The Prophet Addresses Moab

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Continuing today with the desolation of Babylon…

 “I will rise up against them,” declares the Lord of hosts, “and will cut off from Babylon name and survivors, offspring and posterity,” declares the Lord. 23 “I will also make it a possession for the hedgehog and swamps of water, and I will sweep it with the broom of destruction,” declares the Lord of hosts. 24 The Lord of hosts has sworn saying, “Surely, just as I have intended so it has happened, and just as I have planned so it will stand, 25 to break Assyria in My land, and I will trample him on My mountains. Then his yoke will be removed from them and his burden removed from their shoulder. 26 This is the plan devised against the whole earth; and this is the hand that is stretched out against all the nations. 27 For the Lord of hosts has planned, and who can frustrate it? And as for His stretched-out hand, who can turn it back?” (Isaiah 14:22-27 NASB).

Babylon was originally built by Nimrod as a sign of rebellion against God.

And Cush begat Nimrod; he began to be a mighty one in the Earth. He was a mighty hunter before the LORD; wherefore it is said, Even as Nimrod the mighty hunter before the LORD. And the beginning of his kingdom was Babel, and Erech, and Accad, and Calneh, in the Shinar (Gen 10:8-10 KJV).

The destruction by the LORD of this city will be like something that is swept clean. At the Second Coming of Jesus Messiah, Righteousness will cover the entirety of the Earth. We have the emphatic Promise that all of this will be done by “the LORD of Hosts.”

In the year that King Ahaz died this oracle came: 29 “Do not rejoice, O Philistia, all of you, because the rod that struck you is broken; for from the serpent’s root a viper will come out, and its fruit will be a flying serpent. 30 “Those who are most helpless will eat, and the needy will lie down in security; I will destroy your root with famine, and it will kill off your survivors. 31 “Wail, O gate; cry, O city; melt away, O Philistia, all of you; for smoke comes from the north, and there is no straggler in his ranks. 32 “How then will one answer the messengers of the nation? That the Lord has founded Zion, and the afflicted of His people will seek refuge in it” (Isaiah 14:28-32 NASB).

An immense polluted religious system and the political and world opponent of the Throne of David, Babylon is the first to be judged. The other nations hostile to Israel follow.

The oracle concerning Moab. Surely in a night Ar of Moab is devastated and ruined; surely in a night Kir of Moab is devastated and ruined. They have gone up to the temple and to Dibon, even to the high places to weep. Moab wails over Nebo and Medeba; everyone’s head is bald and every beard is cut off. In their streets they have girded themselves with sackcloth; on their housetops and in their squares everyone is wailing, dissolved in tears. Heshbon and Elealeh also cry out, their voice is heard all the way to Jahaz; therefore the armed men of Moab cry aloud; His soul trembles within him. My heart cries out for Moab; his fugitives are as far as Zoar and Eglath-shelishiyah, for they go up the ascent of Luhith weeping; surely on the road to Horonaim they raise a cry of distress over their ruin (Isaiah 15:1-5 NASB).

Moab, Ammon, and Edom are part of present-day Jordan. The “high places” were centers of idolatrous worship—and most important were upon Nebo and Medeba. The “baldness” of the heads consisted of the practice of cutting off the hair because of mourning.

Upon seeing the terrible judgment in his Vision that was coming upon idol-worshipping Moab, Isaiah cried out for them. He sympathizes with the sufferings of Moab as kindred people, and perhaps as having, in the person of Ruth, furnished an ancestress to the Messiah.

And the firstborn bore a son, and called his name Moab; the same is the father of the Moabites unto this day. And the younger, she also bore a son, and called his name Ben-ammi; the same is the father of the children of Ammon unto this day (Gen 19:37-18 KJV).

For the waters of Nimrim are desolate. Surely the grass is withered, the tender grass died out, there is no green thing. Therefore the abundance which they have acquired and stored up they carry off over the brook of Arabim.  For the cry of distress has gone around the territory of Moab, its wail goes as far as Eglaim and its wailing even to Beer-elim. For the waters of Dimon are full of blood; surely I will bring added woes upon Dimon, a lion upon the fugitives of Moab and upon the remnant of the land (Isaiah 15:6-9 NASB).

The Prophecy is that so many people will die that the “water of Dimon” will run red with blood. Of those who escape the enemies’ lance, “lions” and wild animals will help destroy the majority of the remnant of Moab.

Send the tribute lamb to the ruler of the land, from Sela by way of the wilderness to the mountain of the daughter of Zion. Then, like fleeing birds or scattered nestlings, the daughters of Moab will be at the fords of the Arnon. “Give us advice, make a decision; cast your shadow like night at high noon; hide the outcasts, do not betray the fugitive. “Let the outcasts of Moab stay with you; be a hiding place to them from the destroyer.” For the extortioner has come to an end, destruction has ceased, oppressors have completely disappeared from the land (Isaiah 16:1-4 NASB).

Once again, Israel is referred to as “the outcasts.” Moab is instructed to hide these outcasts and not to betray them.

A throne will even be established in lovingkindness, and a judge will sit on it in faithfulness in the tent of David; moreover, he will seek justice and be prompt in righteousness. We have heard of the pride of Moab, an excessive pride; Even of his arrogance, pride, and fury; his idle boasts are false. Therefore Moab will wail; everyone of Moab will wail. You will moan for the raisin cakes of Kir-hareseth as those who are utterly stricken (Isaiah 16:5-7 NASB).

We are told here that the “Tent of David” or the “Tabernacle of David” will once again be set up. The Apostles understood this:

And after they had held their peace, James answered, saying Men and Brethren, hearken unto me. Simeon has declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for His Name. And to this agree the words of the Prophets; as it is written: After this I will return, and will build again the Tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up (Acts 15:13-16 KJV).

For the fields of Heshbon have withered, the vines of Sibmah as well; the lords of the nations have trampled down its choice clusters which reached as far as Jazer and wandered to the deserts; its tendrils spread themselves out and passed over the sea. Therefore I will weep bitterly for Jazer, for the vine of Sibmah; I will drench you with my tears, O Heshbon and Elealeh; for the shouting over your summer fruits and your harvest has fallen away. 10 Gladness and joy are taken away from the fruitful field; in the vineyards also there will be no cries of joy or jubilant shouting, no treader treads out wine in the presses, for I have made the shouting to cease. 11 Therefore my heart intones like a harp for Moab and my inward feelings for Kir-hareseth (Isaiah 16:8-11 NASB).

Seeing the coming destruction, Isaiah was moved with deep compassion for these people.

So it will come about when Moab presents himself, when he wearies himself upon his high place and comes to his sanctuary to pray, that he will not prevail. 13 This is the word which the Lord spoke earlier concerning Moab. 14 But now the Lord speaks, saying, “Within three years, as a hired man would count them, the glory of Moab will be degraded along with all his great population, and his remnant will be very small and impotent” (Isaiah 16:12-14 NASB).

The Moabites continues to present themselves before their idols, and, like the worshippers of Baal at Carmel, they weary themselves in their fruitless cries to their false gods.

This wisdom descends not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work. But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy (James 3:15-17 KJV).