Old Testament

Wisdom and Poetical Books

What did God want Isaiah to do?

First, God wanted Isaiah to give the people bad news. The bad news was that invaders were going to overrun the northern and southern kingdom, and that the northern kingdom, Israel, would be no more. Also, God wanted Isaiah to warn the people that many of them would be taken away as captives.

Second, God wanted Isaiah to give people good news. God told Isaiah to remind the people of God’s mercy and love. God told Isaiah that he would bring the people back for a fresh start. One example of this is, “Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation. And in that day shall ye say, ‘Praise the LORD, call upon his name, declare his doings among the people, make mention that his name is exalted’.” (KJV, Isaiah 12:3–4)

Third, God wanted Isaiah to speak oracles against idolatrous foreign nations. One example is an oracle about Babylon: “Even the strongest hearts melt and are afraid. Fear grips them with terrible pangs, like those of a woman about to give birth. They look helplessly at one another as the flames of the burning city reflect on their faces.” (NLT, Isaiah 13:8)


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