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Isaiah prophesied during the reigns of Judean kings Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah (Isaiah 1:1) and met his end under the rule of the evil King Manasseh. Residing in Jerusalem (Isa 1:1), Isaiah’s ministry spanned from 739 to 681 BC, addressing the southern kingdom of Judah, which had strayed from God. In 722 BC, the Assyrians had already taken the northern kingdom of Israel into captivity. The kingdom of Judah was also in spiritual turmoil, plagued by idolatry and sinful practices, and faced threats from the Assyrians and the rising Babylonians.


The Book of Isaiah is renowned for its detailed messianic prophecies. These include the announcement of the Messiah’s coming (Isa 40:3-5), his virgin birth (Isa 7:14), his proclamation of the good news (Isa 61:1-3), his sacrificial death (Isa 52:13-53:12), and his return to claim His own (Isa 60:2-3). Jesus himself read from the Book of Isaiah in the synagogue, either by divine providence or because the synagogue attendant wanted to see how Jesus would interpret Isaiah’s prophecies.

Isaiah emphasized that God used pagan nations and their conquests as instruments to discipline sinful Israel. Nevertheless, he also gave hope, foretelling the coming of a promised Messiah who would usher in an era of peace and prosperity. The name “Isaiah” means “Yahweh saves,” encapsulating the core of his message—echoing the roles of Joshua and Jesus, who were also bearers of God’s saving power.


Isaiah, the son of Amoz, was called to his prophetic ministry around 740 BC, amidst significant political upheaval and moral decay in Israel. His ministry, which lasted about 50 years, is recorded in the Book of Isaiah, traditionally divided into three parts:

1. Proto-Isaiah (Chapters 1-39): This section includes prophecies attributed directly to Isaiah, focusing on judgment against Israel and surrounding nations, and calls for repentance.
2. Deutero-Isaiah (Chapters 40-55): Written during the Babylonian exile, these chapters offer comfort and hope, emphasizing the return to Jerusalem and the coming of a servant who will bring salvation.
3. Trito-Isaiah (Chapters 56-66): These chapters address the post-exilic community, focusing on themes of restoration and future glory.


Several of Isaiah’s prophecies are interpreted by Christians as foreshadowing the life and mission of Jesus Christ. Key parallels include:

1. The Virgin Birth: “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign; the young woman, pregnant and about to bear a son, shall name him Emmanuel. (Isa 7:14). Christians believe this prophecy is fulfilled in the birth of Jesus to the Virgin Mary (Mt 1:22-23).

2. The Suffering Servant: Isaiah chapter describes a “suffering servant” who is wounded for our transgressions and by whose stripes we are healed. This is seen as a direct reference to the suffering and crucifixion of Jesus, who bore the sins of humanity (1 Pet 2:24).

3. The Light to the Gentiles: “I will give you as a covenant for the people, a light for the nations” (Isa 42:6). Jesus’ mission is seen as bringing salvation to both Jews and Gentiles (Lk 2:32).

4. Proclamation of Good News: “The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me; He has sent me to bring good news to the afflicted, to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, release to the prisoners” (Isa 61:1). Jesus declared its fulfillment in him at the beginning of his ministry (Lk 4:18-21).


Isaiah, often called the “evangelical prophet,” provides profound insights into the coming Messiah, Jesus Christ. His prophecies, detailed and clear, resonate with New Testament writings, pointing directly to Jesus and revealing his identity, mission, and ultimate victory. Here’s what Isaiah’s message offers us today:

1. Call to Repentance and Righteousness: Isaiah’s prophecies call for repentance from sin and a return to righteous living, urging us to seek justice, care for the marginalized, and live in accordance with God’s will.

2. Hope and Comfort in Times of Trouble: Isaiah provides hope and reassurance of God’s presence and salvation, especially in times of suffering and exile. This encourages us to trust in God’s plan and remain steadfast in faith during difficult times.

3. Anticipation of the Messiah: Isaiah’s messianic prophecies invite us to recognize and celebrate Jesus as the fulfillment of God’s promises, deepening our understanding of Jesus’ mission and the nature of his kingdom.

4. Universal Salvation: Isaiah’s vision of a light to the Gentiles expands our understanding of God’s salvation as inclusive and universal. This encourages us to embrace and share the gospel with all people, transcending cultural and ethnic boundaries.

In summary, Isaiah’s prophetic words highlight the coming of Jesus, revealing his mission to bring salvation and establish a kingdom of peace and justice. Isaiah’s timeless message continues to inspire and guide believers, calling us to live righteously, hold onto hope, and share the good news of Jesus Christ with the world.

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