Yerushalayim’s Deliverance Foretold ~ Part 3 ~ Yesha’hayu 37:21-29

In my last post, we continued t learn about Yerushalayim’s Deliverance Foretold ~ Part 2 in Yesha’hayu 37:1-10. In this post, we continue in our mini-series of Yerushalayim’s Deliverance Foretold ~ Part 3 in Yesha’hayu 37:21-29.

21 Then Yesha‘yahu, the son of Amotz, sent this message to Hizkiyahu: “Adonai the God of Isra’el says: ‘You prayed to me against Sancheriv king of Ashur.’

Adonai responded to Hizkiyahu through His divinely chosen prophet Yesha‘yahu. Yesha‘yahu spoke in the name of Adonai. I don’t know about you, but I’ve only experienced one-time in my walk with Yeshua when I spoke out in a situation a message that I believed was from the Lord and it was very unsettling for me, although it was well-received with the person I shared it.

22 Here is Adonai’s answer concerning him: “‘The virgin daughter of Tziyon despises you; she laughs you to scorn. The daughter of Yerushalayim shakes her head at you.

As we have seen earlier, daughter of Tziyon is a personification of Tziyon, the holiest location in Y’hudah. This reminds the reader of the intimate relationship Adonai enjoyed with His people. The response was addressed to none other than Sancheriv, so the use of this title for Adonai’s people shows from the start how important they were to Him.

23 Whom have you taunted and insulted? Against whom have you raised your voice and haughtily lifted your eyes? The Holy One of Isra’el!

Sancheriv was accustomed to serving powerless gods who could neither see, hear, nor speak (Psalm 135:15-17). Here, however, he had come up against the Holy One of Isra’el, the Creator rather than the created. His taunts and insults were nothing more than idol threats.

24 “‘Through your servants you taunted Adonai. You said, “With my many chariots I have ascended the mountain heights even in the far reaches of the L’vanon. I cut down its tall cedars and its best cypress trees. I reached its remotest heights and its best forests. 25 I dug [wells] and drank the water. The soles of my [soldiers’] feet dried up all the rivers of Egypt.”

L’vanon’s cedar forests were well known throughout the ancient Near East. Sancheriv had boasted that he was able to travel to Egypt. These are allusions to the Ashurim’s self-proclaimed capability to overcome any physical obstacle in their path of conquest.

26 “‘Haven’t you heard? Long ago I made it; in antiquity I produced it; and now I am making it happen: you are turning fortified cities into heaps of ruins, 27 while their inhabitants, shorn of power, are disheartened and ashamed, weak as grass, frail as plants, like grass on the rooftops or grain scorched by the east wind.

Now Adonai revealed to Sancheriv the true nature of things. Sancheriv had boasted of his achievements, but Adonai announced that he had done nothing without divine design. Sancheriv’s victories had come about only because Adonai had willed it.

28 “‘But I know when you sit when you leave when you enter — and when you rage against me.

In language reminiscent of Psalm 139, Adonai asserted His extensive knowledge of the Ashurim king. All the while the Ashurim thought it was their might and ingenuity that enabled them to devour any nation at will, they were only able to do so by Adonai’s permission (see Isaiah 10:5-6).

29 And because of your rage against me, because of your pride that has reached my ears, I am putting my hook in your nose and my bridle on your lips; and I will make you return by the way on which you came.

It was Ashurim practice to put a hook in the nose or the mouth of captives as they carried them into exile. Adonai told Sancheriv that he would be subjected to this brutal and degrading treatment. [1]

In my next post, we conclude our mini-series in Yerushalayim’s Deliverance Foretold ~ Part 4 in Yesha’yahu 37:1-38.

Click here for the PDF version.

[1] Jon Courson’s Application Commentary Old Testament Volume 2.

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