Syria & Ephraim Isaiah 7: 1-9 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
This prophecy was made during the reign of Ahaz, who ruled over Judah from 742-726 BC. This takes place at least 16 years after the vision of Is 6, which was in the year that Uzziah died in 758 BC. The king after Uzziah was Jotham, who reigned 16 years. We will study this passage as a running commmetnary on each verse.
v.1 – Rezin and Pekah war against Jerusalem but cannot prevail against it – in order to completely understand what transpired, we have to read 2 Chr 28:1-23 and 2 Ki 16:7-18. These two passages of scripture give a lot of details about the attack from Israel and Syria. Ahaz had caused Judah to walk in the ways of the kings of Israel, and he made images for Baalim, burnt his children in the fire, burned incense on the high places and made a replica of the altar at Damascus on which to offer the Lord’s sacrifices. So, Syria attacked and took a great multitude captive, Israel attacked and killed 120,000 valiant men in one day, and then Israel took 200,000 women and children captive to Samaria. Additionally, Edom and the Philistines attacked Judah and the alliance that Ahaz made with Tiglathpilneser, king of Assyria, failed. Nevertheless, the Lord protected Jerusalem from destruction. That’s a huge miracle.
v.2 – The house of David was scared by the news that Ephraim and Syria were confederate – they knew that a coordinated attack could be their demise.
v.3 – Shearjashub accompanied his father, Isaiah, to meet Ahaz – Shearjashub means “the remnant shall return” and his presence was a reminder that God would ultimately take care of the house of Israel, though only a remnant will survive. The end of the conduit is the place where the king could conveniently meet with Isaiah and where others could hear what Isaiah said [2 Ki 18:17, 26].
v.4 – Fear not, neither be fainthearted seem unattainable considering all the evil Israel had done – but to the Lord, Rezin and Pekah were no more harmful than the tails of two firebrands. There would be no reason to fear something that useless and weak.
v.5-7 – The purpose of the confederacy between Syria and Ephraim was to put the king of their choosing on the throne of Judah [probably an effort to eventually combine the southern and northern tribes of Israel under one king, something God would never allow till Jesus comes again].
v.8 – within 65 years shall Ephraim be broken – Ephraim was taken captive by Assyria in 722 BC, at the most 20 years after this prophecy [2 Ki 17:6, 24] and their land was subsequently inhabited by foreigners who inbred with Israel, from which came the Samaritans.
v.9 – The condition ofJudahbeing established in light of this prophecy was belief – as it turns out, Judah got the same treatment as Ephraim when they were attacked by the Babylonians in 606 BC.