Isaiah 4:2-5:30 Comments by Stephen Ricker
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The Branch of the Lord
Comments for Study 3

Isaiah 4:2-5:30
Memory Verse: 5:7

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I. The Branch of the Lord (4:2-6)

Isaiah by Michelangelo

* See a painting of Isaiah by Michelangelo on the Sistine Chapel ceiling to the right.

>1. What does "in that day" mean?

* Isaiah 4:2 "In that day the Branch of the LORD will be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the land will be the pride and glory of the survivors in Israel."

* "In that day" -"In that day" and "In the last days" and "in the day of the Lord" all referred to the future from the Old Testament prophets' point of view. They all referred to events concerning Jesus first and second coming. The day of the Lord is the time when God reveals His sovereignty over human powers and human existence.

* "In that day" -In Hebrew this is "aharit yom". Aharit is usually translated "end", "latter", or "last".

* Seven Old Testament prophets (Isa. 13:6,9; Eze. 13:5, 30:3; Joel 1:15; Amos 5:18,20; Oba. 1:15; Zep. 1:7,14; Mal. 4:5; perhaps Zec. 14:1 too) uses the term "the day of the Lord". Sometimes they abbreviated it to "that day". It was familiar to their audience, a term by which the audience expected light and salvation (Amos 5:18), but the prophets painted it as a day of darkness and judgment (Isa. 2:10-22; 13:6,9; Joel 1:15; 2:1-11,31; 3:14-15; Amos 5:20; Zeph. 1:7-8,14-18; Mal. 4:5). The Old Testament language of the day of the Lord is aimed at warning sinners among God's people of the danger of trusting in traditional religion without commitment to God and to His way of life. It is language that could be aimed at judging Israel or that could be used to promise deliverance from evil enemies (Isa. 13:6,9; Ezek. 30:3; Obad. 15). The day of the Lord is thus a point in time in which God displays His sovereign initiative to reveal His control of history, of time, of His people, and of all people.

* Eschatology is the teaching concerning the last things in world history. The Greek word "eschatos" means “last” or final.” Accordingly, eschatology is the study of the things expected to occur at the end of history. This does not include what will happen after the Lord Jesus creates the new heaven and the new earth as described at the end of Revelation.

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>Who or what is "the Branch of the Lord"?

* "the Branch of the Lord"

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>What will it be?

* "will be beautiful and glorious"

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>What will be the pride of the survivors in Israel at that time?

* "the fruit of the land will be the pride and glory of the survivors in Israel"

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>2. What does it mean to be holy? (3)

* Isaiah 4:3 "Those who are left in Zion, who remain in Jerusalem, will be called holy, all who are recorded among the living in Jerusalem."

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>What is bloodstain and how can it be removed? (4)

* Isaiah 4:4 "The Lord will wash away the filth of the women of Zion; he will cleanse the bloodstains from Jerusalem by a spirit of judgment and a spirit of fire."

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>When did the Lord send the Spirit of fire? (Acts 2:3-4)

* Acts 2:3-4 "They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them."

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>3. When in Israel's history was a cloud of smoke and fire leading them and then on a mountain? (5-6; Exo. 13:21-22, 19:16-19)

* Isaiah 4:5-6 "Then the LORD will create over all of Mount Zion and over those who assemble there a cloud of smoke by day and a glow of flaming fire by night; over all the glory will be a canopy. It will be a shelter and shade from the heat of the day, and a refuge and hiding place from the storm and rain."

* Exodus 13:21-22 "By day the LORD went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so that they could travel by day or night. Neither the pillar of cloud by day nor the pillar of fire by night left its place in front of the people."

* Exodus 19:16-19 "On the morning of the third day there was thunder and lightning, with a thick cloud over the mountain, and a very loud trumpet blast. Everyone in the camp trembled. Then Moses led the people out of the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. Mount Sinai was covered with smoke, because the LORD descended on it in fire. The smoke billowed up from it like smoke from a furnace, the whole mountain trembled violently, and the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder. Then Moses spoke and the voice of God answered him."

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>What is it to the people under it?

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>When will this happen over all Mount Zion? (Mark 14:62; Rev. 1:12-16, 19:11-16)

* Mark 14:62 "I am," said Jesus. "And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven."

* Revelation 1:12-16 "I turned around to see the voice that was speaking to me. And when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and among the lampstands was someone "like a son of man," dressed in a robe reaching down to his feet and with a golden sash around his chest. His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire. His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters. In his right hand he held seven stars, and out of his mouth came a sharp double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance."

* Revelation 19:11-16 "I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Out of his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. "He will rule them with an iron scepter." He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS."

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II. The Song of the Lord's Vineyard (5:1-7)

>4. What did the Lord do for his vineyard? (1-2)

* Isaiah 5:1-2 "I will sing for the one I love a song about his vineyard: My loved one had a vineyard on a fertile hillside. He dug it up and cleared it of stones and planted it with the choicest vines. He built a watchtower in it and cut out a winepress as well. Then he looked for a crop of good grapes, but it yielded only bad fruit."

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>Who does the vineyard represent? (7a)

* Isaiah 5:7a "The vineyard of the LORD Almighty is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah are the garden of his delight."

