King James Version
11 And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:
2 And the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord;
3 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the Lord: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:
Isaiah wrote about the time when the cruel king of Assyria would march against the northern kingdom of Israel and carry God’s people away into captivity. Similarly, he talked of the time when the southern kingdom of Judah would be enslaved by the great Babylonian king, Nebuchadnezzar, and both events are recorded in the annals of history. However, in chapters 11 and 12, Isaiah writes of the coming millennial kingdom of Christ and a second gathering of His people back to their promised homeland – from which they will never again be scattered.
Isaiah prophesied centuries before the first two dispersions into Assyria and Babylon and both events are fully recorded in holy Scripture, and yet in chapter 11 we are given the most spectacular glimpse into the Messiah’s millennial kingdom, which will only become a reality on earth at Christ’s second advent.
This passaged gives a detailed description of the Messiah – His Person and lineage, His equity and righteousness, His goodness and grace, His wisdom and understanding, His counsel and might, His faithfulness and reverential fear of the Lord.
It is as Isaiah details the characteristics of Christ’s coming earthly rule that we realise this passage can only be referring to His future kingdom on earth, for we discover that the cow and bear will graze together in the same field; the lion shall eat straw like an ox; the nursing child shall frolic on a cobra’s den and the earth will be filled with the glory of God as the waters cover the sea.
It is during that same future ‘day’ that we discover, for a second time in Israel’s history, that the Lord will regather the remnant of His dispersed people back to their promised homeland. The first time he brought them back from Babylon captivity, but this time He will gather them from the four corners of the earth – it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again, a second time, to recover the remnant of His people.
The books of Ezra and Nehemiah detail events that occurred the first time God brought them back to their homeland to rebuild the city and the sanctuary in Jerusalem, following their captivity in Babylon. However, Isaiah was inspired to write that God would bring His people back to the land of Israel a second time – the Lord will set his hand once more – a second time, to recover the remnant of His people.
The first time, a captive remnant from Judah returned from one location – Babylon, but in this future event we discover the remnant of God’s people, who are still alive, will return from Assyria, Egypt, Pathros, Cush, Elam, Shinar, Hamath and from the islands of the sea.
God has not finished with His people Israel, even though they have been set aside during this Church age. The promised kingdom that Christ came to set up at His first coming has simply been postponed, until Christ returns in power of great glory, at the end of the coming tribulation, to set up His kingdom on earth. It is at that time the Lord shall set his hand again – a second time to recover the remnant of His people – those who have survived the terrible time of Jacob’s Trouble.
Although some Jews returned to Israel in 1948, they returned in unbelief. Even though the land of Israel is inhabited by Jews from around the world, there are many Jews that remain in Assyria, Egypt, Pathros, Cush, Elam, Shinar, Hamath and the islands across the sea – England, America, Australia, Japan, Korea.
Some of God’s people may have returned to their homeland as the dead, dry, lifeless bones described in Ezekiel 37, but they have not been born-anew by the ‘in-breathing’ of eternal life from the Holy Spirit, which ONLY comes from faith in Jesus – their Messiah and King.
Let us pray for the salvation of the people of Israel who continue to remain dead in their sins and let us praise God that the time is coming when the blindness of their eyes, the resistant deafness of their ears and the hardness of their hearts will be softened. The day is comeing when life is breathed into the ‘dead bones’ of Israel, and they will look on Him Whom they pierced… and acknowledge Jesus as Lord – King of Israel and Governor of the whole earth.
Isaiah Chapter 11
The millennial reign of Christ is described (in 11:1-12:6). The time of the Messiah’s coming was undoubtedly a puzzle in Old Testament times. In this section, the prophet indicates that His coming is yet in the distant future. Isaiah predicts that the “tree” of the line of David will be cut down and that a shoot must grow out of the stock of Jesse before it will flourish again.
He predicts that a rod (choter, “shoot” or “sprout”), will come forth from the stem (geza, “root” or “stump”), of Jesse (David’s father and the forefather of the Davidic line). Branch (netser), is used in parallel with rod.
