Does Isaiah 43:6 refer to the distant future?
Isaiah 43:6 (ESV) - I will say to the north, Give up,
and to the south, Do not withhold;
bring my sons from afar
and my daughters from the end of the earth,
The "Iglesia Ni Cristo" claims that the last phrase of this verse - "the end of the earth" - refers to a distant time. Is this an accurate understanding of this verse? When we examine the scriptures, we see that it is not.
The phrase "ends of the earth" refers to geography, not time.
The INC argues that "ends of the earth" means the "end of time". This is false, as addressed elsewhere.
The entire context speaks of geography and not of time.
When we look at the context, Isaiah is obviously using multiple phrases
speaking of geography. If his pattern is to be consistent, this phrase should
also refer to geography. Just in this verse, we see:
1. the north
2. the south
In the previous verse, we see:
4. the east
5. the west
Why would we expect Isaiah to make 5 patterned statements about geography and then make one about time? It is unreasonable to think Isaiah would be speaking about time when his statement is clearly intended to continue speaking about geography, paralleling "afar".
The INC has no legitimate reason to believe that Isaiah was referring to the
end of time when he said "the end of the earth":
First, they misuse language to make the phrase "end of the earth" mean something it does not.
Second, they ignore the context and Isaiah's pattern in speaking of geographic distance.
The last days are not when we should be focusing on the words of a messenger who is not Christ, but focusing on the greatest messenger of all, Christ himself.
Hebrews 1:1-2 (ESV) - 1 Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world.