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RCCG Miracle Land Dundalk
Wednesday, February 22 2023

Contributor: Peter Folikwe

We shall be reviewing Chapter 5 - the six woes/curses pronounced on Israel, borne out of their defiance to God’s commandments. And in Chapter 6, we shall x-ray the birth of prophet Isiah’s ministry and a call to service.
Societal decadence of morals and spirituality in Isiah’s time is not any different from what we see around us today.

Is 5:1-7. It begins with a very sorrowful, bitter and heart-breaking song. Here the song composer (God Almighty) who gave a description of a vineyard that He had invested in.

Verses 1-2 - He bought a land, removed stones that will hinder the roots of the vine from nourishment, He planted special breed of vines/not genetically modified, ensured there is wall of protection around the vine, and employed experienced vine dressers to keep it.
He expected bumper harvest of sweet choice grapes, but on the contrary He harvested useless and sour grapes.

In Verse 3, God asked His people to judge between Himself and the vineyard he had planted (the people of a Israel). He asked why the vineyard produce sour grapes against His expectation.

In Verse 5, God describes what will happen to this fruitless vineyard; destruction and curses await them. God tearing down the hedge that was meant to protect it, and dressers will no longer prune/hoe it. It was left for weeds and thorns to choke it to death till it becomes stone dried.

In Verses 5 & 6, God pronounced His judgment on the vineyard.
He will tear down its hedges and let it be destroyed. He will break down its walls and let the animals trample it. He will make it a wild place where the vines are not pruned and the ground is not hoed, a place overgrown with briers and thorns. Rain to cease from falling.
Now God itemizes specific sins, 6 in number, for which curses “WOEs” are pronounced in V8, V11, V18, V20, V21, & V22.

Verse 7 tells us, who this vineyard of the Lord is. The vineyard is the people of Israel and by extension the body of Christ, living unrighteous. God chose the most fertile piece of land - Israel. He dug a trench around them, because they are surrounded by enemies. Removal of the stones may well indicate how God empowered them to eliminate the Canaanites in order for His people to give undiluted service to Him. They are the choicest vine.
The expectation God from them, for all the privileges (provision, protection, nourishment, etc.) enjoyed by these chosen people, is that they produce excellent fruits.
The expectations of God of them is holiness, righteousness, justice and love for mankind.
God asked in Verse 3, what else was expected of Him to do for them, reason He asked that they judge between Himself and they - the vineyard.

Verse 8: The focus here is on how His people have abandoned the faith and focused on material possessions.
God pronounced a curse Verses 9 & 10 reminiscent of famine conditions, where many of the land and houses they acquired illegally will become desolate and yield very little fruits.
The next “WOE” - curse is directed at the sin of drunkenness and pleasure seeking in

Verses 11 & 12. Within the body of Christ some defend their position on strong drinks with the popular quote by Apostle Paul 1Tim 5:23 “Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach's sake and thine often infirmities.”

In Verses 14 & 15 this class of sinners (drunks and pleasure seekers) are condemned to death. The mouth of hell is open to swallow them in large numbers.

God in Verse 16, vindicates Himself of their judgement as He remains holy and righteous.
We see the next judgement - “WOE” in Verse 18. It paints a picture of those who have truck load of sin, evil, iniquity immortality and wickedness: yet they drag their sins all over the place with impunity and without shame.

Verse 19 states that not only are they shamelessly exhibiting their folly, they have the audacity to challenge God to do His worst.
I struggled to exonerate the church from this group, but having pondered over the list, I asked sincerely, don’t we still have pride, deceit, envy, unforgiving and disobedience to parents, still prevalent with the church - I want to believe that Miracle Land is absolved in Jesus name.

We find the next category of “WOE” in Verse 20 where everything is made contrary to the norm. This seems familiar to what is happening in our world today. What is evil they call good and vice-versa. What was light they call dark, what was bitter they call sweet. I want us to critically review this with practical examples in our world today.

The next curse “WOE” in Verse 21 is matted to those who indulge in the sin of arrogance - what we call back home as “ITK”. They have a very arrogant disposition to life. They are highly opinionated of themselves. They hate being corrected and do not heed advice. One of the learnings from our Proverbs challenge is Prov. 24:6.” No wonder the arrogant goof always.

Verses 22 & 23 reel out the final curse “WOE” upon leaders in government, the society the church who take bribes to pervert justice, and take away the rights of the righteous. These are leaders who are corrupt and lack integrity.
The above are the specific sins in Chapter 5 that propelled God to bring judgement’s upon the children of Israel.

And in Verse 24, it reels out the unavoidable punishment where all that fall into the above categories are consumed like grass in a summer bonfire, because they all have rejected the word of the Lord and despised God.

Verse 25 says God is furious against these people. He promised to whisper to the enemies of Israel to go into a battle with them and destroy, and even the remnants captured by the enemy.

This above prophecy of Isiah was fulfilled during the Babylonian destruction of Israel and captivity of remnants into exile. The Babylonian captivity or Babylonian exile is the period in Jewish history during which a large number of Judeans from the ancient Kingdom of Judah were captives in Babylon, the capital city of the Neo-Babylonian Empire, following their defeat in the Jewish–Babylonian War and the destruction of Solomon's Temple in Jerusalem.

Chapter 6

Isaiah must have struggled with this prophecy of doom and gloom. He must have asked, if God was still in charge and in control. This led to the birth of Isiah’s ministry in Chapter 6.
The opening verses 1-4 gave vivid account Isaiah’s visit to the temple to seek the face of God, after the death of king Uzziah. King Uzziah became king at age 16 (2 Chron. 26:1-4).
God showed Isaiah a vision of His throne, that in spite the confusion, He - God is still on His throne, in control and He reigns in His majesty. Angels are at His beck and call. That He - God remains Holy.

In Verse 5, the awesome wonders of God’s majesty, His power, glory and honour in His throne Isaiah was faced with no choice than to curse himself, just as he had been instructed to curse the people of Israel in chapter 5. How filthy, unrighteous and sinful natured he was as a human being became glaring to him as he compared himself with God in His throne room.
Isaiah admitted that he is a man of unclean lips, living in the mist of unclean people.

Verse 6: Isaiah had to go through a purification process after a genuine repentance. The coal touching his lips portrays atonement of sin, purification and cleansing from all forms of unrighteousness

Verse 8: The question here is who is God looking to send into a world in crisis and confusion as we have today? As we have learnt, this person must have a clear vision of God’s glory, majestic splendour, His holiness and unshakable kingdom.
This person must be broken, having an awareness of his sinful nature.
The person should be humbled enough to admit his sins and ask for forgiveness. Only such will be willing to Go.

Verse 9: Having displayed his preparedness and willingness to Go, Isaiah was asked to keep preach until there will be no one left to hear it.

Finally in Verse 13: Despite the confusion, impunity and blatant disregard for God’s commands, God still kept His 10%, His holy seed who will hear, see and understand with a brokenness of heart.My prayer is that Miracle Land will be among the holy seed of God in Jesus name.

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