May 3, 2021
“On that day the Lord will thresh grain from the Euphrates River as far as the Wadi of Egypt, and you Israelites will be gathered one-by-one. On that day...
“On that day the Lord will thresh grain from the Euphrates River as far as the Wadi of Egypt, and you Israelites will be gathered one-by-one. On that day, a great trumpet will be blown and those lost in the land of Assyria will come, as well as those dispersed in the land of Egypt; and they will worship the Lord at Jerusalem on the holy mountain.” Isaiah 27:12–13
Isaiah’s Apocalypse (Isaiah 24–26) has shown the coming judgment for the world, the downfall of God’s enemies, and the downfall of death itself. It has spoken of the safety of God’s people within its own eternal city, promising complete deliverance from His wrath and eventual bodily resurrection.
The aim of God for His people is not only their salvation from sin and its curse; it is that they might be fruitful. The passage in chapter 27 depicting a vineyard must be read in parallel with chapter five, where we were shown the picture of Israel as having been unfruitful. The Vinedresser had come to His vineyard only to find “bad fruit”. All the attention given to the vineyard had been to no effect. The coming exile into Babylon was God’s chastisement for their backsliding. Interesting, then, the words of Jesus:
“I am the vine, you are the branches. The one who abides in Me while I abide in Him produces much fruit, because apart from Me you can do nothing.” John 15:5
Jesus is the restoring agent for both Israel and the nations. He is the TRUE vine. In addition, salvation comes exclusively through Him.
“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6
Today’s chapter ends with a summons to the dispersed Jewish exiles to come home from Assyria and Egypt. A great trumpet sounds summoning their return.
The words are echoed to this day in synagogue worship in the tenth of the Eighteen Benedictions, “Sound the great trumpet for our liberation; lift up the ensign to gather our exiles…” The language is picked up by Paul, who describes the ushering in of the end:
“For the Lord Himself will come down from Heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Messiah will rise first.” 1 Thessalonians 4:16
We find the same picture in Psalm 47:5: “God has ascended amid shouts of joy, the Lord amid the sounding of trumpets.” In fulfillment of His plan and purpose, God is going to spread a feast for all kinds of people, including all “Israel” but not all Jews (Romans 9:6–7; 11:25–26). Messiah followers are diverse, cosmopolitan.
Heaven and glory await God’s people—those who are the redeemed through Messiah Jesus. And what will our occupations be? Worship leaders singing His praises!
“On that day, sing about a desirable vineyard!” Isaiah 27:2