In Isaiah 7:10-14, Ahaz, the king of Judah, is faced with a dilemma. He is under threat from the Assyrian army and is considering forming an alliance with a foreign power to protect his kingdom. Isaiah, a prophet of the Lord, comes to him with a message from God, telling him to trust in the Lord’s protection and not to form an alliance with a foreign power. As a sign of God’s promise to protect Judah, Isaiah offers to give Ahaz a sign from the Lord, but Ahaz refuses, saying that he does not want to put the Lord to the test.
Isaiah’s response to Ahaz’s refusal is to give him a sign anyway. The sign is that a young woman will conceive and give birth to a son, and his name will be Immanuel, which means “God with us.” This prophecy is significant because it points to the coming of the Messiah, who will be born of a virgin and will also be called Immanuel (Matthew 1:23).
It is unclear why Ahaz refused to ask for a sign from the Lord. It may be that he was not really interested in God’s protection and had already made up his mind to form an alliance with a foreign power. Alternatively, he may have been afraid that God would not come through on His promise, and he did not want to risk putting the Lord to the test.
Isaiah’s response to Ahaz’s refusal shows that God is always willing to reveal His plans and promises to His people, even when they are hesitant or doubtful. The sign of the young woman giving birth to a son was not just a sign for Ahaz, but also a sign for all of Judah, and ultimately for the whole world. It was a sign of God’s faithfulness and His promise to send a savior to redeem His people.
God chose to reveal the promise of the birth of the Messiah at that moment because it was a time of great need and uncertainty for Judah. The Assyrian army was threatening to invade, and Ahaz was considering forming an alliance with a foreign power, which would have been a betrayal of his trust in the Lord. The prophecy of the Messiah’s birth was a reminder that God was in control and that His plan for salvation would ultimately prevail.