A NAIL IN A SURE PLACE
Isaiah 22:15 Thus saith the Lord GOD of hosts, Go, get thee unto this treasurer, even unto Shebna, which is over the house, and say, 16 What hast thou here? and whom hast thou here, that thou hast hewed thee out a sepulchre here, as he that heweth him out a sepulchre on high, and that graveth an habitation for himself in a rock? 17 Behold, the LORD will carry thee away with a mighty captivity, and will surely cover thee. 18 He will surely violently turn and toss thee like a ball into a large country: there shalt thou die, and there the chariots of thy glory shall be the shame of thy lord’s house. 19 And I will drive thee from thy station, and from thy state shall he pull thee down.
Isaiah 22:20 And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will call my servant Eliakim the son of Hilkiah: 21 And I will clothe him with thy robe, and strengthen him with thy girdle, and I will commit thy government into his hand: and he shall be a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to the house of Judah. 22 And the key of the house of David will I lay upon his shoulder; so he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open. 23 And I will fasten him as a nail in a sure place; and he shall be for a glorious throne to his father’s house. 24 And they shall hang upon him all the glory of his father’s house, the offspring and the issue, all vessels of small quantity, from the vessels of cups, even to all the vessels of flagons. 25 In that day, saith the LORD of hosts, shall the nail that is fastened in the sure place be removed, and be cut down, and fall; and the burden that was upon it shall be cut off: for the LORD hath spoken it.
The Lord, who looks upon the heart, sets forth two men of rank in Israel whom he brings to the attention of his prophet Isaiah. He sends Isaiah to Shebna, the treasurer of the temple, to inform him that the secret intents of his heart shall not be carried out. For Shebna has evidently made himself rich in carrying out his office duties. He has had a sepulchre hewed out on high, and has provided himself with “chariots of thy glory”. And he has promised himself that he shall have a glorious burial in his own city of Jerusalem.
But God sends Isaiah to him to inform him that his death shall be after he is carried away in a mighty captivity, being tossed like a ball into a large country. And in that foreign land the Lord would cover thee – that is, would bury him in the earth after he dies there.
A similar thing occurred to the Prophet Jeremiah concerning his secretary, Baruch. For the Lord God interrupted his revelation to Jeremiah in order to deal with the heart of Baruch. But unlike Shebna, God promised Baruch that he would sustain his life in all places whither thou goest. Jeremiah 45:2 Thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, unto thee, O Baruch; 3 Thou didst say, Woe is me now! for the LORD hath added grief to my sorrow; I fainted in my sighing, and I find no rest. 4 Thus shalt thou say unto him, The LORD saith thus; Behold, that which I have built will I break down, and that which I have planted I will pluck up, even this whole land. 5 And seekest thou great things for thyself? seek them not: for, behold, I will bring evil upon all flesh, saith the LORD: but thy life will I give unto thee for a prey in all places whither thou goest.
Such religious people, practicing hypocrisy, are in grave danger of “greater damnation.” For the Lord knows their hearts. Matthew 23:14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
And we see in verse twenty-five that at one time Shebna had been called, the nail that is fastened in the sure place. But the “Hammer” that drove that nail in, also has a claw on it to pull it out again! Joshua 24:20 If ye forsake the LORD, and serve strange gods, then he will turn and do you hurt, and consume you, after that he hath done you good. Psalm 75:7 But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another. 1 Samuel 2:6 The LORD killeth, and maketh alive: he bringeth down to the grave, and bringeth up. 7 The LORD maketh poor, and maketh rich: he bringeth low, and lifteth up. 8 He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory: for the pillars of the earth are the LORD’S, and he hath set the world upon them.
Eliakim’s name means “God of raising.” And his father’s name, Hilkiah means “portion of Jehovah.” But Shebna’s name just means “growth.” He just kind of grew up into this. But Eliakim, like our Lord Jesus, has been raised up by God. For the Lord Christ is indeed the “portion of Jehovah.” John 10:30 I and my Father are one. John 14:9 Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?
And we see the Lord God, as it were describing the glories of his Son as he sets forth Eliakim. For it is said in verse twenty-one that God will commit the government into his hand. And that he shall be a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. And of Christ we read in Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.
