Isaiah: The Day of the LORD, Part 3.

12”For the Lord of hosts has a day against all that is proud and lofty, against all that is lifted up—and it shall be brought low; 13 against all the cedars of Lebanon, lofty and lifted up; and against all the oaks of Bashan; 14 against all the lofty mountains, and against all the uplifted hills; 15 against every high tower, and against every fortified wall; 16 against all the ships of Tarshish, and against all the beautiful craft. 17 And the haughtiness of man shall be humbled, and the lofty pride of men shall be brought low, and the Lord alone will be exalted in that day. 18 And the idols shall utterly pass away. 19 And people shall enter the caves of the rocks and the holes of the ground, from before the terror of the Lord, and from the splendor of his majesty, when he rises to terrify the earth. 20 In that day mankind will cast away their idols of silver and their idols of gold, which they made for themselves to worship, to the moles and to the bats, 21 to enter the caverns of the rocks and the clefts of the cliffs, from before the terror of the Lord, and from the splendor of his majesty, when he rises to terrify the earth. 22 Stop regarding man in whose nostrils is breath, for of what account is he?” (Isaiah 2:12-22)

The subject of the Day of the LORD has already been defined as an expression used by Old Testament prophets (as early as the eighth-century bc prophet Amos) to signify a time in which God actively intervenes in history, primarily for judgment. Thus “the day of the Lord” is also called “the day of the Lord’s anger” (Zep 2:2). Isaiah 2:12-22 also provides characteristics of the Day of the LORD.

First, it is a day which belongs to the LORD of hosts. The title “the LORD of hosts” refers to Yahweh’s authority and His rule over a vast army of warriors. It is an Old Testament name for God found mostly in the prophets. The hosts are the heavenly powers and angels that act at the LORD’s command.”

Secondly, this Day of the LORD is about what Yahweh is against, vs. 12b-16. It is a day of judgment against those who by their attitudes and actions continually display rebelliousness against the LORD.

What is the LORD against or what He will ascend upon? The text says the proud and lofty, against all that is lifted up in worship instead of the LORD. He will be against all the cedars of Lebanon and the oaks of Bashan. These sources of wood were fashioned into idols of worship. The LORD will also be against the mountains and uplifted hills which were places of idolatrous worship. He will also be in opposition to high towers and fortified walls which represent man’s military power. Yahweh will also be against the ships of Tarshish, and against all the beautiful craft representing commercial activity and a strong economy.

Thirdly, what will be the result of God’s judgment during the Day of the LORD of Hosts? Vs. 13-19 gives us clear descriptions of man’s response to God’s glorious judgment. Man’s pride will be brought low or humbled. There will be no more false worship of false gods. People will hide in caves and rocks when the glory and splendor of God’s majesty appears (Hosea 10:8; Luke 23:30; Revelation 6:16).

In 2:20-21, Isaiah provides a summary of what the Day of the LORD of Hosts will accomplish. “20 In that day mankind will cast away their idols of silver and their idols of gold, which they made for themselves to worship, to the moles and to the bats, 21 to enter the caverns of the rocks and the clefts of the cliffs, from before the terror of the Lord, and from the splendor of his majesty, when he rises to terrify the earth.” Precious metals will be forsaken for the normally detestable haven and caverns of moles and bats.

Isaiah 2:22 provides a solemn warning. “Stop regarding man in whose nostrils is breath, for of what account is he?” The believer must stop trusting in, being dependent upon, be committed to and worshiping man. Mortal man is but a breath.

It is time to return to the God of our salvation. It is time to repent and receive the LORD’s righteousness.

Soli deo Gloria!

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