Scripture Text:(click to open in a new window)
1. When have you boastfully thought something would turn out fine, but it didn’t?
2. Have you ever felt a decision was rigged against you?
3. The repetition in chapter 9:12, 17, 21 and chapter 10:4 show that this is a song or poem. From this refrain, what do you think the song is about?
4. From verses 10 and 11 (with chapter 7:1), what must have happened in Israel?
Note: The opposition of King Rezin of Aram in verses 11 and 12 indicates this prophecy was given prior to the alliance described in chapter 7:1.
How did the people of Israel (Ephraim and Samaria) respond to these attacks (chapter 9:9, 10, 13)? How should they have responded?
5. Hence, what will God do to their leaders (chapter 9:14 – 17)? With what results?
6. What pictures come to mind as Isaiah describes the wickedness of the people (chapter 9:18 – 20)? What is the point of comparing their wickedness to a raging forest fire or people eating their own family?
7. What are the specific charges God lays against the leaders of Israel (chapter 10:1, 2)? What will be the result of refusing to provide justice and peace for the people? How is the finality of this judgment emphasized? (See 2 Kings 17)
8. From this song, what attitudes and actions do you see that are particularly offensive to God? Which ones do you feel are evident in your life? In the life of your nation?
9. God’s final judgment came only after many attempts to warn the people about the consequences of their deeds. How has God tried to warn you in the past of the consequences of where you were heading? How did you respond to those warnings?
10. What signs do you see today that God still cleans house, beginning with His own people? How might allowing the effects of wickedness to grow actually serve as part of God’s judgment upon that evil (compare Romans 1:21 – 27)?
11. What is one are of injustice or neglect of the poor in your community or nation that you could work on correcting? Tax reform? Housing? Healthcare? Race relations? Abuse victims? Or what? What keeps you from doing so?