The prophecy in this chapter has multiple applications.  Isaiah reminds us that Yahweh loves His people, Israel.  He will punish them for their idolatry and sexual perversion, but He will also protect them and deliver them from captivity.  He will restore much of their glory and will never stop loving them.  Babylon, however, will not last; they will suffer the consequences of their pride and their ill-gained prosperity.  Whether the prophet understood it or not, he not only described the leaders of the Babylonian Empire, but Satan's fall from the heavenlies, as well.  It is interesting that Lucifer's great sin was pride which seems to be one of our greatest struggles, as well.  He had much to be proud of.  He was the top angel in God's hosts and more beautiful than any of the other heavenly beings.  He held great power and authority, but forgot that it all came from God.  He saw himself as something more than what he really was.  The Babylonians fell into that same trap.  They were the most powerful empire on earth and were also the most wealthy.  Until the Medes arrived, they had no rivals.  God uses His prophet to remind us that "pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall" (Proverbs 16:18).  He also reminds us that He will discipline His children, and He will also restore them.  Satan received no second chances and neither did Babylon, but God's people were restored to their homeland and to their former faith.  Do you know just how much God loves you?  I am not sure I can completely wrap my head around it, but I know without a doubt that He loves me more than any other individual in this universe.  He always wants what is best for me and loves to pour out His blessings on His beloved.  That will never change!

Help me, Lord, to celebrate Your great love for me by living in a manner that honors Your purpose and plan for my life.  Help me to overcome the pride that has the potential to destroy the blessed life I now enjoy!