- Parent Category: FAQs
- Category: Bible Questions and Answers about Satan
- Published on Thursday, 19 November 2009 16:48
The previous chapter begins Isaiah’s burden against Babylon and blends statements about Babylon’s total devastation (yet future, Isaiah 13:9-13, 20; Revelation 18:21-23) with her overthrow by the Medes in 539 BC (vv 7, 8; 21:2-4; Dan 5:25-31). Chapter 14 continues and extends the thought. God’s judgment on Babylon in 538 BC would assure Israel of God’s millennial blessing on Israel. What was going to happen, when some from Israel returned from Babylon (now past, see Ezra, Nehemiah), foreshadows Israel’s yet-future return from the nations and her ascendancy. Likewise, the proverb (vv. 4-20) that Israel takes up against the king of Babylon may have this same duality - bringing together Babylon’s kings (like Belshazzar in the past) and all kings who attempt what Babylon’s kings hoped to accomplish. That includes the Beast, the future "Man of Sin." Babylon’s king fell (Dan 5:30). Political, infernal, and internal national results follow (Isa 14:4-11).
Some able commentators apply the next verse to the exalted brilliance of the king this proverb addresses. He became so great and boasted such power. Though proud, he had fallen ("cut down") like a tree. Masterfully, the following verse portrays the thinking of a Nebuchadnezzar (Dan 4:22, 30, 31), a Belshazzar (5:23), as well as the Beast (7:23, 25; 2Th 2:4; Rev 13:4-6). Each of those Babylonian kings (the first kings during the "Times of the Gentiles," Luke 21:24; Dan 2:31-44) and the Beast (the last of those kings) was (or will be) opposed to God and His people, lifted up with pride, and judged as was the devil (1Ti 3:6). Each reflects the consummate pride of Satan, who uses each one, particularly the Beast. But, this is a proverb or simile. None of those men were capable of the full extent of pride the devil expressed. None had been exalted so high or would be so shamefully defeated as he.
Therefore, this section of the proverb (vv. 12-15) is about Satan himself, Lucifer. This proverb, combined with Isaiah’s poetic style, uses figurative language (the morning, cut down, stars of God, mount of the congregation, sides of the north, heights of the clouds); it addresses Lucifer for at least two reasons. First, just as Satan, a greater than earth’s greatest kings and lifted up with unmatched pride, could not rival God, so neither could those proud kings prosper in opposing God and His people. Second, this passage exposes Satan as the instigator behind those kings and all else that opposes God’s people.