learn war any more. Only through judgment can this be brought about. The Son of man is the Judge.)
This chapter gives a rebuke to Zion and all nations. Pride, pleasure, idolatry, prosperity, and towers (what exalts man) all feel the anguish in judgment as the Lord arises to shake terribly the earth. There will be no stability until the Lord alone is exalted.
Judgment mentioned in this chapter would leave its salutary effect even with us if there is exercise in God's presence. Warnings are intended to stop the careless ones. The special mention of pictures of desire (lust) and ships of Tarshish (known for their traffic in luxuries) all tell the story of a mad, pleasure-seeking world indulging in the lusts of an unregenerate heart. Israel, who had a calling before God, are the most responsible in the eastern world. The judgments will occur nearly at the time that the western nations are judged.

Isaiah 3

The staff, the stay, bread and water, being removed, the loss of necessary things of life, with judgment entering into various phases of life, from the military and judge down through the ancient, until the inner circle of the home feels God's hand upon the very apparel worn by the women, leaves the virgin daughter of Israel prostrate upon the ground.
What does God think of the things mentioned in this chapter if all come into judgment? To be adorned outwardly and defiled inwardly could hardly be adorning the doctrine of God our Savior in all things.

Isaiah 4

The Lord reminds His people again that the purpose He has in view in the refining is to restore and bring glory on a holy remnant. Here the Branch is introduced in beauty and glory. Those who escape (the believing remnant) shall be called holy after Zion is cleansed.
Again the cloud and pillar of fire will be their protection as of old because now the Lord is with them (IMMANUEL).

Isaiah 5

God's governmental ways with His people Israel are centered in this chapter. Here He remonstrates with Israel as a whole, not Judah only, for her guilt and indifference to the rebukes of Jehovah. There is no mention of a remnant; no encouragement is given to indifference. Their present prosperity will only end in dust (death) because the Word is despised.
Seven woes, six in this chapter (v. 8,10,18, 20,21,22) and the seventh in chapter 10 (v. 1), are sent upon the nation, and following the first six woes His anger is kindled against His people. He stretches forth His hand, calling down the nations upon them until the heavens darken over the Land. After the seventh woe, the day of the Lord is upon that nation. The Assyrian becomes Jehovah's rod.
"For all this His anger is not turned away, but His hand is stretched out still." This expression is repeated many times (Isa. 5:25;9:12,17,21;10:4) before the Assyrian is sent as the rod of Jehovah to bring them to their knees. Such is the refining. All restoration must be on the basis of righteousness—God's holiness maintained, sin punished.

Isaiah 6

This begins a parenthesis which ends in chapter 9, verse 7.
A vision of the glory and holiness of the God of Israel comes before the prophet. The whole earth is full of His glory. The effect upon Isaiah was much like that of Job and Peter when in God's presence—"Woe is me! for I am undone." The result is that his unclean lips are cleansed by coals from off the altar, preparing him to voluntarily accept the call to go with a message of judgment, also mercy, to God's people.
The message is sad in both respects. On one hand, it was judicial, national blindness and judgment, calling forth the cry of the remnant, "Lord, how long? "
"Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the Land be utterly desolate," is the answer. A remnant of only one-tenth shall be preserved as the holy seed, on the other hand. It was God's character of holiness that demanded sin to be punished.

Isaiah 7

The time of Ahaz becomes the occasion for the prophetic utterances of mercy and blessing through judgment found in this chapter.
The sign "IMMANUEL" Israel must own. When here on earth, the Son of David was rejected upon His first presentation to Israel. The house of David in responsibility must be judged, never to rise again as such, but the Lord gives a sign to His people, the virgin's Son IMMANUEL. This is the promise to the woman's seed.
The Land becomes IMMANUEL'S with the Assyrian taking the preeminence as the chief enemy, until Israel is completely delivered by IMMANUEL.
The prophet Isaiah and his son Shear-Jashub (The remnant shall return) are told to go and meet Ahaz to tell him, "Take heed, and be quiet; fear not, neither be fainthearted. If
ye will not believe, surely ye shall not be established."
Also it was said, "Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good. For before the child (Shear Jashub) shall know to refuse the evil, and choose the good," the lands of the two kings, Syria and Ephraim, shall be forsaken.
The desolating army of the king of Assyria at this time moves on through the land of Judah into Egypt. It is at the same time that Egypt is taken captive after being driven back out of Palestine to their own land. What a picture of desolation after the land of Israel has been emptied by the Assyrian and his allies—"Briars and thorns", Jehovah says.

