The sadness of the situation is emphasized once again in chapter 63. Chapter 59 brought it up first: God was upset that no one stood with Him for justice and righteousness – but that didn’t keep God from accomplishing His purposes.
One of His purposes was to bring about justice. He wanted company in his quest, but He accomplished it alone. Justice would prevail. The nations suffered. Israel suffered.
It wasn’t as though Israel suffered unjustly. She deserved what she got. Her constant straying from God’s embrace resulted in a trampled sanctuary and withheld tenderness and compassion.
At the end of the chapter is an important line: “We are yours from of old, but you have not ruled over them.”
Did God not rule over Israel? How can Israel (or Isaiah) say He did not? Yes, God was in charge, but the people did not submit. The reason this is so important is in consideration of the Kingdom of God in the New Testament. Often, the Kingdom is equated with the Church, thus those in the Church are in the Kingdom. While this idea has some merit, the two are not really equal. The Church is the family of God and therefore His kingdom. But that’s a different matter from God actually ruling in the Church. God’s kingdom is where God is seen to be ruling in the lives of His people. As long as a church fails to yield to the will of God, she may certainly be His family, but not His kingdom, for God doesn’t rule in their hearts any more than He did those of ancient Israel.