Isaiah 57:1 - Premature Death Is Often A Blessing.

Isa. 57:1; Premature Death Is Often A Blessing.

CONTENT; What's in the verse; Translations; Paraphrase; Word 

Isa 57:1 (KJV)  The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to 
heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the 
righteous is taken away from the evil to come. 

Isa 57:1 (NLT)  The righteous pass away; the godly often die 
before their time. And no one seems to care or wonder why. No one seems 
to understand that God is protecting them from the evil to come. 

Isa 57:1 (CWR)  Good people die and no one considers why.  
Devout men are taken away and no one understands.  But the Lord takes 
them away to spare them from evil. 

CONTEXT; What's around the verse; Overview; Topic:

God will restore Zion (54:1-17). He invited all to share in that 
coming celebration (55:1-13). These blessings are for the righteous 
(56:1-8) rather than the wicked (v. 9-57:13); for the contrite (vv. 
14-21), whose faith is a matter of doing justice rather than keeping 
ritual fasts (58:1-14). 

56:9-57:21 Israel's Leadership Is Rebuked
In contrast to the righteous, the wicked face certain 
condemnation and judgment. Isaiah used picturesque language to describe the 
prophets of Israel (Isa. 56:10). They were likened to blind "watchmen" 
and "dogs" that could not bark. Isaiah suggested a positive view of 
death in that it removed a righteous person (like Josiah in 2 Kings 
23) from the evil of the day (Isa. 57:2-8). God is willing to 
provide deliverance from judgment for those who are truly humble and 
repentant (57:15; cf. 2 Pet. 3:9). The second section of Isaiah 40-66 
concludes with a statement of God's judgment on the wicked (Isa. 57:21; 
cf. 48:22). 

The Sins of Israel Bring the LORD's Anger
Evil Leaders Rebuked

CROSS REFERENCES; What's in verses elsewhere.

2 Kings 22:20 (KJV)  Behold therefore, I will gather thee unto 
thy fathers, and thou shalt be gathered into thy grave in peace; and 
thine eyes shall not see all the evil which I will bring upon this 
place. And they brought the king word again.  

2 Chron. 34:28 (KJV)  Behold, I will gather thee to thy fathers, 
and thou shalt be gathered to thy grave in peace, neither shall 
thine eyes see all the evil that I will bring upon this place, and 
upon the inhabitants of the same. So they brought the king word 

Micah 7:2 (KJV)  The good man is perished out of the earth: and 
there is none upright among men: they all lie in wait for blood; they 
hunt every man his brother with a net.  

COMMENTARY / APPLICATION: Moving From The Head To The Heart
What is God teaching here? What does it teach about Jesus?

Isaiah takes comfort in the thought that in times such as those 
described in this chapter the death of the righteous delivers them from 
greater evils that would befall them were they to live on. [SDA 

Why do righteous people sometimes pass from the scene when they 
are most needed in society? Isaiah's insight into this question is: 
The righteous are taken away to be spared from evil. Those who walk 
uprightly enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death. [Victor 
Teacher's Commentary] 

In general the Bible views death as an enemy, and sees long life 
as a blessing and gift from God. Yet death holds no terror for the 
believer. In fact, there are times when life itself is a greater burden. 
Here Isaiah observed that the premature death of a righteous man may 
well be a loving gift given by the LORD. What a powerful pair of 
verses to recall or to share when someone we know dies young. What 
assurance, here in the Old Testament, that upon dying those who walk 
uprightly "enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death." [The 
365-Day Devotional Commentary] 

The pious are often removed in order that they may not be 
exposed to evils which they would experience should they live. (Barnes' 

A new dimension is added to the understanding of death. It can 
be a deliverance from catastrophe and suffering, rather than merely 
a punishment for sin. God can use death to spare His righteous 
people worse horrors. [Disciple SB] 

God takes good people away from this evil world for one 
important reason. They can then be safe from the impure things that 
constantly threaten to contaminate them. Godly people find ultimate 
security only when they leave their present habitation to be with their 
Creator. [Disciple SB] 