Isaiah 8

The prophet is told by the Lord to take a great roll and write concerning Maher-shalal-hash-baz. The prophetess conceives a child who is named "Maher-shalal-hash-baz" (swift for spoil, hasty for prey). In verses 5-10 the Spirit of God leads us on to the final attack of the Assyrian against the returned remnant and his defeat. The nations are warned against forming a confederacy against Israel, "For," says the prophet, "God is with us."
Isaiah instructs the remnant to let the Lord be their sanctuary. Even though the Lord is hiding His face from them, the remnant who return continue to look for Him. This characterized the remnant of John the Baptist's day also, but the prophet looks on to the last days in this passage, verse 18.
The man (Christ) is definitely before us in verse 14. After Christ is spoken of as "a stone of stumbling" to the nation of Israel, the remnant carry the testimony.
The apostates have no light in them and curse their king (antichrist) for leaving them as the Assyrian attacks. (John 10:12; Zech. 11:17.)
The subject of the great "Controversy of Zion" seems to open up more in detail as we pass from one prophecy to the next. The Assyrian being the main enemy, repeated references in different connections are made to his first and second attacks. In the first attack he succeeds against Jerusalem as well as some of the nations of Palestine as he goes down to conquer Egypt. In the second attack he is destroyed in spite of his confederacy, and Israel is delivered.

Isaiah 9

The darkness is not so great now as in Isa. 5:30 because IMMANUEL is here, as light, when Christ is introduced as the One who is to have the kingdom of David.
The prophet's vision goes on now to the increasing joy of God's people, the oppressor gone, and Jehovah on the throne, increasing in power until the whole world is subdued.
In verse 8 of this chapter a new subject is begun. (This ends the parenthesis referred to in comments on chapter 6.) The prophet takes us back to the time when, after no response from the nation, He declares that He will "cut off from Israel head and tail, branch and rush, in one day. The ancient and honorable, he is the head; and the prophet that teacheth lies (false prophet), he is the tail." There can be no peace for the nation until Jehovah, having removed all internal and external enemies, takes the throne to reign in righteousness.

Isaiah 10

"Woe unto them that decree unrighteous decrees." This last evil is tantamount to usurping authority from God in the earth. This woe is pronounced upon such actions. His anger is not turned away—rather, He now sends His "rod", the Assyrian. This closes the series of seven woes.
"O Assyrian, the rod of mine anger, and the staff in their hand is mine indignation. I will send him against an hypocritical nation, and against the people of my wrath will I give him a charge, to take the spoil, and to take the prey, and to tread them down like the mire of the streets." This is the great and terrible day of the Lord, the harvest, when the Land is utterly emptied, when one is taken and another left. (Matt. 24:40,41; Zech. 14:1.)
This period of judgment is spoken of as the "consumption" and leads on to the "indignation" when all of the nations are put down in order for Christ to reign as Solomon.
In the meantime our attention is called to witness the presumption of the "rod" who attempts to take possession of the land of Israel instead of returning to his land after carrying out his charge. Also he takes credit for slaying the armies of the West which had just fallen by the sword of "His (Christ's) mouth". Here we learn that "the light of Israel shall be for a fire". It is at this time, between the first attack of the Assyrian upon Jerusalem and his last attack, the remnant, that is, the ten tribes, shall return from the furthest corners of the earth. After they have returned and are dwelling safely, the Assyrian attacks, only to find himself and his confederacy overwhelmed by Jehovah.
This is the time of full victory for Israel and, following this, millennial blessing.

Isaiah 11

The vision continues to show full blessing upon the earth, the curse removed, as well as showing the character of the kingdom and its King.
The prophet goes back a little, after speaking of the "Root of Jesse" whose rest shall be glorious, to show how the Lord will the second time set His hand to recover the remnant of His people. The first time was in the time of Ezra and Nehemiah.
Following the deliverance from the last great enemy, the Assyrian, the whole ten tribes together, having in the meantime returned to their own land, join with Judah and Benjamin in driving out every enemy within their borders. Special judgment will befall Edom and the Philistines, leaving no remnant. Moab and Ammon become tributary to Israel in a small remnant.
Should there be stragglers of Israel who are still on their way back to the land of Israel, they will find that there will be a highway for them, both from Assyria and also Egypt, God having utterly destroyed the tongue of the Egyptian Sea and smitten all seven streams of the river.

Isaiah 12

This chapter records the joy of Judah and Benjamin as they find Jehovah in their midst. This company has been delivered from Babylon and out of the first attack upon Jerusalem. After this primary restoration, the ten tribes will immediately return.
In verse 2 they say, "I will trust and not be afraid," because they are aware that there are still enemies such as the Assyrian threatening.

