May 23, 2021
"I was angry with My people; I profaned My possession, and placed them under your control. You showed them no mercy..."
“I was angry with My people; I profaned My possession, and placed them under your control. You showed them no mercy; you made your yoke very heavy on the elderly. You said: ‘I will be the mistress forever.’ You did not take these things to heart or think about their outcome. So now hear this, lover of luxury, who sits securely; who says to herself: ‘I, and no one else, will ever be a widow or know the loss of children.’ These two things will happen to you suddenly, in one day: loss of children and widowhood. They will appear to you in their entirety, in spite of your many sorceries and the potency of your spells.” Isaiah 47:6–9
Today’s passage brings to mind how salvation can only come through Messiah Jesus. We learn today that if God were to raise up another nation to replace Israel, giving them the same opportunities and favor as He gave to Israel, that newly-favored nation could not fulfill God’s requirements, either. God gave favor to Babylon to judge the nations and rebuke Israel. But God-given power went to their heads. They humiliated God and elevated their man-made gods. Instead of showing grace to Israel, the Babylonians punished them. Compare Babylon’s burden and yoke to that of Jesus:
“Come to Me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. All of you, take up My yoke and learn from Me, because I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for yourselves. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:28–30
In addition, God will never be a widower or leave us as orphans (Hebrews 13:5). His “Bride” is His Church, all who are saved by His grace through faith in His Son, Messiah Jesus (Ephesians 2:8–9). His children are the “sheep of His pasture”. Therefore, His “Bride” equals the sum total of His “sheep”, as it were.
“My sheep hear My voice, I know them, and they follow Me. I have given them eternal life, and they will never perish – ever! No one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all. No one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. I and the Father – We are One.” John 10:27–30
God’s warning to Babylon (when Babylon said they would be His “Mistress forever”) is curiously similar to Paul’s warning to Gentile believers who displayed arrogance towards what they considered to be “rejected” Israel. In Biblical imagery, people are also referred to as “branches” with Jesus being the True Vine.
“Now if some of the branches (the unfaithful of Israel) were broken off, and you, though a wild olive branch, were grafted in among them, and have come to share in the rich Root of the cultivated olive tree, do not brag that you are better than those branches. But if you do brag – you do not sustain the root, but the root sustains you.” Romans 11:17–18
The world is prone to forsaking both wedding vows and offspring. God has no mistresses, only one “Bride.” He is eternally faithful to His vows and His natural and adopted children.