Isaiah 9:12
Aram from the east and Philistia from the west have devoured Israel with open mouths. Despite all this, His anger is not turned away; His hand is still upraised.
Sermons
The Divine AngerR. Tuck Isaiah 9:12
The Evil Spirit of DefianceW. Clarkson Isaiah 9:8-12
God's JudgmentsJ. Tillotson, D. D.Isaiah 9:12-13
The End of Judgments and the Reason of Their ContinuanceJ. Tillotson, D. D.Isaiah 9:12-13
For all this his anger is not turned away. The reference of the previous verses is to the calamities which are surely overtaking Rezin of Syria, and Pekah of Israel, as judgments on them, signs of Divine indignation, for their schemes against Judah. Rezin was threatened by Assyria; Pekah was threatened both by his former ally, Israel, and on the other side by the Philistines. As yet, however, these judgments had not proved effectual in humbling Rezin and Pekah, or in leading them to forsake their self-willed ways and seek the help and guidance of Jehovah; so yet more and heavier judgments must come on them, and they must not think, because there seemed a little lull in the storm, that Divine wrath was abated. Divine judgments were exhausted, or God's outstretched hand drawn back.

I. DIVINE ANGER, BEING THAT OF AN INFINITE BEING, CAN NEVER BE AT A LOSS FOR MODES OF EXPRESSION. There are always fresh arrows in his quiver. This should check all carnal security. Clear heavens may but mean gathering storms. Hush in the evening air may but indicate approaching earthquake. The seemingly secure house of prosperity may be within a moment of the lightning-flash. God can always find out how best to smite.

II. DIVINE ANGER, BEING A REMEDIAL FORCE, WILL NOT CEASE UNTIL ITS PURPOSES ARE WROUGHT OUT. It proposed the humbling of Syria and Israel, and the conviction of the sin of their willfulness and ungodliness. Therefore, if Syria and Israel resisted one expression of the anger, another must be found. Since the anger works only towards good, we may well say, "Blessed be God, that he will never cease to be angry until he is enabled to forgive."

III. DIVINE ANGER, BEING THE STERN SIDE OF LOVE, SPENDS ITSELF IN CORRECTIVE DISPENSATIONS. If we ask what Divine love would do for sinners, for rebellious, for persistent sinners, then the answer will tell us what Divine anger would do for them. To the resistant and willful God's dealings take form as anger. To the submissive and humble God's dealings take form as chastisement. The features prominent in Divine dealings we ourselves determine by the response which we make to those dealings. - R.T.







For all thin ms anger is not turned away.
I. THE DESIGN AND INTENTION OF GOD IN SENDING JUDGMENT UPON A PEOPLE; that is, to reclaim them from all their sins, implied in these words, "for the people turneth not to Him that smiteth them." This, indeed, is the intention of all God's dispensations towards us in this world. The end of all His mercies is to take us off from our sins and win us to our duty (Romans 2:4). This is the way wherein God delights to deal with us. The way of judgment is that which He is more averse from. Though the judgments of God be evils in themselves, yet considering the intentions of God in them, they are no real objections against His goodness, but rather arguments for it.

1. The judgments of God are proper for the cure of a far greater evil of another kind — the evil of sin. We take wrong measures of things, when we judge those to be the greatest evils which afflict our bodies, wound our reputation, and impoverish our estates. For those certainly are far the greatest which affect our noblest part; which vitiate our understandings, deprave our wills, and wound and defile our souls. Now it is very agreeable with the goodness and mercy of the Divine providence, to administer to us whatever is proper for the cure of so great an evil.

2. The judgments of God are likewise proper for the preventing of far greater evils of the same kind; I mean, further punishments. In sending temporal judgments upon sinners God usually proceeds by degrees.

3. The judgments of God are not only proper to these ends, but in many cases very necessary. Our condition many times is such as to require this severe way of proceeding, because no other course God hath taken, or can take with us, will probably do us good. The providence. of God makes use of hunger and extreme necessity to bring home the prodigal (Luke 15).

II. THE REASON OF THE CONTINUANCE OF GOD'S JUDGMENTS — because the people were not reclaimed by them. And how can t be expected it should be otherwise, when incorrigibleness under the judgments of God is a provocation of so high a nature, a sign of a most depraved temper, and an argument of the greatest obstinacy in evil? (2 Chronicles 28:22; Leviticus 26:22, etc.; Deuteronomy 28:58, 59; Isaiah 1:4, 5; Hosea 7:9, 10; Amos 4:11, 12; Psalm 18:26.)

(J. Tillotson, D. D.)

God hath invited us to Him by many blessings, but we would not come; so (to borrow an apt illustration from Bishop Sanderson) we have forced Him to deal with us as Absalom did with Joab: he sent one civil message to him after another, but he would not come; at last he set on fire his cornfield to try whether that would bring him: this course God hath taken with us; we would not be persuaded by messages of kindness (by His many blessings and favours) to return to Him, and therefore hath He sent amongst us the terrible messengers of His wrath.

(J. Tillotson, D. D.)

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