Isaiah chapter 44

Israel should not be afraid. The LORD God will revive them. He is sovereign. His people are marked by joy. In the future, Cyrus will liberate them.

 


 

ISRAEL SHOULD NOT BE AFRAID

 

VERSE 1. Yet listen now, Jacob my servant, and Israel, whom I have chosen.

whom I have chosen. The LORD God is speaking tenderly.

 

VERSE 2. This is what the LORD who made you, and formed you from the womb, who will help you says: “Don’t be afraid, Jacob my servant; and you, Jeshurun, whom I have chosen.

NAB translation. Thus says the LORD who made you, your help, who formed you from the womb; Fear not, O Jacob, my servant, the darling whom I have chosen.

Don’t be afraid. God often says this in the Bible.

the darling. The LORD God cherishes his people.

 

VERSE 3. For I will pour water on him who is thirsty, and streams on the dry ground. I will pour my Spirit on your descendants, and my blessing on your offspring:

 

VERSE 4. and they will spring up among the grass, as willows by the watercourses.

 

VERSE 5. One will say, ‘I am the LORD’s;’ and another will be called by the name of Jacob; and another will write with his hand ‘to the LORD,’ and honor the name of Israel.”

I am the LORD’s. It is great when someone says they are saved.

another will write … and honor the name of Israel. The Old Testament foresees Gentiles coming to faith in the One God of Israel and bringing gifts to Jerusalem. Here are the key Bible verses about this »

 

THE LORD IS SOVEREIGN

 

VERSE 6. This is what the LORD, the King of Israel, and his Redeemer, the LORD of Hosts, says: “I am the first, and I am the last; and besides me there is no God.

I am the first, and I am the last. Jesus Christ calls himself the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last, the Alpha and the Omega. Here are the verses about this »

besides me there is no God. The LORD is one. He is God alone. He is the one God and Father of all. Beside him there is no other God. There is none like him. Read more »

 

VERSE 7. Who is like me? Who will call, and will declare it, and set it in order for me, since I established the ancient people? Let them declare the things that are coming, and that will happen.

NLT translation. Who is like me? Let him step forward and prove to you his power. Let him do as I have done since ancient times when I established a people and explained its future.

power. The Lord Jesus told the religious leaders they were in error because they did not know the Scriptures nor the POWER of God. Do you know the POWER of God? Read more »

 

VERSE 8. Don’t fear, neither be afraid. Haven’t I declared it to you long ago, and shown it? You are my witnesses. Is there a God besides me? Indeed, there is not. I don’t know any other Rock.”

Don’t fear. Once again God gives us this important message.

Is there a God besides me? Indeed, there is not. The LORD is one. He is God alone. He is the one God and Father of all. Beside him there is no other God. There is none like him. Read more »

 

VERSE 9. Everyone who makes a carved image is vain. The things that they delight in will not profit. Their own witnesses don’t see, nor know, that they may be disappointed.

 

VERSE 10. Who has fashioned a god, or molds an image that is profitable for nothing?

 

VERSE 11. Behold, all his fellows will be disappointed; and the workmen are mere men. Let them all be gathered together. Let them stand up. They will fear. They will be put to shame together.

 

VERSE 12. The blacksmith takes an ax, works in the coals, fashions it with hammers, and works it with his strong arm. He is hungry, and his strength fails; he drinks no water, and is faint.

 

VERSE 13. The carpenter stretches out a line. He marks it out with a pencil. He shapes it with planes. He marks it out with compasses, and shapes it like the figure of a man, with the beauty of a man, to reside in a house.

 

VERSE 14. He cuts down cedars for himself, and takes the cypress and the oak, and strengthens for himself one among the trees of the forest. He plants a cypress tree, and the rain nourishes it.

 

VERSE 15. Then it will be for a man to burn; and he takes some of it, and warms himself. Yes, he burns it, and bakes bread. Yes, he makes a god, and worships it; he makes it a carved image, and falls down to it.

 

VERSE 16. He burns part of it in the fire. With part of it, he eats meat. He roasts a roast, and is satisfied. Yes, he warms himself, and says, “Aha! I am warm. I have seen the fire.”

 

VERSE 17. The rest of it he makes into a god, even his engraved image. He bows down to it and worships, and prays to it, and says, “Deliver me; for you are my god!”

 

VERSE 18. They don’t know, neither do they consider: for he has shut their eyes, that they can’t see; and their hearts, that they can’t understand.

 

VERSE 19. No one thinks, neither is there knowledge nor understanding to say, “I have burned part of it in the fire. Yes, I have also baked bread on its coals. I have roasted meat and eaten it. Shall I make the rest of it into an abomination? Shall I bow down to a tree trunk?”

 

VERSE 20. He feeds on ashes. A deceived heart has turned him aside; and he can’t deliver his soul, nor say, “Isn’t there a lie in my right hand?”

 

THE LORD’S PEOPLE ARE MARKED BY JOY

 

VERSE 21. Remember these things, Jacob and Israel; for you are my servant. I have formed you. You are my servant. Israel, you will not be forgotten by me.

 

VERSE 22. I have blotted out, as a thick cloud, your transgressions, and, as a cloud, your sins. Return to me, for I have redeemed you.

BBE translation. I have put your evil doings out of my mind like a thick cloud, and your sins like a mist: come back to me; for I have taken up your cause.

I have taken up your cause. This is phrased in the past-tense. The LORD God has already taken up our cause.

 

VERSE 23. Sing, you heavens, for the LORD has done it! Shout, you lower parts of the earth! Break out into singing, you mountains, O forest, all of your trees, for the LORD has redeemed Jacob, and will glorify himself in Israel.

Sing, you heavens. When we Christians sing, our singing is often lukewarm.

Shout. Very few of us Christians SHOUT to the LORD.

the LORD has redeemed Jacob. This is in the past-tense. This use of the past tense indicates that the LORD God has already done this for the Jewish people.

 

CYRUS WILL LIBERATE THEM

SUMMARY: More than 150 years in advance, Isaiah prophecies that a man named Cyrus would liberate the Jewish exiles.

 

VERSE 24. The LORD, your Redeemer, and he who formed you from the womb says: “I am the LORD, who makes all things; who alone stretches out the heavens; who spreads out the earth by myself;

 

VERSE 25. who frustrates the signs of the liars, and makes diviners mad; who turns wise men backward, and makes their knowledge foolish;

 

VERSE 26. who confirms the word of his servant, and performs the counsel of his messengers; who says of Jerusalem, ‘She will be inhabited;’ and of the cities of Judah, ‘They will be built,’ and ‘I will raise up its waste places;’

 

VERSE 27. who says to the deep, ‘Be dry,’ and ‘I will dry up your rivers;’

 

VERSE 28. Who says of Cyrus, ‘He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure,’ even saying of Jerusalem, ‘She will be built;’ and of the temple, ‘Your foundation will be laid.’ ”

Cyrus. This refers to Cyrus II of Persia (circa 600 or 576 – 530 BC). He is commonly known as Cyrus the Great.

 


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Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.