Isaiah 13

This, a new vision, goes back to the closing of the times of the Gentiles and ushering in the day of the Lord.
Babylon, that held God's people in captivity, is judged first. Now that Jehovah is to reign, He must put down all power opposing Him, destroy all systems of government, pleasure, commerce, and idolatry, in fine, the whole world system. It shall never be rebuilt. This is Babylon—the tower and city of Babel were types.
At this point in prophetic chronology, "They shall every man turn to his own people, and flee every one into his own land." This is also true of the ten tribes of Israel. The subject of this chapter continues through chapter 27 and includes judgment upon all nations of the prophetic earth.

Isaiah 14

God chooses Israel, not Judah only, and sets them in their own land. After the Assyrian, the enemy here, is destroyed, Zion is founded. Verses 13 and 14 may have an application to the Roman beast, as most expositors feel from the general teachings of the prophetic Word.
Babylon falls first and is swept with the besom (broom) of destruction. Thereupon the Assyrian falls under the power of Jehovah, being the last enemy to fall before the millennial day of blessing and peace for Israel and eventually the whole world.
Although the western Roman nations held the last of the four empires spoken of in Daniel, still the great image of Daniel will fall as a whole when the "Stone" smites it upon the feet. The "Stone" becomes a great Mountain and fills the whole earth. The whole image represents Babylon, the head being of gold, to whom the power was originally given. The powers of all peoples of the first three empires have had their "lives prolonged for a season and a time," although their dominion was taken away. They will again be seen to form their part of the image, only to be destroyed.
In Isa. 14:26, "This is the purpose that is purposed upon the whole earth: and this is the hand that is stretched out upon all the nations." Thus this chapter that takes up the subject of Babylon does not conclude until the Assyrian is destroyed. The entire image once and for all is judged, no part remaining to threaten God's people again. "Then shall his yoke depart from off their shoulders."
The great Assyrian of the last days, the leader in the last great battle of Armageddon, gathers the whole earth after the beast is destroyed. As the head of this great confederacy, spoken of in Psa. 83, he attacks Jerusalem and finds his grave there. Now Zion is founded. "This is the purpose that is purposed upon the whole earth: and this is the hand that is stretched out upon all nations." It is finally culminated in the "Controversy of Zion" at Jerusalem, ending in Edom, where the nations are all put down in judgment by Jehovah.
When the Assyrian falls, with the nations who once formed a part of that image, Chaldea, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome, Babylon in its fullest sense as a controlling power in the earth falls, never to rise again, but the feet are smitten first, initiating the final blow that crushes Babylon so as to never rise again.

Isaiah 15 and 16

The consumption withers the land of Moab (son of Lot), which is an enemy in the territory of Israel. Moab shall be judged but not fully destroyed. At the end a remnant shall be left paying tribute to Israel.

Isaiah 17

Damascus (Syria), an enemy who should have been expelled before and who has always been an enemy of Israel, is now a ruinous heap. Ephraim (not the ten tribes) feels this with Damascus but is left a remnant.
All the prosperity that has been built up in Palestine must be completely crushed, and there shall be utter desolation. In the midst of this widespread idolatry a man shall look to his Maker; he shall respect the Holy One of Israel. This, the first attack of the Assyrian as Jehovah's rod, succeeds, and Jerusalem is trodden down as the mire.
The "harvestman gathereth the corn and reapeth the ears with his arm" suggests that the little remnant in the Land are now shown mercy—"gleaning grapes shall be left"—and at the end the Assyrian falls.

Isaiah 18

What a momentous announcement comes in chapter 18, and so much more singular as we have noticed the setting. The consumption of the Land and nations surrounding have been before us. Now a call, "Ha," and a summons to the whole world, a trumpet blast, and an ensign to serve notice to the nations that God is gathering His people again. Some nation beyond the borders of the Land shall be used to bring the people back to Judah. After a season the Land will be desolated by the nations, yet in a remnant a present shall be brought to Jehovah, and by that holy seed a present shall be brought, too. It is not difficult to identify by the description who is brought back.

Isaiah 19

The One who rides on a swift cloud could be none other than Jehovah who has undertaken to cleanse the Land and judge the nations that were in any way connected with Israel. This chapter goes on, according to the prophet's style, to the blessing for Egypt, Assyria, and Israel following that judgment.

Isaiah 20

Chapter 20 tells who it is that is used to reduce Egypt. The description is most humbling, as Egypt is a type of the world in nature.

