You may have noticed that my blog was quiet for the majority of the past week. My apologies to any of you who missed it. I’ve been in and out of the dentist, dealing with a lot of pain. They’re doing a root canal tomorrow morning, which I’m actually excited about. Tooth pain isn’t fun. ANYWAY!
Today’s reading with our church was Isaiah 11-12. These are some awesome chapters!
Right off the bat, we’re given a prophecy of the Messiah, as “a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch from his roots…”
This is saying that the Messiah will come from the offspring of David.
If you remember, in 2 Samuel 7:16, God promised David, “and your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before Me. Your throne shall be established forever.”
This was a promise to David that the Messiah would be one of his descendants. Isaiah confirms that, and then we see the fulfillment of it in Matthew 1:1-16, and Luke 3:23-38.
Isaiah 11:2-5 describes what this Messiah’s ministry will look like.
“And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon Him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord. And His delight shall be in the fear of the Lord. He shall not judge by what His eyes see, or decide disputes by what His ears hear, but with righteousness He shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth; and He shall strike the earth with the rod of His mouth, and with the breath of His lips He shall kill the wicked. Righteousness shall be the belt of His waist, and faithfulness the belt of His loins.”
This description gives us a beautiful picture of Jesus. Notice what it says about Him in verse 2.
He’ll have the Spirit of the Lord upon Him. This means He’ll have
and the fear of the Lord
These are great things for Him to have, because it means that Jesus has everything that we need. No matter what circumstance you’re facing, no matter what issue arises, Jesus can help.
Maybe you need wisdom to make a decision, Jesus has that wisdom. Maybe you need strength to get through something, God is the supplier of that strength! Maybe you’re going through something that is just rough to go through. Find comfort in the fact that Jesus understands your pain. Jesus knows what you’re going through.
I find it one of the most comforting facts, that God is not ignorant of my struggles.
In verses 3-4, we see that Jesus will bring justice. This speaks not only of when He came and died in our place, but of His second coming as well.
There is an easy distinction to pick up in these verses, between two groups of people.
The first group is identified as poor, and meek. The second, as wicked.
If you read, you’ll notice that there is a different outcome for these groups. The poor and meek are judged with righteousness, and the wicked are destroyed.
This reminds me of something that Jesus Himself said, in Matthew 5:3-5.
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”
If you keep reading in Isaiah 11, you’ll see some pretty awesome stuff! Wolfs and sheep will live together, without the wolf getting lamb chops for dinner! Baby cows and lions will dwell together, and all of them will be led by little kids!
There is a beautiful picture of peace across the planet. A peace that even extends to the animal kingdom. This will be a glorious day that we’ll get to see during the millennial reign of Christ. The key to it all working is found in the end of verse 9.
“For the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.”
This speaks beyond information. This is more than saying that everyone will have heard of God. What Isaiah is writing here, is claiming that in that day, all of creation will be lined up with God’s will, and with God’s heart.
Jesus will reign in Jerusalem, and all of the nations will be blessed by Him. All of the nations includes you!
In the rest of this chapter, a sign is given that we will be able to observe, as the world leads up to these things.
The sign that God gives of everything moving in this direction is the regathering of Israel.
You might be reading this and thinking, “… but Pastor Wes, that’s happening now!”
You’re right! It is!! On May 14th, 1948, Israel was declared a nation again. It’s population at that time was around 800,000. As of 2014, there are over six million Jews in Israel! That’s over 40% of the Jews in the world!
So what does this mean? Israel is being regathered. They are back in the land. They are one of the most fruitful nations, which fulfills prophecy from Ezekiel 36:24-36. God is moving!
“…and those who harass Judah shall be cut off;” -Isaiah 11:13b
So… Israel is being regathered. If we keep reading, one of the next things that we see is their enemies being dealt with. Don’t you think it’s interesting that almost the whole world hates Israel. Israel is roughly the size of New Jersey, but every other country over in that area wants to get rid of it. The muslim states repeatedly declare that their goal is to wipe out Israel entirely.
To learn more about the middle eastern conflict, watch this video:
But why do I bring all of this up? Because the Bible says that these enemies of Israel are going to be dealt with.
This is pretty awesome. I stand with Israel, because God stands with Israel.
A few things to take away from our reading today…
1: God can deal with your problems. In Jesus is everything that you need.
2: God still stands with Israel. As Christians, we should too!
3: Prophecy is happening before our very eyes. Pay attention, because Jesus is coming back soon.