Isaiah 7: A Sign Shall Be Given
In Isaiah 7, there is a definite danger that the people of Judah are going to be invaded by Syria and the tribe of Ephraim, and God tells Isaiah to go talk to the King, Ahaz. Isaiah communicates the fact that Judah is eventually going to win, and then we are met with this passage.
Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
Isa 7:15 Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good.
Isa 7:16 For before the child shall know to refuse the evil, and choose the good, the land that thou abhorrest shall be forsaken of both her kings.
I think that this passage has some pretty obvious Messianic ties. No surprise there. He shall be called Immanuel, and he will know to refuse evil. That’s something very important about the person of Jesus Christ. He was tempted while He was on earth, but He always made the right decision. No one else has been able to pull that off. This was written hundreds of years before Jesus, but we already have a prophecy about the manner of His birth as well as His sinless life.
It is interesting why this prophecy is put in this chapter and in this context. They are talking about someone who is going to stop Syria. Judah was already out from under Syrian control at the time of Jesus, so the most literal interpretation doesn’t seem to fit.
However, maybe it does fit. Think about it in this way. Isaiah was not the first person to prophesy the Messiah. We even see Jesus prophesied in the Garden of Eden. When Israel blessed his children, Judah was prophesied to have the Messiah. It wasn’t as if this is something that began with Isaiah. Therefore, that birth is the sign that the promise had not departed from Judah. No matter what was happening in the world, Judah was not going to be destroyed because that prophecy needed to be fulfilled.
Prophecy is such an interesting thing. Even when it seems slightly out of place, it really isn’t. Judah was not going to be destroyed. How do we know that? They need to be around for the Messiah, who is going to come, to come.