Shall we turn in our Bibles to Isaiah, chapter thirteen, as we continue our study through the Bible. Now so much of Bible prophecy has what we refer to as a near, and a far, fulfillment. Many of the prophesies had an immediate, and addressed immediate situations. But in a secondary sense, they looked down the road, and there was a secondary prophetic aspect to what was being said. In the prophesies of Isaiah, we find so often this dual kind of fulfillment of the prophecy. That immediate and then, that far fulfillment that would take place.
In the prophesies concerning Jesus Christ, we realize that there was that which was the immediate, or that which was to be fulfilled in His first coming, but also that which would be fulfilled in His second coming. Many a times, the prophesies, as they were given, were not really divided. So that issues of the first coming, as well as the second coming, were just bunched together.
The sixty first chapter of Isaiah is an example of that, and Jesus, when He took the scriptures in Nazareth, when He began His public ministry, reading the sixty first chapter of Isaiah, stopped at the portion of the prophecy that dealt with His first coming. He did not read on in the portion that dealt with His second coming. But stopping at the portion that dealt with His first coming, He said, “This day is this scripture fulfilled in your eyes.” That first part was fulfilled in His first coming. That portion of the prophecy that will be fulfilled at His second coming, He did not read into that. He left that because that would be fulfilled at a future date. Thus, the prophets of the old testament so often just wrote of immediate situations, but there was a prophetic element that was to be fulfilled in the yet distant future.
The prophets did not always discern. In fact, the new testament tells us that they did not always understand the things that they wrote about. They sort of desired to understand them more fully. But writing through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, they just wrote down as the Spirit inspired them, not always fully understanding themselves the things that they wrote.
Now as we are dealing then tonight, with the prophecy of Babylon, we find in chapter thirteen, it opens with…
The burden of Babylon, which Isaiah the son of Amoz did see (13:1).
Now with the prophecy of Babylon, there was to be the near fulfillment, and we say near fulfillment, however the prophesies of Babylon when they were made by Isaiah, at this point Babylon was not a real power in the world. Babylon was not the major, it was a power, but not the major power. Assyria was the major power in the world at the time of this writing. Later on Assyria was defeated by the Babylonians, and Babylon became the major power. Babylon was the nation that conquered Judah, the southern kingdom.
So at the time that he wrote this prophecy, it was at the time of the death of Ahaz, which puts it at around 726 BC. This is the time at which, the northern kingdom, Israel was falling to Assyria, and was being carried away by the Assyrians. However, he goes beyond Assyria, and some hundred years later, hundred and fifty years later, Babylon is to be destroyed.
So, that near fulfillment would be the hundred and fifty years later in the destruction of Babylon. But with the dual aspect the prophecy, as we will see in its context, really deals with the end times and the time of the great tribulation. And, so there is the dual fulfillment of this prophecy concerning Babylon.
Lift up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them, shake the hand, that they may go into the gates of the nobles. For I have commanded my sanctified ones, I’ve also called my mighty ones for mine anger, even them that rejoice in my highness. And thus the noise of a multitude in the mountains, like as of a great people; a tumultuous noise of the kingdoms of nations gathered together: for the Lord of hosts is mustering the hosts of the battle (13:2-4).
So when Babylon was destroyed, and we will read prophetically that it was destroyed by the Medes and the Persians, it was not destroyed by a confederacy of nations from all over the world. So this prophecy that he is speaking here, concerning this destruction of Babylon was not fulfilled in the overthrow of Babylon by the Medo-Persian empire. But it becomes quite obvious that Isaiah is talking about another destruction of Babylon, which would be yet future, which would be accomplished by a amalgamation of many nations, the host of the kingdoms that God would gather together for the purpose of destroying Babylon.
Now it is important to note that the ancient Babylon, is the modern day Iraq. What we see happening at this very moment, is that there is gathering together in Saudi Arabia, a vast host from many different nations, primarily from the United States. We are currently in the process of sending two hundred and twenty thousand more troops into that area in order that we might change our forces from just a defensive force, to one that will be able to launch a military attack against Iraq to force them to leave Kuwait. Thus this scripture accurately describes accurately what is going on at this very moment in Iraq. “As the nations, kingdoms, plural, of nations, plural, are gathering together as the Lord of hosts is mustering the host of the battle.”
Now almost everyone is declaring that war in the Gulf is inevitable. Margaret Thatcher, this week, said that, “Hussein has two options. One is to peaceably withdraw his troops, and thus it would be the honorable option of pulling out of Kuwait peaceably. If he does not do that then he must face the fact that he will be driven out militarily.” Thus Baker, and Bush, Margaret Thatcher, and everyone is saying that Hussein cannot remain in Kuwait. Hussein says that he will not leave Kuwait, and that they will die rather than leave Kuwait. So we’ve come to an impasse, and thus the Lord is mustering the hosts for battle.
