Revival or Ruin
Isaiah 18 is considered one of the most obscure passages in Isaiah. It describes a prophecy of messengers coming to Israel from the land of Cush, which is modern day Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia region. God tells them not to trust in what the people from Cush will offer, but to watch God handle the problem instead.
If you look at Israel’s history, in this time they were surrounded by three superpower nations. Assyria,to the north, Babylon to the east, and Cush to the south. All three of these nations traded places as the highest power, and the biggest threat to Israel.
At the time of this prophecy (Estimated 714 BC), Assyria was dangerous. In fact, in only 12 years or so, Assyria would come in and attack Israel. Cush was going to offer an alliance with Israel, but God tells them to ignore it. God tells them (verses 3-6) to just watch Him take care of it. God promises to handle Assyria when the time comes, and that in the end, the people of Cush will worship God too!
You might be thinking, “What does this have to do with me today? I didn’t sign up for a history lesson!” Well, fair enough. I’ll tell you what it has to do with you and I today.
We live in very uncertain times. There are diseases, economic uncertainty, wars, terrorism, ISIS, all kinds of things that threaten us. It’s very easy to look to the world for these solutions. We can put our trust in our government, or in our military. But God challenged Israel and He challenges us today. Put your trust in Him! He’ll come through for us!
If you look at our world, it’s pretty easy to see that one of two things could happen. 1. We could go down. We could be attacked, or wiped out by disease, or see another economic collapse, and that would be it. Anarchy would arise. The other option is revival. We could see our nation turn back to God, and see His Word and His truth sweep across this nation!
Which one it will be for our nation is hard to say at this time, and it might seem like we can’t do very much about it, but we can. You can decide for yourself. A nation sees revival when individual people take stand for God’s truth. You can be that individual person that decides not to look to the world for solutions, but to look to God. I think Joshua summed it up the best when he was talking to Israel.
“Now therefore fear the Lord and serve Him in sincerity and in faithfulness. Put away the gods that your fathers served beyond the river and in Egypt, and serve the Lord. And if it’s evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the river, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
Joshua told them that if they wanted to serve the idols that had proven to be useless, they could. But he was deciding to follow God.
We are all facing this choice, as a nation, and individually. Revival or ruin. Which one will you choose?