Understanding the Bible
Isaiah 1: 28-31
28 ¶And the destruction of the transgressors and of the sinners shall be together, and they that forsake the Lord shall be consumed.
29 For they shall be ashamed of the oaks which ye have desired, and ye shall be confounded for the gardens that ye have chosen.
30 For ye shall be as an oak whose leaf fadeth, and as a garden that hath no water.
31 And the strong shall be as tow, and the maker of it as a spark, and they shall both burn together, and none shall quench them.
Isn’t fire fascinating?
It gives light and warmth, we use it to cook and have some good time at the fire place too.
And that’s what we talked about in the last class. That the Lord has that fire coming on his Saints and his city of Zion and that his going to purify it and cleanse it. So, he is coming with this promise that he is going to cleanse. So whatever could stand the fire, would survive the judgment.
The distinct object of this was to bring back Jerusalem to the pure metal of its own true nature.
Under such God given leaders, Jerusalem would become what it had once been and what it ought to be. And that leads us right to verse 27.
In one version it reads: Zion will be redeemed through judgment and her returning ones through righteousness.
The king James Version reads: Zion shall be redeemed with judgment,
And her converts with righteousness.
It reads: To compensate for the faults, or bad aspects of something, to do something that compensates for poor fast performance or behavior.
Next one says: To atone or make amends for error or evil.
Next one: To save someone from same error or evil.
To gain or regain position of something in exchange for payment. All those fit and add insight to what we are talking about.
So, Zion that city of holiness is a great place where there;s happiness, peace, and freedom. So, when he comes in and cleanses and makes things right, he does it with justice. And her converts with righteousness are going to be redeemed and going to make up for those past experiences. There are going to make things right. So Zion as a city will be purified and come back to her original medal, and the converts individually with righteousness. And righteousness has the power to compensate for faults to repent and to become new. No more desire to do evil but to do good continually.
Morally right or justifiable virtuous perfectly wonderful and fine. So by being morally clean and pure striving for a form of perfection. Not that we are going to be perfect, we are going to make mistakes and we are going fall down. But we are seeking to become Crise like. And to live every day in a way that is pleasing to Him. And by doing so according to the definition of the dictionary, we can do something, which is the righteousness, that compensates for poor past performance or behavior.
And so we seek to be like Him, we seek to be redeemed on an individual basis and as a group.
So Israel and Zion through judgment and justice can be redeemed.
Now, that judgment will come in two types.
- On the part of the righteousness. It comes in Zion itself and those who are converted or going to be redeemed.
- Will be upon the centers and Saints. And that bondage of wickedness is going to be broken.
In the consequence of which those who turn to Jehova, would be incorporated into his true church. So those who are weak would be taken away and those who are righteous will be incorporated into his true church.
So, it will be great for the righteous, it’ll be great for those who want to repent, change and to become purified. And it’ll be terrible for those who refuse to acknowledge and repent.
In his version, verse 28 reads:
And breaking up of the rebellious and centers together and those who forsake Jehovah will parish.
In King James version it reads:
Under the destruction of the transgressors and of the centers shall be together and they forsake the lord shall be consumed.
I prefer the word rebellious because I think from the context of the chapter it is the rebellion that’s more than just a transgressor.
Often in the scripters, the threat is with the sword, with famine, with fire, and with natural disasters uses many methods and ways to bring justice.
Now, verse 29 is very powerful, so let’s dig into it.
Isiah 1:29 reads:
For they shall be ashamed of the oaks which ye have desired, and ye shall be confounded for the gardens that ye have chosen.
Let’s talk about that desire for a second, Dallin Oak said:
“Desires dictate our priorities, priorities shape our choices, and choices determine our actions.The desires we act on determine our changing, our achieving, and our becoming.”
So what we desire in our hearts is what we bring about in our lives. It is important to remember that God has said He granteth unto men according to their desires. He also said that he will judge us according to our work. Our actions reveal our desires.
