Isaiah’s Pattern of Doom

As I was working my way through Isaiah 9 and 10, I couldn’t help but notice that the description of the doom that was coming to Israel/Judah was punctuated by the repeated phrase “Despite all this, His anger does not subside, and His hand is ready to strike again.” (Isa 9:12, Isa 9:17, Isa 9:21, Isa 10:4)

Immediately it made me think of Moses’ fortelling of how the Children of Israel would rebel and would pursue other gods and not keep His laws and commandments. Not only did Moses tell them that they would fall away from God, but he also told them what God Himself would do to them when they fell away. You can read it in Lev 26 (and the more detailed (and grisly) parallel in Deut 28). What jumped out in my mind is that in these warning passages, God warned them that if they did not turn, He would “raise the volume” and punish them even more. He repeated this “raise the volume” warning several times throughout the chapter.

So I wondered if there was a direct parallel between those passages and Isaiah 9/10. Sure enough, the “raise the volume” warning appears 4 times in Lev 26:14, Lev 26:21, Lev 26:23, Lev 26:27 . It’s the same number of times that God says “despite all this, his anger does not subside, and his hand is ready to strike again” in Is 9 & 10.

How weird is that?
Was Isaiah deliberately trying to draw the people’s attention to Lev 26? I’d bet a nickel that he was.

I haven’t gone through and done a play-by-play comparison between the woes in Lev 26 with the woes in Is 9/10, but I wouldn’t be surprised if there was some simliarity there.

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