Isaiah 26:17-18. “Like as a woman with child, that draweth near the time of her delivery, is in pain, and crieth out in her pangs; so have we been in Thy sight, O Lord. We have been with child, we have been in pain! We have as it were brought forth wind: we have not wrought any deliverance in the earth: neither have the inhabitants of the world fallen.”
Any woman who has ever given birth can identify with this laboring mother. It’s hard work. It’s painful work. But at the end, there’s a beautiful baby that you already love with your whole heart.
Israel was like that laboring woman, crying out in pain, but bringing forth nothing but wind. Can you imagine?
The meaning here is that Israel and Judah, while scattered among the nations, would seek God travailing like a woman in labor, but would not have an results. There was no deliverance in the earth, and the oppressors of the Jewish people were not subdued.
But wait. There’s more.