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Isaiah 54

This chapter continues the prophesy of the Servant and salvation.

“Shout for joy, O barren one, you who have borne no child;
Break forth into joyful shouting and cry aloud, you who have not travailed;
For the sons of the desolate one will be more numerous
Than the sons of the married woman,” says the Lord.

Isaiah 54:1

Oh, wow.

What a joyful and blessed way to start my day.

Basic biology and simple math tell us that a barren woman has zero children, who then multiple by zero, making zero. Zero is less than 1 or any other positive whole number.

So how can the sons be more numerous than those having children?

The Five Aspect of Woman study I've done the last two years has an Aspect titled Lifegiver. One of the primary functions of womanhood is to give life. And even for those of us who never "travailed" we are decided to to support the giving of life, physical and spiritual.

God said to having kids and grandkids (and I made choices that also brought about that outcome.) But He has placed me in positions throughout my life to support lifegiving. As a teacher. As a curriculum developer. As a woman's study facilitator. And as a wife, friend, and family member.

He is good and it is well with my soul.

I do realize this verse is about the desolate people of Israel who are liked a shamed, barren wife who will bring about a great number of people, like Sarah did. But it spoke to me in my actual barrenness.

Verses 2-3 support this notion of needing a bigger tent for all of your new family. Coming out of Babylonian captivity, they would only be a small remnant, but would grow into a multitude, needing a big tent. This also seems to be an indication of a future when God's people will be worldwide and include ever tribe and tongue. "You're gonna need a bigger tent." (Sorry, I couldn't help myself.)

Verses 4-8 tell the tale of a wife rejected by the Lord and is now given hope.

  • Fear not, for you will not be put to shame;
    And do not feel humiliated, for you will not be disgraced
  • All of the shame and reproach will be forgotten. (Amen!)

“For your husband is your Maker,
Whose name is the Lord of hosts;
And your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel,
Who is called the God of all the earth.

Isaiah 54:5

6“For the Lord has called you,
Like a wife forsaken and grieved in spirit,
Even like a wife of one’s youth when she is rejected,”
Says your God.

“For a brief moment I forsook you,
But with great compassion I will gather you.

“In an outburst of anger
I hid My face from you for a moment,
But with everlasting lovingkindness I will have compassion on you,”
Says the Lord your Redeemer.

Isaiah 54:6-8

I, generally, don't just quote this much; but this is too good to try and paraphrase. The Lord God, our Redeemer has turned His face back toward us after we have betrayed Him. We have not earned it and don't deserve it. We're walking around with shame in our hearts for the many sins we brought down on ourselves.

But God.

But God who is loving and faithful and just. Made a way. We are all in a Babylonian exile out of Eden and our Husband's anger has subsided. Now He is gathering us.

Such hope.

In verse 9 He compares the situation to the days of Noah, when He swore not to destroy the earth again with water. In verse 10 He commits to His peace and compassion, even if the whole world is shaken.

Verse 11-17 are a beautiful description of the future life He is promising to those who are in His kingdom in the end. He makes these promises to "the afflicted one, stormed-tossed and not comforted." I have to believe we've all been in that place and maybe are that place even now.

  • He describes the city of this redeemed future and it very similar to what we read in Revelation 21. Walls and foundations made of precious stone.
  • Sons will be taught of the Lord and their well-being will be great. (What a precious promise for the parents who have adult children for whom they are unsure of their salvation.)
  • established in righteousness
  • far from oppression and terror
  • Those who assail you will fail
  • He will create a destroyer to protect them

No weapon that is formed against you will prosper;
And every tongue that accuses you in judgment you will condemn.
This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord,
And their vindication is from Me,” declares the Lord.

Isaiah 54:17

Oh glorious day. Come, Lord Jesus, come.

It's so important to remember that this compassion, forgiveness, and redemption is being offered to these people (and eventually to us) ONLY because of the work of the Suffering Servant. Maybe He's not mentioned in this chapter; but this is the chapter immediately following the Suffering Servant song. All of that suffering must be remembered. That we were wicked and He drank the cup of wrath in our place. Must be remembered.

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