Summary: An exposition of Isaiah 24
The judgment of the world
Scripture reading: Genesis 6:1-8; 7:11-23; 8:12-22.
How many of you have seen or heard of the following movies? Armageddon, Deep Impact, The day after tomorrow.
What are these movies about? The end of the world!
Dozens of movies and hundreds of books have been produced and written about the end of the world. Many doomsday theories exist as to how the world may cease to be: meteors, nuclear war, viruses, a series of huge natural disasters, aliens. Over the course of the centuries 1000’s of individuals—some outright crackpots, others highly esteemed- have stepped up and ‘prophesied about the end of the world. Last year Liberal party supporters seemed to predict that if the Conservatives won that the world would end. Go online and you’ll discover that there are folks who have declared that this year the world will end.
Because of the over abundance of messages about the end of the world and the sinfulness of peoples hearts, the Bibles message about “the judgment of the world” is being drowned out, scoffed at, and foolishly ignored. See 2 Peter 3.
The Bible has a very clear message as it pertains to the judgment of this world: A day of judgment for sin is coming. Prepare yourself by being reconciled to God.
My inspiration for this message comes from Isaiah 24. Please turn there now.
In Isaiah 13-23 God’s judgment is announced upon a number of nations and cities: Tyre, Jerusalem, Babylon, Arabia, Edom, Egypt, Cush, Damascus, Moab, the Philistines, and Assyria. In Isaiah 24, Isaiah concludes this series of judgment notices by proclaiming that not only will these cities be judged for their sins but the whole world will be judged because of her rebellion against God.
In case you are wondering, this is not the only text in the Scriptures that speaks of God judging and punishing the world for her sins. Such is spoken of in Daniel, Ezekiel, Zechariah, Malachi, the Gospels, the Pauline epistles, 2 Peter, and the book the Revelation—just to name a few.
READ ISAIAH 24
I. ASPECTS OF THE JUDGEMENT OF THE WORLD
Key things to note:
1. No date has been set—many foolishly set dates. The Bible forbids it. Even Jesus said "No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father” Matthew 24:36
2. The judgment here announced is not of Isaiah’s invention for in verse 3 it says “The LORD has spoken this word.”
3. The surety of this Day of Judgment is a given. As verse 3 says “The LORD has spoken this word”
4. The Lord will be the author of the destruction of the world- not aliens, not us, not nature, not global warming, but God.
5. Many aspects of the judgment that Isaiah describes are elaborated upon in the book of Revelation chapters 6-21.
6. This announced judgment will finally come after the incredible patience of God is exhausted. As 2 Peter 3:8-9 says “But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. 9 The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
7. When this prophesy comes to pass, there will be a small group of people on the earth who will raise their voice in joy, worship, and praise of the Lord v.14-16 (READ).
Who are these people? They are the saints, the followers of Jesus, who will live through in the last days. They will be happy and rejoice in the Lord because they will see with their own eyes the just punishment of the wicked. This sentiment is often expressed in the book of Revelation.
Specific aspects of the coming judgment that Isaiah speaks of
a. The world will be laid waste, ruined, plundered, and devastated by God. The effect will be that the cities lie in ruins v.1,12.
b. There will be no escape. Regardless of how much money, education, what job you have, what color you are, where you live, etc, all who are on the earth will be affected v.2,18.
c. The tone of the peoples of the erath will be one of doom, gloom, and despair. People will wish they were dead. In Revelation 6:12-17 John says in relation to the judgments to come “I watched as he opened the sixth seal. There was a great earthquake. The sun turned black like sackcloth made of goat hair, the whole moon turned blood red, 13 and the stars in the sky fell to earth, as late figs drop from a fig tree when shaken by a strong wind. 14 The sky receded like a scroll, rolling up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place. Then the kings of the earth, the princes, the generals, the rich, the mighty, and every slave and every free man hid in caves and among the rocks of the mountains. 16 They called to the mountains and the rocks, "Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! 17 For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?"