Isaiah 16

Those who will not yield to the fear of God,
will be made to yield to the fear of everything else.

1 Send ye the lamb to the ruler of the land from Sela to the wilderness, unto the mount of the daughter of Zion.

2 For it shall be, that, as a wandering bird cast out of the nest, so the daughters of Moab shall be at the fords of Arnon.

3 Take counsel, execute judgment; make thy shadow as the night in the midst of the noonday; hide the outcasts; bewray not him that wandereth.

4 Let mine outcasts dwell with thee, Moab; be thou a covert to them from the face of the spoiler: for the extortioner is at an end, the spoiler ceaseth, the oppressors are consumed out of the land.

5 And in mercy shall the throne be established: and he shall sit upon it in truth in the tabernacle of David, judging, and seeking judgment, and hasting righteousness.

6 ¶ We have heard of the pride of Moab; he is very proud: even of his haughtiness, and his pride, and his wrath: but his lies shall not be so.

7 Therefore shall Moab howl for Moab, every one shall howl: for the foundations of Kir-hareseth shall ye mourn; surely they are stricken.

8 For the fields of Heshbon languish, and the vine of Sibmah: the lords of the heathen have broken down the principal plants thereof, they are come even unto Jazer, they wandered through the wilderness: her branches are stretched out, they are gone over the sea.

9 ¶ Therefore I will bewail with the weeping of Jazer the vine of Sibmah: I will water thee with my tears, O Heshbon, and Elealeh: for the shouting for thy summer fruits and for thy harvest is fallen.

10 And gladness is taken away, and joy out of the plentiful field; and in the vineyards there shall be no singing, neither shall there be shouting: the treaders shall tread out no wine in their presses; I have made their vintage shouting to cease.

11 Wherefore my bowels shall sound like an harp for Moab, and mine inward parts for Kir-haresh.

12 ¶ And it shall come to pass, when it is seen that Moab is weary on the high place, that he shall come to his sanctuary to pray; but he shall not prevail.

13 This is the word that the LORD hath spoken concerning Moab since that time.

14 But now the LORD hath spoken, saying, Within three years, as the years of an hireling, and the glory of Moab shall be contemned, with all that great multitude; and the remnant shall be very small and feeble.

Isaiah 16:5—And in mercy shall the throne be established.

​   In those days thrones were not generally established in mercy; but in blood, and cruelty, and savage might. Addressing Moab, the prophet advises that in the hour of her anguish, when her fugitives gather at the fords of the Arnon, in their mad flight from before the conqueror, they should make peace with their ancient enemies the Jews, and appease their hatred, that the outcasts may find shelter in the Land of Promise. And he goes on to say, that when this should come to pass, their piteous appeal for protection will be generously met, because the throne shall at that time be established in mercy. The ancient causes of enmity will be forgotten; the old feuds will be condoned; and the protection of Israel will be to the trembling crowds of refugees like the shadow of a high rock flung across the sand, when all the land is baking in the noontide glare.
   Who can this be that sits on the throne of David, combining mercy with truth, seeking righteousness in his judgment, and swift to act on the behalf of the oppressed! None other than the Prince of the House of David, of whose kingdom there can be no end. Art thou a fugitive, driven from thy nest, and rushing to and fro as a scared and trembling bird (Isaiah 16:2)? Is the glare of the sun scorching thee? Dost thou stand at the fords of Arnon, with enemies behind, and death in front? Send ye lambs to the Mount of Zion; make peace with her King; invoke his forgiveness and salvation. Remember that though He is a great King, his throne is established in mercy. And his shadow shall be as the night in the midst of the noonday; He will hide the outcast, and will not betray the wanderer (Isaiah 16:3). —Our Daily Homily