Isaiah 21

Babylon falls by the hand of Elam and Media, an awful visitation. Dumah despises the watchman's pleadings, and judgment follows. Arabia is judged next.

Isaiah 22

The false ruler is replaced with the true One, Christ. The chapter begins with the taking of the city Jerusalem by Elam and Kir (Persia and Media). After the false ruler is removed, One who is able to bear all of the glory is brought in. This is the nail in the sure place upon which hangs all of the glory. The other nail is removed.

Isaiah 23

Tire, the commerce of the world—pride -is judged, but in the coming day all of the hire from her commerce shall be holiness to the Lord.

Isaiah 24

The prophecy in chapter 24 sums up all of the system of the world as that which has been in relationship to God by testimony. The land of Judah is judged first. This consumption does not cease until it reaches not only the uttermost parts of the prophetic earth but the western nations as well. The angels and the kings whom they have controlled are brought together in judgment here. Total enemy power is destroyed.

Isaiah 25

Chapter 25 gives the result and shows the light breaking as the face of the covering is removed from all peoples. National resurrection takes place. The removal of the covering is simply that there is now no more mystery concerning God's purposes: The testimony of the kingdom is to all, no one nation alone having the truth.

Isaiah 26

Chapters 25 and 26 are a song of deliverance which ends in the hiding of the remnant until the indignation, the final attack, be overpast.

Isaiah 27

The world system opposing God's Christ is seen as Satan's power (leviathan) in the hands of the Gentiles, now completely crushed by the coming of the Son of man in judgment. The ending of the times of the Gentiles is the beginning of the time when Israel shall "fill the face of the world with fruit." Later the iniquity of Israel shall be completely purged when "He stayeth His rough wind in the day of the east wind," the destruction of the Assyrian. In that day the Lord shall beat off the enemy, clearing the Land, and His people shall be gathered back one by one. The great trumpet shall then be blown for the gathering of Israel. There are several trumpet calls. See Num. 10:1-10.

Isaiah 28

Chapter 28 gives the first attack upon Jerusalem by the Assyrian as the rod.

Isaiah 29

The following chapters, through 34, describe the circumstances of the people who have returned and are dwelling safely but under the threat of the Assyrian for the last time. The tension increases until the climax in chapter 34. It might be profitable to notice especially that as chapter 28 is a victory for the Assyrian, chapter 29 is his crushing defeat. The whole host is scattered. Ariel (the lion of God) is now aroused under its Deliverer, and the result is victory. "In a very little while Lebanon shall be turned into a fruitful field, the blind shall see, they that erred in spirit shall come to understanding," etc. Thus the millennial day.

Isaiah 30

Chapter 30 warns the people, during the interval between the first and second attacks of the Assyrian, not to seek help from their neighbors. Their strength is to sit still.
For the most part we have noticed the prophecies which take up the people of God, Judah first, then all Israel, and their being placed in the Land after the consumption, but still under the threat of the Assyrian. Jehovah encamps about His house, suggested by the cloud and the pillar of fire. We now come to the day of vengeance in which the vintage terminates, as well as the indignation.
In the very first chapter of Isaiah, Jehovah says that He shall ease Himself of His adversaries and avenge Himself of His enemies. This includes not only the apostates of Israel but all those as sheaves, gathered to the floor, from the nations who have had a testimony of some kind in regard to Jehovah or His people.
We notice, too, that in Isa. 8:10, a confederacy is warned that "God is with us," and although this Assyrian shall come in like a flood to overflow, yet the fact of his gathering all the earth against Jerusalem shall only be to him as thick clay when he tries to escape. Whatever character other battles might have taken, this one shall be with "burning and fuel of fire."
God tells His people in chapter 10 not to be afraid of the Assyrian. The deliverance shall be just as spectacular and complete as when they went out of Egypt to cross the Red Sea the first time. When this indignation of Jehovah's against Israel shall end in the destruction of the Assyrian, who is the indignation, the burden and yoke shall be removed forever. His itinerary until his fall is noted in chapter 10.
In chapter 14 the Assyrian, who is the last to fall, is identified with the image of Babylon in its last form, i.e., of power in the earth to usurp the throne which belongs only to One. (See chapter 22.)
"This purpose" concerns the whole earth and all the nations. As we near the climax, chapter 30:30 gives the glorious voice and arm of deliverance whereby the Assyrian falls. The result shall be that just when Israel, dwelling in peace in their own land, are about to become the object of an overwhelming flood, as all of the nations under the Assyrian descend upon them, the Lord in fury delivers His people. This shall be the binding up the breach and the healing of the people. Tophet is prepared for the Assyrian who smote with a rod, as well as for the king. The king is mentioned twice, perhaps three times, in Isaiah, chapter 30:30, 57:9, 8:21. He is the one who is referred to in chapter 22 as Shebna who is to be driven from his station and state, verses 15, 19, 25. Tophet is a picture of everlasting fire, no one to hear the cry.

