Isaiah’s style of writing was vivid — even beautiful if words of judgement can be so described.
Isaiah was a prophet of Judah probably from 740 BC – 680 BC. He was a prominent citizen of Jerusalem and had access to the royal and priestly leadership of Judah. During his time as prophet he saw the warring of Northern Kingdom Israel against the Southern Kingdom Judah (1 Kings 15:16), the the fall of Israel and subsequent captivity to Assyria (2 Kings 17), even a national revival of Judah under king Hezekiah (2 Chronicles 29, 30).
With his call to ministry he uttered, “Woe is me! for I am undone; a man of unclean lips dwelling in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.” —Isaiah:6:5
His absolute humility is the attitude ALL should share when in God’s presence.
He continues and describes a seraphim touching his mouth with a live coal from the altar — taking away his iniquity, purging his sin.
God then asks, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?”
Isaiah’s response was, “Here am I. Send me.”
Isaiah prophesied during dark, idolatrous days in Judah. He compared the extent of Judah’s wickedness to that of Sodom and Gomorrah. He compared Judah to an ox and a donkey stating that these animals know their masters and Judah is dumber than they because the nation doesn’t see God in His proper place as LORD and Provider.
Isaiah’s foretelling of Christ as Savior and Suffering Servant, Sin-bearer, and salvation to the Jew and Gentile is quoted throughout the New Testament.
While the book of Jude is short it dealt with much the same problems as Isaiah in his day faced. Problems we face today too.
Jude was of a notable family. One of his brothers was James and he was the half-brother of Jesus.
Jude’s challenge to all Christians was to earnestly content for the faith — be vigilant, teach, preach, and spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Jude warned of apostasy. Described men who have crept in with a lewd mind like Sodom and Gomorrah. Like brute beasts they have gone out of the way. Led people astray with human self-effort like Cain (Jude 11, Genesis 4:3). Rebelled against God’s authority on earth like Korah (Jude 11, Numbers 16:1-3). Men after money instead of God’s Kingdom like Balaam (Jude 11, Numbers 22).
The close of both books deal with God’s salvation of the saint and His glory. Isaiah the new heavens and new earth and Israel’s restoration. Jude with Christ presenting the Christian faultless before God.
What do we learn for today from these two men? One lived 2,000 years ago, the other 2,700 years ago.
- Both knew the authority of God as we should recognize today
- Both compared dumb brute beasts to the prideful who try to acquire a relationship to God through their own self-effort
- The Savior is Jesus Christ and only through faith in Him will we have a relationship with God
- We should content for the faith by spreading the Good News of Jesus’ death as payment for sin and His resurrection that gives the assurance of life with God