Judgment Against the Nations (Isaiah 34)

Scripture Text:

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Isaiah 34

1. What do you associate with the following words: war? massacre? meat slaughter house? Red Cross blood drive? Hospital surgery?

2. What’s the bloodiest thing that’s ever happened to you? What does the sight of lots of blood do to you? Have you ever fainted?

3. If special effects recreated the cosmic and gory scenes depicted here for a movie, what would God’s anger look like? Feel like?

4. As music director, where would you place the drum roll? The crescendo? The discordant notes? The resolution?

5. Why is the Lord this angry with “all nations” (verse 2; see also Isaiah 10:5 – 19, for the example of Assyria)? What modern political and military leaders does that example bring to mind? What is Isaiah’s purpose in doing so in such graphic detail?

6. How is God’s vengeance related to His saving purpose (verse 8; see also Isaiah 35:4)?

7. Edom (traditional enemy of Judah) represents all the nations as an object lesson here. What is the object lesson meted out to Edom for having refused to willingly offer sacrifice to the Lord (verses 4 – 7)?

8. After making them give their own blood in sacrifice to Him, what will the resulting population and landscape be like for Edom (and all nations under judgment)? Are these images meant to be understood literally, figuratively or both? Explain.

9. How do you feel about God after reading this passage? How might you feel if you read it from the viewpoint of an oppressed person reflecting on the fact that justice would one day overtake your oppressor?

10. What do you think it would mean to have the “measuring line of chaos” and the “plumb line of desolation” stretched out over your country (verse 11)?

11. How would you explain God’s justice to someone if there was no prospect of judgment? How is His wrath related to His love? What does it mean to you that God will fight this hard to save you?

Additional Comment:

Hey everyone. Isaiah’s book includes many references to nations and leaders of the day. Perhaps more than any other prophet, Isaiah had a deep sense of history. In fact, he wrote an account of the life of King Uzziah and a record of the rulers of Israel and Judah (see 2 Chronicles 26:22 and 2 Chronicles 32:32). Although neither of these books has survived, this book that bears his name gives a blow-by-blow analysis of all the nations of his time.

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One comment on “Judgment Against the Nations (Isaiah 34)

  1. Pingback: Displeasure of יהוה , Jehovah the God of gods, and His wrath against all the gentiles their divisions | Free Christadelphians: Belgian Ecclesia Brussel - Leuven

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