And they come from a far country, [Now that could not refer to the Medes and the Persians, because they were adjacent to Babylon, “They come from a far country,”] from the end of heaven, [Now in reality, if you were over there in the time of Isaiah, and you were writing of troops coming from the United States into the Gulf region to battle against Iraq, or Babylon, you would say, “they’re coming from the ends of heaven”, the opposite side of the earth, “from the end of heaven”.] even the Lord, and the weapons of his indignation (13:5),
The word indignation is a word that is used in the old testament for the great tribulation that God had said was going to come upon the world in the last days. The word indignation is used over and over in the old testament. You can reference that, and it is used for the period of the great tribulation.
to destroy the whole land. [And so] Howl ye; for the day of the Lord is at hand (13:6);
Now the day of the Lord is a phrase that is constantly used through the scriptures to describe the day of His wrath, the day of His vengeance, and the day of the great tribulation.
Now in the prophecy that God gave to Daniel, He said that there were seventy, sevens that were determined upon the nation of Israel, and upon the holy city. He describes the events that will take place in that seventy, seven year periods, or, seventy, seven years, period, or four hundred and ninety years. He said that, “From the time that the commandment would go forth to restore and rebuild Jerusalem”, which had been taken. The Jews had been taken to Babylon in captivity, and Daniel was writing in Babylon. “From the time the commandment would go forth to restore and rebuild Jerusalem, to the coming of the Messiah, the Prince, would be sixty nine, sevens, or, four hundred and eighty three years.” From the time that the commandment was given to restore and rebuild Jerusalem by Artaxerxes, to Nehemiah, 445 BC, it was four hundred and eighty three years later that Jesus came. The Messiah, the Prince. But Daniel predicted that the Prince would be cut off, and the Jews would be dispersed. Jesus, we know was crucified. He did not receive the kingdom, and the Jewish nation was dispersed.
Now that leaves one seven year period that is yet to be fulfilled. That seven year period is yet future. It will be a time when God will be dealing again with Israel, and with Jerusalem, and the people, the Jews. During this final seven year period, it will end, the last three and a half years of it, will be the great day of the Lord, the day of God’s judgment, and the day of God’s wrath that will be poured out upon the earth.
Daniel says, “There shall be a time of trouble, such as the world will, has never seen before.” Jesus said, “It will be a time of great tribulation. Greater than the earth has ever seen at any time, or will ever see again.” In the book of Revelation, beginning with chapter six, and going through chapter eighteen, there are great details given to you of the events that will be taking place in that three and a half year period of time. The day of the Lord, the day of His indignation, the day of His wrath, and the time known as the great tribulation. It will be a period of three and a half years, but it begins in the middle of the seventieth, seven, of Daniel.
It is all activated by the Antichrist going to the temple of God, that has been rebuilt in Jerusalem, and profaning it, as he stands in the holy of holies, and stops the daily worship and sacrifices, and proclaims that he is God, and demands to be worshiped as God. This will be the final sacrilege, sort of the straw that breaks the camel’s back, so to speak. This will be the final sacrilege of man that will bring the wrath and the indignation of God upon the earth.
So this destruction of Babylon is tied together with the nearness of the day of the Lord. “Howl ye; for the day of the Lord is at hand;” When? At the time that Babylon, or Iraq is destroyed by this army that has been mustered from all over the world.
Therefore shall all hands be faint, and every man’s heart will melt (13:7):
This is talking about the great tribulation period. Jesus, speaking of it said, “Men’s hearts will be failing them for fear of the things that are coming upon the earth.” Thus, as Isaiah said, “Every man’s heart shall melt.” Collaborated by Jesus in Matthew, twenty four, as He spoke of the tribulation period.
And they shall be afraid: [For fear of things that are coming upon them.] pangs and sorrows will take hold of them; and they will be in pain as a woman that is in travail: and they shall be amazed at one another; and their faces shall be as flames. [Or as, on fire.] So behold, the day of the Lord cometh, [That is the great tribulation.] it will be cruel with wrath (13:8-9)
In the midst of this time, they will cry for the rocks and the mountains to fall on them, and to hide them from the face of the Lamb, for they declare, “The day of His wrath has come, and who shall be able to stand?” “A day that is cruel both with wrath.”
and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: he will destroy the sinners thereof out of it (13:9).
Now some of the events of the great tribulation will be cataclysmic, cosmic kind of events. For he tells us that…
The stars of heaven and the constellations thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine. [So great cataclysmic events taking place in the cosmos.] And the Lord said, I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and I will lay low the haughtiness of the awesome (13:10-11).