Isaiah 31

Again Israel is warned to not seek outside help, because the Lord shall be the One who delivers, and He shall not be afraid of the Assyrian, but like a lion who fears nothing, He shall descend on the enemy and deliver His people Israel. When the Assyrian does fall, it shall not be by a mighty army, but by the Lord Himself. This is the day of vengeance.

Isaiah 32

This chapter tells of the circumstances in which His people shall dwell when "the city (Babylon) shall be laid low." Peace, righteousness, and liberty shall follow after all wars cease. Israel is reminded that it is a Man who is to be the hiding-place and the shadow of a great rock in a weary land. This follows the showing of His hands and feet.
The character of evil shall be fully manifested because righteousness shall be present and villainy exposed. The Spirit shall be poured out on the nation that dwells in peaceful habitations and quiet resting-places.

Isaiah 33

never been spoiled. He has dealt treacherously in that, being the rod, he sought to take possession. Now the cup of trembling has been taken out of Israel's hand and placed in his hand. Jehovah hears the cry of the remnant, and the nations are scattered.
The Lord is exalted. Now He exalts Himself. The enemy is chaff, stubble, and shall be as the burnings of lime. The complete separation between the apostates and the remnant of faith takes place as final. The apostates dwell with everlasting burnings, while the remnant that waited for their Messiah see the King in all His beauty. As they meditate the (error which almost overwhelmed them, they turn to see Zion, the city of their solemnities, Jerusalem, a quiet habitation. None of the stakes shall ever be removed. There the Glorious Lord shall be a place of complete blessing. The enemy could not strengthen his mast. The prey of a great spoil is divided among the lame, no more sickness, complete forgiveness.

Isaiah 34

One more vision meets the prophet's eye. This decides the "Controversy of Zion." As the Son of man comes riding on a swift cloud to "cleanse out of His kingdom all things that offend and them which do iniquity, making a short work," starting in chapters 13 to 28, the Land and all of the nations of the prophetic earth have felt the judgment in which one is taken as sheaves to the floor and another is left to be blessed in the kingdom, the Lord now reveals Himself in vengeance.
The indignation of the Lord is upon all nations, and His fury upon all their armies. The mountains shall be melted with their blood. All the host of heaven is dissolved and the sword bathed in heaven. Here every king, every governor, every judge of the earth either has submitted before or dies in the awful carnage of this vengeance. This includes as well the armies of all nations outside the prophetic earth that come against Jerusalem. Edom is the threshing-floor. Here the Lord is returning to His people from Edom, having completely crushed the enemy.
Isa. 66 would show in the last scenes how the apostates of Jews and Gentiles alike shall feel together the fire of Jehovah, but in the midst there shall be those who escape to proclaim, to those who have never heard, the glory of the great King.
The carcasses of the rebels shall lie on the heap of burning outside of Jerusalem, a constant reminder to Israel and the world what a solemn thing it is to join issue with God.

Isaiah 35

Notice the expression, "the excellency of our God." Blessing abundantly follows the cleansing of the earth, the desert blossoming as the rose. Joy and singing abound from henceforth, the eyes of the blind opened, ears unstopped, lame leap as an hart, parched ground a pool. The way in which the redeemed shall walk shall be holiness. As they experience joy and gladness, sighing and sadness fade away.
In the remaining references, chapter 65, He creates a new heaven and a new earth. In chapter 24 we have noticed all evil powers in heaven and earth put under and judged. Now a new order exists in heaven and on earth. All that went before shall be forgotten, as the new is lost in joy.
There shall be government and summary judgment of sin. They shall build and pursue peaceful occupation for pleasure. What a picture of tranquility as His servants serve Him. The gleanings of their brethren shall then be brought back, and they shall bring an offering, too.
As we come to the close of this amazing set of prophecies, which reveal with much detail the "Controversy of Zion",our spirits are filled with trembling at the audacity of man to take sides against God. Still what is it that brings peace and balm to the heart as the setting forth here the deep compassions, the tender pity, loving care, and patience of a beneficent Redeemer God who wills nothing but eternal bliss for His creature. Oh, to have our hearts in tune—to mourn when He mourns, to dance when He pipes. Lord Jesus, deepen this in our souls!
C. E. L.
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