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Isaiah 44

Talks for Growing Christians

Denouncing Idolatry and a Promise of Israel’s Deliverance

Isaiah 44

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Lesson Number 35

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. Those who design idols are stupid.
  2. Those who dismiss Israel are short-sighted.

Practical Application

  1. Listen to the Rock!

Questions

  1. What is the meaning of the title “Jeshurun” in verse 2?
  2. In verses 6-8, what is the basis for the Lord’s blessing in the future?
  3. How does Isaiah emphasize the stupidity and foolishness of making false idols?
  4. Who was Cyrus and why was this prediction so remarkable (verse 28)?
  5. Summarize the point of verses 24-27 in light of the upcoming prediction of verse 28.

Answers

  1. Jeshurun means “upright one.” Israel was not upright in Isaiah’s day, but they would be in the future when the Lord would pour out His Spirit on their descendants.
  2. 1) Who He is – the First and the Last, the supreme and sovereign God (verse 6) 2) His creation of Israel in the past (verse 7) 3) His sovereign promises concerning Israel’s future (verse 8)
  3. He speaks of a man cutting down a tree and using half of the wood to build a fire to cook and using the other half to carve an image. Then he bows down to the idol he has made and asks it for deliverance!
  4. Isaiah prophesies of Cyrus by name, more than 150 years before the Persian Emperor arrived on the scene. It was Cyrus the Persian who issues a decree in 539 BC that permitted the Jewish people to return to their homeland and lay the foundation for the rebuilding of the Second Temple. At that time Jerusalem and the ruined cities of Judah were rebuilt.
  5. These verses emphasize the sovereignty of God in case anyone doubts that God can perform this miracle of restoring Israel to the land and to the Lord.

Discuss/Consider

  1. Have all of the prophecies and promises made to Israel been fulfilled? Partially. Discuss their fulfillment in part following the Jew’s return from the Babylonian captivity and again on the Day of Pentecost. Discuss their complete fulfillment to the Jewish people in the future.
  2. Isaiah repeatedly emphasizes that these promises of the Lord are made to Israel, the descendants of Jacob. Discuss the all-too-common mistake of transferring these promises to the Church and seeing Christians today as the recipients.

Challenge

  1. In Isaiah 44:8, the Lord calls Himself the “Rock,” the only eternally secure foundation. Are you basing your life upon this Rock?

Key Verses

  • “Thus says the LORD who made you and formed you from the womb, who will help you: ‘Fear not, O Jacob My servant; and you, Jeshurun, whom I have chosen.’” Isaiah 44:2
  • “Then it shall be for a man to burn, For he will take some of it and warm himself; Yes, he kindles it and bakes bread; Indeed he makes a god and worships it; He makes it a carved image, and falls down to it.” Isaiah 44:15

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