Isaiah 11:1-8

Isa 11:1

And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:


Now the prophet Isaiah looks ahead to the coming of the Messiah.  The Assyrians had nearly destroyed Judah but the kings from the lineage of David sat on their throne until 586 B.C. when they were taken to Babylon.  Assyria was called the rod in God’s hand as he used them to bring judgment upon Judah and Israel.  In this verse the Lord Jesus Christ is referred to as a rod from the stem of Jesse.  Jesse was the father of King David and what is referred to here is the Messianic line leading to the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ.  The Lord Jesus Christ is referred to as the Branch in Zechariah 6:12.  And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH; and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the LORD: (Zechariah 6:12)  The Messiah ben David.  Isaiah prophesied further of his coming.  And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.  (Isaiah 11:10)  He shall be of the tribe of Judah and will be in the line of David.  When Christ comes on the scene, he will build the temple.  Not the physical temple because that is what the Pharisees stumbled on believing Christ would raise the temple in three days.  And said, This fellow said, I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to build it in three days.  (Matthew 26:61)  The temple which will be built is the body of believers.  Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?  (1 Corinthians 3:16)  All the elect of God will be saved until the last day when the temple will be complete.  The body of believers is the third temple.


Isa 11:2

And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;


For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell; (Colossians 1:19)  He will have the full measure of the Holy Spirit, that is, without measure as it is in the believers which receive only a measure of faith because of our humanity.  Because Christ is full Deity, he will have the Holy Spirit in an unmeasurable capacity.  The Holy Spirit will rest upon him that means he will be fully indwelt with the Holy Spirit which will result in the decisions and the counsel he will give to others.  He will have wisdom which will exceed that of Solomon who has been called the wisest man who ever lived.  And God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding exceeding much, and largeness of heart, even as the sand that is on the sea shore. (1 Kings 4:29)  Christ showed his wisdom and understanding when he was 12 years old and was in discussion with the Doctors of the law in the Temple.  He will have the spirit of counsel which will be “wonderful counselor” as stated back in chapter 9.  One such example is when the Herodians tried to trap Jesus into speaking against taxes to Rome.  Jesus responded to them in a way they could not answer or refute.  They say unto him, Caesar's. Then saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's. (Matthew 22:21) 


Jesus had the spirit of understanding and knew what was in the hearts of men.  But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men, (John 2:24)  Understanding includes knowing good from evil and that is what Christ did as he discerned all situations.  The spirit of might was given him to perform all the miracles that he did such as feed the 5,000 or raise Lazarus from the dead.  Jesus had the spirit of knowledge in which he was the only one who really knew God the Father.  No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him. (John 1:18)  He was also given the spirit of fear which meant that he was given the respect and people feared him in a reverent manner as they saw him perform functions that only God could do and that caused many people to kneel in front of him and worship him.  And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. (Matthew 8:2)


Isa 11:3

And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:


The quick understanding will give him the ability to make righteous judgments quickly. Just like someone smells something and know instantly whether it is a good or bad smell, the Lord Jesus will have the ability to make quick but right and proper judgments.  He would have the discernment to know whether someone had the fear of the LORD or not, meaning he would know who was his and who was his enemy.  He shall not judge according to sight nor according to what is heard but he will have the ability to judge the hearts of men that goes beyond the senses.  We go back to our verse which teaches that Christ knew exactly what was in man, whether it be righteousness or evil.  Jesus showed this attribute when he first met Nathanael.  Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile! (John 1:47) 


Isa 11:4

But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.


Unlike the leaders of Israel that abused the poor and gave them no justice or proper judgment, the Messiah will deal with all people in righteousness.  There will be no social standing in this judgment and the righteousness will be dealt to those whom God plans to save, to those who acknowledge their need of a Savior, whom God opens their eyes to their sins and their inability to do anything to obtain favor with God.  Even those who are the most poor will be treated with equality as those who are wealthy and it will not matter how many possessions a person has, all will be treated equally as the ground is level at the foot of the cross.  There will be two ways he will smite the earth.  The first way is when his word is preached all over this world and the evil consciences are smitten with the true gospel and they becomes saved.  The second way is that the wicked will be slain on the last day.  And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. (Revelation 19:15) The sentence of eternal damnation hangs over every unsaved person and those who are the unsaved on Judgment day will face the winepress of the fierceness of God as he gives the final judgment upon sin.


Isa 11:5

And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins.


The girdle was a belt and sash which symbolized being ready for action and was also used as an ornament.  Everything the Lord Jesus Christ will do will be from a standpoint of righteousness and nothing will be done in his ministry on earth out of personal desire or wantonness.   The reins basically say the same thing.  As one drives a team of horses with reins, the Lord Jesus Christ will order his life and ministry in the realm of faithfulness.  Faithfulness to his Heavenly Father and faithfulness to his mission on earth to die for all the Elect.  And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. (Revelation 19:11) 


Isa 11:6

The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.


It is unfortunate that many theologians and Christians attempt to make this portion of Scripture a description of the Millennium.  There is no such thing in Scripture as a Millennial reign of Christ on earth for a thousand years.  This is just very bad exegesis and shows that the majority of commentators do not know their Bibles and inject false teachings to fill that gap.  What is in view here is a time when there is going to be absolute peace on earth.  This will only happen after sin is judged and removed from the earth in its entirety.  This is speaking of the New Heavens and New Earth where sin is gone and righteousness dwells.  Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. (2 Peter 3:13)  If Isaiah 11:6 was some type of millennium, then sin would still be present and those animals mentioned above would still have the viciousness of the sinful nature.  Look at the animals and what they are paired up with.  The wolf is a predatory animal and would devour a helpless lamb on the spot.  The leopard which is another predatory animal would devour a young goat, kid, in a heartbeat.  Then we see a calf which would be a young cow, the fatling which would be a fattened calf and then in that group is a young lion which would rip the calf and cow to shreds and probably kill the young child but here they are under the authority and leadership of a young child who is a very vulnerable individual.


Isa 11:7

And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.


Then the cow and bear would eat together.  Spiritually speaking those who were of a predatory nature in their unsaved state would now be brethren to those they might have ruled over and caused problems for them.  Now because of the gospel, they are no longer enemies but are now brethren.  The young bears and cows shall lie down together and the cows would not have fear because of the bears.  The lion which is a carnivorous meat eater would now be eating straw like the oxen.  Spiritually speaking both the lion and the oxen would be representing two types of people who now share the same gospel which is represented by the straw.  Remember in Egypt the Israelites used straw to make the bricks and bricks are what makes a building and the believer is a brick in the temple of the LORD.  21 In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: 22 In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit. (Ephesians 2:21-22) 


Isa 11:8

And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice' den.


Here we have two of the most poisonous snakes.  The asp which is otherwise known as the adder which is a highly poisonous snake.  The sucking child or baby will be able to place at the entrance to their den and have no worry about being bit.  The same thing is applied to the child who is just a little bit older shall place his hand on the adder’s den (possibly a cobra) and will suffer no bite.  Satan has been compared to a serpent and no true Christian can ever be destroyed or overtaken by Satan as they are no longer of his kingdom.  The adders represent the fact that Satan has no authority over the believer.  The adder is such a mean snake that it cannot even be charmed like a Cobra according to Psalm 58:4-5.