Neal Maxwell said:
“Therefore what we insistently desire over time is what we will eventually become.”
What we desire will come about in our lives and it’ll determine who we become. So, we’ve got to make sure that our desires are righteous because they dictate our priorities, they shape or choices, they determine our actions and who eventually will we become.
Where is our time, tension and energy focused? When you wake up int the morning what you think about first? When you go throughout the day where are your thoughts focused? Is it in doing the Lords will? Fulfilling the major of your creation and doing the things you were born to do? Are you seeking to be truly Christ-like?
It is all about what’s in our hearts and what’s in our desires!
Let’s turn now to Alma 36:14-15. It reads:
14 Yea, and I had murdered many of his children, or rather led them away unto destruction; yea, and in fine so great had been my iniquities, that the very thought of coming into the presence of my God did rack my soul with inexpressible horror. 15 Oh, thought I, that I could be banished and become extinct both soul and body, that I might not be brought to stand in the presence of my God, to be judged of my deeds.
Let’s look at a great example in Malachi 3:13-14.
13 Your words have been stout against me, saith the LORD. Yet ye say, What have we spoken so much against thee? 14 Ye have said, It is vain to serve God: and what profit is it that we have kept his ordinance, and that we have walked mournfully before the LORD of hosts?
What a horrible attitude! These are the people who find it so hard to be Christien. And it is pathetic and very sad to see this kind of people.
I would like to share some quotes from Neal Maxwell from in book All These Things Shall Give Thee Experience (Click HERE to get the book).
“Let us not be drawn of the straight narrow path of survice, as have some new converst to the religion of selfishness, by misplaced envy of those traveling in other directions whose happiness is the mock happiness of selfish lifestyles. How ironic it is to envy someone who has a pretty figure but who is a spiritual cripple. The fleeing and transitory ‘advantages’ such individuals seem to have dissolve even as the multitude drools over them. Sophisticated selfishness is still selfishness, even when cleverness tries to pose as substance. Glibness by someone who leads a flawed life cannot cover, except cosmetically, the spiritual speechlessness that afflicts that person. Nor can large bank accounts fill the empty vault of the soul.”
That’s so good! The sophisticated selfishness is still selfishness. So where are the great souls, the ones that should be honored?
“In this respect, the young will live to see a certain madness in some majorities in the world . heretofore thought impossible. Pilate yielded Barabbas instead of Jesus to just such a crowd. Someone has recently coined what is called the Gadarene Swine Law, which is, simply put, that just because a group is in formation does not mean that it is ing in the right direction.”
Isaiah 1:30 reads:
For ye shall be as an oak whose leaf fadeth, and as a garden that hath no water.
It is all about the mind. The mind is a garden and what you put in is what you get out, what you plant is what you harvest. And our whole lives are gardens. The garden doesn’t care what you put in it, it just returns to you what you put it in. Thus, life is exactly what you and I make of it. Your life and my life is a garden, and if our gardens have no living water, because of our choices, the gardens will drys up and be unproductive.
Isaiah 1:31 reads:
And the strong shall be as tow, and the maker of it as a spark, and they shall both burn together, and none shall quench them.
So the idol becomes the spark that sets this mass of fiber in flames so that they are both irretrievably consumed.
By strong, he is not referring to the spiritually strong but perhaps he refers to the one who is politically powerful, who is popular and wealthy. So those who are strong among men but weak among the lord. And yes it is possible to be strong among men and strong with God. You become strong with God and he will make you strong among men.
We need to follow great leaders and lead out ourselves. We need to lead away from this wickedness and this neglect of God and this ridiculous consuming monopoly type care of the world! We must flee out of Babylon and leave her things behind.
Put your heart and mind right. Focus, think about, and care about the things that really matter most. Let’s make sure that our hearts and mind are in the right place and that we are concerned about helping and loving others. That we are not filled with the desires for those oaks.
Let us turn our lives over to the Lord!