THE ISAIAH RIDDLE - PART TWO
In the last lesson I presented the basis of this interesting study on part of Isaiah. That basis being the fact that the Book of Isaiah, with its 66 chapters, represents the entire Bible including a chapter by chapter representation of each book. It also includes the grouping of the books of the Bible according to the Menorah Design (the Temple lampstand) given to Moses, and the Torah Design1 discovered by Dr. J. R. Church.
The puzzle that I discovered deals with the Torah Design of the chapters of Isaiah. As I was reading through the book, I found in some chapters the design was very easy to see. For example, parts of chapters 25 and 30 and all of chapter 35 deal with the Kingdom (fifth in the Torah Design). When I came to chapter 49, which should be a “wilderness testing” chapter (fourth in the Torah Design), it was clearly about the Kingdom (again, the fifth in the Torah Design). The following eight chapters continued this shift, but still follow the Torah pattern. Then I noticed another underlying pattern in these nine chapters, 49 through 57. You will recall from last week that the twenty-seven books of the New Testament are divided into three groups of nine books each, addressing Jewish subjects, then Gentile subjects, and then again, Jewish subjects. Isaiah chapters 49 through 57 represent those nine New Testament books addressed to Gentile subjects.
Isaiah chapter 48 should be about setting apart, or sanctification, and it is. In this chapter the Lord sets Israel apart and tells them how stubborn and rebellious they are. Likewise, chapter 58 deals with true fasting and obedient (future) Israel. These chapters about rebellious and obedient Israel bracket the “shifted” chapters of 49 through 57. At the end of chapter 48 the Lord says, “There is no peace for the wicked.” It is of interest that He makes the identical statement at the end of chapter 57. This statement also brackets the subject chapters.
The themes of these nine chapters and the books they represent are also of interest. Isaiah Chapter 49 is about the servant of the Lord, which is Jesus. The 49th book of the Bible, Ephesians, is about Jesus and His salvation for us. Isaiah Chapter 50 is about obedience and Philippians, the 50th book, is about obedience. Chapter 51 of Isaiah is about the supremacy of “my salvation” (51:5). The word “salvation” in Hebrew is jesha, which is the root of the name Jeshua, or Jesus. Colossians, the 51st book of the Bible, is about the supremacy of Jeshua, or Jesus. The subject of Isaiah chapter 52 is Jerusalem, while the 52nd book, First Thessalonians, is about New Jerusalem, or the Church.
The prophecy of Jesus in Isaiah chapter 53 is perhaps the most frequently quoted of all Old Testament prophecy. This chapter is about the First Coming of Jesus. The corresponding 53rd book, Second Thessalonians, is about the Second Coming of Jesus. Both Isaiah chapter 54 and the 54th book, First Timothy, are about the faithfulness of the Lord. Chapter 55 of Isaiah and the 55th book, Second Timothy, are both about encouragement and reward. Isaiah 56 is about salvation for Gentiles. “I will gather still others, besides those already gathered.” (56:8) The 56th book, Titus, is about salvation for Gentiles.
Isaiah Chapter 57 is one of my favorites. It says the devout men are taken away. The Hebrew word for taken away is acaph, which means to gather or collect2. This chapter begins with the gathering of the Church to the Lord. The 57th book of the Bible, Philemon, is a picture of the Church being sent Home. Please see http://www.luke810.com/pr24.htm In this short book Paul is a type of Jesus, paying the debts of the sinner/servant, and sending Philemon Home to his master, a type of the Lord. The Torah Design of chapter 57 in these “shifted” chapters is sanctification, or setting apart. In the first of this chapter the righteous are set apart for resurrection; and at the end, the wicked are set apart for punishment, showing the First Resurrection and the Second Death of the Revelation 20:6.
The insertion of nine New Testament books dealing with Gentile subjects between the two groups of nine books dealing with Jewish subjects shows that we Gentiles are a parenthetical insertion in God’s Plan for His Chosen People. The Apostle Paul tells us that we Gentiles are wild olive branches grafted into the natural olive tree (Romans 11:17-21). Although Israel rebelled against the Lord, in the future they will be obedient to Him. The nine subject chapters in Isaiah are inserted between chapters dealing with rebellious Israel and obedient Israel, again showing that we are an insertion in His Plan. The Lord said that He would reveal Himself to a people that were not looking for Him because of the obstinacy of Israel. (Isaiah 65:1-7) And He did! Praise His name!
Remember, in John chapter 10, when Jesus was speaking of being the Good Shepherd, His flock was the Jews. He also noted that He had “other sheep” that were not of “this sheep pen.” (John 10:16) Jesus was speaking of us Gentiles. Do not dismiss the Jews or Israel. The Lord still has plans for them. The Lord made promises to Abraham. He will fulfill those promises. I am so thankful to know that He will also fulfill His promises to me and to His Church. May His name always be praised.
1 - a simple explanation of the Torah Pattern is as follows:
(1) Chapters 1, 6, 11, etc. - Genesis - the Beginning and the Sin of Man
(2) Chapters 2, 7, 12, etc. - Exodus - Redemption and Deliverance
(3) Chapters 3, 8, 13, etc. - Leviticus - Sanctification, or setting apart
(4) Chapters 4, 9, 14, etc. - Numbers - Focus on Sin and the Wilderness
(5) Chapters 5, 10, 15, etc. - Deuteronomy - Summation and the Kingdom
2 - Strong’s Hebrew Dictionary - number 622