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Read Isaiah 65
Judgment and Salvation
65 “I revealed myself to those who did not ask for me;
I was found by those who did not seek me.
To a nation that did not call on my name,
I said, ‘Here am I, here am I.’
2 All day long I have held out my hands
to an obstinate people,
who walk in ways not good,
pursuing their own imaginations—
3 a people who continually provoke me
to my very face,
offering sacrifices in gardens
and burning incense on altars of brick;
4 who sit among the graves
and spend their nights keeping secret vigil;
who eat the flesh of pigs,
and whose pots hold broth of impure meat;
5 who say, ‘Keep away; don’t come near me,
for I am too sacred for you!’
Such people are smoke in my nostrils,
a fire that keeps burning all day.
6 “See, it stands written before me:
I will not keep silent but will pay back in full;
I will pay it back into their laps—
7 both your sins and the sins of your ancestors,”
says the Lord.
“Because they burned sacrifices on the mountains
and defied me on the hills,
I will measure into their laps
the full payment for their former deeds.”
8 This is what the Lord says:
“As when juice is still found in a cluster of grapes
and people say, ‘Don’t destroy it,
there is still a blessing in it,’
so will I do in behalf of my servants;
I will not destroy them all.
9 I will bring forth descendants from Jacob,
and from Judah those who will possess my mountains;
my chosen people will inherit them,
and there will my servants live.
10 Sharon will become a pasture for flocks,
and the Valley of Achor a resting place for herds,
for my people who seek me.
11 “But as for you who forsake the Lord
and forget my holy mountain,
who spread a table for Fortune
and fill bowls of mixed wine for Destiny,
12 I will destine you for the sword,
and all of you will fall in the slaughter;
for I called but you did not answer,
I spoke but you did not listen.
You did evil in my sight
and chose what displeases me.”
13 Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord says:
“My servants will eat,
but you will go hungry;
my servants will drink,
but you will go thirsty;
my servants will rejoice,
but you will be put to shame.
14 My servants will sing
out of the joy of their hearts,
but you will cry out
from anguish of heart
and wail in brokenness of spirit.
15 You will leave your name
for my chosen ones to use in their curses;
the Sovereign Lord will put you to death,
but to his servants he will give another name.
16 Whoever invokes a blessing in the land
will do so by the one true God;
whoever takes an oath in the land
will swear by the one true God.
For the past troubles will be forgotten
and hidden from my eyes.
New Heavens and a New Earth
17 “See, I will create
new heavens and a new earth.
The former things will not be remembered,
nor will they come to mind.
18 But be glad and rejoice forever
in what I will create,
for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight
and its people a joy.
19 I will rejoice over Jerusalem
and take delight in my people;
the sound of weeping and of crying
will be heard in it no more.
20 “Never again will there be in it
an infant who lives but a few days,
or an old man who does not live out his years;
the one who dies at a hundred
will be thought a mere child;
the one who fails to reach a hundred
will be considered accursed.
21 They will build houses and dwell in them;
they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
22 No longer will they build houses and others live in them,
or plant and others eat.
For as the days of a tree,
so will be the days of my people;
my chosen ones will long enjoy
the work of their hands.
23 They will not labor in vain,
nor will they bear children doomed to misfortune;
for they will be a people blessed by the Lord,
they and their descendants with them.
24 Before they call I will answer;
while they are still speaking I will hear.
25 The wolf and the lamb will feed together,
and the lion will eat straw like the ox,
and dust will be the serpent’s food.
They will neither harm nor destroy
on all my holy mountain,”
says the Lord.
Isaiah 65 begins with the Lord responding to the prayers of the previous chapters. Isaiah 65:2 says, “I spread out my hands all the day to a rebellious people, who walk in a way that is not good, following their own devices.” What does it mean to be rebellious against God? The Lord himself gives us a definition here: people who follow their own devices. The Message translation says, “People who make wrong turns, who insist on doing things their own way.” If we trust in our own wisdom, judgment, and thoughts, then we are amongst the rebellious people! Proverbs 16:25 warns us that “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.”
Isaiah then goes on to look forward, further into the future than any Old Testament prophet has so far. In verses 17-25 he talks about the new heavens and new earth. Isaiah gives us a glimpse into the new creation. One that will be filled with rejoicing and gladness (v. 18-19); one in which long life will prevail (v. 20); and one in which there will be just rewards for labor (v. 21-23). Probably the most Gospel-worthy prophesy about the new creation comes from v. 24: “Before they call, I will answer; while they are yet speaking I will hear.” In the new heaven and the new earth, our relationship with the Lord will be so close that there will be an immediate and constant sense of the presence of God!
