“At that time a gift will be brought to the LORD of Armies from a people tall and smooth-skinned, a people feared far and near, a powerful nation with a strange language, whose land is divided by rivers – to Mount Zion, the place of the name of the LORD of Armies” (Isaiah 18.7-8).
The land divided by rivers is a mysterious land in Isaiah’s day. Cush is the ends of the earth for the nation of Israel. Perhaps this mysterious nation is representative of all the nations. “All the inhabitants of the world and dwellers on the earth” will see the banner lifted by the LORD of Armies (18.3). The time of judgement would come. Even before the harvest, the LORD “will both cut off the sprigs with pruning hooks and take away and cut down the branches. They will be left together for the mountain birds of prey” (18.5-6).
I think this connects this passage to a yet future day described in Revelation 19: John sees “an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all birds that fly in the midst of heaven, ‘Come and gather together for the supper of the great God, that you may eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, both small and great.”
The nations that reject God will be judged in this manner one day. Jesus will return and put an end to rebellion. All who remain after this harvest, will worship Him as the LORD of Armies. They will brings gifts to Him as the representative nation of Cush does in our text.
We know the end of all nations. They will all bow the knee before Jesus. Satan will no longer be around to deceive the nations. He will be bound for 1,000 years. After this Millennium, Satan will be released but just for a short time. He will stir the nations and deceive them once again. But fire will come down from heaven and consume these nations. The devil who deceived them will also be thrown into the lake of fire. There he will be tormented day and night forever and ever. Then a new heaven and a new earth, along with the new Jerusalem, will become the place of God’s dwelling with humanity. All will be His peoples. God will be their God. All tears are gone. Death is no more!