So the day of God’s wrath, the day of God’s judgment against whom? The evil in the world, a punishment for them, and the wicked being punished for their iniquity. This is one of the many reasons why I believe that the church will not be here when this event takes place. That is, the pouring out of God’s wrath, indignation, and judgment upon the earth. Because our iniquities have been forgiven. Jesus took the punishment for your sin.
This seven year period will be the time in which God’s Spirit will be poured upon the people of Israel, the Jews. And, God will be dealing with them once again, which precludes the church being here. The ministry of the Holy Spirit among the Gentiles, in gathering out a bride for Jesus Christ, will have been completed. Thus, the church will have been removed, and once the church is removed, it opens the door for the revelation of the Antichrist, who comes on the scene at the beginning of this last seven year cycle, when God begins to work among the Jews once again. So,” God will punish the world for its evil, and the wicked for their iniquity.”
And I will make man more precious than fine gold; even man than the golden wedge of Ophir (13:12).
As you read the book of Revelation, chapters six, through eighteen, you will find that mankind for the most part, will be destroyed during this three and a half year period. In the first of the judgments that come, the four horses that you’ve heard, of the apocalypse. As these demonic forces come upon the world, by them one fourth of the earth’s population will be destroyed. At a later point, in other judgments that will come, one third of the earth’s population that remains, will be destroyed. So that means in just those two separate forms of judgment, over a half of the earth’s population will be wiped out. Jesus said that, “Unless those days were shortened, no flesh would remain upon the earth. And thus for the elect’s sake”, that is the Jews, “those days shall be shortened.”
So it will be a time when mankind, much as in the flood, will be destroyed. Only a few will remain this tremendous holocaust, when God judges the wicked on this earth, and punishes them. Man will become scarce. You talk about an endangered species. At that point man will be declared an endangered species as, “he will become as scarce, or more precious than fine gold”.
Therefore [The Lord said] I will shake the heavens, and the earth (13:13)
The Bible tells us that God is gonna shake the earth once again. In Hebrews it speaks about this tremendous shaking. It speaks about it in the book of Revelation. And God said He’s gonna shake the earth once again, until everything that can be shaken, shall be shaken, and only that which cannot be shaken, shall remain. I mean, they talk about the San Andreas fault, and then an 8.2 earthquake. They haven’t seen anything yet! That’s local, that would only effect us here. But it would not effect the world. God’s gonna shake the whole world with more than an 8.2, and everything that can be shaken, will be shaken. We’ll be wiped out! Only that which cannot be shaken will remain. The Lord said, “I will shake the heavens and the earth.”
shall be moved out of her place (13:13),
Now the physicists tell us that there has been a polar axis shift in past history. In fact, this polar axis shift takes place, they believe, every five, six thousand years, and that it accounts for much of the climactic changes that we know have taken place upon the earth. It could account for the great ice age, and other type of climactic changes that have come to pass. We do know that the area of Siberia was once lush, tropical jungles, and great mammoths roamed in those jungles. For in the frozen tundra of Siberia, they have found mammoths that have been perfectly encased in the ice, and in their digestive tracts there is tropical vegetation.
Now they were flash-frozen, because the meat was still edible. The dogs ate the meat of these mammoths, which are several thousand years old, frozen in that Siberian frozen tundra, as the result of some great cataclysmic event that took place several thousand years ago upon the earth, that changed the whole climate of the earth, in an instant, almost! Because here they are frozen, in place, with tropical vegetation, and, and that of course today, the way the earth is tilted at twenty three and a third degrees on its axis, and we have the poles set where they are, we know that that could not exist. You could not have tropical vegetation in the area of Siberia!
Two hundred feet under the ice in the south pole region, there are beds of charcoal, which means that there once were forests in the south pole region. We know that that could not be under the present climactic conditions. So there have been in past history, great climactic changes that were caused by cataclysmic kind of events.
The physicists talk about this polar axis shift. There seems to be evidence of this polar axis shift in the ionized iron, and rocks and so forth, by the direction that the ionization is pointing, is not to, what we know, as the north pole today. Thus they speak of the polar axis shift, and the things that transpire during a polar axis shift.
How that mountain ranges are removed. How that ocean bodies, and ocean beds are changed. We do know that the area up around the painted desert, and the great salt lake, was once a vast ocean, and there were dinosaurs that roamed around the shores of that ocean up there. The grand canyon could possibly have been caused by a polar axis shift, when that great, vast ocean that was up in that area, was emptied on down into the pacific, through the area of the gulf of Mexico. The geologists today, rather than ascribing to the theory that the grand canyon was formed by hundreds of, or billions of years of gradual erosion by the Colorado river, are now saying it probably happened more rapidly by a massive flow of water over a short period of time, rather than a small flow of water, over a long period of time.
