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Isaiah 34:13-17: Seek out of the book of the Lord and read: not one of these shall fail

Isaiah 34:13-17

Amplified Bible, Classic Edition

13 And thorns shall come up in its palaces and strongholds, nettles and brambles in its fortresses; and it shall be a habitation for jackals, an abode for ostriches.

14 And the wild beasts of the desert will meet here with howling creatures [wolves and hyenas] and the [shaggy] wild goat will call to his fellow; the night monster will settle there and find a place of rest.

15 There shall the arrow snake make her nest and lay her eggs and hatch them and gather her young under her shade; there shall the kites be gathered [also to breed] every one with its mate.

16 Seek out of the book of the Lord and read: not one of these [details of prophecy] shall fail, none shall want and lack her mate [in fulfillment]. For the mouth [of the Lord] has commanded, and His Spirit has gathered them.

17 And He has cast the lot for them, and His hand has portioned [Edom] to [the wild beasts] by measuring line. They shall possess it forever; from generation to generation they shall dwell in it.


When the judgement of God is poured out upon Edom or any nation for that matter, it is devastating. God gives us a picture here of the results of His judgement. Nations before the judgement of God touches it believes themselves to be strong and mighty in themselves. But here the Lord says that thorns shall come up in its palaces and strongholds, nettles and brambles in its fortresses. Strongholds and fortresses were used in defense and the military might of a nation. But here they have been left desolated by the Living God. This simply demonstrates the foolishness of man in his wickedness. The more wicked people become, the more self-centered they become. They believe their lives are untouchable, but there is an appointed hour in which God will rightly deal with them.

Jackals and Ostriches were often found in desolate places. This again is a picture of a once thriving nation being brought to a wilderness. The strength of a nation and its ability to stand ultimately is in the hands of God. Every great empire of the world at some point came to a point of destruction and desolation. When pride and arrogance grow in the heart of people, it always invites the judgement of God because the actions that grow out of pride and arrogance are in direct contrast to God and His kingdom.


Animals who are classified as desert creatures and who are comfortable in the desolate wilderness would make their home in Edom after God had poured out His judgement. It again gives us an understanding of how thorough the judgement of God would be. Many times we may look at the wicked of our day and wonder and even ask “God where is your justice”. But we must trust the Lord at all times. His timing is perfect and His ways are perfect. There is nothing new under the sun and God is not surprised by anything that is happening.


The Lord says to seek out the book of the Lord. All that God has spoken through Isaiah shall come to pass. God’s word will never return void. God’s word will never fall to the ground. In Isaiah’s day and throughout the history of Israel there were many false prophets who arose to simply tell the people what they wanted to hear. But Isaiah is a true prophet of the Lord. He is a spokesman and messenger for the Lord.

When the mouth of the Lord commands His word, it is the Spirit of God that brings it to pass. This is why the word of God is called the sword of the Spirit. The sword of the Spirit is far more powerful than we understand. Often we look at God’s word and if we are a brand new christian or immature in our walk with God, we may simply view the word of God as words on a page that tell us about God.

But when the word of God is proclaimed, the purposes of God are accomplished. When we partner our faith with the word of God and stand upon the word of God, the power of God is made available to accomplish the purposes of God. There is nothing that Satan and all the hordes of hell can do to hinder the word of God. The enemy's target will always be us. He will always try to get us to doubt and abandon the word of God. But God’s word is truth, it will always come to pass. Everything He has declared not only concerning Edom in this chapter, but throughout the entire bible will come to pass.


Just as God promised to give the land to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, God’s promise concerning the judgment of Edom would be sure as well. Here it says He has cast the lot for them, and His hand has portioned to by measuring line. God would pour out His judgement surely upon Edom. At this moment in time as Isaiah proclaims the word of the Lord, it would sound foolish to Edom that this could take place. But when God speaks of things to come, they will indeed come because He is the one who shall bring it to pass. The wild animals and desolate creatures that the Lord has previously listed will indeed possess the area of Edom forever.

The more time we spend in the word of God we come to understand how truly foolish it is to doubt the word of God. Time and time again God has demonstrated His faithfulness through the lives of so many. When God reveals things to us concerning our lives and His plans, we must hold fast to what God has spoken to us. It is by His grace and power that all things come to pass. Even the judgement that is coming to the nations of the world can seem at times like it is never going to happen. But the mercy of God is far greater than we understand. He is very patient and His desire is that the wicked would repent and turn from their wicked ways. But judgement is indeed coming and in God’s time He will rightly deal with the wicked.

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