Isaiah 7     Job 34     Philippians 1

Review: Syria from Ephraim, that is from and with northern Israel, makes war against Judah and Jerusalem (7:1-2)…The LORD, through Isaiah to King Ahaz of Judah, predicts Ephraim’s collapse and dismemberment within 65 years (7:3-9)…Ahaz is given a sign from the LORD, that is IMMANUEL (7:10-16)…Ahaz is informed that Assyria will eventually overcome Judah and Jerusalem (7:17-25).

Analysis: In the OT, Ephraim and Israel are used interchabably.  They both refer to the 10 tribes who under Jeroboam (1 Kings 12:16-33) established the northern kingdom in Samaria (1 Kings 21:1)…Around 720 BC, Ephraim was sacked by Assyria (2 Kings 17) because of their sins, it says…Yes, sins have consequences forgiven through the sacrificial Savior Jesus or not…Ahaz not desiring a sign (7:10-13) from the LORD is either a witness to his faith – not wanting to put God to the test, or his lack of faith – not wanting to get involved with God and take leave of his physical securities…Within the Christian context of 7:14, we know who the virgin and Son are…However, to Ahaz this prophecy could be related to his wife the queen giving birth to a male child who will lead Judah to victory over it’s enemies; thus extending his legacy…It’s interesting how cultures, at a times, in all forms and degrees of dilapidation look for a savior…One who, through the strength of his or her character and leadership abilities, will make it all better, bringing heaven to earth…This thinking is the basis of the totalitarian mind-set, that the right gal or guy can usher heaven onto the earth…Alive and well, even here, even now…Democracy says finding a savior is impossible as all are flawed… Some more than others…The best democracy does is struggle, that’s what voting is, with its problems/leaders and find its way by a majority…The problem with democracies can be the majority, when they’ re wrong so is the society…de Tocqueville referred to this phenomena as the “tyranny of the majority”…Faced with these odds, the individual and constituents in the minority within a democracy search for a savior…So, it goes…Our circle, incapsulating the fallen situation (Gen. 3) we find ourselves in, is now complete…Fallen, but still can be very good if each and corporately exercise their dominion to God’s standards (Deut. 30:11-20)…The previous can be viewed as political as anything involving humans can be political as we are social creatures (Aristotle)…By my reckoning, politics trails only religion in importance to an individual and society.  Their efficacy direct the direction they go….Better religion and politics necessarily leads to better individuals and societies…The opposite is also true…Complicating matters is the fact that politics and religion through the society are intertwined by way of society…The best of religion should direct the politics, etc…That is why the anti-religious sentiment within the US currently is so troubling…But, I digress…But, I needed to…Since Israel, that is Ephraim in Samaria, is to be vanquished, their fields will languish (7:20-25).