20 “In that day the remnant of Israel and the survivors of the house of Jacob will no more lean on him who struck them, but will lean on the Lord, the Holy One of Israel, in truth. 21 A remnant will return, the remnant of Jacob, to the mighty God. 22 For though your people Israel be as the sand of the sea, only a remnant of them will return. Destruction is decreed, overflowing with righteousness. 23 For the Lord God of hosts will make a full end, as decreed, in the midst of all the earth.” (Isaiah 10:20-23)
Who, or what, do you lean upon when life becomes difficult? The government? Your wits? Friends and/or family?
For the Nation of Israel in the 8th century B.C. they trusted in, depended upon, committed themselves to and honored and worshiped the nation and leaders of Assyria. This is what King Ahaz of Judah was doing in Isaiah 7. The tragic irony for the many in Israel is that because they no longer trusted in, depended upon, committed themselves to, and worshipped the LORD exclusively, the LORD ironically would punish them by the very nation from which they sought protection from their enemies: Assyria.
However, the LORD always preserves a believing remnant. These are the faithful few. It will be these who will no longer lean upon other nations to do what the LORD has promised to do for them. They will seek support from and rely upon the LORD, the Holy One of Israel. These are they, the LORD says, who will return to the land of the forefathers.
Isaiah said, “For though your people Israel be as the sand of the sea, only a remnant of them will return. Destruction is decreed, overflowing with righteousness.” The expression “sand of the sea” should be immediately recognized as God’s description of Israel and His promise to Abraham (Genesis 22:17).
God’s judgment is sure. It is a righteous judgment where righteousness has been lacking. Isaiah 10:23 says, “For the Lord God of hosts will make a full end, as decreed, in the midst of all the earth.”
Did the LORD know His people would be unfaithful to the covenant? Absolutely. This truth is found in Joshua 24:14-28. Joshua knew the people would forsake the LORD, even though they denied they would.
Dr. John MacArthur writes, “A small nucleus of God’s people, preserved by his sovereign grace, form this righteous remnant in the midst of national apostasy. There were always the obedient few who preserved, obeyed, and passed on God’s law. There will always be a remnant because God will never forsake the Abrahamic Covenant (cf. Mic. 2:12–13; Rom. 9:27; 11:5).
Thank the LORD for His faithfulness to His covenant. Rejoice today that you belong to His believing remnant if you are in Christ Jesus.
Soli deo Gloria!