Isaiah 7:1-9

Report
Isaiah 1-39
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1-12 Words against Judah and Jerusalem
13-23 Oracles against Foreign Nations
24-27 Isaianic apocalypse
28-32 Assyrian Cycle
33-35 Salvation appendix
36-39 Historical materials//2 Kgs 18:17-20:19
Hezekiah and Isaiah (cf. Ahaz and Isaiah in
chap. 7). Exile to Babylon!
Events in Isaiah
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Syro Ephraimitic war 734-32 Ahaz king
(chaps. 6-8)
Revolt of Ashdod vs. Sargon II 711
Hezekiah king (chap. 20)
Invasion of Sennacherib 701 Hezekiah
king (chaps. 36-37)
The Unity of Isaiah?
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Isaiah 1//Isaiah 65-66
Disobedience of Ahaz in 7-8//Faithfulness of
Hezekiah in 36-39
Anticipation of Exile in 39; Exile presupposed
in 40-55
This unity is literary or redactional, not
historical
Did 1-39 ever exist as a unit? Did 40-55 exist
separately?
Isaiah 1 and 65-66
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Cultic abuses disrupt the relationship with God. I,
Yahweh, am fed up with sacrifices. 1:11; 65:3; 66:3
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There must be a separation between the righteous
and the impious. All flesh will worship me…corpses
of wicked who rebelled
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Judgment of impious leads to a resumption of
relations with God. You will be “faithful city.”
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Isaiah 1 and 65-66 form an inclusion.
Themes in Isaiah
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The fate of Zion
– conditional on faith 28:14-22 (One who TRUSTS will
not panic)
– after defeat of Zion, its final vindication
Future of Kingship
– conditional on faith 7:9 (If you do not stand firm in
FAITH, you will not stand firm at all)
– after end of kingship, a new messianic figure in
chaps 9 and 11
Exodus and covenant--absent in Isaiah 1-39!
Outline of Isaiah 5 - 12
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5:1-7 Song of the Vineyard
5:8-23 Woes specifying the indictment
5:25 Refrain: for all this his anger is not
turned away….
Hence: 5:26-30 God will summon
Assyrians as his agent
Outline of Isaiah 5-12 continued
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6:1-9:7 Memorandum about SyroEphraimitic War
– 6 Call of Isaiah--legitimizes judgment that
befalls Judah
– 7 Shear Yashub and Immanuel
– 8 Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz
– 9:1-7 Birth of new royal child
Outline of Isaiah 5-12 continued
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9:8-21 Refrain: for all this his anger is not
turned away...
10:1-4a Woes specifying the indictment
(refrain 10:4b: for all this his anger is not
turned away)
10:5-34 Words against Assyrians
11 Messianic promises
12 Hymn of Thanksgiving (“my salvation” in v
2 may be a pun on the name Isaiah)
Song of the Vineyard
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V. 1a Prophet’s introduction
VV. 1b-2 Prophet comments on the
vineyard owner’s expectations
VV. 3-4 Owner’s (Yahweh) first address
VV. 5-6 Owner’s second
address/sentence
V. 7 Prophet’s explanation (vineyard =
Israel;; xpfm//jpvm; hq[c//hqdc)
Isaiah’s Call--chapter 6
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1-2 What the prophet saw--Yahweh
enthroned
3-4 What the prophet heard--chorus of
Seraphim
5-7 Prophet’s uncleanness and purification
8 Yahweh’s question and prophet’s response
9-10 Commission report
11-13 Prophet’s question and Yahweh’s
response
Isaiah 5-12
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5:1-7 Song of the Vineyard (I will make it a waste,
without rain)
– 5:8-24 Woes that specify the indictment
– 5:25 For all this his anger is not turned away
– 5:26-30 God summons “a nation far way” (Assyria?) as his
agent
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6:1-9:7 Memorandum about the Syro-Ephraimite War
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9:8-21 For all this his anger is not turned away
10:1-4a Woes that specify the indictment
10:4b For all this his anger is not turned away
10:5-34 Words against Assyria for its arrogance—remnant of
Israel will lean on Yahweh—Yahweh the woodsman will
chop down the tallest trees
Sins condemned by Isaiah in
Woes
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5:8-10 people gobble up land
5:11-17 people drink wine to avoid social
responsibility
5:20 people call good evil and vice versa (U.
