Some Things God Has Taken – Pastor Stacey Shiflett

Some Things God Has Taken

Isaiah 3

  • 1 For, behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, doth take away from Jerusalem and from Judah the stay and the staff, the whole stay of bread, and the whole stay of water,
  • 2 The mighty man, and the man of war, the judge, and the prophet, and the prudent, and the ancient,
  • 3 The captain of fifty, and the honourable man, and the counsellor, and the cunning artificer, and the eloquent orator.
  • 4 And I will give children to be their princes, and babes shall rule over them.

Intro:  When we consider how much God loves Israel, then it puts into the proper perspective the reasons for His taking away some things.  It doesn’t say that Satan took them away.  Even though the Word of God says that he is a thief and a robber and has come to steal, kill and destroy, it is not him that is taking away things in these verses – God is! 

His taking away of wholesome, good things is a manifestation of His judgment.

  • Psalms 106:15 And he gave them their request; but sent leanness into their soul.

These verses are a shadow of the future fulfillment; but these days are drawing nearer and nearer.

The things that are taken away are compared to bread and water.  

This illustrates the simplicity, but the basic essentials – things we cannot do without.

In verse 8, it says that Jerusalem is ruined and Judah is fallen.

God knew that to completely dismantle a society, all he had to do was take away the men.

We live in a country where men are a dying species. Not males – but men.

There is a famine of men in the land – real men!!

By the way, there’s always been a shortage of men.

Good men; solid men; faithful men are hard to find.

Notice these verses:

  • Proverbs 20:6 Most men will proclaim every one his own goodness: but a faithful man who can find?
  • Ezekiel 22:30 And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none.

Notice the detailed description of the kind of men God took away in Isaiah 3:1-3

We must conclude that they have been taken away from our society, our churches, and our families today.

Let’s look at them.

A. The mighty man

MIGHTY MAN: mighty, strong, valiant men, strong man, upright man, champion, excel, giant 1, men’s 1,

David was a man after God’s own heart. Listen to this description by the friends of Absalom:

2 Samuel 17:10 And he also that is valiant, whose heart is as the heart of a lion, shall utterly melt: for all Israel knoweth that thy father is a mighty man, and they which be with him are valiant men.

  • physically strong – Proverbs 20:29 The glory of young men is their strength…
  • mentally strong – most men have not read a single book since they graduated high school
  • emotionally strong – not easily discouraged, doesn’t always need someone to comfort them
  • financially strong – pays their bills, earns a living, can handle their finances, not strapped and in debt; not dependent on others for everything; independent; secure
  • spiritually strong

Luke 11:21 When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.

B. The man of war – a soldier; a warrior

  • fearless, not afraid of a fight; not timid; not cowards; have guts
  • not easily intimidated; doesn’t shrink from opposition and conflict
  • understand when to go on offense and when to go on the defense
  • understand how to use weapons and is not afraid to use it
  • not discouraged by injuries or quits because of pain or discomfort
  • not discouraged by casualties or deserters
  • understand chain of command and respects higher ranks and authority
  • can take orders
  • understand the importance of preparation
  • understand the importance of communication
  • understand the importance of accomplishing the mission
  • doesn’t run in the heat of the battle

C. The Judge

  • men with discernment – they think with rationality and logic

Proverbs 28:5 Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the LORD understand all things.

  • can interpret the law and apply it to any given scenario
  • listens to the evidence before making a judgment
  • they are not told what to think or believe; they look at all the facts and make their own conclusions
  • when the evidence has been given, has the character to make a judgment

1 Corinthians 5:3 For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed,

  • has the ability to both free the innocent and convict the guilty
  • has the courage to sentence and punish those that deserve it
  • has the mercy and compassion to free those that are innocent
  • justice is blind – meaning no double standard, can issue fairness and righteous judgments

D. The Prophet

  • Spiritual men; men that know God on an intimate level
  • Men that are speaking terms with God; communicate with Him on a regular basis
  • God uses them to speak to others for Him and share His word
  • They have the guts and wherewithal to be a mouthpiece for God
  • Don’t mind being in the minority; can stand against the crowd if need be
  • More interested in being right than in being popular
  • Place a high premium on truth
  • Understand what will happen next and how to prepare for it

E. The Prudent

  • Literally the same Hebrew word as the soothsayers and diviners
  • A man that can interpret the signs of the times
  • Speaks of an unnatural ability to discern and interpret events and circumstances

Proverbs 22:3 A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.

