New Living Translation
6 Scream in terror, for the day of the Lord has arrived— the time for the Almighty to destroy. 7 Every arm is paralyzed with fear. Every heart melts, 8 and people are terrified. Pangs of anguish grip them, like those of a woman in labor. They look helplessly at one another, their faces aflame with fear.
9 For see, the day of the Lord is coming— the terrible day of his fury and fierce anger. The land will be made desolate, and all the sinners destroyed with it. 10 The heavens will be black above them; the stars will give no light. The sun will be dark when it rises, and the moon will provide no light.
11 “I, the Lord, will punish the world for its evil and the wicked for their sin. I will crush the arrogance of the proud and humble the pride of the mighty. 12 I will make people scarcer than gold— more rare than the fine gold of Ophir. 13 For I will shake the heavens. The earth will move from its place when the Lord of Heaven’s Armies displays his wrath in the day of his fierce anger.”
14 Everyone in Babylon will run about like a hunted gazelle, like sheep without a shepherd. They will try to find their own people and flee to their own land. 15 Anyone who is captured will be cut down— run through with a sword. 16 Their little children will be dashed to death before their eyes. Their homes will be sacked, and their wives will be raped.
The day of the Lord always speaks of a time of God’s ultimate judgement. God is full of love, grace, and mercy. He gives people ample time to turn away from their sins and to turn and do that which is right according to Him and His kingdom. But sadly, people often in their pride are deceived by wickedness and believe they are not accountable to anyone. This is often how God deals with wicked people and wicked nations. They ultimately are destroyed by their own wickedness. The Living God knocks on the door of their heart, but He will never force them to do anything. When it says that God is God Almighty it speaks of none being greater. When God makes the decision to bring judgement, there is nothing that can stand in His way. One thing studying the word of God does for us is gives us a right understanding of God in the midst of our circumstances.
When God brings the Persians and the Medes against Babylon in judgement the results will be devastating. Any time you have a city you have a well populated area. Any time war breaks out, there are mass casualties. Here we see a description of the effects of war on the people. All hands will fall limp and every man’s heart will melt. This is simply the result of overwhelming fear. When the judgement of God is poured out on a nation or individual there is nowhere to hide. There is nowhere to escape. The pride of Babylon has brought them to this point.
Isaiah uses the picture of a woman who is travailing in childbirth. The immense pain that takes place in the body of a woman when she gives birth is not something we can fully understand unless it has been personally experienced. When a woman gives birth there is great joy after the pain because of that work and toil has brought forth a beautiful child. But sadly, here the pain and overwhelming sorrow of God because of judgement has no joy at the end. The only thing that remains is destruction. This is why when God sends forth His word to repent that it is wise to heed the word of the Living God. It is truly a dreadful and terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the Living God.
When the day of the Lord comes on anyone or any nation those involved in wicked will not escape. God has given them sufficient time to repent. The Lord says that all sinners will be destroyed. God doesn’t take pleasure in the destruction of the wicked, but when His kindness and mercy is rejected time and time again, the only thing left to experience is His judgement.
The sun and the moon will be impacted by the day of the Lord. Isaiah has now turned His attention to the end in which God will judge the world and its system. Often the system of the world is referred to Babylon. In the book of Revelation, the city from which the anti-Christ operates from is the city of Babylon. Babylon represents everything that is against God and His kingdom. In 1 Peter 5:13 Peter writes she who is in Babylon. It speaks of the body of Christ in the word system. We live in the world, but we are called not to be of the world. But there will come a day in which God will fully judge the wickedness of the world and its system. The world and its wicked system are driven and built upon the lies and deceptions of Satan.
The Lord speaks of moving against the world and its system. The Lord mentions the arrogance of the proud and the pride of the mighty. We are told in God’s word that pride comes before the fall. It is pride that caused Lucifer to fall. It is pride that has caused every person throughout history to reject the precious mercy and grace that God offers. God’s desire is that people would repent and humble themselves. But to experience the mercy and grace of God we must come to a place of humility and sadly many will not bow their knee to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
When God moves against the world and its system it will touch people from every walk of life. They will become more rare than fine gold. There will be no hiding from the hand of Almighty God. When we simply sit back and meditate on what God is offering us, He is offering us an opportunity to truly be forgiven. To have our sins removed as far as from the east from the west. Through Christ God has made a way for our sins to be removed. But again, people in their pride would rather chase after selfish sinful desire than live in obedience to the Living God.
The day of the Lord will be a time in which the fierce anger of Almighty God will be poured out. It will touch all of creation. We see in the book of Revelation that everything on the earth will be touched by the hand of God. Creation as it stands now is mired by sin. God is righteous, holy, and just. There is coming a day when God shall create a new heaven and earth. God is all about healing, restoration, and giving new life. If we truly desire new life in Jesus Christ, we must turn from living in sin and instead live fully for Almighty God.
When the judgement of God comes on the world and its system, there will be no place to hide from the Living God for those who live on the earth. They will be like a gazelle that is being hunted or a sheep without a shepherd. They will search for safety and security, but none will be found. They will try to seek out their own home and land believing it to bring a feeling of safety and security to them, but it will not be found. For when the day of the Lord comes it will be a determined time of judgement by Almighty God.
Isaiah tells us anyone who is captured will be cut down, will be run through with a sword. There will be no escape from the judgement of the Living God. Today when the gospel is shared with people in a nation where comfort is readily available, many consider it simply foolishness. They see the cross as foolishness and the thought or idea of the judgement of God is foolishness. But when we read these words of Isaiah, they are very vivid. They are vivid for a reason. When these words are read or proclaimed it is meant to move the sinner to repentance. To hear about the reality of the judgement of the Almighty and understand that the only escape is through humbling oneself and asking God for forgiveness. The only way to truly be saved is through repentance and confessing one’s sins. We cannot be saved by our works, because next to the Living God our works are nothing more than filthy rags.
When the judgement of God comes it touches every person in society. No matter their standing. Children would be dashed to death like pottery, homes would be sacked, and the wives of men would be raped. This sounds very cruel that God would do this. But when we examine the wickedness of the world and its system, how long God has given people time to repent, and how the gospel and His word is everywhere today on social media, it doesn’t seem that cruel. God every day is knocking on the hearts of so many. But people have no desire to be accountable to anyone. They have made themselves their own gods and the only thing that truly matters is their own desires.