Life-Study of Isaiah, by Witness Lee

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After Jehovah deals with Israel, He deals with the nations.

A. The Name of Jehovah Coming from a Distance

In 30:27 we are told that the name of Jehovah comes from a distance, burning with His anger and heavy with smoke. His lips are full of indignation, and His tongue is like a devouring fire. His breath, like an overflowing stream, reaches up to the neck, to sift the nations with the sieve of nothingness (v. 28). Here nothingness signifies the result of destruction. God sifts the nations with the sieve of destruction. Furthermore, a bridle that leads them to err is in the jaws of the peoples.

B. Jehovah Causing
the Majesty of His Voice to Be Heard

Jehovah will cause the majesty of His voice to be heard and the descending of His arm to be seen, with the blasting of anger and the flame of devouring fire, in cloudburst, downpour, and hailstones (v. 30). For at the voice of Jehovah, Assyria will be dismayed; with a staff He will strike (v. 31). Every pass of the appointed rod, which Jehovah will lay upon him, will be with tambourines and harps; and in battles of brandishing weapons He will fight against them (v. 32). Their king will be burned in the fire of Topheth (v. 33). Topheth, a valley of continual fire not far from Jerusalem where filthy and evil things were burned, is a symbol of the lake of fire (Rev. 20:15).

C. Jehovah Rising Up
against the House of Evildoers

According to Isaiah 31:2 and 3, Jehovah will rise up against the house of evildoers, who go down to Egypt for help and commit iniquity, and against those who help them. The Egyptians are mere men and not God, and their horses are mere flesh and not spirit. Thus Jehovah will stretch out His hand, and he who helps will stumble, he who is helped will fall, and all of them will be consumed together.

D. The Assyrian Falling by the Sword Not of a Man

The Assyrian will fall by the sword not of a man, and the sword not of man will devour him. Thus he will flee from a sword, and his young men will be forced into labor (v. 8). Concerning the Assyrian, Jehovah, whose fire is in Zion and whose furnace is in Jerusalem, declares, "And his rock will pass away in terror,/And his princes will be dismayed by the standard" (v. 9). To His people God will be the fire and the furnace.

(Life-Study of Isaiah, Chapter 17, by Witness Lee)