Summary: In this chapter God’s judgment results in three things, rebuke, retributions and repentance.
THOUGHTS ABOUT THE PASSAGE:
An umpire named Babe Pinelli once called Babe Ruth out on strikes. When the crowd booed with sharp disapproval at the call, the legendary Ruth turned to the umpire with disdain and said, "There’s 40,000 people here who know that the last pitch was a ball." Suspecting that the umpire would erupt with anger, the coaches and players braced themselves for Ruth’s ejection. However, the cool headed Pinelli replied, "Maybe so, Babe, but mine is the only opinion that counts." Believers need to realize that God’s judgment is the only one that counts and resist the temptation to argue over disappointments. (Contributed by: Paul Fritz in Sermon Central)
In this chapter God’s judgment results in three things:
1. Rebuke (vv. 1-7). This is addressed to the religious leaders, the nation in general and the royalty. It is especially directed to the religious and governmental leaders, who have been leading the nation into its sin (v. l). The nation has been wholly given over to idolatry. Though they may try to hide their true condition, God sees them for what they are, wholly given over to idolatry (v. 3). When they do come to the end of themselves and finally seek God with their sacrifices and religious formality, they are not able to find Him because in judgement He hath withdrawn Himself from them (vv. 6-7).
2 Retribution (vv. 8-14). God’s retribution must fall. The judgement heaped upon the north will be so severe that it will even endanger the tribes in the south (v. 8). Because of their willful forsaking of God and wholesale turning to idols things will not get better for them. When both the northern and southern kingdoms saw their sad condition, they realized that they needed help but went to the wrong source to get it. Instead of going to God they went to the king of Assyria, who was powerful in man’s sight but was totally helpless before God (v. l3).
3. Repentance (v. 15). Into this dark picture of retribution was one ray of hope. He has withdrawn from His people for the purpose of causing them to seek Him. So just as certainly as the judgement has fallen so certainly will come their repentance.
I do not want to be tempted to argue with God over disappointments. His judgment is final.