Pastor Joe's Blog

January
14 2020
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The Prophet Series: Isaiah part 24; Chapters 28-29: When God's people reject His Word

28:1-8 Ephraim, the people and the land, were a beautiful gift from the Lord in a wonderful fertile valley. She had every opportunity to follow the Lord and live in beauty and be beautiful herself. Fine, wonderful families; working together, enjoying the produce of the Lord’s land; knowing that they are the kingdom of God, gracious, loving,...
November
28 2019
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Isaiah part 23: The Lord of History, chapters 28-37

As we have been doing, we will overview the section and then look at it more closely. In the last section (13-27) the prophet gave us an overview of divine purposes, and now Isaiah reveals the reality of divine power that moves and controls history and fulfills all promises. Buckle up - God is...
November
19 2019
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The Prophet Series: Isaiah part 22: Review of chapters 1-27

We will write an article in order to review our work in Isaiah thus far. It is important to keep a general understanding of the structure of this expansive work. Any of you who are doing the work of reading and understanding the Book of Isaiah will be rewarded with a deeper understanding of God’s work and purpose for all of human history.   Chapters 1-5:...
November
17 2019
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Isaiah part 21: The end to the third cycle, chapter 27.

Chapter 27 is not only the end to the third cycle but also to the section (13-27) devoted to the universal kingdom. In our next installment we will summarize what we have done so far in this great and vast book. Remember, Isaiah is like a Bible within the Bible, both having 66 parts. If we want to know the Bible, it is going to take some time, and so it is with the Book of Isaiah. If we are...
October
31 2019
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The Prophet Series: Isaiah part 20: the strong city waiting in hope - chapter 26

In Isaiah’s oracles we have seen Israel making an alliance with Syria, Judah making alliances with Egypt, Assyria, and Babylon, and even Jerusalem rejoicing in a deliverance from invasion due to a water tunnel rather than to God. God’s city (meaning God’s people) abandoned the way of faith for collective strength and self-reliance, but here in chapter 26, at last, we see...
October
18 2019
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The Prophet Series: Isaiah part 19: Third Cycle Continued.

The King shall reign (24:21-23)   Isa 24:21-23 So it will happen in that day, That the Lord will punish the host of heaven, on high, And the kings of the earth, on earth. ...
October
08 2019
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Isaiah part 18: The Third Cycle (chap. 24-27)

It is not called the third cycle ‘of oracles’ because this section does not have the structure of an oracle. Its basic outline is:   A city of meaninglessness: world history planned around the people of God (24:1-20). The end of waiting: the King shall reign (24:21-23). The world rejoicing in salvation: the...
October
01 2019
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Isaiah part 17: The Second Cycle of Oracles - Tyre: Pride and Holiness (chapter 23)

Isaiah part 17: The Second Cycle of Oracles - Tyre: Pride and Holiness (chapter 23)   In this installment we conclude Isaiah’s second cycle of oracles. The first cycle (chapters 13-20) shows the world to be in the Lord’s hands and that nothing can stop His promises from being fulfilled. This second cycle is much darker. It began with a vision of...
September
22 2019
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Isaiah part 16: The Second Cycle of Oracles - The Valley of Vision (Jerusalem): the unforgivable sin (chapter 22)

In the first cycle the microscope fell on the Northern Kingdom of Israel and their Syrian alliance, in this cycle the microscope falls on Judah, the Southern Kingdom, and the same bacteria is found - faith is abandoned for the quest of self-reliance. The people of God surrender to the pressure of the surrounding world. In chapter 22, three oracles (Jerusalem, Shebna, and Eliakim) repeat the...
September
06 2019
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Isaiah part 15: The second cycle of oracles - the world in the shadows (chapters 21-23)

Chapters 1-5 are a preface dealing with Judah - it’s diagnosis and prognosis - and deals with sin in the face of experience, election,...
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