The sinful rebellious nation (Isa 58:1-58:2)

“Shout out!

Do not hold back!

Lift up your voice

Like a trumpet!

Announce to my people

Their rebellion!

Announce to the house of Jacob

Their sins!

Yet they seek me daily.

They delight to know my ways,

As if they were a nation

That practiced righteousness,

As if they did not forsake

The ordinance of their God.

They ask of me

Righteous judgments.

They delight to draw near to God.”

Third Isaiah wants the house of Jacob to shout out and not hold back. They should lift up their voices, as if it was like a trumpet. However, the announcement was that they were a sinful rebellious people. They have pretended to act righteously. They profess daily that they delight in God’s ways. Meanwhile, they are a nation that has forsaken the ordinances of God. They want righteous judgments. They say that they want to draw near to God, but they do not follow his laws.

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An oracle against the rebellious people (Isa 30:9-30:11)

“They are a rebellious people!

They are faithless children!

They are children who do not hear

The instruction of Yahweh.

They say to the seers.

‘Do not see!’

They say to the prophets.

‘Do not prophesy to us what is right!

Speak to us about smooth things!

Prophesy illusions!

Leave the way!

Turn aside from the path!

Let us hear no more

About the Holy One of Israel.’”

As in chapter 1 of this book, Isaiah says that the Israelites were a rebellious people. This theme comes from the Exodus situation with Moses in the desert as found in Exodus and Numbers. These faithless children did not want to hear the instructions of Yahweh as presented by Isaiah. They told their wise men not to see. They wanted their prophets not to prophesize about truth, but rather easy smooth things. They wanted to hear about illusions. They were tired of all this talk about the Holy One of Israel. They wanted to get off the idea of the straight and narrow path.