As Michael Heiser in ‘THE UNSEEN REALM’ explains:
God issues four commands. All four commands are grammatically plural in Hebrew. That means that Yahweh is commanding a GROUP. The group cannot be Israelites or a collective Israel, since it is Israel that Yahweh is commanding the group to comfort, speak to, and call. You should know the identity of the group by now: THE DIVINE COUNCIL.
The context of Isaiah 40 is a new beginning for Israel, Judah. The remaining two tribes had spent seventy years in captivity in Babylon. God brought them out of exile and back to the land. However – and this is frequently overlooked – the other ten tribes never emerged from exile. They were lost, scattered among the disinherited nations. But the coming of the messiah will result in redemption for ALL THE TRIBES. Yahweh will draw his children from EVERY TRIBE AND NATION, whether Abraham’s literal descendants or not.”
“With the arrival of the messiah, the apostle John casts John the Baptist in Isaiah’s role. Like the prophet of old, John the Baptist has “stood in the council and answered the call. To a Jew familiar with the Old Testament, the pattern would not be lost. The calling of John the Baptist tells the reader that Yahweh’s divine council is in session again, only this time the aim is TO LAUNCH THE KINGDOM OF GOD WITH THE SECOND YAHWEH, no incarnate, as its point man.”
Mark 1:9-11 And it happened that in those days Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized in the Jordan by John. And immediately as he was coming up out of the water, he saw THE HEAVENS BEING SPLIT APART (schizo) and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son, with you I am well pleased.”
“schizo” is a verb used in Exodus 14:21 to describe the miraculous parting of the sea.
Exodus 15:11 (Moses asked the rhetorical question:
“WHO IS LIKE YAHWEH AMONG THE gods?”
Michael Heiser explains it this way:
“The New Testament story, then, begins with a dramatic revisitation of Yahweh’s call to the divine council to send someone to announce the appearance of Yahweh in the man Jesus of Nazareth. That much will become evident to friend and foe, human and divine. The strategy behind the appearance of the king, however, IS CLOAKED. It had been over 500 years since the return of Judah from exile. The emergence of Jesus, born and raised in obscurity, from the water launches a battle of wits that entangles both the divine and the human realms.”
Luke presents the Lord’s view of the kingdom of God in two parts:
In part 1 Jesus briefly answered the Pharisees’ question about the
Part One: THE TIMING OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD.
Part Two: NATURE OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD.
First: The kingdom will not come right away.
Second: During the King’s absence, people will claim the Kingdom has come.
Third: Jesus reveals HOW the kingdom will be established on earth