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Isaiah 51-52:12

Talks for Growing Christians

Exhortation and Encouragement for the Godly Remnant

Isaiah 51-52:12

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Lesson Number 42

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. The godly remnant should look and listen.
  2. The godly remnant should awake and arise.

Practical Application

  1. Make your applications smooth transitions from the interpretation.

Questions

  1. Who is being addressed in this section of Isaiah?
  2. Review the three times the remnant was told to look and listen in 51:1,4, and 7.
  3. How is pagan Egypt described in Isaiah 51:9-10?
  4. In the second part of this passage, Israel is told to awake and arise three times. Identify these exhortations and briefly explain them.
  5. Where do we see Isaiah 52:7 quoted in the New Testament?

Answers

  1. This section is addressed to the godly remnant of Israel, those who were faithful to the Lord and His Word in spite of the spiritual and moral decline all around them.
  2. The godly remnant was told to look back and remember their roots – to the call and blessing of Abraham and Sarah by God Himself (verses 1-2). In the second exhortation of listen, Israel is told that in the new heaven and earth all evil will be judged and the Lord will reign in righteousness over all peoples (verses 4-6). Thirdly (verses 7-8), the remnant is told to take courage because the skeptics would pass away and righteousness would endure forever.
  3. As Rahab and the dragon from pagan myth
  4. The first awake section (51:9-10) begins as a prayer by the godly remnant for the Lord to come and show His power as He had when He delivered Israel out of Egypt and through the Red Sea. Secondly, the godly remnant was told to awake and arise (51:17-23) to the fact that even though God had to discipline Israel in His wrath against sin, He would comfort them in the future. In the third awake section (52:1-12) the godly remnant is exhorted and encouraged to awake and prepare for her future blessing when Israel will be redeemed and restored for all her former problems and wrong associations.
  5. Romans 10:15

Discuss/Consider

  1. Think of the godly remnant throughout biblical and modern history. There have always been a group of believers who pursue righteousness and seek the Lord in the midst of a world of spiritual and moral decay. Can you identify who they were in different time periods?
  2. In Isaiah 51:17-23, God acknowledges that Israel has had to drink the cup of His fury because of their disobedience. But soon they would be comforted, and their enemies would be forced to drink the cup of God’s wrath. Israel has had many enemies throughout her history. Discuss how these enemies have each been punished for their persecution of God’s people.

Challenge

  1. The Apostle Paul applied Isaiah 52:7 to preachers who bring the good news of salvation in Romans 10:15. There are nice parallels and smooth transition between this interpretation and application. Follow this example in your applications.

Key Verses

  • “So the ransomed of the LORD shall return, And come to Zion with singing, With everlasting joy on their heads. They shall obtain joy and gladness; Sorrow and sighing shall flee away.” Isaiah 51:11
  • “Thus says your Lord, the LORD and your God, Who pleads the cause of His people: ‘See, I have taken out of your hand the cup of trembling, The dregs of the cup of My fury; You shall no longer drink it.’ But I will put it into the hand of those who afflict you, Who have said to you, ‘Lie down, that we may walk over you.' And you have laid your body like the ground, And as the street, for those who walk over.’” Isaiah 51:22-23

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