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Isaiah 29

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 1 Woe to Ariel, to Ariel, the city where David dwelled! Add year to year; let them kill sacrifices [for yearly feasts].

 2 Yet I will distress Ariel, and there shall be heaviness and sorrow; and it shall be to me like Ariel [an altar hearth].

 3 And I will camp against you all around, and will lay siege against you with a mound, and I will raise forts against you.

 4 And you shall be brought down; and shall speak out of the ground, and your speech shall be low out of the dust; and your voice shall be like one who has a familiar spirit, out of the ground; and your speech shall whisper out of the dust.

 5 Moreover the multitude of your strangers shall be like small dust, and the multitude of terrible ones like chaff that passes away; yes, it shall be in an instant suddenly.

 6 You will be visited by the LORD of hosts with thunder and with earthquake and great noise, with storm and tempest and the flame of devouring fire.

 7 And the multitude of all the nations who fight against Ariel, even all who fight against her and her fortress, and who distress her, shall be as a dream, a vision of the night.

 8 It shall be like when a hungry man dreams, and, behold, he eats; but he awakes, and his soul is empty; or like when a thirsty man dreams, and, behold, he drinks; but he awakes, and, behold, he is faint, and his soul is hungry. So shall the multitude of all the nations be, who fight against mount Zion.

 9 Stop and wonder; cry out, and cry: they are drunken, but not with wine; they stagger, but not with strong drink.

 10 For the LORD has poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and has closed your eyes, the prophets; and has covered your rulers, the seers.1

 11 And the vision of all this has become to you like the words of a book that is sealed, which men deliver to one who is learned, saying, "Read this, I pray you," and he says, "I cannot, for it is sealed.2"

 12 And the book is also delivered to one who is not learned, saying, "Read this, I pray you" and he says, "I am not learned."

 13 Therefore the Lord says, "Since this people draws near me with their mouth and honors me with their lips, but have removed their heart far from me, and their reverence and fear toward me are taught by the precept of men;

 14 Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder; for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their intelligent men shall be hidden."3

 15 Woe to those who seek deep to hide their counsel from the LORD, and their works are in the dark; and they say, "Who sees us? And who knows us?"

 16 Surely you turn things upside down. Shall the potter be esteemed as equal to the clay; or shall the work say to him who made it, "He did not make me?" Or shall the thing formed say to him who formed it, "He has no understanding?"

 17 Is it not yet a very little while, and Lebanon shall be turned into a fruitful field and the fruitful field seem like a forest?

 18 And in that day the deaf shall hear the words of the book, and the eyes of the blind shall see out of gloom and darkness.

 19 The meek shall increase their joy in the LORD, and the poor among men shall rejoice in the Holy One of Israel.

 20 For the terrible one is brought to nothing, and the scorner is consumed, and all who look for iniquity [sin] are cut off;

 21 Who makes a man an offender for a word, and lay a snare for him who reproves in the gate, and turn aside the just by empty arguments.

 22 Therefore thus says the LORD, who redeemed Abraham, concerning the house of Jacob, "Jacob shall not be ashamed, neither shall his face grow pale.

 23 But when he sees his children, the work of my hands, in the midst of him, they will sanctify my name, and sanctify the Holy One of Jacob, and will fear the God of Israel.

 24 Those who erred in spirit will also come to understanding, and those who murmured, will accept instruction."

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1 The Lord has poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and has closed your eyes, the prophets; and has covered your rulers, the seers.’ This happened to the Jews, for when the virgin had a child — the Messiah, the Immanuel — when that sign occurred, at the exact time as prophesied by Gabriel in the Book of Daniel, they were asleep and covered in their understandings. (All of this Chapter's footnotes regarding the Jews are taken from George Fox's writing, A Mirror for the Jews). Just as Israel fell from truth, so has Christendom been so twisted from its origins that now it approves of sin, tolerates sin, assures guilt-free sin, and proclaims sin to be unconquerable. And so God has closed the eyes of those in Christendom because they had no love for the truth or God, preferring to perpetuate their selfish lifestyle over repentance to please God.

2 The vision and the book, and the law and the prophets were a sealed book to the Jews, which spoke of Christ to the Jews, so that when the Messiah came, they wondered, and staggered like drunken men, but not with wine or strong drink. And so the Bible is a closed book today to Christendom, without a clue to what the gospel is, what is the Kingdom, what the Lord will not tolerate, and what the Lord insists we do.

3 Although the Jews could not rightly read the book of the law and the prophets, it being sealed up; yet they then and now draw near to the Lord with their lips, and their mouths do honor him, but have removed their hearts far from him: therefore the Lord said, ‘behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, a marvelous work and a wonder; for the wisdom of the wise men shall perish, and the understanding of your intelligent men shall be hidden.’ Is this not still the case among the Jews, concerning the Messiah, regarding the sign, that a virgin should have a son? And so does Christendom today talk very loudly about their love of God, as they approve of and embrace sin whole-heartedly. It is not what you say you are, but what you do that makes you a Christian or not; from the Word of the Lord within: "remember, every person who sins denies Him as Lord and Master."


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