the day of the Lord. This term occurs frequently in the Old Testament prophets. It can refer to any specific time when the Divine Warrior, the Lord of Hosts, is glorious in victory: against Babylon through the Medes (Is. 13:1–14:27), against Egypt through Babylon (Ezek. 30:2–4), or against Israel through Assyria (Is. 10:5, 6, 20, 24). This day of the Lord’s vengeance against the wicked is also depicted as the time of Israel’s deliverance (Is. 34:2–35:10), when the Lord decisively defeats all of Israel’s opposition (2:2, 9; 3:8–20; Joel 3:14–16). It is also the day of final judgment (Amos 5:18–20). See notes Ezek. 7:7 and Amos 5:18.
the Lord has prepared a sacrifice. The imminent judgment coming upon Judah is compared to sacrifices. The nation is a sacrificial lamb (Is. 34:6; Jer. 46:10; Ezek. 39:17–19).
consecrated his guests. The invited guests may be the nations who serve as the divine instrument of judgment (Is. 10:5–10; Hab. 1:6). Alternatively, the invited guests (the covenant people) are themselves the sacrificial offerings. The consecration of guests is necessary to maintain the holiness of the Lord (Ex. 19:10; 24:9–11), and recalls elements of the covenant ritual at Mount Sinai (vv. 15, 16 note).
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