We do know that a canyon almost half the size of the grand canyon was created in just a few days, up at Mount St. Helen. When Mount St. Helen’s erupted and that lake was emptied, it formed a vast canyon up there, that is similar to the Grand Canyon, about half the size. So that it tends towards the theory of the Grand Canyon being formed by a massive amount of water over a short period of time. We do have the evidence of the fossils there around the Grand Canyon, and up in the area of the Painted Desert and all, that show that it was once an ocean floor.
So this they believe did take place during a polar axis shift, and they say that these shifts do take place about every five, six thousand years. The last one took place, according to them, about the time that the scripture says that the flood of Noah took place. It would sort of coincide with the time of the flood, which is interesting to consider. The Lord says He’s gonna “shake the heavens and the earth, will remove out of her place.”
in the wrath of the Lord of hosts, in the day of his fierce anger (13:13).
That, “being removed out of it’s place”, could be a reference to a polar axis shift. Now in light of this prophecy, you might find the book, “Worlds in Collision”, by Immanuel Velikovsky, quite interesting, as Isaiah ties it together with, “the earth shaking, and the earth removing out of her place”. I’ll just leave it there, and you can read the book and draw your own conclusions. But it is fascinating reading.
And it shall be as the chased deer, and as a sheep that no man taketh up: and they shall every man turn to his own people, and flee every one into his own land. [So there’s going to be this tremendous cataclysmic event that is gonna terrorize the world.] And every one that is found shall be thrust through; and every one that is joined unto them will fall by the sword. Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; and their houses shall be spoiled, and their wives ravished (13:14-16).
These are events that usually take place in war. It’s one of those horrible side effects, and consequences of war. The inhumanity of man to man, is manifested and demonstrated in war. Man is as a wild beast, and it becomes manifested in a time of war.
Now in the immediate, and it’s interesting, a lot of Bible critics ascribe this portion of Isaiah to another writer. If you’re familiar with the theory that there is not one author of the book of Isaiah, but there are actually two authors, and they ascribe much of the writing of Isaiah to a second author of a later period.
Now why do they do that? Here’s one of the reasons why they speak of a second Isaiah. Because he said…
Behold, I will stir up the Medes against them, [That is the Babylonians] which will not regard silver; and as for gold, they shall not delight in it (13:17).
Now at this time the Medes were just a very small tribal group. So for Isaiah to say that the Medes were gonna conquer Babylon, was just so preposterous and far fetched that no one could even think that, at that time. Therefore there must have been a later Isaiah who wrote it after the Medes became powerful in their joining together with the Persians. Because it’s prophetic they, they, they cast it out for that.
So if you want to know why a lot of Bible critics are critical, it’s because they don’t believe the Bible. They don’t believe God. They don’t believe that God can speak of things in advance. They don’t believe that God can speak prophetically of things that will take place in the future, and thus they always invent a late date for the book. It happened, they wrote it after the fact, because their, these details, they could not have known. It was just not, they couldn’t even have imagined the Medes at that time rising up.
The interesting thing about the idea of two Isaiah’s, is that Jesus spoke of Isaiah, and He quotes from Isaiah. Jesus said, “As Isaiah the prophet declared…”, and He quotes from Isaiah. The interesting thing, He quotes from what the critics have said, are both Isaiahs. In other words, the second Isaiah, He quotes from that, and attributes it to Isaiah, and He quotes from the first, and attributes that to Isaiah. So, “Jesus did not have the advantage of modern scholarship, and liberalism, and thus He did not know that there were two authors. One was sort of a used the pseudonym at a later date, adding details that the first Isaiah could not have known.”
So you see the Bible stands or falls as a unit. You take away part of it, and you’ve destroyed the whole. The moment you ascribe to the two Isaiah theory, then you have to discredit, and discount Jesus, and the words of Jesus. “Because He was mistaken in assuming that there was only one prophet Isaiah.” And thus, the words of Christ are actually impugned by such a scholarship of liberal theology.
So the Lord said, “I will stir up the Medes.” Which He did, it was the Medes that ultimately conquered the Babylonian kingdom, but this was several hundred years later. “And they will not regard silver, and as for gold, they will not delight in it.”
Their bows also shall dash the young men to pieces (13:18);
And as I said, near, far fulfillment, He gave us the far fulfillment first, now he’s giving us the near fulfillment will be by the Medes. This is in contrast to “kingdoms of nations”, plural gathered from the far country, even from the end of heaven. Here are the Medes close by.
and they will have no pity on the fruit of the womb; [That is, the babies] and their eyes will not spare children. And Babylon, the glory of the kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldees’ excellency, shall be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah (13:18-19).
