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Isaiah: A Godly Man in a Nation in Crisis

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
June 14, 2022 4:00 am

Isaiah: A Godly Man in a Nation in Crisis

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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June 14, 2022 4:00 am

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John 14 verse one the fool has said in his heart. What there is no God doesn't. That is not a philosophical statement that is saying this I'm going to do what I do.

God could care less that is not a logical conclusion of the study. That is a way to justify. You might wonder what God thinks of the situation and, more important, what he might be prepared to do.

John MacArthur helps you consider just that in the study begins today on grace to you based on some texts from the prophecies of Isaiah and Jeremiah. It's called God's word to an ungodly society John when it comes to tackling the problems of today. I know there's a temptation for a lot of people to think that the Bible probably doesn't relate to every issue that we face. I mean how reasonable is it to expect men like Isaiah and Jeremiah who lived thousands of years ago to speak effectively to the troubles of 2022. Well, the fact of the matter is that whether you lived in the time of Isaiah and Jeremiah are living now. The same issues existed there only so many issues that can exist in the created fallen world and obviously they they cycling me. I think it's an act 14, where Paul says he got a lot all the nations to go their own way that there is a repetition of the patterns of sin. There is a repetition of the effects of those sins on society after society after society there is a sense in which there is technological advance, but there's no moral advance. There is no real spiritual advance.

I'd hate to think that anyone would say well because I live 2000 years after the apostle Paul.

I'm a better Christian than he is because I have 2000 years of spiritual advancement to go my life on I just think we have to make sure that we understand that from the spiritual standpoint, which the Bible addresses nothing changes than what the diagnoses on the cure is offered in Scripture for any of the maladies of fallenness in the world are timeless and that is why the word of God is still alive and powerful and doing its its mighty work. So were going to start a series today that is going to be from Isaiah and from Jeremiah, but the title of it is God's word to an ungodly society you're going to be able to make the connection. Very fast between what Isaiah said in Jeremiah said to the people of their day and what their word inspired by the Holy Spirit and permanent and eternal is saying to the culture today. It's one thing to be angered by what we see in the culture, and I understand that is another thing to know what to do about it. This study can help you motivate you and instruct you to be a strength in your church to be salt and light in a decaying world don't miss a day of this look at God's word to an ungodly society. Yes, what should you do when your nation completely rejects the Lord. How should you pray for it and how can you help find out. Now here's John with the biblical plan of action because the subject on my heart is of great importance. I want us to get right in our text and I'd like you to turn your Bible to Isaiah chapter 5 someone as well.

Said if men have learned anything from history is that men never learn anything from history and social history inexorably repeats itself and I really feel that if you read the Old Testament.

The Old Testament presents to the history of today a series of billboards all along the path of mankind warning about the inevitability of destruction when sin enters the society we want to look at one of those billboards and there are many one erected by the prophet Isaiah is a clear insight is a very lucid lesson of the deadly sins that destroyed Israel readily applicable to our own society and how a godly man reacted to that very crisis and it sets up for us a form in which we to should react.

First of all, look at chapter 5 and I want you to notice the parable of the Lord. For in this drama. The main character is the Lord himself.

This is a parable. In fact, it is an exquisite elegy is a parable in the form of a plaintive weeping song concerning what happened to that vineyard and what does it mean verse seven tells us for the vineyard of the Lord of hosts is the house of Israel and the men of Judah, his pleasant plant and even looked for justice, but behold, oppression for righteousness. But behold, a cry so says God, there is coming a judgment. I want you to move with me then from the parable of the Lord, to the penetration of the Lord beginning in verse eight. Now here the Lord penetrates to the very core of the problem. I want you to see this six specific seasons have led to the ruin of the nation six lows and a wall why that's a word used by John and by Jesus in Revelation used by the Lord in the Gospels a will simply is this an impassioned denunciation of some evil observed by the penetrating eyes of God and impassioned denunciation of some evil observed by the penetrating eyes of God, and God penetrates the situation and marks out six sin Pamela is frightening to notice the six because they are so true of our nation and may I hasten to add this sadly they are even true of the church, the so-called Church of Jesus Christ you make application as we go number one first Isaiah says says God penetrates their sin. Verse eight you are guilty of a grasping materialism verse eight while under them who join house to house, who lay field to field till there is no place that they may be placed alone, in the midst of the earth. I hear you have the sin of avarice is not enough to have one house isn't enough to have one piece of land. They had a house to house and land to land until they have consumed the goods in standalone isolated from everyone. The insatiable greed of the landowners of Isaiah's time caused a great amount of poverty because what it did was it kept putting all of the resources in the hands of the few making the gap between the very rich and the very poor wider and eliminating almost altogether anybody in the middle. Amos speaks of it. Hosea speak summit.

