This article focuses on the story of the transformation of the city called Zion. Isaiah 1:1–2:5 is
the key to the book. This chapter describes the failure of Israel to be the people of God:
Israel’s covenant breach, a corrupted cult and imminent punishment. It tells of the existence
of two groups within Israel: the righteous remnant who would be saved and the wicked who
would be judged. This chapter furthermore presents the reader with a picture of decadent
Jerusalem whose sacrifices are rejected and whose prayers are no longer accepted. Isaiah
1 contains a warning of judgement against Jerusalem, whereas Isaiah 2:1–5 sketches the
prophetic hope for Zion, which would lead to a pilgrimage of the nations to receive the
Torah on Zion.
This research is part of the
project ‘Exegesis and the
Theology of Isaiah’, directed
by Prof. Dr Alphonso
Groenewald, Department of
Old Testament Studies,
Faculty of Theology,
University of Pretoria.
This article is part of the Special Collection titled ‘Spatial Justice and Reconciliation’, sub-edited by Stephan de Beer, of the
Department of Practical Theology and the Centre for Contextual Ministry, University of Pretoria.