Northern and southern kingdoms of Israel experienced nearly half century of prosperity, power under the Long suffering and Love of GOD. Northern kingdom under the reign of jeroboam and his successors fallen into the sin of pagan worship. Even though the kings in southern kingdom were somewhat GODly, they maintained only the outward rituals than confirming to Law of GOD in their hearts. This gradually lead to the decline of moral, spiritual standards in society. Rich started oppressing the poor and fatherless, widows. Secret places of pagan worship were raised in Judah. Priests became pleasers of men rather than insisting the commandments of GOD to the people.
This was the crucial time GOD sends Isaiah as prophet to the nation of Judah to express HIS displeasure about the sins of Judah and about the Judgement that is about to come from GOD. Isaiah prophesied not only about Judah but also about the surrounding pagan nations. The other purpose of the Isaiah is also to allow people look into the Glorious plan of Salvation, Comfort, Restoration set by GOD through HIS Messiah and turn away from their wicked ways.
The “office” of prophet was instituted during the days of Samuel, the last of the judges. Prophets stood with the priests as God’s special representatives. The prophet’s role was to speak for God, confronting the people and their leaders with God’s commands and promises. Because of this confrontational stance and the continuing tendency of people to disobey God, true prophets usually were not very popular. But though their message often went unheeded, they faithfully and forcefully proclaimed the truth.
The book of Isaiah is the first of the writings of the prophets in the Bible; and Isaiah, the author, is generally considered to be the greatest prophet. He was probably reared in an aristocratic home and was married to a prophet. In the beginning of his ministry he was well liked. But, like most prophets, he soon became unpopular because his messages were so difficult to hear. He called the people to turn from their lives of sin and warned them of God’s judgment and punishment. Isaiah had an active ministry for 60 years before he was executed during Manasseh’s reign (according to tradition).
As God’s special messenger to Judah, Isaiah prophesied during the reigns of several of its rulers. Many of those messages are recorded in his book: Uzziah and Jotham, chapters 1–6; Ahaz, chapters 7–14; and Hezekiah, chapters 15–39.
The first half of the book of Isaiah (chapters 1–39) contains scathing denunciations and pronouncements as he calls Judah, Israel, and the surrounding nations to repent of their sins. However, the last 27 (chapters 40–66) are filled with consolation and hope as Isaiah unfolds God’s promise of future blessings through his Messiah.
Isaiah has more to say about the greatness of God (ch. 40, 43), the horrors of the tribulation (24), the wonders of the millennium (35), and the ministry of Christ (53), than any other biblical book. Isaiah probably contains the most important and far -reaching chapter in the entire Old Testament – chapter 53. This amazing chapter alone is quoted from or alluded to some 85 times in the New Testament. Jesus said that Isaiah saw His glory and spoke of Him (Jn. 12:41).
As you read Isaiah, imagine this strong and courageous man of God, fearlessly proclaiming God’s word, and listen to his message in relation to your own life—return, repent, and be renewed. Then trust in God’s redemption through Christ and rejoice. Your Savior has come, and he’s coming again!