Micah speaks of it and they were all Isaiah's contemporaries wealthy man ruthlessly acquiring property amassing fortune squeezing out the poor and the helpless and making them buy at inflated prices to fill their own coffers yet think of first Kings 21 don't you and Ahab let everything was the king, and yet there was one Naboth who just had one vineyard and Ahab wanted that vineyard, and he took greed.

I don't believe God ever intended people to stockpile like that. I believe that's why God's plan in the book of Leviticus there was a Jubilee year when everything reverted back to its original owner.

All the slaves were set free. It just washed out the whole economy and everybody started from scratch. God never intended people to amass those kinds of fortunes out of greed and Micah chapter 2 in verse two Micah rights. They covet fields. They take them by violence and houses. They take them away. They oppress a man in his house.

Even a man and his heritage, grasping materialism verse nine he says in mine ears said the Lord of hosts, of a truth. Many houses shall be desolate, even great and fair without inhabitant notices is going to come a time when all those great houses are going to be empty.

Nobody home desolate and it happened you know, for example, in one invasion and Judah in the days of Ahaz recorded in second Chronicles 28 in one day when the nation invaded peak was the king in the country was Samaria in one day they killed get this 120,000 men were soldiers and 200,000 men, women and children were carried off into captivity in one day, 1/3 of a million people. God can move in judgment when he watched the great houses that are being a master be swept away our people in our country who have contributed to the demise of this country by grasping materialism verse 10 he says is going to come a day when I bring famine in the land. Your houses are not only going to be empty, but your fields are going to produce 10 acres of vineyards will yield one bath in the seed of an home or she will yield Anisa what it means is 10 acres will produce about 4 gallons of wine. That's famine. Folks 4 gallons of wine on a 10 acres, a homer of seed is not 48 gallons of seed and he says 48 gallons of seed will produce 4.8 gallons of result one famine. What a picture of America Time magazine says America is like an unloved child with an ice cream cone fact full of pimples and screaming for more were materialistic were indulgent were possessive.

I even saw a book written by a Christian news on television the name of it is Jesus wants you rich worship the golden cow. We seek worldly status.

The church is prostituted for gain. There are people floating around will give their testimony for 1500 or $2000 a night. The nation is gone in the materialism and everything is up in the church is riding the crest said thing see Christians caught up in that grasping materialism. Secondly, Isaiah says Israel is characterized by a drunken pleasure seeking.

Verse 11 woe to them arise up early in the morning that they may follow. Strong drink will continue until night till wine inflames them and the harp and dilute the timbrel and food and wine are in their feast, but they regard not the work of the Lord.

Neither consider the operation of his hands wasn't in on it any time for God. They're too busy getting drunk and having entertainment retracing people. I can't think of anything. It's more characteristic of our society than a drunken entertained characteristic people blindly migrate from one rock festival to another, from one nightclub to another, blasting away at their brains with the music of the world all the time concocting drinks all variations of mixtures to dull their senses and the end of it all is a life reeling and rocking with insensibility to the very God who upholds the universe. That's what Isaiah, saying we live in a stupor in our society.

It's not just drugs PCP and sniffing snorting coke and heroin and all of this. It's alcohol.

We are a drunken society and we are a society society gone mad on music. No wonder Revelation 18 God says I'm in a wipe out music read music.

The world what he says of the universe. 12 is it men or practical atheists. They don't regard the work of the Lord will give any thought to God, our country knows about God.

