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Isaiah: God’s judgment and salvation

Judgment, 1-35Historical Interlude, 36-39Salvation, 40-66
Judgement on Judah,
Sennacherib, 36-37
Looks back at the Assyrian crisis
The basis of salvation, 40-48
The uniqueness of God
Promise of
Hezekiah, 38-39
Looks forward to the Babylonian crisis
The means of salvation, 49-57
The Messianic Servant
Judgement on Nations,
The fullness of salvation, 58-66
Final restoration
Promise of
Woes on Israel, 28-35
Promise of

Major characters

  • Isaiah (“Jehovah is salvation”), son of Amoz
  • Uzziah (790-740 bc), Jotham (750-731 bc), Ahaz (735-715 bc32), and Hezekiah (715-686 bc), kings of Judah
  • Sennacherib, king of Assyria

Major themes

  • Judgement
  • Sin
  • Salvation
  • Messiah
  • God

Major words/phrases

  • “in that day” (43x)
  • salvation (28x)
  • woe (23x)
  • Holy One (30x)
  • sin, sins, sinful, sinners (23x)
  • sing (16x)
  • glory (48x)
  • holy (29x)

Major locations

  • Ephraim (Israel)
  • Assyria (Capital city: Ninevah)
  • Babylon
  • Syria (capital city: Damascus)
  • Moab
  • Tyre

Christ in all the Scriptures

  • The Virgin Birth, 7:14
  • A Child born, a Son given, 9:6-7
  • A Branch, from the stem of Jesse, 11:1
  • A Precious Cornerstone, 28:16
  • A light to the Gentiles, 42:6; 49:6; 9:2 (cp. 60:19-20)
  • The Anointed One, 61:1-3
  • The Glorious One, 63:1-6
  • The Servant of the LORD, 42, 49-53

The name “servant” is applied by Isaiah to the Messiah, to the entire nation of Israel, to the godly remnant (43:10), and to Cyrus. Usually the context makes clear which one is intended.

William MacDonald

William MacDonald gives the following outline of chapters 49-57:

  • The Messiah as Servant, 49
  • The Messiah as True Disciple, 50
  • The Messiah as Righteous Ruler, 51:1-52:12
  • The Messiah as Sin-Bearing Sacrifice, 52:13-53:12
  • The Messiah as Redeemer and Restorer, 54
  • The Messiah as World Evangelist, 55:1-56:8
  • The Messiah as Judge of the Wicked, 56:9-57:21

While the entire section (chs. 40-66) anticipates the ultimate restoration and peace of Jerusalem, ch. 41-48 do refer particularly to the return from the Babylonian captivity and the rebuilding of the Jerusalem that followed in the days of Zerubbabel, Ezra and Nehemiah.

John Riddle, What The Bible Teaches: Song of Solomon, Isaiah (Ritchie, 2005), pg. 398.
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