Hand Of Love

In previous articles in the fifth chapter we have seen that the prophet has likened the people of Judah to a vineyard that had been planted, and nothing come from it but wild grapes. They have been raised up by God, and they have turned from God, and gone their own way, thus bringing on themselves the six woes that has been pronounced against them.

The judges were guilty of accepting bribes following their heavy drinking, and debauchery; then, allowing the guilty to go free and condemning the just. It sounds somewhat familiar to me. I pray it is not entirely that bad in the United States, but if things continue as they are and the nation continues to drift further and further away from God. That will increase.

Now we look at verses 24 and 25 of chapter five. “Therefore as the fire devoureth the stubble, and the flame consumeth the chaff, so their root shall be as rottenness, and their blossom shall go up as dust: because they have cast away the law of the LORD of hosts, and despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.  Therefore is the anger of the LORD kindled against his people, and he hath stretched forth his hand against them, and hath smitten them: and the hills did tremble, and their carcases were torn in the midst of the streets. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still.” Isaiah 5:24-25 (KJV)

 

The New Testament reminds us of whom the Lord chastises: “For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards [illegitimate], and not sons.” Hebrews 12:6-8 (KJV) The brackets [] are mine.

The LORD of hosts, the Holy One of Israel is holy indeed. Those two names are mentioned by the prophet to make a clear statement to all who will hear. The statement is clearly that Judah has offended the God of their salvation; their deliverance; by rejecting His law. O, they prided themselves in having the law, and the temple, but by turning from the God of Israel, they rejected the very thing which they held dear.

The LORD God desires that His hand hold, protect, guide, comfort, heal, provide, and encourage; and probably a lot many more pleasant things. In our text we see His hand instead judging. He likens them to fire devouring stubble, dry grass sinking down in the flame; and as rotten roots, that dries up, and any blossom goes like dust to the wind. “He stretched out His hand against them and struck them…” We must realize the Holy One of Israel finds no pleasure in judging His people. God desires to bless His people exceedingly.

 

The last part of verse 25, tells us that God’s anger is not turned away. His anger toward sin in His people cannot be turned away. If the Holy One turned away from judging sin He would no longer be holy. No longer be the Holy One. Because He is holy He judges sin, and especially in those who are His. There are many who profess to be God’s people who choose to live as they please in sin, debauchery, and all forms of wickedness, and enjoy their sin. Their profession is false; unless, their is conviction from the Holy One that makes them miserable in their sin. If they are miserable in sin, then, they are not enjoying the sinful life. A couple of thoughts on this; first, God will do whatever it takes to make His people holy; second, God is pleased to save you where and as you are, but He loves you so much that He will not leave you where and as you are.

The verse tells us that the “mountains quaked” when He struck them, and their “corpses as refuse in the midst of the streets”. How sad that the people of God could end up so judged. His anger is still not turned away. His hand is stretched out still. He is still judging the Nation of Israel. There is further judgment coming.

People who name the Name of Jesus. Look to Him and live. Live for Him and do not be judged. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart”. When you turn from Him you  trust in yourself, and other idols.

 

“Therefore, as the tongue of fire devours the stubble, and as dry grass sinks down in the flame, so their root will be as rottenness, and their blossom go up like dust; for they have rejected the law of the LORD of hosts, and have despised the word of the Holy One of Israel. Therefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against His people, and He stretched out His hand against them and struck them, and the mountains quaked; and their corpses were as refuse in the midst of the streets. For all this His anger has not turned away, and His hand is stretched out still.” Isaiah 5:24-25 (ESV).

 

-Tim A. Blankenship