Assyria subjugates the superpower Egypt after Jehovah’s prophet–servant gives three years’ warning.
1 In the year the general who was sent by Sargon king of Assyria came to Ashdod and took it by combat,2 Jehovah had spoken through Isaiah the son of Amoz, saying, Go and ungird the sackcloth from your loins and remove the shoes from your feet. And he had done so, going naked and barefoot.3 Then Jehovah said, Just as my servant Isaiah has gone naked and barefoot for three years as a sign and portent against Egypt and Cush,4 so shall the king of Assyria lead away the captives of Egypt and the exiles of Cush, both young and old, naked and barefoot, with buttocks uncovered—to Egypt’s shame.5 Men shall be appalled and perplexed at Cush, their hope, and at Egypt, their boast.6 In that day shall the inhabitants of this isle say, See what has become of those we looked up to, on whom we relieda for help and deliverance from the king of Assyria! How shall we ourselves escape?
And it came to pass in the days of Ahaz the son of Jotham, the son of Uzziah, king of Judah, that Rezin the king of Syria, and Pekah the son of Remaliah, king of Israel, went up toward Jerusalem to war against it, but could not prevail against it.
When Ahaz son of Jotham, the son of Uzziah, was king of Judah, Rezin king of Aram and Pekah son of Remaliah king of Israel came up to Jerusalem to wage war against it, but could not overpower it.
Two generations of kings from the time Isaiah receives his prophetic commission, an expansionist Assyria threatens to invade the kingdom of Aram (Syria), the ten-tribed Northern Kingdom of Israel, and the Southern Kingdom of Judah and to annex them into its empire. When King Ahaz of Judah refuses to join Aram and Israel in an alliance to resist Assyria, they invade the Southern Kingdom to overthrow Ahaz and put a puppet ruler on his throne who will join their coalition. Ahaz, moreover, becomes an important type in the Book of Isaiah of an end-time ruler who proves disloyal to Israel’s God.