Once upon a time a Man of God and a traveler took a journey 
together. About sundown the first day the Man of God led the traveler to a 
modest home and knocked on the door. A kind man invited them in and 
treated them like royalty. After a very pleasant evening together the 
host showed them a goblet made of pure gold. "This cup means very 
much to me because my neighbor, who has been an enemy, gave it to me 
as a token of friendship." 
The next morning the Man of God and the traveler thanked their 
host and started on their way. They had only walked a short distance 
when the Man of God said, "Wait here. I forgot something." He went 
back to the house and secretly entered the door. When he returned he 
had the beautiful gold goblet. 
The traveler was shocked. Why had the Man of God taken it?
That night the two stopped at a large landowner's mansion. "Bam, 
team, ham," went the large brass knocker. Finally, the door swung 
open, and a tall inebriated man shouted, "Yeah, wadda you want?" 
When the tyrannical landowner heard their request for lodging, 
he grunted, "Wadda ya think I run here, a hotel?" As they turned to 
leave, he yelled, "You can sleep in the barn if you want." 
In the middle of the night the landowner crept to the pack that 
belonged to the Man of God, searched it, and quietly removed the goblet. 
The traveler wanted to stop the thief but the Man of God whispered, 
"Wait. All will be well." Again the traveler was confused by the 
strange behavior of the Man of God. 
The next night they found themselves in a dense forest known to 
be the home of a band of robbers. They knocked at the door of a 
small cabin. The father hesitated when the men asked for lodging, but 
his boy insisted they should stay. 
After supper the boy settled himself at the foot of the Man of 
God and listened attentively to the stories he told. He seemed drawn 
to the Man of God and in the morning asked his father if he could 
go with them to the fork in the road and show them the way. As they 
crossed the narrow bridge the boy slipped and fell into the raging 
river. The traveler plunged into the icy water to save the lad, but it 
was too late. And all this time the Man of God did nothing. 
This was too much for the traveler. In agony he shouted to the 
Man of God, "What kind of a person are you anyway? You steal from 
the kind man, allow a tyrant to steal from you, and then just stand 
by while a boy drowns! Why? Tell me why!" 
At last the Man of God said, "It is not for most travelers to 
understand the ways of God, but for a moment I will open your eyes. The cup 
the enemy had given to the kind man was poisoned, and I wanted no 
harm to come to him. I allowed the landowner to steal the goblet 
because he may choose to drink from it, and the peasants will be free 
from his rule. And the boy," tears came to his eyes, "the boy loved 
me. But his father was the head of a gang of robbers, and if the boy 
had lived, he, because of his love for his father, would have 
followed in his father's steps. I allowed him to die to save him for 
The traveler at last nodded his head, "I understand," he said. 
[Creating Love by Kay Kuzma. p.163] 

Isa 55:8 (KJV)  For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither 
are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. 
Isa 55:9 (KJV)  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so 
are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your 

It is a sign that God intends war when he calls home his 
ambassadors. (Matthew Henry's Commentary) 

It has been often remarked that, previously to the execution of 
God's judgments upon a wicked place, he has removed good men from it, 
that they might not suffer with the wicked. When great and good men 
are removed by death, or otherwise, from any place, the remaining 
inhabitants have much cause to tremble. (Adam Clarke Commentary) 

1 Th 4:16 (KJV)  For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven 
with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of 
God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 
1 Th 4:17 (KJV)  Then we which are alive and remain shall be 
caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the 
air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 
1 Th 4:18 (KJV)  Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

The living righteous are changed "in a moment, in the twinkling 
of an eye." At the voice of God they were glorified; now they are 
made immortal and with the risen saints are caught up to meet their 
Lord in the air. Angels "gather together His elect from the four 
winds, from one end of heaven to the other." Little children are borne 
by holy angels to their mothers' arms. Friends long separated by 
death are united, nevermore to part, and with songs of gladness ascend 
together to the City of God.  {GC 645} 

We cannot look at the cross and still think our lives are of no 
account to God. [Your Daily Walk SB]