Now that did not take place under the Medes. When the Medes conquered Babylon, they did not even destroy the walls. Cyrus the Medo-Persian general diverted the river Euphrates, built some dykes, and converted the river Euphrates around the city of Babylon. In the night, they shut off the river Euphrates. The soldiers of Cyrus came under the wall of Babylon, on the banks of the river Euphrates that had been stopped by the dykes upstream that they had built. The Babylonians were so drunken and so engaged in a big party, and celebration of Belshazzar, that they weren’t aware of what was going on. As the water level of the Euphrates went down, it exposed the, the underpart there, and the men came on the river bed into the city of Babylon, and then up and through the gates, the levied gates that, the river Euphrates ran right through the center of Babylon There were twenty five major boulevards that crossed the river Euphrates, each with a bridge, and gates and walls along the river bank. But these gates, the levied gates were left open, and Cyrus and his troops were able to come through these gates, and into the palace, and they took Belshazzar, and the Babylonians almost without firing a shot, so to speak. They, they just took the city, and for two or three days, the city of Babylon was so vast that many of the people in Babylon didn’t even know that it had been conquered, for two or three days. The walls were left in tact, the palaces and all were left in tact. They were not destroyed, they did not need to destroy them.
But they were destroyed at a later date, when Babylon, about two hundred years later was again conquered. At that time, the walls were destroyed. But surely it was not as when God overthrew Sodom in destruction. That was with fire and brimstone from heaven, and it was a pretty thorough destruction. So this destruction that is prophesied here, that is coming upon Babylon will be a fiery destruction, and a total destruction, as the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah were totally wiped out. Thus after this destruction it will never be inhabited.
Now the ancient side of Babylon is inhabited at the present time. They have rebuilt the palace of Nebuchadnezzar. They have rebuilt many of the other buildings in the ancient city of Babylon, and the, once God overthrows it…
It will never be inhabited, neither will it be dwelt in from generation to generation: neither shall an Arabian pitch a tent there; neither shall the shepherds make their fold there. But wild beasts of the desert will lie there; their houses will be full of doleful creatures; owls will dwell there, and satyrs [Or demons] shall dance there. And the wild beasts of the islands shall cry in their desolate houses, and dragons in their pleasant palaces: and her time is near to come, and her days shall not be prolonged (13:20-22).
For the Lord will have mercy upon Jacob, and will yet choose Israel, and set them in their own land (14:1):
Now the Lord has had mercy upon Jacob, and again there’s a dual fulfillment. They came home from the Babylonian captivity, and they were reestablished, but never as a major power. This prophecy deals with Israel being reestablished but becoming a major power. Thus, this prophecy is yet future. “The Lord will have mercy on Jacob, and will yet choose Israel.” God will pour out His Spirit and His grace upon Israel. He will deal with them as a nation for seven more years, prior to the return of Christ, and the establishing of God’s great kingdom. And so…
The stranger shall be joined with them, and they shall cleave to the house of Jacob. [Yet future.] And the people shall take them, and bring them to their place: and the house of Israel shall possess them in the land of the Lord for servants and handmaids: and they shall take them captives, whose captives they were; and they shall rule over their oppressors (14:1-2).
So, Israel the nation, God’s people are yet to have power and to rule, as they take them captives, whose captives they were.
It shall come to pass in the day that the Lord shall give thee rest from thy sorrow, and from thy fear, and from your hard bondage wherein you were made to serve, That you will take up this proverb against the king of Babylon, and say, How has the oppressor ceased! and the golden city ceased! For the Lord has broken the staff of the wicked, and the scepter of the rulers. And he who smote the people in wrath with a continual stroke, he that ruled the nations in anger, is persecuted, and none hinders. And the whole earth is at rest, and is quiet: and they break forth into singing. Yea, the fir trees rejoice at thee, and the cedars in Lebanon, they say, Since you are laid down, no feller is come against us (14:3-8).
Or that is a um, what do they call guys who chop down trees? Here the word is feller, but logger. So the prophecy of the future, when God restores the glory to Israel. When Jesus comes to reign as King over the earth, when oppression ceases, when the staff of the wicked is broken, the scepter of the rulers, that is earthly rulers, and the whole earth is at rest in the righteous reign of peace through Jesus Christ. The whole earth’s at rest and is quiet. “And they break forth into singing.” Glorious day. Now…
Hell from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at thy coming: it stirs up the dead for thee, even all of the chief ones of the earth; it has raised up from their thrones all of the kings in the nations. And they shall speak and say unto thee, Are you also become weak as we? are you become like unto us? Your pomp is brought down to the grave, and the noise of thy viols: and the worm is spread under thee, and the maggots cover thee (14:9-11).