Every Christmas and Easter. They flow bone to basically our world is drunken, lustful, you know what happens when you drink wine and listen to the world's music pretty soon. At least a sex scene that's the way it is in our world, said thing about it is it's even tolerated by Christians. I read about Christian cocktail party. I hate to tell you all the Christians that I know were in the ministry who are living in sexual immorality, a well-known Christian musician in our own community.

I confronted about the fact that he is living in immorality and agile as well on our country living in immorality is been doing it for five years lease well-known Bible teacher whose name all of you would know who was lived in immorality for you all the time. Trading in the name of Jesus, not just in our society, but the church is falling prey to it.

Verse 13 says therefore my people are going to captivity because they have no knowledge send thereon men are famished in their multitude dried up with thirst, why you abandon the word of God and there is no resource. The church long ago gave away to entertainment social comments. There is no word from God. So verse 14. Therefore, she will let the enlarged herself and opened her mouth without measure. What a vivid image here is the picture of the grave literally opening its mouth wide and all their glory, the glory of the world and all their multitude in all their pomp and he rejoices all the time.

Charlie shall descend into the grave and the common man shall be brought down and the mighty man shall be humbled in the eyes of the lofty shall be humbled with the Lord of the home shall be exalted in justice and God, who is holy, shall be sanctified in righteousness. God is not tolerated. I'm telling you people as someone once said, if God doesn't destroy America still have to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah. Verse 17 says then shall the lamb's feet.

After their manner in the waste places of the fat ones shelf sojourners eat what it means is roaming the once beautiful land ravaged will be an uncultivated heap where stray lambs will graze and roaming strangers scavenge coming in for centuries and Israel.

Arabs fulfilled this and still doing some of the land originally given to God's people.

Third, soon a defiant sinfulness, grasping materialism, a drunken pleasure seeking in a defiant sinfulness.

Verse 18 says one of them will draw iniquity with cords of vanity. In other words there proud about it.

They they are like oxen pulling a cart. They wrote themselves up and they dragged their iniquity. In other words, they work hard all ill being really gross is hard work, hard work, the figures of the beast. A stupid dumb beast wrote to a wagon dragging around the burden of iniquity in the vein delusion that this is really living in verse 19.

They say let him make speed and hasten his work that we may see it like the Council of the holy one of Israel drawn here in town that we may know that if there is a God, let him say something here, let him do some come on if there's a God do your thing. In other words, they mocked God they taunt God. I think the most common swearword in America is either God or Jesus or Jesus Christ you that's a taunt that God that's a mockery of his holy name open, flagrant, defiant, mocking sinfulness, the world is so blatant about it soon. Filthy television programs filthy movies dirty music rotten magazines and books. It's blatant on the signboards. It's blatant in the nightclubs, it's blatant everywhere and they mocked the name of God. They don't even think God can respond like the fools in second Peter, who said oh well, all things continue as they were from the beginning God's never gotten upset about this in the past.

Certainly, he won't in the future. In fact, in Psalm 1011 it says he says in his heart, God has forgotten he's hiding his face he'll never see me. God is not looking in Psalm 14 verse one the fool has said in his heart.

What there is no God doesn't. That is not a philosophical statement that is saying this I'm going to do what I do. God could care less. There's no God checking on me that is not a logical conclusion of study that is a way to justify evil in our society mocks God, you can't do that get away with it grasping materialism, drunken pleasure seeking defiant sinfulness forcefully or moral perversion. Isaiah's time and even you can. It's hard to imagine that Israel was doing this. This is God's covenant people. Verse 20 wool. One of them who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter well those people who have totally reverse morality with perversion, right and wrong to say, adultery is okay fornication is okay.

Marriage is prudish.

Abstinence is prudish, drunkenness is the way to go. Homosexuality is just an alternate lifestyle. Those who have twisted inverted and perverted what is right and what is wrong. Malachi says your sin is this you have lifted up evil people who are the people we pay $100,000. A word to sing yeah yeah yeah who are the movie stars.

We fill their coffers with our money. They live in moral godless life subversion of moral principles. So I tell you people I see that in our society.

