Isaiah 32 Commentary

A kingdom of righteousness (32:1-20)

Looking beyond the victory over the Assyrians, Isaiah sees the day when the people of God are under the rule of an ideal government. At the head of this government is a king whose chief officials share his characteristics of integrity, justice and mercy. Together they give their people protection and contentment (32:1-2).

In such a kingdom the people as a whole reflect in their lives the qualities of their rulers. They have a desire to know more of God and his ways and to live lives of greater usefulness to others (3-4). If people speak foolishly, act selfishly, or plot cunningly how to exploit the disadvantaged, they will find that in such a society they are shown up to be what they really are (5-7). In the same way the upright will be recognized for what they are, and honoured accordingly (8).

Returning to the Jerusalem of his own time, Isaiah announces that the upper class women who live luxuriously will suddenly find themselves poor. The vineyards that provide them with a constant supply of wine will be destroyed, and the city where they find their pleasure will be smashed to ruins (9-14).

Only after the removal of all these evils does the ideal age begin. This age is characterized by justice and righteousness, because the people have God’s Spirit poured out upon them (15-16). The result is peace, safety, joy, freedom and prosperity such as people have never known before (17-20).

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