Isaiah 48:1-22


48:1, 2 -  Hypocrisy

“Listen” is “sama” and is used ten times in 48:1-16.

“Sama” means more than “listen” it also implies that if you hear you will now obey.

If you do not obey you can not say you have really heard the message in any useful way.

For example: “Look out!”  or  “Get out of the way!” would only be considered to be heard if people responded on time. 


The positive side:

a)      house of Jacob

b)      called Israel

c)      from line of Judah

d)      take oaths in name YWHW

e)      citizens of holy city

f)        rely on God of Israel – the Lord Almighty (Lord of Hosts) is added next to remind Israel that he is more than a local deity like the other nations worship.  Israel may not had a full understanding of the magnitude of the God of Israel.

The negative side:

1)      Not in Truth - 

a.       doctrine,

b.      word of God,

c.       listen to prophets,

d.      world view

2)      Not in Righteousness

a.       application of truth,

b.      actions,

c.       obedience to Word



God foretold them of the coming Babylonian captivity.

The people refused to listen and refused to change their ways.

When these events finally happened they still surprised Israel even though God had told them ahead of time.


Israel is sinning by worshipping idols.  God continues to try to prove his superiority over idols.


48:4 – Stubborn and Refused to See

God knows that Israel will avoid seeing the obvious fact that God is dealing with them in history and will come up with their own explanation that will           glorify themselves and their idols.


48:5 – Announced in Days of Old

God told them in advance so the Israelites would have to see the connection and give God the credit and the worship.


48:6 – Say “Uncle”

God forced Israel to hear the prophecy ahead of time: “You have heard these things

Then he forced Israel to live through the events: “look at them all”

In conclusion of Israel hearing the prophecies and living through their fulfillment God says: “Will you not admit them?” 

He is telling Israel to say “uncle” and admit he is God before he lets up on them.


Old and New Information

The Old Information came from the writings of Moses:

a)      Deuteronomy 30:1-5 promised Israel would return to the land after captivity.

b)      Genesis 15:18-21 (the Abrahamic Covenant) promised the land of Canaan to Israel forever.

So Israel knew that if they did go to captivity they would return.

What they did not know was

a)      how they could return or

b)      when they would return


48:7 – No One Knew

The answer to these questions would be the new information God was now telling them.

The reason for this was “So you cannot say, ‘Yes, I knew of them.’ ”


48:8 – Deaf Rebels

Israel was not delivered because they deserved it.

They had not “heard” the prophecies nor “understood” them when they where fulfilled.

No matter what God does to prove who he is they are “treacherous” and a “rebel

Obviously, God is not going to deliver them because they are righteous or deserve it.


48:9 – God Does the Work Himself and Does it For Himself

The Babylonian exile would be cut short so God could continue his work in history and so he might prove that he is the God who is in control.



What happened in captivity?

God refined Israel and tested them.

Israel is not making themselves better.  God is making them better.

God was not destroying Israel in captivity.  He was making them stronger and obedient.

If there is any improvement for Israel it is because God did a work in their lives.



God works with Israel to make them better for himself.


48:12 – Listen to Me

God again addresses the nation and tells them to listen to him


He reminds them that he has “called” them. 

Everything they are depends on God and his plan for them.

To reject God and ignore his plan makes Israel an empty zero


48:12, 13 – God Describes Himself for Man

a)      I am he

b)      I am the first

c)      I am the last

d)      I laid the foundations of the earth - (this includes not only the physical earth but the principles of wisdom, operation, philosophy and all the spiritual principles.)

e)      I spread out the heavens - (the extent of the universe that is beyond man’s mental capacity to understand and his physical capabilities of ever attaining.)

f)        I summon them and they all respond - (things beyond man’s mental and physical abilities all obey God!!)



48:14 – The New Information

God will overthrow Babylon with the use of a man.

God chose him to be an ally


48:15 – Simple Sequence of History

The Simple Sequence for God’s Will to be done:

a)      I have spoken

b)      I called him

c)      I bring him

d)      He will succeed in his mission


48:16 – Spoke in Past and Speaks Today

Another invitation to Listen.

God spoke clearly in the past of events that have occurred

God speaks clearly today of events that will yet occur.


The Trinity

a)      “Sovereign Lord” - God the Father

b)      “sent Me” – God the Son, Messiah (may be Cyrus when he responded the Lord’s will)

c)      “with His Spirit” – God the Holy Spirit


48:17 – The Son of God Has Been Leading Israel From the Beginning

The Lord:

a)      Redeemer

b)      Holy One of Israel

c)      Lord your God

d)      Teaches what is best

e)      Directs you in the way


48:18, 19 – Benefits of Obedience

Paid Attention to the Way, the Truth, and the Life:

a)      Peace like a river

b)      Righteousness like the waves of the sea

c)      Descendants like the sand

d)      Children like numberless grains

e)      Name never cut off

f)        Name never destroyed before God

48:20 – Cyrus’s Edict

2 Chronicles 36:22-23

Ezra 1:1-4

“The Lord has redeemed his servant Jacob.”

- “redeemed” is “ga’al” and it means “to but out of slavery”.


48:21 – Second Exodus Equal to First Exodus


48:22 – Result of Disobedience

Results of Disobedience to the Way, the Truth and the Life is simple:

“No Peace”