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Series Theme: FRAMEWORKS: Isaiah

(Return to Old Testament Contents)


(The objective of these ‘Frameworks' is to provide an easy-to-read layout of the text in order then to use these individual verses for verse-by-verse study or meditation. To focus each verse we have also added in italic a description of what is happening)


FRAMEWORKS: Isaiah 3: Judgement on Jerusalem & Judea


For structure & preliminaries, see chapter 1


v.1-3 What the Lord will remove
v.4-7 The resultant chaos
v.8-12 Their state described generally
v.13-16 The Lord as Judge – His accusations
v.17-26 The Lord as Judge – His sentences


[Comment: The state of life inside Jerusalem and throughout Judah comes under the spotlight. There is symmetry in the chapter in the first two sections (about the Lord's activity) is balanced by the last two sections (that similarly speak of His activity) and these two parts act like bookends to the central section that summarizes their terrible state.

First (v.1-3) comes the warning that the Lord will remove all those in leadership roles who should have acted and didn't and thus caused the present poor state of the land. The prophet then faces them with what will happen when the authority is removed (v.4-7) and he goes on in the central section (v.8-12) with a general description of their current state. In v.13-16 we see the Lord coming as a Judge who indicts the leaders and affluent women, leading on in v.17-26 to His sentences on them.]


PART ONE: Judgment & Effect


v.1-3 What the Lord will remove


v.1 (The Lord, in His disciplinary judgement will remove from you he things you presently rely on) See now, the Lord, the Lord Almighty, is about to take from Jerusalem and Judah both supply and support: all supplies of food and all supplies of water,
v.2,3  (the people you look up to in society) the hero and the warrior, the judge and the prophet, the diviner and the elder, the captain of fifty and the man of rank, the counselor, skilled craftsman and clever enchanter.



v.4-7 The resultant chaos


v.4 (that will mean you are only left with teenagers to rule you) “I will make mere youths their officials; children will rule over them.”

v.5 (and because they lack authority violence & injustice with reign) People will oppress each other— man against man, neighbor against neighbor. The young will rise up against the old, the nobody against the honored.

v.6 (whoever looks better you will want to take a lead) A man will seize one of his brothers in his father's house, and say, “You have a cloak, you be our leader; take charge of this heap of ruins!”
v.7 (yet they will acknowledge they're not up to it) But in that day he will cry out, “I have no remedy. I have no food or clothing in my house; do not make me the leader of the people.”


PART TWO: The Plight of the Land


v.8-12 Their state described generally


v.8 (you're in a mess having denied the Lord) Jerusalem staggers, Judah is falling; their words and deeds are against the Lord , defying his glorious presence.
v.9 (you've only got to look at people to know this is true) The look on their faces testifies against them; they parade their sin like Sodom; they do not hide it. Woe to them! They have brought disaster upon themselves.

v.10 (those who remain righteous, they will be blessed) Tell the righteous it will be well with them, for they will enjoy the fruit of their deeds.
v.11 (but the unrighteous… they're in trouble) Woe to the wicked! Disaster is upon them! They will be paid back for what their hands have done.

v.12 (those who shouldn't be leaders dominate and life goes wrong) Youths oppress my people, women rule over them. My people, your guides lead you astray; they turn you from the path.



PART THREE: The Lord acting as a Judge


v.13-16 The Lord as Judge – His accusations


v.13 (So God steps up to the bench as Judge) The Lord takes his place in court; he rises to judge the people.
v.14 (he holds leaders accountable) The Lord enters into judgment  against the elders and leaders of his people: “It is you who have ruined my vineyard; the plunder from the poor is in your houses.

v.15 (He faces them with their injustices) What do you mean by crushing my people and grinding the faces of the poor?” declares the Lord, the Lord Almighty.

v.16 (affluent women are proud and unrighteous) The Lord says, “The women of Zion are haughty, walking along with outstretched necks, flirting with their eyes, strutting along with swaying hips, with ornaments jingling on their ankles.



v.17-26 The Lord as Judge – His sentences

v.17 (so God will afflict them) Therefore the Lord will bring sores on the heads of the women of Zion; the Lord will make their scalps bald.”

v.18-23 (all their finery will be removed) In that day the Lord will snatch away their finery: the bangles and headbands and crescent necklaces, the earrings and bracelets and veils, the headdresses and anklets and sashes, the perfume bottles and charms, the signet rings and nose rings, the fine robes and the capes and cloaks, the purses and mirrors, and the linen garments and tiaras and shawls.

v.24 (all of their false outward adornment will be removed) Instead of fragrance there will be a stench; instead of a sash, a rope; instead of well-dressed hair, baldness; instead of fine clothing, sackcloth; instead of beauty, branding.
v.25 (the men who should protect you will fall) Your men will fall by the sword, your warriors in battle.
v.26 (the security of Jerusalem will be ended) The gates of Zion will lament and mourn; destitute, she will sit on the ground.


Continue to Chapter 4