Friday, November 18, 2016

A Study in Trust, Isaiah 22: 15-25

A short excerpt from “The Prophecy of Isaiah, J. Alec Motyer” that in my opinion has contemporary ramifications.

A Study in Trust (Isaiah 22:15-25) pg 186

Shebna found his identity as a person in the “this worldly” benefits of  his office, and he set about securing his “place in history” (legacy) by his own efforts.  He enjoyed a position as the king’s right hand man in charge of the palace (15).  He went in for ostentatious display (splendid chariots; 18) and he intended to perpetuate his memory in a grandiose tomb (16).  He was, therefore, individually what the nation was collectively: wedded to present satisfactions and self confident in the face of the future.  Thus, Isaiah holds up a mirror to his contemporaries.

Eliakim, in contrast, ran the risk of becoming the one whom others trust (see below on verses 23b-25) and in this exposes another alternative to the way of true faith.  The reliable office-holder attracts to himself the respect and confidence of people, but should this become a reliance on a human person replacing reliance on the Lord, the end is calamity (25)—both for the person who is thus foolishly trusted and for those who find their security in him or her.  Thus human beings are neither self-sufficient (Shebna) nor sufficient to others (Eliakim).  In each case there is a fatal usurpation of the place due only to the Lord.  Isaiah reiterates the message of 2:22, “Stop trusting in man”.

No comments: