In my last post, we began to explore the issue of Sin, Confession & Redemption ~ Part 1 in Yesha’yahu 59:1-11. In this post, we conclude our exploration of this topic in Sin, Confession & Redemption ~ Part 2 in Yesha’yahu 59:12-21.
12 For our crimes multiply before you, our sins testify against us; for our crimes are present with us; and our sins, we know them well: 13 rebelling and denying Adonai, turning away from following our God, talking about oppression and revolt, uttering lies which our hearts have conceived. 14 Thus justice is repelled, righteousness stands apart, at a distance; for truth stumbles in the public court, and uprightness cannot enter. 15 Honesty is lacking; he who leaves evil becomes a target. Adonai saw it, and it displeased Him that there was no justice.
The people had only themselves to blame for their lamentable situation, and they knew it. Here the people acknowledge the sin itself. The chapter concludes with a description of Adonai’s reaction to the sin and helplessness of His people. He will intercede and rescue His people despite their sin and failure.
16 He saw that there was no one, was amazed that no one interceded. Therefore, His own arm brought Him salvation, and His own righteousness sustained Him.
The section begins with a statement of Adonai’s recognition of human injustice and the offense that He takes at it. It also goes on to describe His amazement that no human was interceding on behalf of the people. Adonai proclaims that in the absence of such a human intercessor, He Himself will step into the gap between His people and Himself.
In Ezekiel 22:30, Adonai says the same thing when He says that He sought for a man to stand in the gap and intercede but found none. No one in Israel’s dark days said, “I’m going to pray.” Like us, maybe they talked about it. Like us, they were probably aware of it. But, all too often, like us, they didn’t do it. Yet does Adonai write His people off? No. He shows them grace.
17 He put on righteousness as His breastplate, salvation as a helmet on His head; He clothed Himself with garments of vengeance and wrapped Himself in a mantle of zeal.
To save His people, Adonai assumed the guise of a warrior. However, His armor and His weapons are not physical but spiritual. This sounds very familiar to the battle dress described by Sha’ul in Ephesians 6:14-17.
The concluding verses are a picture of Yeshua’s Second Coming when He will crush all His enemies and reign in righteousness. Yeshua comes as a terrifying conqueror who will sweep them away like a pent-up stream.
18 He repays according to their deeds – fury to His foes, reprisal to His enemies; to the coastlands, He will repay their due; 19 in the west, they will fear the name of Adonai, and likewise, in the east, His glory, for He will come like a pent-up stream, impelled by the Spirit of Adonai.
Adonai’s enemies do not get off without punishment. The mention of the coastlands indicates that the far-flung nations, indeed the whole world (west and east), are in mind here. The world as a whole will fear the name of Adonai after His work of retribution.
20 “Then a Redeemer will come to Tziyon, to those in Ya’akov who turn from rebellion.” So says Adonai. 21 “And as for Me,” says Adonai, “this is My covenant with them: My Spirit, who rests on you, and My words which I put in your mouth will not depart from your mouth or from the mouth of your children, or from the mouth of your children’s children, now or ever,” says Adonai. ~ Isaiah 59:12-21 (CJB)
The climax of this prophecy announces the future arrival of Adonai, the Redeemer of Tziyon, Adonai’s holy mountain in Yerushalayim. He had abandoned Tziyon in anticipation of its destruction at the Babylonian captivity, but His war against sin will result in His return. It is precisely to the repentant that He will come. He will re-establish His covenant with them. Adonai’s Ruach will be given to His people to cleanse their mouths so they will proclaim the glory of Adonai to future generations.
In my next post, we will begin to explore the Glory of Tziyon ~ Part 1 in Yesha’yahu 60:1-12.