S. missiles are “peacemakers”)
5:23 people acquit guilty for a bribe
10:1-4 people use the law (oppressive
statutes) to defraud the poor (Exod 21:4-6?)
Isaiah 7:1-9
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Context in Syro-Ephraimitic War
Rezin of Syria and Pekah of Israel
tried to force Ahaz, king of Judah, into
an anti-Assyrian coalition.
They intended to install the “son of
Tabeel” (v 6) as a puppet king.
Isaiah 7:1-9 (continued)
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Isaiah takes along Shear Jashub
– “Only a remnant of the invading army will
return home in safety,” “those who return to
Yahweh in repentance will survive,” or
“only a very few people will survive this
catastrophe”
– 10:21 a remnant will return to the mighty
God; cf. 30:15 (In returning and rest you
shall be saved)
“Faith” in the book of Isaiah
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If you do not stand firm, you will not be
made firm Isa 7:9
8:17 I shall wait for Yahweh and hope in him
10:20 the remnant will lean on Yahweh
30:20 In quietness and trust will be your
strength--No! We will speed on horses
31:1 Alas for those who do not look to the
Holy One of Israel
Isaiah 7:10-14
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Ahaz refuses the sign offered by Isaiah;
cf. Deut 6:16: Do not put the LORD to
the test.
“Young woman” or “virgin”: Four things I
do not understand: the way of eagle in
the sky, of a serpent on a rock, of a ship
on the seas, of a man and young
woman making love. Prov 30:19
Identity of the Woman and the
Meaning of Immanuel
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Ms. Ahaz--child = Hezekiah?
Ms. Isaiah--children = Shear Jashub;
Maher-shalal-hash-baz, and Immanuel?
A woman whom Isaiah noticed in the
vicinity?
Collective (women in general)?
God is with us--Is this good news or
bad in 7:15-17?
Isa 7:15-17 Six Choices
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Are curds and honey the food of prosperity
(A-1) or the food of affliction (A-2)?
Is “know” in v 15 to be understood temporally
(B-1 By the time he knows) or as part of a
result clause (B-2 so that he will know)?
Is the choice between good and evil moral
(C-1) or merely a sign of maturity (C-2 old
enough to make his own decisions)?
Isa 7:15-17 Six Choices
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Does Ephraim’s departure from Judah refer to
the prosperous days before the breakup of
United Monarchy (D-1) or the times of
hardship immediately thereafter (D-2)?
Is the “king of Assyria” in v 17 a gloss (E-1) or
authentic (E-2)? Does he come against
Judah or against Judah’s enemies?
Is Immanuel positive (F-1) or negative (F-2)?
Isa 7:15-17and the meaning of
Immanuel
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15 By the time (B1) that he has learnt to reject evil
and choose good (C1), he will be eating curds and
honey (A1); 16 before that child has learnt to reject
evil and choose good, desolation will come upon the
land before whose two kings you cower now. 17 The
LORD will bring on you, your people, and your house,
a time the like of which has not been seen since
Ephraim broke away from Judah (D1, E1, F1). NEB
D 1--good old days of United Kingdom
E 1--king of Assyria deleted
F 1 Immanuel--God is with us positively.
Isa 7:15-17 and the Meaning of
Immanuel
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15 He will eat the sparse fare of curds and honey
(A2) so that (B2) he will know how to reject what is
wrong and choose what is right (C1). 16 For before
the boy learns how to reject what is wrong and
choose what is right, the land whose two kings you
now dread will be abandoned. 17 Yahweh will bring
upon you, your people, and your father’s house bad
days (D2), which have not existed since the
aftermath of the time when Ephraim left Judah. That
is, he will bring the king of Assyria (E2, F2).