How we all long for the day when the earth will be as it was intended! A time of great rejoicing and constant communion with Jesus. A day when all of creation shall graze together as it talks about in verse 25. As believers in Jesus Christ, we can look forward to that day with hopeful anticipation. In the meantime, we can use Romans 12:2 as a road map as we navigate the world in its present state: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing, and perfect will.” God’s solution for us so that we don’t fall into the same trap as the rebellious Israelites is to continually renew our minds. May we be a people marked by our transformed, not rebellious hearts!
- In what ways do you tend to trust in your own wisdom, judgment & thoughts?
- Read Proverbs 14:12 and Proverbs 16:28. What warnings do these scriptures have for people who follow their own devices?
- What is the most hopeful promise of the new heaven and new earth that Isaiah prophesies in this chapter?
This is the first mention in scripture of the new heaven and new earth. It will also be mentioned in Isaiah 66 and in the New Testament in 2 Peter 3:13 and Revelation 21. For a better understanding of what the new heaven & earth are, check out this article and video from GotQuestions.org.
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3 thoughts on “Isaiah 65”
Unworthy, rebellious, obstinate—left to our own devices what a stench we are. We never naturally drift toward righteousness but continually defy and displease God in the flesh. V12 reveals our sorry state of affairs “for I called but you did not answer, I spoke but you did not listen. You did evil in my sight and chose what displeases me.” Will there come a day when he no longer calls? A few chapters back Isaiah 53:6 gives this indictment on our stubborn ways “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; and the Lord has laid in him the iniquity of us all.” There will be a coming day of reckoning. Either we will intentionally chose to flee sin and accept the forgiveness offered in Christ, or we will be left outside the gate doomed. Our consciences can get seared by habitual sin, and we are lulled to sleep. Let’s wake up to light and life and an incomparable relationship with God that deeply satisfies our souls. It’s yet another great exchange!
This area of “new heaven and earth” are slightly confusing but I also have not read and researched much. I know that some call this time the millennial kingdom, due to some of the teen and twenties verses. That is something I will look at as God leads. BUT GOD today is showing me just how great He is. The beginning to the end He has our way made available we but have to reach out to Him with our free will and choose to walk along side. No where does the Word say all will be rainbows and sunshine until we get to our final destination. BUT GOD through His grace and power in us can help us make it through the refiner’s fire or battles of now today. There are no unsolvable problems 1 Peter 5:7 cast your cares. Phil 4:13,19 13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. 19 But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Unbelief sees problems, difficulties, but believing sees ways to solve or opportunities to show how big our God is . Make this our heaven now, here, to have the privilege and honor of sharing God, showing God by our love to others and being happy or joyful in as possible in all circumstances.
God thank You HOW GREAT THOU ART!!!! Then sings my soul!! Grateful, thankful, blessed, joyful, loving, kind, generous, compassionate, honest, gentle, thoughtful, prayful and more. Thank You for helping me those things and bringing them back to mind when I stumble. It is my hearts desire. Thank You for Your love goggles today as I interact with folks, thank You for Your words falling out of my mouth. Thank You for how Your beauty just unfolds around me as I drive around Your creation. I give You the glory, honor and adoration of my heart in Jesus name amen
WOOHOO!! and WOOHOO!!!
HOW GREAT THOU ART!!!!
Well, one thing’s for sure…Isaiah hasn’t been wrong in not one of his prophecies, so whatever he states about the new heaven and the new earth…we should rejoice in!! I can’t even imagine a new world of grandeur enough that I would forget, and not remember the earth as we know! We really have to take God out of the box on this one! Lol If God can create earth in 6 days, as beautiful as it is, I can’t fathom the creativity He has in mind for it not to resemble anything what our eyes have seen!!!
But one thing I won’t miss, is Satan!!! And not remembering all the havoc he brought to my life!! Hallelujah!!! 🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻 The promises of all heartache and tears are completely gone! The only tears we will have will be of great joy!
At the time of my dad passing, he was completely asleep. My dad, who barely cried, had one tear, and with an effort of a smile…passed to eternity. His heart hadn’t even completely stopped before he saw Jesus, and the tears of joy began!
What a wonderful passage of hope,
and to give comfort to us today!
Amen! To that commentary! “May we be a people marked by our transformed, not rebellious hearts!”