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Eternity 2: In Stressful Times
(Isaiah 26:20 NKJV) Come, my people, enter your chambers, And shut your doors behind you; Hide yourself, as it were, for a little moment, Until the indignation is past.
God advises His people to hide themselves away while He judges the earth. Just like the Israelites hid in their houses with the blood covering the doorposts while the Destroyer went through the land of Egypt killing the first-born sons in the tenth plague, so a time comes when we must hide ourselves away while God does his awful work of judgment.
Isaiah goes on in the next verse: (Isaiah 26:21 NKJV) For behold, the LORD comes out of His place To punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity; The earth will also disclose her blood, And will no more cover her slain.
It is plain that this is no ordinary judgment but a final judgment, a great reckoning for "iniquity" (iniquity (chazon) is wickedness that carries its own punishment inherent in the crime, something that so violates justice that it must be punished and which slowly accumulates with great inevitability toward judgment. Amos likens it to a bulging wall that slowly but inevitably collapses on the head of the builder)
Some iniquities are not for us to deal with, they will only be dealt with by God. Only he cans et the world to right and there may be time when all we can do for justice is to hide in our rooms and pray.
In verse 20 Isaiah says "shut the door" - don't let evil in, hide away from it and don't even open the door a crack, not a millimeter or the flood will sweep through and take your soul with it. Evil can reach such a pitch that we can no longer control it, or reason with it, or witness to it, all we can do is hide from it and prevent it entering our lives - and that is enough.
Has the world reached that place yet where God's people need to withdraw from the world? Not quite, there is still plenty of scope in many nations for reason, involvement and witness. But in some places its getting very bad. In many places it may soon get worse. But the good news is that God is preparing to set His world straight - so rejoice!