Yes, truth is lacking;
And he who turns aside from evil makes himself a prey.
Now the LORD saw,
And it was displeasing in His sight that there was no justice.
And He saw that there was no man,
And was astonished that there was no one to intercede;
Then His own arm brought salvation to Him,
And His righteousness upheld Him.
He put on righteousness like a breastplate,
And a helmet of salvation on His head;
And He put on garments of vengeance for clothing
And wrapped Himself with zeal as a mantle.
According to their deeds, so He will repay,
Wrath to His adversaries, recompense to His enemies;
To the coastlands He will make recompense.
So they will fear the name of the LORD from the west
And His glory from the rising of the sun,
For He will come like a rushing stream
Which the wind of the LORD drives.
“A Redeemer will come to Zion,
And to those who turn from transgression in Jacob,” declares the LORD.
“As for Me, this is My covenant with them,” says the LORD: “My Spirit which is upon you, and My words which I have put in your mouth shall not depart from your mouth, nor from the mouth of your offspring, nor from the mouth of your offspring’s offspring,” says the LORD, “from now and forever.” (Isaiah 59:15-21)
Truth and justice are not as popular as some slogans might make us think. Instead, people would rather know what they’ve always known and what they’re comfortable with. And too often, good guys do finish last. Or worse, get eaten alive.
God understands that the world of human relationships and activities too often fails to work the way he’d like. It has always been thus. In the time of Isaiah, his government wasn’t overjoyed by his message; many of the people in the land were not particularly happy to hear what he had to say, either. The truth is sometimes very painful, very unpopular, and does not make anyone feel good. He predicted the destruction of his nation by the invasion of powerful neighbors. People were suffering, which is why God was bringing his judgment. Those who heard God’s message accused Isaiah of being a traitor and of hating his own countrymen.
God understood that no one would take care of rescuing his people. And none of them could save themselves. Therefore, God took the task upon himself. He recognized that salvation was dependent upon him, and him alone. He would see to it that his people came back from captivity in Babylon. Likewise, he would ultimately see to it that his people came back from their bondage to sin when he sacrificed himself on the cross.