“God is with us” in judgment
Further Oracles in 7-8
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7:18-25 Assyria will devastate the land
8:1-4 Assyria will carry off Ephraim and Syria-Maher-shalal-hash-baz
8:5-8 Lack of faith leads to the Assyrian
invasion of Immanuel’s land
8:9-10 “God with us” means defeat for
nations
8:11-15 People should fear Yahweh rather
than the nations
8:16-18 The Prophet and his
children as signs
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Isaiah retires temporarily--waits for
Yahweh, hopes in him
Isaiah himself = Yahweh saves
Shear-jashub = only a remnant will
survive the coming disaster
Immanuel = God is with us
Maher-shalal-hash-baz = the spoil
speeds, the prey hastens
Isaiah 7-8//36-39
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Isaiah and Ahaz//Isaiah and Hezekiah
Ahaz shows unfaith in the crisis of 734-32
chs 7-8//Hezekiah shows his faith in the
Assyrian crisis of 701 when Jerusalem is
threatened with death 36-37
Hezekiah trusts in Yahweh during mortal
illness ch 38
Isaiah 36-39
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36:1-37:38//2 Kgs 18:13; 18:17-19:37
– 2 Kgs 18:14-16 Hezekiah capitulates to the Assyrian king—
not included in Isaiah—no blemish on Hezekiah’s faith
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38:1-22 Hezekiah’s illness, recovery, prayer of
thanksgiving//2 Kgs 20:4-11. I will deliver you and this
city from the hand of the king of Assyria.
– Isaiah 38:9-20 Psalm of Hezekiah—without a parallel in
Kings—shows Hezekiah’s faith
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39:1-8//2 Kgs 20:12-19 Hezekiah welcomes a
delegation from Babylon and Isaiah’s response
– What is to be the fate of Jerusalem and the Davidic dynasty
in view of threat posed by Babylon? Introduces Isaiah 40-55
Purpose of 36-39
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Confirms prophetic power of Isaiah (hence no report of
capitulation by Hezekiah or fall of Jerusalem to
Assyrians)
Yahweh cares for city during reign of faithful king
Hezekiah
Provides bridge between previous prophecies of
Assyrian period and those of Babylonian exile
Yahweh spared Jerusalem in the Assyrian period, but
these chapters warn of darker days ahead—cf. chaps
7-8
Isaiah’s words of judgment in the Assyrian period are to
be fulfilled in the Babylonian period
Hezekiah, man of faith
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Faithful deeds of Hezekiah thrown into his
teeth by foreigners 36:4-10
Hezekiah rends his garment, asks Isaiah to
pray 37:1-2
Hezekiah prays, and his prayer turns Yahweh
against Sennacherib 37:21-35
Signs offered by Yahweh are accepted by
Hezekiah and not scorned 37:30, 38:7, 22
Swords into Plowshares
Isa 2:2-5//Mic 4:1-5
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Utopia?
Heaven?
God’s in-breaking future?
– Liturgical response in Isa 2:5 (O household
of Jacob, come let US walk in the light of
Yahweh) and Mic 4:5
– Christian eschatology--1 Corinthians 15
Isaiah 1-33//34-66
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1-33 anticipate punishment & restoration of
Jerusalem, Judah, and Israel.
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34-66 presuppose downfall of Edom and Babylon in
the age of Zion’s restoration.
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1-33 Yahweh’s sovereignty is future
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34-66 this sovereignty is a current event (downfall of
Edom 35 and the Assyrians 36-37; the rise of Cyrus)
Isa 7:15-17 and the Meaning of
Immanuel
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15 By the time (B1) he is old enough to make his own
decisions (C2), people will be drinking milk and
honey (A1). 16 Even before that time comes, the
lands of those two kings who terrify you will be
deserted. 17 The LORD is going to bring on you, on
your people, and on the whole royal family, days of
trouble worse than any that have come since the
kingdom of Israel separated from Judah (D2)--he is
going to bring the king of Assyria (E2, F2). TEV

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