Chapters 28–35 are often referred to as Volume Five and the
Book of Woes preceding restoration glories.
Chapter 28 gives the woe against Ephraim. Verses 1-13 cover
the judgment of the ten tribes; while the fate of Ephraim and the
warning to Judah are given in verses 14-29.
In chapter 29:1 we see the word “Ariel.” This is a name for
Jerusalem, which means “the lion of God.” In this chapter Isaiah is
prophesying that the nation would suddenly be overwhelmed. We will
see in chapter 37:36 that this prophecy was fulfilled. All this
happened despite Jerusalem’s sacred character as the lion of God,
because the people were only giving lip service to the Lord and were
following men’s commandments rather than the commandments of God.
Because of their turning away from God, the Lord would encamp
against them. He would besiege Jerusalem (verses 2 and 3) until the
city was brought to the dust (verses 4 and 5). The Lord would then
deal with Jerusalem’s enemies (verses 5-10). Verses 11 and 12 give
us the prophecy for the end-time. Verses 13-16 show the condition of
the people as being one of religious blindness and empty formalism.
Woe is pronounced upon those who think their dark deeds are hidden
from the Lord.
We see in chapter 30 that the people again put their trust
in man. They looked to Egypt for help, but in vain. The contempt of
Jehovah, accompanied by refusal of the people to hearken to His
Word, added yet more to their iniquity. God allowed the evil, but
only in order to give free course to His grace. He allowed the
chastisement to be fully accomplished, that nothing might be left
for Him but perfect grace.