Go, My People,

Enter Your Rooms and Shut the Doors

26:20 to 27:1

    DIG: What does Isaiah mean by his advice in 26:20? What are they to hide from (see 24:21-22)? How long will the antichrist’s persecution and the believing remnant’s hiding last? How is this related to waiting on the LORD for you today (26:8)? Who is Leviathan synonymous with? Who is really responsible for the misery in this world?

    REFLECT: When you are under attack from Satan, the world and your flesh, were do you go (Matthew 6:6)? The Bible tells us about our hiding place. David said: You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance (Psalm 32:7; also see Ps 18:1-3, 28-36, 31:20, 119:114). After reading these Scriptures, how has God been the hiding place in your life? If you have been eaten up and spit out by this life, who is to blame?

    In these verses Isaiah continues to deal with the far eschatological future. He wrote that the believing remnant of Isra'el should hide during the Great Tribulation, knowing that deliverance of  Messiah would come. Go, My people, enter your rooms and shut the doors behind you; hide yourselves for a little while. They are instructed to hide until His wrath has passed by (26:20). The Day of His Wrath was one of the names for the Tribulation in the TaNaKh (see Eu – The Rapture and the Great Tribulation).

    Other scriptures in both Covenants describe a similar picture. So When you see standing in the Holy Place ‘the abomination that causes desolation’ spoken of through the prophet Dani'el – let the reader understand – then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains (Matthew 24:15-16). The woman fled into the desert to a place prepared for her by God, where she might be taken care of for 1,260 days (Revelation 12:6). The place of hiding is found in Micah 2:12, ancient Bozra (the Hebrew name), or modern Petra (the Greek name). It is from Bozra that Isaiah will see the Messiah coming to punish the people of the earth for their sins (see Kg – The Second Coming of Jesus Christ to Bozrah). Some might ask, “How can this place where they flee to be both in the mountains and in the desert.” Bozra is a mountainous area in the desert.

    Why does Isra'el need to be in hiding? Because the LORD is coming out of His dwelling in heaven to punish the people of the earth for their sins. The earth will disclose the blood shed upon her; she will conceal her slain no longer (26:21). These words would have encouraged the believing remnant during Isaiah’s day to remain faithful to the LORD, knowing that He would eventually judge sin. In that day, when things seem to be at their darkest hour, all Isra'el will be saved (Romans 11:26). There will be a national regeneration of Israel (Ezeki'el 37). Therefore, remember that the book of Revelation is based upon the book of Isaiah. The context here is the national regeneration of Isra'el, the Campaign of Armageddon, the end of the Great Tribulation and the resurrection of the righteous of the TaNaKh.

    Paul wrote that the Church was a mystery to Old Testament believers, or the righteous of the TANAKH. The Church is a profound mystery – hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed (Ephesians 5:32; Colossians 1:26). This mystery does not mean something that can never be discovered, as I have previously mentioned. It means something hidden for long ages past, but now revealed and made known (Romans 16:25-27). The Jews in Christ’s day were spiritually blinded, just as the majority of Jews of today are (Second Corinthians 4:4). So it is not a surprise that the current rabbinical interpretation is quite different than the biblical interpretation. As a result of being blinded, they have spiritualized these Scriptures because they cannot accept them in a literal sense. Therefore, the rabbis interpret enter your rooms as places of worship and study. Similarly, the words shut the doors behind you are interpreted as the doors of one’s mouth, the lips. They say one must not question or doubt the justice of the Divine decree.

    When Messiah returns after the Great Tribulation, He will punish Leviathan. This will be the culmination of judgment (26:1). In that day, the LORD will punish with His sword, His fierce, great and powerful sword; Leviathan the gliding serpent, Leviathan the coiling serpent; Messiah will slay the monster of the sea (27:1). Here we see the punishment of Leviathan, which is a reference to Satan (Revelation 12:9 and 20:1-3; Job 26:12-13; Psalm 74:12-14, and Isaiah 51:9). God’s sword is given three descriptions, and Satan is given three descriptions. God’s sword is fierce, great and powerful, and Satan is a gliding serpent, a coiling serpent (which the rabbis teach are symbols of Assyria and Babylon), and monster of the Sea. The rabbis teach that this is an allusion to Egypt and the sea here means the Nile. But like they say, denial is not a river in Egypt!

    When I say that Leviathan and Satan are one and the same, it is important to remember, in addition to the Scriptures above, that the book of Revelation is based upon the Little Apocalypse of Isaiah. In Isaiah, after the national regeneration of Israel, the Campaign of Armageddon, the end of the Great Tribulation, and the resurrection of the righteous of the TANAKH, God punishes Leviathan. In the book of Revelation, after the Great Tribulation, the regeneration of Israel and the return of the Messiah, He punishes Satan.

    Therefore, the future defeat of this enemy of ADONAI is carried through from the Apocalypse of Isaiah to the Apocalypse of John. In Revelation, Satan is described both as the great dragon (Revelation 12:3 and 9) and as the ancient serpent (KJV) or the gliding serpent (NIV), who will receive his eternal end (Revelation 20:10). This will be the decisive, final victory of Christ over the Adversary (see Do – All Your Pomp Has Bee Brought Down to the Grave).

    One serious danger in times of uncertainty and doubt is to begin looking for enemies, for those whom we can blame for our troubles. Many times, even believers blame the LORD for their troubles. They ask, “Why would God do this to me?” At those times, it is helpful to remember Satan and ourselves. Yes, Satan opposes ADONAI and His people (First Peter 5:8). But he is not responsible for the existence of sin in the world. Eve, our first mother and Adam, our first father chose to sin against God of their own free will (Genesis 3:6). We must be careful not to excuse immorality of every sort in ourselves and say, “The devil made me do it!” When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each one is tempted when, by his evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full grown, gives birth to death (James 1:13-15).

 

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