Friday, November 18, 2016

Comfort My People: The Prophecies Of Isaiah, Day 143

Comfort My People:
The Prophecies Of Isaiah
Day 143

The freedom the Lord speaks of in today's passage is more than the release of the captives from Babylon. He is foretelling the kingdom of the Messiah, under whose rule they will live in peace.

The Lord is speaking to His chosen Servant, the Lord Jesus Christ, "This is what the Lord says: 'In the time of My favor I will answer You, and in the day of salvation I will help You; I will keep You and will make You to be a covenant for the people, to restore the land and to reassign its desolate inheritances, to say to the captives, 'Come out!' and to those in darkness, 'Be free!'" (Isaiah 49:8-9a) Christ is the new covenant God has made with mankind.

"They will feed beside the roads and find pasture on every barren hill. They will neither hunger nor thirst, nor will the desert heat or the sun beat down on them. He who has compassion on them will guide them and lead them beside springs of water." (Isaiah 49:9b-10) The children of Israel had wandered the desert on their journey from Egypt and would cross the desert on their journey back home from captivity. But a day is coming when the Lord reigns from the throne of David and no one will wander in the desert ever again. The Lord will lead mankind like a shepherd leading a flock. As David said of the Shepherd of his soul, "He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters." (Psalm 23:2)

"I will turn all My mountains into roads, and My highways will be raised up. See, they will come from afar---some from the north, some from the west, some from the region of Aswan." (Isaiah 49:11-12) The Lord made the mountains and He owns them and He can do anything He wants with them. If He tells a mountain to move, it moves. Both literally and figuratively, He is going to see to it that nothing gets between us and our King. "And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness; it will be for those who walk on that Way." (Isaiah 35:8a)

"Shout for joy, you heavens; rejoice, you earth; burst into song, you mountains! For the Lord comforts His people and will have compassion on His afflicted ones." (Isaiah 49:13) When the creation sees the kingdom of the Lord come, it will break into song. This is the fulfillment of God's plan from eternity past. This is the moment that God, along with every faithful angel and every believer and all of creation have been waiting for. This is the moment when the One who makes all things new says, "Look! God's dwelling place is now among the people, and He will dwell with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." (Revelation 21:3-4) 

At the right time God sent His Son into the world to pay the price for our sins and at the right time Jesus will return and claim the kingdom and all those who are His. This intention was formed farther back in eternity than our feeble human minds can fathom, but it's as good as done because the One who spoke this promise is faithful. As the Lord Jesus said to the Apostle John, "It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be My children." (Revelation 21:6-7) What beautiful, welcome words as we trudge through this weary land! A haven of rest is ahead of us. We have endured the heat of the day and the chill of the night. We have wept in the night but joy will come in the morning. And the Holy Spirit testifies with our spirits that we long for the day of our Redeemer's appearing, "The Spirit and the bride say, 'Come!' And let the one who hears say, 'Come!' Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life." (Revelation 22:17) 

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