Even though it only has nine verses, this chapter carries a weighty description of God’s power. The themes are not new but they are introduced anew with memorable descriptions and prophecy.
Verses 1-3 describe the mistake of not trusting in God and instead putting your faith into something or someone else. Chariots, men on horses and great nations are not to be relied on. When the Israelites should have been praying and putting their faith in God to help them be victorious in battle, they were instead putting their faith in a nation with no faith. God says that because of this, both Israel and Egyptwill fail: “Now the Egyptians are men, and not God; And their horses are flesh, and not spirit. When the LORD stretches out His hand, Both he who helps will fall, And he who is helped will fall down; They all will perish together.” Isaiah 31:3
Verses 4-5 indicate to us that God will save the faithful. These verses paint a picture of protection. God will protect Israel as a lion would its prey. Verse 5 has a reference to the passover, the memorable protection God provided for His people in Exodus 12, before they were allowed by Pharaoh to flee Egypt. These verses affirm that God loves His faithful and will go to great lengths to save them.
Verses 6-9 include an admonition for the Israelites to return to God and throw away their idols. Assyria has a strong warning here as well: all that which they think is strong will be defeated. And their defeat will come from the one true God. This is affirmed with no room for error or misunderstanding: “Then Assyria shall fall by a sword not of man, And a sword not of mankind shall devour him. But he shall flee from the sword, And his young men shall become forced labor. He shall cross over to his stronghold for fear, And his princes shall be afraid of the banner,” Says the LORD, Whose fire is in Zion And whose furnace is in Jerusalem.” Isaiah 31:8-9
God’s power is unchangeable, irrefutable and without doubt. God’s restraint, grace and mercy prevent us from immediately experiencing the consequences of our sins.
Do you need a more pertinent reason to believe in Jesus Christ?