The 18th chapter of Isaiah opens with these words: “Ha
for the land of the whirring insects with wings, which is in the region
of the rivers of Ethiopia! It is the one sending forth envoys by means
of the sea, and by means of vessels of papyrus upon the surface of the
waters, saying: ‘Go, you swift messengers, to a nation drawn out and
scoured, to a people fear-inspiring everywhere, a nation of tensile
strength and of treading down, whose land the rivers have washed away.’”
What is the land
of the whirring insects with wings and what is the message of the envoys
God commands them to send forth? And who are the fear-inspiring people
and the nation of tensile strength to whom the messengers are sent?
the years that I have studied prophecy I have revisited the 18th
chapter of Isaiah many times to ponder it’s possible meaning. It remains
maddeningly inscrutable. What seems clear, though, is that, the
prophecy is intended to apply to the ultimate success of God’s purpose
at the conclusion of the present system of things.
And what is God’s purpose?
all of Jehovah’s Witnesses know, God’s grand, over-arching purpose is
to bring forth a new creation composed of 144,001 humans that will
ultimately be reborn into immortal, incorruptible spirits. Jesus is, of
course, “the firstborn among many brothers,” as Paul described the