Dave Burnette's Commentary

Isaiah Chapter 8

Written By: God through Inspiration
Penned By: Isaiah
Date Penned: (700-681 BC)
Overview: To Tell of God's Salvation through the Messiah (c 1-66)
Theme: Words of Judgment (c 1-39)
Message: Isaiah Predicts the Invasion By Assyria (v 1-25)

Isaiah 8 Commentary 

(8:1-4) God's Warning - These verses predict the fall of Israel and Syria (or Aram). Syria fell to Assyria in 732 BC, and Israel followed in 722 BC. Isaiah put his message on a large scroll in a public place. God was warning all his people. The name of the child means "swift to plunder and quick to carry away." 

(8:6-8) Waters of Shiloah - "The waters of Shiloah that go softly" represent God's gentle and sustaining care. Because the people of Judah rejected God's kindness, choosing instead to seek help from other nations, God would punish them. We see two distinct attributes of God in this--his love and his wrath. To ignore his love and guidance results in sin and invites his wrath. We must recognize the consequences of our choices. God wants to protect us from bad choices, but he still gives us the freedom to make them. 

(8:7-8) The Assyrian Empire - The heart of the Assyrian Empire was located between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. This flood is a poetic way of describing the overwhelming force of the Assyrian army. 8:9 To be "broken in pieces" means to lose courage by the pressure of sudden fear. 

(8:11-15) The Fear of Invasion - For the people of Judah, fear of invasion was a constant threat. They had powerful enemies on their doorstep. Yet Isaiah said, "Sanctify the LORD of Hosts himself; and let him be your fear.... And he shall be for a sanctuary." Fear is a powerful enemy of our faith and can disrupt our peace of mind. Fear of war, terrorist attacks, disease, and pollution can rob us of the peace that comes from trusting God. God is our shelter and refuge (4:6). Ask him to drive debilitating fear from your heart and to help you fear only him. Fear of God-reverence for him--is the only kind of fear that brings peace and confidence to all you think and do. 

(8:11) Commitment - Isaiah, along with most of the prophets, was viewed as a traitor because he did not support Judah's national policies. He called the people to commit themselves first to God and then to the king. He even predicted the overthrow of the government. 

(8:16) God's Word - "Bind up the testimony" and "seal the law" mean that God's words would be written down and passed to future generations. Because some people faithfully preserved the teaching of God and passed on his words from generation to generation, we have the book of Isaiah today. Each of us needs to accept the responsibility to pass on God's Word to the next generation, encouraging them to love the Bible, read it, and learn from it. Then they will faithfully pass it on to their children and grandchildren. 

(8:17) Wait on the Lord - Isaiah decided to wait for the Lord, even though God had turned away from the people of Israel. For some believers, patient waiting becomes the most difficult test they must face: waiting for illness to pass, for a child to return to God and the church, or for God to restore broken relationships. Many of the prophecies God gave through the prophets would not come true for 700 years; others still haven't been fulfilled. Are you willing to accept the Lord's timing instead of yours? 

(8:19) Seeking the Dead - The people would consult mediums and wizards, seeking answers from dead people instead of consulting the living God. God alone knows the future, and only he is eternal. We can trust him--the living God who controls the whole universe--to guide us. 

(8:21) Blaming God - After rejecting God's plan for them, the people of Judah would blame God for their trials. People continually blame God for their ill-considered schemes and self-induced problems. How do you respond to the unpleasant results of your own choices? Where do you fix the blame? Instead of blaming God, look for ways to learn from and grow through

Dave Burnette's Life Application

Seeing the Signs

Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today we continue in the Book of Isaiah with Chapter 8. In our text today we see Isaiah predict the invasion by Assyria and warn the people by putting his message on a large sign in a public place with writing that all could read as God was warning all his people. In making application we see the same warning today as our country is at risk for God's judgment as our nation embraces sin. The same warning is posted on a large sign which we call the Bible and its message is "repent" before we see the same fate as Israel. How about you? Do you see the sign which reads "repent"? Let us learn from our text today and the warning of Isaiah and the Bible to "repent" as a nation lest we too fall to the enemies of God due to a lack of seeing the signs of our Lord which are printed in the Bible.


Isaiah 8

Isaiah 8

 1Moreover the LORD said unto me, Take thee a great roll, and write in it with a man's pen concerning Mahershalalhashbaz.

 2And I took unto me faithful witnesses to record, Uriah the priest, and Zechariah the son of Jeberechiah.

 3And I went unto the prophetess; and she conceived, and bare a son. Then said the LORD to me, Call his name Mahershalalhashbaz.

 4For before the child shall have knowledge to cry, My father, and my mother, the riches of Damascus and the spoil of Samaria shall be taken away before the king of Assyria.

 5The LORD spake also unto me again, saying,

 6Forasmuch as this people refuseth the waters of Shiloah that go softly, and rejoice in Rezin and Remaliah's son;

 7Now therefore, behold, the Lord bringeth up upon them the waters of the river, strong and many, even the king of Assyria, and all his glory: and he shall come up over all his channels, and go over all his banks:

 8And he shall pass through Judah; he shall overflow and go over, he shall reach even to the neck; and the stretching out of his wings shall fill the breadth of thy land, O Immanuel.

 9Associate yourselves, O ye people, and ye shall be broken in pieces; and give ear, all ye of far countries: gird yourselves, and ye shall be broken in pieces; gird yourselves, and ye shall be broken in pieces.

 10Take counsel together, and it shall come to nought; speak the word, and it shall not stand: for God is with us.

 11For the LORD spake thus to me with a strong hand, and instructed me that I should not walk in the way of this people, saying,

 12Say ye not, A confederacy, to all them to whom this people shall say, A confederacy; neither fear ye their fear, nor be afraid.

 13Sanctify the LORD of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread.

 14And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

 15And many among them shall stumble, and fall, and be broken, and be snared, and be taken.

 16Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples.

 17And I will wait upon the LORD, that hideth his face from the house of Jacob, and I will look for him.

 18Behold, I and the children whom the LORD hath given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the LORD of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion.

 19And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? for the living to the dead?

 20To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.

 21And they shall pass through it, hardly bestead and hungry: and it shall come to pass, that when they shall be hungry, they shall fret themselves, and curse their king and their God, and look upward.

 22And they shall look unto the earth; and behold trouble and darkness, dimness of anguish; and they shall be driven to darkness.