TUESDAY – Isaiah 45:23


I think one of the more compelling and pre-eminent verses in the Bible is Isaiah 45:23.

NAU Isaiah 45:23 I have sworn by Myself, The word has gone forth from My mouth in righteousness And will not turn back, That to Me every knee will bow, every tongue will swear allegiance.

NIV Isaiah 45:23 By myself I have sworn, my mouth has uttered in all integrity a word that will not be revoked: Before me every knee will bow; by me every tongue will swear.

KJV Isaiah 45:23 I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.

Isaiah is like the Bible in miniature. The Bible has 66 books, the Book of Isaiah has 66 chapters. The Bible is divided into two parts – the Old Testament (39 books) and the New Testament (27 books). Isaiah is divided into two parts – The Prophecies of Condemnation (the first 39 chapters) and the Prophecies of Comfort (the next 27 chapters).

Isaiah 45 is found in part 2 of Isaiah – The prophecies of Comfort. More particularly it is found in a section dealing with prophecies discussing the deliverance of Israel. More specifically, chapter 45 is detailing God’s comforting of Israel after using Cyrus to deliver the nation. It is also a chapter dealing with Divine Lordship over mankind.

Isaiah 45:23 is the basis for two arguments used by Paul in the New Testament found in Romans 14:11 and Philippians2:10. In Romans 14:11 it is used in a discussion of Christian principles to discourage judgmentalism among Christians. His argument is that all believers will appear before the judgment seat of Christ and give an account to Him, therefore, we must not judge other Christians based on our preferences rather than the clearly proclaimed standards of God.

Philippians 2:10 is used a little differently. After describing the submission of Jesus’ Divinity to His humanity in the Incarnation as an example of humility for Christians to follow, he uses Isaiah 45:23 to exalt Jesus as the Messiah to be worshipped. I think Paul also had a picture from Psalm 2:12 in his mind as well.

As a pre-eminent verse in the OT used twice in the NT, Isaiah 45:23 should command our attention. It tells us that one day everyone will bow their knee to God. Why? Why should we bow our knees to God Almighty? It is this question we will attempt to answer this week.

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