So it’s speaking really of the beast, who is cast into Gehenna, “hell from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at your coming. It stirs up the dead for thee, the chief ones of the earth”, and there will be no one quite the equal to, of course, the Antichrist in power and glory. The last final world leader who will be given the power of Satan to rule over the earth, and yet he will be cast down and as he is, the former world rulers and all, will say, “Have you become as weak as we? You’ve become like us. Your pomp is brought down to the grave, and the noise of your viols. For the worm has spread under thee, and the maggots cover thee.”
Now the prophecy turns towards Satan. In the book of Daniel, Daniel speaks about his desire to have understanding of certain matters for God, from God. So Daniel set himself to fasting and praying that God might give to him wisdom and understanding in certain matters. Twenty one days after Daniel began his fast, and his prayers, the angel of the Lord came to Daniel and he said, “Daniel, from the time you began your fast and your prayers, twenty one days ago, the Lord dispatched me to bring you the answer. But lo, the prince of Persia hindered me, took me as a captive, and he held me until that great prince Michael came, and delivered me. Now I am come to bring you God’s message.”
Behind the power of Persia, was the Satanic power that rules the world. Behind the power of Babylon was the Satanic power that rules the world. Behind Hitler, there were Satanic powers.
Hitler was actually guided by men who were masters in the realm of white magic. These men were demon controlled, demon guided. They had their spirit demon guides, and they actually controlled Hitler, and the fifth Reich. These men, after the war, a great number of them fled to South America, in Peru, and have, some of them still are existing today. But they were the men who were in control. They were demonically guided, and guided Hitler. That’s why Hitler was able to do the horrible, atrocious things that he did, because it was guided by these men under demonic control.
So the Lord recognizes that behind these earthly powers is Satan, the prince of this world. Or, as he is called by Paul, the god of this world. So as the Lord is speaking about Babylon, he now turns to that demonic, or satanic force that is behind the power of Babylon, which is Satan himself. In addressing Satan’s fall, He said…
How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations (14:12)!
So we read here the fall of Lucifer, Satan, the destroyer, the deceiver. There are many names that are given to him in the bible. The devil. So many names given to Satan. One interesting thing about the names of Satan in the bible, both in Hebrew, and in Greek, each letter has a numeric equivalent. It is interesting to note that in totaling up the numeric equivalents of all of the names for Satan, they are always divisible by thirteen. Just an interesting note. Lucifer, one of his names, the name “Lucifer” means, “son of the morning”, very beautiful name indeed. But because of who it was given to, “daystar”, “son of the morning”, or “daystar”. “Lucifer how are you cut down to the ground which didst weaken the nations!” Satan and his power over the nations, destroying nations.
Now the reason for Satan’s fall. Now you see, Satan, when he was created, was created of a high order of an angelic being, an order known as the cherubim. They are the angels that are about the throne of God. They had the, they lived in closest proximity to God.
As we get into Ezekiel, we find Satan described, and, and it’s nothing like what you picture today the caricatures of, of Satan. Where you see the horns, and the pitchfork, and the red costume with a forked tail. If you’re looking for Satan to look like that, you’ll, you’ll miss him! The Bible said he was perfect in wisdom, and perfect in beauty.
Satan doesn’t come as some horrible, ugly, repulsive kind of creature. He always comes with the idea of, wonderful, exciting, beautiful! That’s why its so deceptive. Because he promises you life, and he promises you excitement, but he brings death. He promised to Eve, “You know you eat of this, you’re gonna be as God. You’ll know good from evil!” But it brought the fall.
Now Satan being this cherubim, being the anointed cherub, that covers, or, the ruling cherub, being in the garden of God, every precious stone for his covering. Perfect in beauty, perfect in wisdom, perfect in all of his ways, until the day that iniquity was found in him. What is the iniquity? Being created as a self-determinate being, as is man, Satan had the capacity of choice. Satan decided to exercise his will against the will of God.
That’s what basically sin is all about. It’s rebellion against God’s authority. God who reigns over the universe as the Creator, the sovereign God, did create creatures of, and gave to them the capacity of choice, so that as they worshiped Him, their worship would be meaningful. If He had created robots, no capacity of choice. Though they may worship Him, the worship would not be meaningful. So that God might receive many meaningful worship from His creation, He created angels and men with self-determination.
Satan chose to rebel against God in the exalting of himself. So we read of his “I wills”. Five of them. This is the exercise of his will, against the will of God, rebellion, which constitutes sin.
I will ascend into heaven, this is what he said in his heart, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: [The stars of God being, the angels, “I will exalt my throne above all of the angels of God.”] I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds: [And then finally, and climactically,] I will be like the most High (14:14).
“I will be as God”, or, “I will be God.” Now this, “being God”, is the very thing that perpetrated his fall. That desire to be God. And so He said…
Yet thou will be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit (14:15).
Satan, when he came to Eve in tempting her, used the same lure. “You will be as God, knowing good from evil.” The Hindus believe that by going through their rituals, their fastings, their prayers, their meditations, their chantings and all, that they can come to a place where they are transformed into the God-state.
