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Christ's Rule
Isaiah 11:6-16
Argument #3 Logical presentation
Book of Isaiah : Overview of BFF Contents

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The Bible Teacher's Commentary

Paul J. Bucknell

Isaiah 11:6-16 Three Interpretations
Argument #1 Word context | #2 Logical presentation
#3 Last section's timing | #4 'My holy mountain' | #5 'In that day'
Isaiah 11:6-16 Bible study questions
Isaiah Outline | Timeline | Overview | Brief Introductions
Isaiah 1-6 | 7-12 | 13-23 | 24-27 | 28-33 | 34-35 | 36-39 | 40-66

Christ's Rule: Isaiah 11:6-16
#2 Argument of logical presentation

Purpose

#2 Argument of logical presentation is the second of five arguments for a figurative interpretation of Isaiah 11:6-16 which argues from a point of unity between Isaiah 11:1-9.

Logical presentation of Isaiah 11:6-16

Secondly, we need to look at the logic of the argument or presentation and see if there is any reason to separate this passage into different sections.

Isaiah 11:6.  And the wolf will dwell with the lamb, And the leopard will lie down with the kid, And the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; And a little boy will lead them. (Isaiah 11:6, NASB).Isaiah 11:1-5 clearly refers to a future time when Christ Jesus was anointed full of the Spirit . When it was written, it was still future. Now it is about 2000 years in the past. We would normally conclude that the follow verses would be of the same time period unless the grammar suggested a different time. As we have seen, the grammar does not at all suggest this.

We then need to look at the meaning. This is what convinces many that a new section has begun in verse 6. In fact, we have interpreted the verses first and then made the separation. However, there is a stronger structural reasoning that would forcibly keep these times in the same New Testament era.

Let's say at this point that Isaiah 11 is divided up into three sections (1-5, 6-9, 10-16)(2). If section 1-5 speaks of a future time of Christ's time on earth, then it would make sense, if thee were no other grammatical markers, that the other sections would be in the same era. But say, because of meaning, we find that section 6-9 is in a far more remote future, then we should expect section 3 to also be of that far distant future.

We find, however, that the third section 11:10-16 clearly refers to the period of the first section - the NT era. It is after Jesus' time, but during the time of His disciples. Let's at two possibilities below.

Two Possibilities

11:1-5
Spirit Anointing

11:6-9 Harmony Restored

11:10-16 Worldwide Following

Possibility #1

(Believe 11:6-9 is separate)

NT age

(Christ's earthly ministry) (3)
Distant age

(millennium or heaven)
NT age

Church or don't know
If we can prove 11:10-16 refers to the NT age, then it is extremely awkward for 11:6-9 without any special announcement to refer to an age far distant in time after this.
Possibility #2

(Believe 11:1-9 is one unit)

NT age

(Christ's earthly ministry)
NT age

(Christ in church)
NT age

(Christ in church)
This is very consistent and what we would expect without any special transition markers. We will speak of the "in that day" later. What Christ has started, He continues in the church.

The following arguments will help clarify other questions.

Argument #3: The last section (11:10-16) refers to the NT age | Main article

Notes

(2)Actually Isaiah 11 might better begin in 10:33 with a 'behold' and the following series of 'wav' conjunctions until chapter 12:2 or 2:5 and 6, that is, if 12:2 serves as a quote of a song. In this case 12:5-6 serves as a fit conclusion of this section of Isaiah.

(3) Some commentaries suggest this might refer to some great King like Hezekiah. We see no NT support for this even if he partially inspired this concept. Even this, though, is not likely. Instead we see much confirmation that Christ was anointed with the Spirit in full and thus ministered.