Isaiah 4 … Consider Him, Our Eternal Canopy

In that day the Branch of the Lord will be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth will be the pride and the adornment of the survivors of Israel… 5 then the Lord will create over the whole area of Mount Zion and over her assemblies a cloud by day, even smoke, and the brightness of a flaming fire by night; for over all the glory will be a canopy, (4:2, 5).

It’s a short chapter, but it’s filled to the brim and I am convinced we could park here for months and barely begin to unearth all its glorious treasures. Today’s chapter is both anticipative and reminiscent, foreshadowing the culmination of His promises for the future and calling to memory His faithfulness in the past.

And through the prophet, Isaiah, He proclaims His heart of love that offers hope for that day, as well as an invitation to come by faith to find shelter beneath Him, Our Eternal Canopy.

Consider Him, Our Eternal Canopy

In that day the Branch of the Lord will be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth will be the pride and the adornment of the survivors of Israel. It will come about that he who is left in Zion and remains in Jerusalem will be called holy—everyone who is recorded for life in Jerusalem. When the Lord has washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion and purged the bloodshed of Jerusalem from her midst, by the spirit of judgment and the spirit of burning, then the Lord will create over the whole area of Mount Zion and over her assemblies a cloud by day, even smoke, and the brightness of a flaming fire by night; for over all the glory will be a canopy. There will be a shelter to give shade from the heat by day, and refuge and protection from the storm and the rain, (4:2-6).

That day, or the day of the Lord, typically refers to the Day of God’s wrath poured out in His ultimate judgment, the Day of Christ’s triumphant return. Judgment and Triumph. And, oh praise God that His “mercy triumphs over judgment,” (James 2:13).

After a brief, but horrifying, description of the destitution awaiting the nation, signifying the many lives lost in battle that has left the women without hope for husband or family (For seven women will take hold of one man in that day, saying, “We will eat our own bread and wear our own clothes, only let us be called by your name; take away our reproach!” 4:1), the next four, and final verses of the chapter, direct the people’s attention to the ultimate mercy in the promised Messiah, the Branch of the Lord, the root of Jesse; Jesus, Our Eternal Canopy.

Then a shoot will spring from the stem of Jesse,
And a branch from his roots will bear fruit.
The Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him,
The spirit of wisdom and understanding,
The spirit of counsel and strength,
The spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord,
(Isaiah 11:1-2).

The record of the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham… Jesse was the father of David the king, (Matthew 1:1, 6).

Isaiah 4:2-6 precedes the coming pronouncement of judgment. But in this brief interlude, the Lord tenderly speaks of a future for His people in the promise of the Messiah Who would come as Our Eternal Canopy.

Canopy: “2646. חֻפָּה ḥuppāh: A feminine noun referring to a chamber, a cover, a canopy. It refers figuratively to the “bridal chamber” from which the sun comes forth (Ps. 19:5[6]; cf. Joel 2:16). It indicates a mighty, protective canopy over God’s people (Isa. 4:5).” Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance

And if we will but listen, we will hear His heart calling us to come to Him…

  • …Him, Our Eternal Canopy of beauty and fruitfulness.
    • In that day the Branch of the Lord will be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth will be the pride and the adornment of the survivors of Israel, (4:2).
  • …Him, Our Eternal Canopy of holiness and life.
    • It will come about that he who is left in Zion and remains in Jerusalem will be called holy—everyone who is recorded for life in Jerusalem, (4:3).
  • …Him, Our Eternal Canopy of cleansing and purging from sin and guilt.
    • When the Lord has washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion and purged the bloodshed of Jerusalem from her midst, by the spirit of judgment and the spirit of burning, (4:4).
  • …Him, Our Eternal Canopy to lead and shield us by day and by night.
    • then the Lord will create over the whole area of Mount Zion and over her assemblies a cloud by day, even smoke, and the brightness of a flaming fire by night…(4:5).
  • …Him, Our Eternal Canopy, where His glory will forever be our shelter, shade and refuge from the ravaging storms of sin and death.
    • for over all the glory will be a canopy. There will be a shelter to give shade from the heat by day, and refuge and protection from the storm and the rain, (4:5-6).

How do we respond to Him, Our Eternal Canopy?

The Bible, from cover to cover, is God’s progressive revelation of His plan of redemption for mankind.

And as we hear His tender heart’s cry to His people, let us remember His faithfulness in the past, calling His people out of bondage unto Himself, Our Eternal Canopy, Who faithfully led and shielded His people by day and by night.

The Lord was going before them in a pillar of cloud by day to lead them on the way, and in a pillar of fire by night to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night. 22 He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people, (Exodus 13:21-22).

And today, let us look with eager anticipation for that day; that day when mercy triumphs over judgment; that day when we will be drawn to the bridal chamber and live forever in beauty and fruitfulness, holiness and life; that day when we are cleansed and purged from all sin and guilt; that day when His glory will forever be our shelter, shade and refuge from the ravaging storms of sin and sorrow, pain and death as God Himself dwells among us, and we in Him, Our Eternal Canopy.

And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away,”  (Revelation 21:2-4).

Oh, Lord please use us to share Your heart with those who reject Your truth. We know You are patient and not willing that any should perish. Oh Lord, please use us to invite others to Jesus, that they too may have the blessings of forgiveness and their sins covered in Him, Our Eternal Canopy.

But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day. The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance, (2 Peter 3:8-9).

Blessed are those whose lawless deeds have been forgiven,
And whose sins have been covered,
(Romans 4:7).

Let’s Grow Together!

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