The New Age movement, which is modern day Hinduism, or is Hinduism in western garb, is telling them the same thing, that you can ascend into the God-state. They speak of that universal consciousness. This altering of our consciousness, and the conscious level, so that you can ascend into the universal consciousness of God. “You become God”, Shirley MacLaine, “I am God.” It is something that is being espoused by the New Age movement.
It is something that the Mormons are attracted to. For the hope of the Mormon is, when he dies, to become God, and to have his own planet. Take his celestial wife, and to be joined with her on that planet, and to populate that planet with a lot of little Mormons and watch over them as they develop, and answer their prayers, and have power, and authority and all, over them. So that when a marriage is sealed in the temple, at the time of their consecration of their marriage, or the wedding in the temple, the wife is given a new special name.
So that when the husband comes to his planet, when he calls that new special name that is given to his wife, then she comes and together they procreate, and start their new planet. If he doesn’t call her name, she’s out of luck. She wasn’t good to him, didn’t bring his coffee in the morning, and didn’t serve him well in this life, and so he gets even with her, he doesn’t call her name when he gets to his kingdom. He calls another name. So wives, treat your husbands well, if you want your name to be called!
Tragically, many of the TV evangelists, and TV personalities today have taken up this same “man is God” kind of a heresy. As they promulgated the heresy of positive confessions, of writing your own tickets, of creating your own reality. As they spoke of the creative power of words. The word of faith, and its creative force, and how that you can create your own reality, and you can have whatever you wish, and whatever you desire. These are characteristics that belong to God.
God is sovereign, and God does create, and can create His own realities, and when man then, steps into that position of control, and he can have whatever he desires if he exercises the proper attitudes, and positive attitudes, and confessions and all towards it, creating his own reality, God is no longer in control of that man’s life. He is in control of his own life. Thus, man is elevated even by that doctrine to the god-state. So that would be a doctrine that would be assumed, by the teaching of positive confession, and all, even if they did not take the next step and talk about god-man, and man becoming God, and you are gods, it would be an assumption that would be made in the fact that, “I am able to create my own reality. I can take control, and I can have whatever I desire, by making my confession and all. God then has to honor my faith, and what I have said, and what I have claimed and all. And God becomes really subservient to me. God is no longer in control of my life. I am in control. God is obeying my whims, and my wishes.”
Thus, you see the next step logically would be, “I am God”, and they took that step unfortunately, and many of the TV evangelists that are well known today are teaching this heresy. And the TV personalities, even locally are teaching that, “you are little gods, and that you look in the mirror, and you see god, and God looks in the mirror and He sees you. You are gods!” It’s just this stuff that goes way back to Satan who said, “I will be like the most High.” And yet, the Lord said, “You’ll be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.”
And they that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee (14:16),
That is, they’ll sort of squint. When you see Satan there in hell, you’ll squint, you’ll say, “Is that the guy that gave me such a hassle? Gave me such a bad time?” “They that see thee will narrowly look upon thee,”…
and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake the kingdoms (14:16);
“That’s the one that did all the damage? Wow!” You take a universal tour and you’ll get to see this one that created so many problems.
That made the world as wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; and opened not the house of his prisoners (14:17)?
Now turning again to Babylon and it’s destruction…
All of the kings of the nations, even all of them, lie in glory, every one in his own house. But thou art cast out of thy grave like an abominable branch, and as the raiment of those that are slain, thrust through with a sword, that go down to the stones of the pit; as a carcase that is trodden under feet. Thou shalt not be joined with them in burial, because thou hast destroyed thy land, and you have slain the people: and the seed of evildoers shall never be renowned. So prepare slaughter for his children for the iniquity of their fathers; that they do not rise, nor possess the land, nor fill the face of the world with cities. For I will rise up against them, saith the Lord of hosts, I’ll cut off from Babylon, the name and remnant, the son, the nephew, saith the Lord. And I will also make it a possession for the bittern, and the pools of water: and I will sweep it with the besom of destruction, saith the Lord of hosts. For the Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; as I have purposed, so shall it stand (14:18-24):
So God’s destruction of Babylon will be thorough, it will be complete. Nothing will remain. “And the Lord said, I have sworn, as I have thought so shall it come to pass.” God’s word is faithful, God’s word is sure, God’s word shall stand. “As I have purposed”, God said, “so shall it stand.” Whenever God swears, I’m always taking note! Because that’s something you can be absolutely sure of. God, who is true, and who cannot lie. When He takes an oath to proclaim a truth, then mark that in heavy underlining, because you can be sure that God will fulfill His purposes!