Isaiah 11:1 “And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:”
Stem … Roots. With the Babylonian captivity (of 586 B.C.), the Davidic Dynasty appeared as decimated as the Assyrian army. A major difference between the two was the life remaining in the stump and roots of the Davidic line. That life was to manifest itself in new growth in the form of the Rod and Branch.
“Jesse”: Jesse was David’s father through whose line the Messianic King was to come (Ruth 4:22; 1 Samuel 16:1, 12, 13).
“Branch”: This was a title for the Messiah (see 4:2).
We have seen in the last lessons, that the wrath of God came against His people, and God allowed the Assyrians to devastate their country. Except for God’s remnant, they would have been annihilated.
There was a remnant left, however. It was as if the tree had been cut off even with the ground. It seems though a tree will come up again from the roots, if it gets enough water.
The word “rod” here, was translated from the word “choter”, which means twig. It appears that the growth that came forth was weak, but alive.
Job 14:7: “For there is hope of a tree, if it be cut down, that it will sprout again, and that the tender branch thereof will not cease.”
“Stem”, in this verse, means resemble. We can see this twig was not a literal twig, but a race of people stemming from Jesse through David. This remnant was like the roots of the tree. When the Spirit of God (water), was applied to the root, it grew again. At first it was weak.
The “Branch”, of course, is Jesus. He was spoken of as Son of David, because David was in His earthly ancestry.
Jeremiah 23:5 “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.”
These Scriptures should leave no doubt that this Branch is speaking of Jesus Christ. Jesus is actually the Tree of Life.
Verses 11:2-5: The Branch is personalized (in verse 2), as the Messiah himself. The spirit of the Lord refers to the sevenfold Spirit of God (Revelation 4:5), described here in relation to His seven attributes. The words for counsel and might are the same as used (in 9:6), to describe the divine Child. Because the Spirit of God is upon Him, the Messiah will not judge after the sight of his eyes, for He will have true spiritual vision and judge the poor with righteousness. He will rule the earth with the rod (shebet, scepter), of his mouth, the power of His spoken word, by which He will slay the wicked with His breath (Revelation 19:15).
Isaiah 11:2 “And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;”
The Spirit of the Lord: As the Spirit of the Lord came upon David when he was anointed king (1 Samuel 16:13; Psalm 51:11), so He will rest upon David’s descendent, Christ, who will rule the world.
This verse refers to the 3 persons of the Holy Trinity (see 6:3).
Wisdom and understanding … Console and might… Knowledge … Fear of the Lord. These are Spirit-imparted qualifications that will enable the Messiah to rule justly and effectively. Compare the 7-fold Spirit in Revelation 1:4.
Look with me, at the time when Jesus said this very thing about Himself.
Luke 4:16-19 “And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up for to read.” “And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written,” “The Spirit of the Lord [is] upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,” “To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.”
Jesus was of the Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit of God hovered over Mary, and she conceived of the Spirit of God. Jesus was God the Son housed in the flesh of man. Jesus is the Spirit of Wisdom. Wisdom is a gift from God. Jesus is the source of all Wisdom. “Understanding”, in the verse above, comes from a word that means helper.
The Holy Spirit is Helper, Teacher, and Guide. Jesus was full of the Spirit. In Him all the fullness of the Godhead dwelt. We find that counsel and might go hand in hand with wisdom. “Knowledge” is accumulated learning.
Jesus does not need to learn. He is all-knowing, so He is the source of knowledge. Fear, in the verse above, is speaking of a willingness to carry out the wishes of God. Jesus said, Father, not my will, but thine. He fulfills every statement in the verse above.
Isaiah 11:3 “And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:”
“Sight of His eyes … What His ears hear”: These are ordinary avenues for a king to obtain information needed to govern, but the future King will have supernatural perception beyond these usual sources.
Since Jesus is the Judge of all the world, and contains all knowledge and understanding, He will not judge as a man from outward appearances. He will not depend on his eyes, or His ears to guide Him in His judgment.
He will judge in truth, because He knows all things, even the heart of man. His judgment will be just. He will not need to hear the witnesses. He already knows everything about every individual on the earth.