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After King Uzziah died, and after his son King Jotham died, Jotham’s son Ahaz became king of Judah. During this time two nations joined together against King Ahaz and the Kingdom of Judah. Ahaz and the people were so scared they shook like trees in the forest that shake and shiver in the wind.
Although King Ahaz was a relative of David, he did not have a heart for God like David did. And even though Ahaz was just quaking in his boots and seemingly not even asking God for help, God offered a helping hand to him through Isaiah.
God told Isaiah, “Isaiah, go and talk to King Ahaz. Tell him to be careful, keep calm, and don’t be afraid because what his enemies are planning against the land of Judah won’t happen. But if Ahaz doesn’t stand firm in faith, he won’t stand at all.”
God even went a step further and offered Ahaz, “Ahaz, go ahead and ask Me for a sign to prove that what I said is true. Ask Me for anything from the deepest depths to the highest heights. Go ahead! Anything!”
What an offer! God is really being generous to offer such reassurance. But Ahaz answered, “No. I won’t test God by asking Him to actually do anything.”
Wow! Why not? Why did Ahaz snub God like that? What did he have to lose? Unlike David, and Elijah and others, apparently King Ahaz wouldn’t put it all on the line for God.
Then Isaiah said, “Listen up, house of David! It’s bad enough that you’re testing man’s patience, but now you’re testing God’s patience, too! Oh, God will give you a sign: a young maiden without a man will get pregnant and have a baby boy, and will call him Immanuel — God with us.”
Even though God is talking to Ahaz about specific things that were going to happen in that time, sometimes God was ALSO dropping them a “puzzle piece” about things that would happen in the future! This is one of those things. Who do you think of when you hear, “a young lady without a man will have a baby boy named God with us”? Yes! Mary was the young lady who had baby Jesus — God with us!
Keep in mind that most people back then didn’t understand what all these things the prophets said were pointing to… but we know now that they were pointing to Jesus.
For those who are looking, it’s easy to see, “Hey! This is that! God said this would happen, long ago through His prophets.” Cool, huh?
And some of the things in your Bible that those Heaven-Seeing people said would happen, still haven’t happened yet. So keep your eyes and ears opened. We’re not just sitting around waiting for Jesus to come back in the clouds and get us. There is still a wild ride ahead for those who are His.
God continued, “This people rejected Me, so I’m sending trouble. They can prepare for battle, and make plans and strategies, but it won’t work.
“These people ask the dead for advice! They go to mumbling knuckleheads for help instead of Me. They have no light. They are stressed out and hungry. They look up and get angry and curse their government and God. Then they look down and around and see only darkness and anxious gloom.
“But trouble and darkness and gloom won’t last forever. In the future, Galilee (along the road that runs between the Jordan River and the sea) will be filled with glory, glory, glory.
“The people walking in darkness will see a bright light. Those living in the land of deep darkness, a light will rise on them. You’ve made the nation large and happy; they’ll rejoice in front of you. For to us a baby is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on His shoulders. He’ll be called Wonderful Guide, Mighty God, Forever Father, and Prince of Peace.”
We’ll talk about it a little more later, but have you noticed that God is very poetic when He talks through His people? He uses very beautiful or descriptive words, doesn’t He? That just shows us that God is an awesome Poet. But, it’s very important to know that it’s not just poetry. With God every word is carefully chosen to get His message across to His creation.
God continued talking through Isaiah,
“The greatness of His government and peace there’ll be no end to it. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom. He’ll start the Kingdom and hold it together with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The energy of the Lord Almighty will get this done.”
Ever since the time of David, God’s Family knew that God had promised David he would always have a future relative on the throne. The people had heard this again and again. But ever since David’s son, Solomon, things just kept going down, down, downhill. And there had not been much peace or justice or righteousness at all.
But God is continually reminding them of His Promise. And God doesn’t break His promises.