And it was also promised in verse twenty-two of our text that his shall be the key of the house of David. And is that not applied to Jesus Christ? Revelation 3:7 And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth;
Revelation 1:17 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: 18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death. Satan doesn’t even have the keys to his own abode! Jesus Christ cast him out and kept the keys! Revelation 20:1 And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. 2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, 3 And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season. Luke 10:18 And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.
And just as a matter of interest, for he was not the same man, but he name Eliakim is listed in the lineage of the Lord Jesus. Luke 3:30 Which was the son of Simeon, which was the son of Juda, which was the son of Joseph, which was the son of Jonan, which was the son of Eliakim;
Also there was a priest of that name who rejoiced over the rebuilding of Jerusalem. Nehemiah 12:41 And the priests; Eliakim, Maaseiah, Miniamin, Michaiah, Elioenai, Zechariah, and Hananiah, with trumpets; 42 And Maaseiah, and Shemaiah, and Eleazar, and Uzzi, and Jehohanan, and Malchijah, and Elam, and Ezer. And the singers sang loud, with Jezrahiah their overseer. 43 Also that day they offered great sacrifices, and rejoiced: for God had made them rejoice with great joy: the wives also and the children rejoiced: so that the joy of Jerusalem was heard even afar off.
And the Lord Christ is the High Priest who builded the house of God – the church! Hebrews 3:1 Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus; 3 For this man was counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who hath builded the house hath more honour than the house.
And Eliakim was seen in sackcloth before the enemies of Jerusalem, in order to protect the Lord’s people. Isaiah 37:2 And he sent Eliakim, who was over the household, and Shebna the scribe, and the elders of the priests covered with sackcloth, unto Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz.
And so our Lord, God’s Lamb, was clothed in humiliation for the deliverance of his people from their sin. Acts 8:32 The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth: 33 In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth. 34 And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man? 35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.
Both Eliakim and the Lord Christ appear in a day of false rejoicing. Isaiah 22:1 The burden of the valley of vision. What aileth thee now, that thou art wholly gone up to the housetops? 2 Thou that art full of stirs, a tumultuous city, a joyous city: thy slain men are not slain with the sword, nor dead in battle. 5 For it is a day of trouble, and of treading down, and of perplexity by the Lord GOD of hosts in the valley of vision, breaking down the walls, and of crying to the mountains.
And so citizens of the world shall be in a party spirit, consumed with satisfying the fleshly desires when our Lord appears! Luke 17:26 And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. 27 They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all. 28 Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; 29 But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. 30 Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed. Matthew 24:44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.
And in verse twenty-one we read that the Lord shall clothe Eliakim with the official robe that Shebna had worn. And to do so it was to transfer the honor of this office upon Eliakim. And we know that the office of the priest was taken from Levi and given to the Lord Jesus of the tribe of Judah. Hebrews 7:11 If therefore perfection were by the Levitical priesthood, (for under it the people received the law,) what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchisedec, and not be called after the order of Aaron? 12 For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law. 13 For he of whom these things are spoken pertaineth to another tribe, of which no man gave attendance at the altar. 14 For it is evident that our Lord sprang out of Juda; of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood.
And John saw Him in his ‘official’ priest’s garments! Revelation 1:12 And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; 13 And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.
Be careful with your garment of righteousness. Revelation 16:15 Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame. Revelation 19:8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.
And lastly we see that this “nail” shall be fastened in “in a sure place.” Ecclesiastes 12:11 The words of the wise are as goads, and as nails fastened by the masters of assemblies, which are given from one shepherd. Zechariah 10:4 Out of him came forth the corner, out of him the nail, out of him the battle bow, out of him every oppressor together.
The Lord God is the master of assemblies. It is therefore upon his word which we can, with all confidence, rest our souls. Psalm 55:22 Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.
Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
For everything the Lord Jesus does shall prosper. Psalm 1:3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper. Isaiah 53:10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. 55:11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
His immutability – His changelessness, is the certainty of our spiritual and eternal wellbeing. Malachi 3:6 For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.
Hebrews 1:12 And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. 13:8 Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.
Truly, from all the mighty glory of his father’s house down to all vessels of small quantity may safely be hung on this Nail!
Pastor Gene Breed
July 6, 2019