We live in a day when our nation is rotting from the inside out from the moral decay that has been progressively getting worse for decades. When the floodgates of sin are opened up wide and a nation openly embraces and celebrates its newfound “freedom” to live in sin, it inevitably binds itself under the illusion that it is “free” while, in reality, it is becoming more and more enslaved by the very sin that promises freedom but actually brings bondage.
Sin is not new. Rather, it has enslaved mankind since the Fall of man. As one reads the account of the history of Israel, it quickly becomes evident that they were a nation often in bondage to sin. In Isaiah 3 & 5, we are given a glimpse into the moral decay of the nation of Israel and the judgment that God brought upon them. God was judging them with a famine, shortage of water, and incompetent leaders (v. 1-7) and took the time to show them the error of their ways which had led to these severe judgments. God judged their sin by taking away their food and their godly, competent male leaders on all levels. This lack of male leadership only led to a further breakdown in society and a reversal in the way God had ordered society originally. In v. 8, Isaiah said, “For Jerusalem is ruined, and Judah is fallen: because their tongue and their doings are against the LORD, to provoke the eyes of his glory.” This was the key to their ruin. They had brought judgment upon themselves. This is seen in chapters 3 & 5, where eight “woes” were pronounced against them.
Right in the midst of the description of their judgment for sin, God provided a short chapter (4) in which He reminded His people of a future glorious hope in which Christ would reign and holiness would mark His people. God reminded the nation of Israel of a day in which the “the Branch of the Lord” (i.e., Jesus) would appear and set up His rule and reign. God pointed forward to the future Millennial Kingdom and reminded His people that their darkness would one day turn to dawning. This dawning would be brought in by the establishment of Christ’s Kingdom and would be marked by holiness, safety, security, cleansing, and the enjoyment of God’s abiding presence. Though the nation of Israel has experienced great darkness and will continue to do so in the Great Tribulation, God promises that their darkness will turn to dawning when He returns and revives them again.
As Christians in America, we grieve to see the sin of our nation, understanding that God must judge sin. Yet, we also are sure that one day God will return and catch His Church away to be with Him forever. We know that our darkness will turn to dawning. We can find hope and joy in the glorious expectation of His soon return!