In contrast to the ‘ideal’ in chapter 58, here is the sad ‘actual’. Having held up the mirror of God’s Word with its requirement of a conformed life (chapter 58), Isaiah turns now to see how the Lord’s people look in the light of the call to obedience. Accusation (vv.2-3, note ‘your’) is followed by description (vv.4-8, note ‘they’, ‘their’), and this leads to confession (vv.9-13, note ‘we’, ‘us’, ‘our’). The passage, however, begins with a statement of Yahweh’s ability to save (v.1), and this theme is taken up in vv.14-19, where Yahweh himself dresses in garments speaking of his commitment and ability to save, to implement his own righteous purposes, and to deal with his foes.
The saving Yahweh
1. Behold, Yahweh’s hand1 is not short so that he cannot save, nor his ear insensitive so that he cannot hear!
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