The book of Isaiah is centered on the theme of servanthood. Just as Isaiah had his lips cleansed so he could speak a message to the nation, so the nation of Judah was to experience a similar fiery cleansing so it could convey God’s message to the world. During this time, the Judean people asked many of the same questions we ask today. Has God rejected us? Is God capable of delivering us? If God wants to deliver us, both from circumstances and from our sins, and he can deliver us, is he actually going to deliver us?
In this OneBook Daily-Weekly, Dr. John Oswalt takes learners on a deep dive into chapters 40–55, where we discover that often we experience the fire of captivity is not for the purpose of destroying us, but rather for the purpose of cleansing us and revealing to us the strength and sovereignty of God.
Dr. John Oswalt is Visiting Distinguished Professor of Old Testament at Asbury Theological Seminary. His expertise is in Old Testament studies, Hebrew language, and Hebrew religion. His writings have appeared in Bible encyclopedias, scholarly journals and popular religious periodicals, and is a leading scholar on the book of Isaiah. He is married to the former Karen Kennedy, and they have three children and two grandchildren.