This post begins with a section of Jeremiah that denounces the pride of Babylon and her king.
Jeremiah 50:31–32 “Behold, I am against thee, O thou most proud, saith the Lord GOD of hosts: for thy day is come, the time that I will visit thee. And the most proud shall stumble and fall, and none shall raise him up: and I will kindle a fire in his cities, and it shall devour all round about him.”
God continues to emphasize how He hates pride and is against those who choose to align themselves against Him in pride. I am reminded that pride is the first thing on the list of the seven things most hated by God.
Proverbs 6:16–17 “These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look….”
Satan’s sin was a result of his pride. It’s interesting that this is told us most explicitly in Isaiah’s passage regarding judgment against the king of Babylon. Also it is interesting to me to note that after Satan is thrown out of heaven, he chooses to indwell the Antichrist and desecrate God’s temple as he begins the 3.5 years of complete authority granted him by God. How does he desecrate the temple? By placing his throne in the temple and declaring himself to be God.
Isaiah 14:12–15 “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.”
Revelation 13:4–5 “And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him? And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.”
2 Thessalonians 2:3–4 “Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.”
Jeremiah 50:33 “Thus saith the LORD of hosts; The children of Israel and the children of Judah were oppressed together: and all that took them captives held them fast; they refused to let them go.”
It’s much easier to see how God’s people could make application of the messages of the prophets to their times since they were unaware of the future applications of these prophecies that become clearer as time marches on. The Lord Jesus affirms this to be true by referencing the abomination of desolation spoken of Daniel as an event yet future. Until that time, I am sure the Jewish people had assumed that prophecy to have been fulfilled by Antiochus Epiphanes, who in retrospect we can now understand to be a type of the coming Antichrist. (See the journal on Daniel 11 for more details.)
These verses speak of the captives of Israel as being oppressed and under the ruling authority of their enemies without hope of escape. The first thing that jumped into my mind was the plight of the Jews in Russia as depicted in “The Fiddler on the Roof.” Of course, the Jews have faced much oppression in the nations of the world throughout history. The Spanish Inquisition resulted in the death of thousands of Jews before they were finally expelled by Ferdinand and Isabella. Many European countries dealt with the Jewish problem by establishing ghettos to which the Jews were confined for the most part. Germany’s ultimate solution for the Jews was enacted in the concentration camps of World War II.
Jeremiah 50:34 “Their Redeemer is strong; the LORD of hosts is his name: he shall throughly plead their cause, that he may give rest to the land, and disquiet the inhabitants of Babylon.”
Though God has acted in judgment against His people, His covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is still in force. He has provided a Redeemer in the person of His precious Son, Jesus Christ, who will eventually assume the throne of David and give peace to the land of Israel. In the process, He will completely destroy Babylon. To “disquiet” the people of Babylon is to put them in fear through His awesome display of power.
The prophet Micah understood that God would provide a redeemer, an intercessor that would allow His people to enter the His presence.
Micah 7:9 “I will bear the indignation of the LORD, because I have sinned against him, until he plead my cause, and execute judgment for me: he will bring me forth to the light, and I shall behold his righteousness.”
(to be continued)