That I will break the Assyrian in my land (14:25),
Now he turns from, from Babylon to Assyria. The immediate danger is not from Babylon. That will come later. The immediate danger is Assyria. At this very time, Assyria is carrying away captive the northern kingdom of Israel. This is the time of, of the death of Ahaz the king. It’s the time that Hezekiah is coming into the throne. 726 BC, and at this time the process of the destruction of Israel is taking place by Assyria. Thus, He speaks of Assyria, that, “I will break the Assyrian in my land.”
and upon my mountains I will tread him under foot: and then shall his yoke depart from off of them, and his burden will depart from off their shoulders. And this is the purpose that is purposed upon the whole earth: and this is the hand that is stretched out upon all nations. For the Lord of hosts has purposed, and who can disannul it? his hand is stretched out, who can turn it back (14:25-27)?
Now Assyria conquered the northern kingdom of Israel, and then they began to invade Judah, at the time that Hezekiah was king. The Rabshakeh came with a message from Sennacherib the king of Assyria, and said, “Don’t trust in your God that He will deliver you. Because none of the gods of the other nations have been able to deliver them from the Assyrians. Capitulate and we will spare you, but if you don’t, we’re gonna exterminate you.”
Now Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Don’t worry, don’t fret over this because God is going to destroy the Assyrians.” Now here Isaiah prophesied that God would break the Assyrians in his land, and upon the mountains He would tread them under foot.
So the Assyrians invaded and they began to set up their hosts for the siege of Jerusalem. The Assyrians were encamped on mount Scopus, there on the edge of the city of Jerusalem. In fact, it’s a tremendous vantage point to look over the city of Jerusalem, from mount Scopus. As they were encamped on mount Scopus, ready to besiege Israel, or, Judah and Jerusalem, an angel of the Lord went through the camp of the Assyrians, and in the morning when the men of Judah looked out at the camp of the Assyrians, they saw all of these corpses lying on the ground. They went out, and they counted them, a hundred and eighty five thousand slain by the angel of the Lord, in that one night. The Assyrian power was broken. God said, “I have purposed it, and no one can disannul it.” He did it and no one could disannul it. The great power of the world at that time, was destroyed by the hand of God, in one simple operation by one angel. Now whenever you begin to tremble at the power of man, just remember, one angel could wipe out the whole total nuclear force of Russia, or the United States, or anything else, could disannul it! God said, “I have purposed it, no man can disannul it.” Isaiah then tells us, in verse twenty eight that…
In the year that king Ahaz died was this burden (14:28).
In other words, “This is when the Lord laid this heavy burden upon me, as I saw the destruction of Babylon, as I saw the future, and the things that were going to transpire, horrible things!” It created a real heaviness upon him. A burden.
Rejoice not thou, whole Palestine, because the rod of him that smote thee is broken: [Now] for out of the serpent’s root shall come forth a cockatrice, and his fruit shall be a fiery flying serpent (14:29).
You remember that out of the root of Jesse would come the righteous Branch, who would reign. Now here, “Out of the rod of Him that smote thee, because of the rod of Him that smote thee, out of the serpent’s root there will come forth not a righteous branch, but a poisonous serpent. And his fruit shall be as a fiery flying serpent.”
And the firstborn of the poor shall feed, and the needy shall lie down in safety: and I will kill thy root with famine, and he shall slay thy remnant. Howl, O gate; cry, O city; thou, whole Palestine, art dissolved: for there shall come from the north a smoke, and none shall be alone in his appointed times. And what shall one then answer the messengers of the nation? That the Lord hath founded Zion, and the poor of his people shall trust in it (14:30-32).
So the Palestine issue will be settled. “And the Lord will found Zion, and the poor of His people shall trust in it.”
He now turns to Moab, and pronounces the destruction that will come upon Moab. That we will take in our lesson next week, as we continue to move through the book of Isaiah.
Again Our Father, we thank You for the plan that You have announced. Your purposes that You intend to fulfill. Lord, as we see the things that are transpiring in our world tonight, as we see the hosts, the armies, that are being mustered and gathered into Saudi Arabia, we realize that it is quite possible that the time has come for the fulfillment of these prophesies, here in Isaiah, as You bring your judgment against the land of Babylon. And Lord, we realize that if this indeed is so, then the day of the Lord is at hand, the day of Your great judgment upon the earth, upon the wicked, and the evil. So Lord, we realize that it is the day in which we should lay aside every weight, and sin which so easily besets us, that we might run with patience this race that You have set before us, as we look unto Jesus, the Author, and the Finisher of our faith. So help us Lord to live all out for You, in these final days. We thank You Lord that we’re children of the light, help us to walk as children of the light, in a way that brings glory and praise unto You, In Jesus’ name.
Edited & Highlighted from “The Word For Today” Transcription, Pastor Chuck Smith, Tape #7248