Isaiah Chapter 22
In this passage, Isaiah delivers one of the most saddening of all the prophecies of the book, the proclamation against Jerusalem, the holy city. This capital of Judah is arrogant, boisterous, not aware of the impending tragedy. The rulers are already declared captured. The men are already seen as slain with the sword. Isaiah asked to look away as he weeps over the city.
Isaiah goes on the recount the circumstances of the destruction, as the walls are torn down, and the city is overcome by Elam and Kir, and chariots and horsemen are filling the surrounding valleys, even at the gates. The Lord removed the protection of Judah, and the damage was great.
The Lord God of Hosts then called for weeping and mourning over the judgment declared. However, the inhabitants of Jerusalem instead feasted, saying they would eat, drink, and be merry, for they were about to die. This arrogance elicited the response from God that is chilling:
14 Then it was revealed in my hearing by the Lord of hosts,
“Surely for this iniquity there will be no atonement for you,
Even to your death,” says the Lord God of hosts.
Shebna the Scribe then incurred the judgment of God. He was told that his iniquities were strong enough that his tomb would not even be used. Instead, he would be thrown out on the ground, and his shame will be great. The Lord will give his office to another, and Eliakim will wear his robe and belt and take his place. Eliakim will be a father to Jerusalem and have authority to open and close with the key of David. He will be fastened as a peg in a secure place.
God will judge arrogance and unrighteousness leadership. He will elevate the humble and obedient. Be part of the peg that remains, not the one that is removed!