Therefore hear the word of the Lord, you scoffers,
who rule this people in Jerusalem!
Because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death,
and with Sheol we have an agreement,
when the overwhelming whip passes through
it will not come to us,
for we have made lies our refuge,
and in falsehood we have taken shelter”;
Isaiah is reprimanding the leaders in Jerusalem. Isaiah lived during the time of 740 to 680 BC. So Isaiah’s words speak of what was going on in ancient times. But Isaiah could go to D.C. today, stand on the steps of the Capitol Building, speak these words and they would still be applicable.
Isaiah addresses the leaders as scoffers, those who scoff, speak of God scornfully, derisively and mockingly. The leaders who scoff at righteousness and wish to make themselves gods who will define for all, their idea of righteousness. And by all they mean everyone except themselves. They will set the moral standards by which the unwashed masses will live their lives. For the people they govern are uneducated and unenlightened. They cannot see the vision of the self-proclaimed gods. Continue reading
(This is a copy of the letter that they sent.) “To Artaxerxes the king: Your servants, the men of the province Beyond the River, send greeting. And now be it known to the king that the Jews who came up from you to us have gone to Jerusalem. They are rebuilding that rebellious and wicked city. They are finishing the walls and repairing the foundations. Now be it known to the king that if this city is rebuilt and the walls finished, they will not pay tribute, custom, or toll, and the royal revenue will be impaired. Now because we eat the salt of the palace and it is not fitting for us to witness the king’s dishonor, therefore we send and inform the king, in order that search may be made in the book of the records of your fathers. You will find in the book of the records and learn that this city is a rebellious city, hurtful to kings and provinces, and that sedition was stirred up in it from of old. That was why this city was laid waste. We make known to the king that if this city is rebuilt and its walls finished, you will then have no possession in the province Beyond the River.”
I found this letter to be interesting because it confirms what I have said about protests and symbolism.
Protest accomplish nothing. All of the signs, speeches,demonstrations, catchy little phrases and hash tags, don’t make a difference. They just make you feel better about yourself. You say; See, I did something, I wore this color, I wore this wristband, I stood or I kneeled with my hand in the air. I did my part. I’m helping. I’m special. Continue reading