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>What did Jesus teach about a vineyard? (Matt. 20:1, 21:28-32, 33-34; Luke 13:6-7)

* Matthew 20:1 "For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire men to work in his vineyard."

* Matthew 21:28, 32 "What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, 'Son, go and work today in the vineyard.' ...For John came to you to show you the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes did. And even after you saw this, you did not repent and believe him."

* Matthew 21:33-34 "Listen to another parable: There was a landowner who planted a vineyard. He put a wall around it, dug a winepress in it and built a watchtower. Then he rented the vineyard to some farmers and went away on a journey. When the harvest time approached, he sent his servants to the tenants to collect his fruit."

* Luke 13:6-7 "Then he told this parable: "A man had a fig tree, planted in his vineyard, and he went to look for fruit on it, but did not find any. So he said to the man who took care of the vineyard, 'For three years now I've been coming to look for fruit on this fig tree and haven't found any. Cut it down! Why should it use up the soil?'"

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>5. What did the Lord ask Judah? (4)

* Isaiah 5:4 "What more could have been done for my vineyard than I have done for it? When I looked for good grapes, why did it yield only bad?"

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>What did he want and did not get?

* "I looked for good grapes"

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>What are good and bad grapes? (7b)

* Isaiah 5:7b "And he looked for justice, but saw bloodshed; for righteousness, but heard cries of distress."

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>What does the Lord do with unproductive vineyards? (5-6)

* Isaiah 5:5-6 "Now I will tell you what I am going to do to my vineyard: I will take away its hedge, and it will be destroyed; I will break down its wall, and it will be trampled. I will make it a wasteland, neither pruned nor cultivated, and briers and thorns will grow there. I will command the clouds not to rain on it."

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III. Woe and Judgements (5:8-30)

>6. What was Judah's business practices like in Isaiah's time? (8-10)

* Isaiah 5:8-10 "Woe to you who add house to house and join field to field till no space is left and you live alone in the land. The LORD Almighty has declared in my hearing: "Surely the great houses will become desolate, the fine mansions left without occupants. A ten-acre vineyard will produce only a bath of wine, a homer of seed only an ephah of grain."

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>What was their personal life like (11-12)

* Isaiah 5:11-12 "Woe to those who rise early in the morning to run after their drinks, who stay up late at night till they are inflamed with wine. They have harps and lyres at their banquets, tambourines and flutes and wine, but they have no regard for the deeds of the LORD, no respect for the work of his hands."

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>Is this lifestyle still prevalent today?

* Yes. It is honored and celebrated.

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>What is the result of those who live this way? (13-15)

* Isaiah 5:13-15 Therefore my people will go into exile for lack of understanding; their men of rank will die of hunger and their masses will be parched with thirst. Therefore the grave enlarges its appetite and opens its mouth without limit; into it will descend their nobles and masses with all their brawlers and revelers. So man will be brought low and mankind humbled, the eyes of the arrogant humbled."

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>7. Why will the Lord Almighty exalted? (16)

* Isaiah 5:16 "But the LORD Almighty will be exalted by his justice, and the holy God will show himself holy by his righteousness."

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>What will happen when this is done? (17)

* Isaiah 5:17 "Then sheep will graze as in their own pasture; lambs will feed among the ruins of the rich."

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>How is Jesus the good shepherd? (John 10:11, 14-16; and 1 Peter 2:24-25)

* John 10:11 "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep."

* John 10:14-16 "I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me-- just as the Father knows me and I know the Father--and I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd."

* 1 Peter 2:24-25 "He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. For you were like sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls."

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>8. What kind of person is described in verses 18-19?

* Isaiah 5:18-19 "Woe to those who draw sin along with cords of deceit, and wickedness as with cart ropes, to those who say, "Let God hurry, let him hasten his work so we may see it. Let it approach, let the plan of the Holy One of Israel come, so we may know it."

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>In verses 20-23?

* Isaiah 5:20-23 "Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter. Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight. Woe to those who are heroes at drinking wine and champions at mixing drinks, who acquit the guilty for a bribe, but deny justice to the innocent."

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>What will happen to those who are like these? (24)

* Isaiah 5:24 "Therefore, as tongues of fire lick up straw and as dry grass sinks down in the flames, so their roots will decay and their flowers blow away like dust; for they have rejected the law of the LORD Almighty and spurned the word of the Holy One of Israel."

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>9. Who is the Lord's anger against? (25)

* Isaiah 5:25 "Therefore the LORD's anger burns against his people; his hand is raised and he strikes them down. The mountains shake, and the dead bodies are like refuse in the streets. Yet for all this, his anger is not turned away, his hand is still upraised."

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>10. What will the Lord use to punish them? (26-30)

* Isaiah 5:26-30 "He lifts up a banner for the distant nations, he whistles for those at the ends of the earth. Here they come, swiftly and speedily! Not one of them grows tired or stumbles, not one slumbers or sleeps; not a belt is loosened at the waist, not a sandal thong is broken. Their arrows are sharp, all their bows are strung; their horses' hoofs seem like flint, their chariot wheels like a whirlwind. Their roar is like that of the lion, they roar like young lions; they growl as they seize their prey and carry it off with no one to rescue. In that day they will roar over it like the roaring of the sea. And if one looks at the land, he will see darkness and distress; even the light will be darkened by the clouds."

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