Summary: God will show the foolishness of trusting in man.
Isaiah 3:1-7 Little Leaders
8/27/00e D. Marion Clark
Last Sunday we studied a passage that presented the final judgment of God, a judgment that shakes the whole earth and humbles all the arrogant. It ended with this admonition:
22 Stop trusting in man,
who has but a breath in his nostrils.
Of what account is he?
That verse is a fitting introduction to this evening’s passage, which presents a temporal judgment against the nation of Judah. God will show the foolishness of trusting in man.
Verse 1a makes clear that what is about to take place is from the hand of the Lord:
See now, the Lord,
the LORD Almighty.
See now, the Lord,
the LORD Almighty…
Adonai is the Hebrew word translated in small cases as “Lord.” It is the term that speaks of God as Sovereign. LORD in capital letters is from the Hebrew word “Yahweh,” also transliterated as “Jehovah.” Hebrew has no vowel letters and how one inserts vowels changes the form of the word. This is the name God gave to Moses for himself, and it indicates his self-existence, that his existence is eternal and depends on no one or nothing else. Almighty is more literally translated by the KJ as of hosts. He is the God of many or a mighty army. Therefore he is almighty.
The great almighty God is about to remove from Judah everything that she thinks makes her mighty. First, he will remove the basic support system.
both supply and support:
all supplies of food and all supplies of water,
These basics, which are essential to sustain life, and which are taken for granted, will be removed, probably through famine and drought. Man can cultivate and irrigate all he wishes, but it is God who brings and withholds the rains.
The second action is perhaps more severe. God will remove worthy leadership. He will remove the 2 the hero and warrior. The tried military leader who has proven his courage and ability will be removed. Perhaps he will be killed in battle; perhaps he will step down without a worthy successor. But the ones whom a nation relies on to protect her from attack, will no longer be available.
The judge and prophet will be removed. Those to whom the nation looked for wisdom, discernment, and especially to teach the will of God will be taken away. Even the soothsayer will be taken out of commission. This is a strange group to include. Soothsayers were supposed to be illegal anyhow. Even so, Judah and Israel continued to call on their services. Despite their theology that proclaimed God as sovereign and their religion that esteemed his prophets, they nevertheless turned to soothsayers for “real” help. God is going to take them away too, which will unnerve the people and leaders.
He will also take away the elder, the legal and esteemed position of leadership. Every town had its elders who decided the everyday cases of the people, and who helped regulate the community life. They were, as they were termed, the elder men. They earned their position by their experience.