First of the Major Prophets, The Book of Isaiah deals with the upcoming judgment and punishment of nations, and the eventual restoration of Judah and Jerusalem. It also foreshadows the coming of Jesus.
Again I am surprised by the numerous times the Israelites turned away from the Lord and worshipped idols in the Old Testament, and God’s wrath in placing them under the yoke of other nations, only to forgive and raise them up, and smite their enemies. And finally now we have the possibility of inclusion of other nations and peoples under God’s hand, after they have been suitably ‘humbled’ as had the Israelites before them.
Favourite lines/passages: Some very well known verses here, and despite the predominant themes of punishment, the ones which resonate are to do with peace
“… and he shall judge amongst the nations, and shall rebuke many people, and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks, nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore” Isaiah 2:4
“The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid ; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them” Isaiah 11:6
which leads me to the foretelling of the coming of Christ
“Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign ; Behold a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel” Isaiah 7:14
Diversions and digressions: This read was a diversion in itself from the dry works of Aristotle, but it’s not very satisfactory and I am still hanging out for a work of dramatic literature. I will have to wait until Menander’s comic play Dyskolos (aka Old Cantankerous) which is still about 8 books away.
Personal rating: By no means a work of clarity on first reading – it might improve with study and more personal knowledge of the historical background. 2
Next : Back to Aristotle and his work on Metaphysics. Yikes!