8 Yet will I leave a remnant, that ye may have some that shall escape the sword among the nations, when ye shall be scattered through the countries.
At many places we come across a remnant. First we shall consider this verse taken from Isaiah. “Except the Lord of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and we should have been like unto Gomorrah(Is.1:9).” Curiously enough the prophet is addressing the leaders of Israel thus:Hear the word of the Lord, ye rulers of Sodom; give ear unto the law of our God, ye people of Gomorrah. Disobedience is not about place names that shall be destroyed by fire and brimstone or by great flood. Now we shall consider this verse which is from the Book of Zechariah.” And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein./ And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The Lord is my God (Ze.13:8-9)”. The preceding verse is obviously about the Son of man: ‘What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends'(v.6) should leave in our mind no doubt that the prophet is referring to the suffering and death of Jesus in the ‘house of Israel’.(see the note at the end)
9 And they that escape of you shall remember me among the nations whither they shall be carried captives, because I am broken with their whorish heart, which hath departed from me, and with their eyes, which go a whoring after their idols: and they shall lothe themselves for the evils which they have committed in all their abominations.
10 And they shall know that I am the Lord, and that I have not said in vain that I would do this evil unto them.
Thus saith the Lord God; Smite with thine hand, and stamp with thy foot, and say, Alas for all the evil abominations of the house of Israel! for they shall fall by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence.
12 He that is far off shall die of the pestilence; and he that is near shall fall by the sword; and he that remaineth and is besieged shall die by the famine: thus will I accomplish my fury upon them.
13 Then shall ye know that I am the Lord, when their slain men shall be among their idols round about their altars, upon every high hill, in all the tops of the mountains, and under every green tree, and under every thick oak, the place where they did offer sweet savour to all their idols.
14 So will I stretch out my hand upon them, and make the land desolate, yea, more desolate than the wilderness toward Diblath, in all their habitations: and they shall know that I am the Lord.
God cannot deny himself. His Holiness is set in the Power and glory of His word. When the Lord God said,’Let there be light’ it was so. God fashioned heart of man alike. So truth written in his inner man shall reveal the truth of God to whosoever shall seek him. So ‘remnant’ as a theological idea is to make the connection between God and Man understood well by man. When the Pharisees asked Jesus to restrain his disciples from shouting “And he answered and said unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out (Lk.19:39-40)”For this reason man is a spectacle unto angels as well.”for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men (1 Co.4:9)”.In this connection we shall consider the saying of Jesus to his disciples on sending them to preach the gospel,”And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet./Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city(Matt.10:14-15). A remnant is how God’s sovereignty established so He shall always be justified as St Paul uses the case of Esau and Jacob. “
Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?
22 What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction:
23 And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory(Ro:9:21-23)”,
“I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.” It is thus a remnant of Israel shall be added to the redeemed from the earth. And these shall be found in the New Jerusalem. While discussing Ezekiel we see the rebellious house of Israel was rejected. St Paul states why,”But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness. Their works only made their case worse. But grace of God is greater. “Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed(Ro.9:31-33)”.
Finally we shall examine the manner remnant moves forward. Cain slew his brother but God did not write ‘finis’ to the story of Adam’s disobedience. Cain was rejected and how shall God’s Salvation Plan move forward? “For God, said she, hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew(Ge.4:25).” Why a remnant? We shall understand its significance from the next verse. It was through his son Enos the world shall know the glory of God.’ Then began men to call upon the name of the Lord.’