Everything is become perverted and twisted and dirty, and even in the church. There are people who preach and sing songs and play instruments and their living vial lives just talking generalities about one step from start to give names. I taste something I identify with Psalm 69 the reproaches.

If all of the Lord are fallen on me. I can't stand to step and I don't know whether the law why the Lord gets me so excited about this thing that nobody else because it seems like I'm out there sometimes fight and steal all but I got to the place where I started confronting some of these people because I can't let the name of Jesus Christ be profane when I know it where I stand in the point of chastening from the Lord is one was called to speak his truth. We can't tolerate that we can't tolerate a generation given over to a reprobate mind twisted, perverted sense of morality affixing and this one is inevitable to the others, grasping materialism, drunken pleasure seeking defiant sinfulness moral perversion. Add an arrogant conceit.

Verse 21 won't have them who are wise in their own eyes, including their own sites, you know. Another characteristic of our society. They have all the answers they got all. Never has there been so much stupid talk.

We never had so much media capacity, but just goes on all time you turn on the radio talk talk talk talk further television. Blah blah blah blah conversations analyst age and's viewpoints, theories, books I'm telling you ad infinitum. Attanasio, everybody's got the answer. Also, ever learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. One is something inevitable when men live vial rotten lives and abandoned God, they'll put themselves on his throne, the greatest sin of man is the room. He really worships himself is the ultimate idolater we have in God we trust on our coins and me first in our hearts.

Isaiah chapter 29 similarly says in verse 14. Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish the understanding of their prudent men shall be hidden well and to those who seek deeply to hide their counsel from the Lord and their works are in the dark and they say who sees us and who knows us pieces I'll unmask them and I'll turn their foolishness aside.

Finally, this kind of a society was characterized by corrupt leadership. Verse 22 loan to them who are mighty to drink wine ministry ranks to drink and mix strong drink, who justify the wicked for reward. In other words, their bride and take away the righteousness of the righteous from you know what this is talking about is drunkenness and unbridled luxury but more than that it is directed at the leaders of the country, the rulers and the judges who were perverting justice two ways one by their drunkenness to buy taking bribes they could be bought. The leadership is corrupt.

How can these people make sensible moral judgments talking these people lead a right nation.

The word mighty there in verse 22, means, men of renown famous leaders. We see it on a local level. I tell you the scandals never ran on a state level and national level in your heart just aches you cry out for somebody with some sense somebody with a trust in God somebody with some standards for lead this people where we get our society just would Israel gave a grasping materialism a drunken pleasure seeking a defiant sinfulness of moral perversion, arrogant conceit, and the main thrust of it all just comes down from a corrected leadership.

What's a result. Verse 24 therefore therefore that you know it's a result. As the fire devours the stubble, and the flame consumes the chaff so their route shall be as rottenness and their blossoms shall go up as dust that was. He says it looks really good, but the roots are rotten and the blossom looks beautiful but it's fragile when the wind blows it'll blow as dust.

We talk about the great heritage of America. The roots go down great Christian heritage there rotten folks. Just like Israel's talk about the flower of American beauty. We talk about the wonderful country we live in, with its glories that with one half of the rest of God will blow itself away like the most fragile dandelion superficial prosperity, superficial strength, but it's fragile and about to disintegrate.

This is grace to you with John MacArthur.

Thanks for being with us today. John looked at God's word to an ungodly society. That's the title of the series. He started today, and friend. A great complement to John series is a book he wrote called right-thinking in a world gone wrong. It cuts through secular worldviews that saturate our culture and helps you apply God's truth to current moral, ethical and political issues. To order right thinking in a world gone wrong.

Get in touch with us today. You can call our toll-free number 855 race or go to our website Jide TY.org right-thinking in a world gone wrong can help you develop and maintain a biblical worldview in an increasingly ungodly culture. It makes a great gift for student going off to school this fall again to place your order.

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TTY.org now for John MacArthur and the entire Greece. Do you staff, I'm Phil Johnson. Thanks for making this broadcasts part of your day and join us tomorrow when John looks at what happens when a nation abandons God in his word. It's another 30 minutes of unleashing God's truth one verse at a time on grace to you


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