Proverbs 27:12 A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself; but the simple pass on, and are punished.

  • Can predict the direction of your children
  • Can foresee the coming landmines in your marriage
  • Can see what is happening in the church; the service; the ministry
  • Has his ear to the ground and is on top of it

F. The Ancient

  • Speaks of maturity

I Corinthians 13:11 “…when I became a man, I put away childish things.”

  • Speaks of experience; someone that has been around the block

Job 12:12 With the ancient is wisdom; and in length of days understanding.

  • Speaks of someone that knows what they are talking about
  • Speaks of the ability to teach and train and instruct others
  • Speaks of men with wisdom and knowledge and understanding and perspective
  • Speaks of someone with a track record that is proven over time
  • Speaks of someone that is not enamored with the latest and greatest
  • Speaks of someone that has a lot of respect for the old way of doing things

Ezra 3

  • 11 And all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid.
  • 12 But many of the priests and Levites and chief of the fathers, who were ancient men, that had seen the first house, when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, wept with a loud voice; and many shouted aloud for joy:
  • Someone that appreciates history
  • Someone that appreciates those that have fought and died so we could have what we have

G. The Captain of Fifty

  • Men that are qualified to be leaders
  • Men that can be a leader without being THE leader
  • Men that can follow their leader and yet help him by leading others
  • Men that can take orders as well as give orders
  • Men that can oversee tasks and get it done effectively
  • Men that have the respect of others
  • A man that can be promoted into a place of authority and it doesn’t ruin him

H. The Honourable

  • DEFINITION: to lift, bear up, carry, take; to lift, lift up; to bear, carry, support, sustain, endure; to take, to lift up, exalt, support, aid, assist; to carry, bear continuously; to take, take away look up to
  • Also translated “armorbearer”

understands the honor of assisting others

Galatians 6:2 Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.

  • a servant; a burden bearer
  • one that can sustain and carry others
  • do you help others bear their burden or are you the burden others have to carry?

I. The Counselor

  • men that are wise and know how to share that wisdom to help others
  • men that can give good godly counsel and advise to others
  • men that are qualified to tell others what they need to hear; not what they want to hear
  • men that can lead and give instruction to their families and weaker, struggling Christians

J. The Cunning Artificer

  • men that are talented and use their talents for the cause of Christ.

Exodus 31

  • 1 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
  • 2 See, I have called by name Bezaleel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah:
  • 3 And I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship,
  • 4 To devise cunning works, to work in gold, and in silver, and in brass,
  • 5 And in cutting of stones, to set them, and in carving of timber, to work in all manner of workmanship.
  • both skilled and smart
  • know how to make money as well as how to save it and spend it
  • men that can provide for their families and the house of God
  • men that have studied and applied themselves to master a trade or a skillset
  • someone that can make a significant contribution to society
  • video games is not a skill set that God recognizes as an asset to society

K. The Eloquent Orator

ELOQUENT: intelligent; discerning, insight, understanding, perception

ORATOR: enchantment; charmed

A picture of an effective communicator that people will heed and listen to when they speak.

  • men with controlled tongues
  • men that have given a lot of thought to what they want to say

1 Peter 3:15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:

  • men that have studied the power of communication and its ability to affect others

Proverbs 25:11 A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.

  • men that speak with authority and knowledge, research and facts

Psalms 45:1 «To the chief Musician upon Shoshannim, for the sons of Korah, Maschil, A Song of loves.» My heart is inditing a good matter: I speak of the things which I have made touching the king: my tongue is the pen of a ready writer.

  • men that have mastered the language and can use it to make a difference; articulate
  • men that can influence others with their words
  • men that have learned what to say, how to say it and when to say it
  • men that can explain to their families why they do what they do


Notice verse 10 – God promised the righteous “that it shall be well with him, for they shall eat the fruit of their doings.”

Just because there is a shortage of these essential men, that does not mean you cannot be an exception! Gentlemen, you can choose to be the exception or the rule.