Friday 04 December 2009

Bible Book:

"Shall not Lebanon in a very little while become a fruitful field." (v.17)

Isaiah 29:17-24 Friday 4 December 2009


These verses set out a broad picture of reassurance and hope,focusing on a coming age of salvation.

In this the poor and oppressed will find joy and freedom, theruthless and tyrannical will be restrained and the survivors ofIsrael will maintain a glad and unwavering piety.

For those living under judgement, in which ancient prophecies hadbeen fulfilled, the message was not one of ultimate condemnation.But a call to repentance in expectation that a great turning-pointwould soon come in which the ancient hopes of Israel would findfulfilment.

This reversal of fortunes takes a strange turn. Judgement on thosewho seek to elude God's scrutiny is understandable.

The leaders are accused of having taken counsel as if God did notexist. The result was that ordinary people bore the brunt of thedisaster which those misguided policies brought about.Nevertheless, God will change all that. The blind will see, thehelpless will be empowered, and those who have made a living out ofinjustice will disappear.

If all the odds seem weighted in favour of the corrupt and theviolent, that is the fault of the odds-makers, for God is on theside of the powerless who trust in their god.

The author of Isaiah uses 'Lebanon' as symbol for the powerful (Isaiah2:13; 10:34; 35:2; 60:13).

But in God's plan, things will soon be reversed. The mighty forestwill become a ploughed field, whereas the humble fields will growup in such luxurious tangle as to be called a forest.

To Ponder

It sometimes appears that the odds favour thecorrupt and the violent. Western wisdom says that power and comfortare evidence of success. But how do you define successfulliving?

What does the phrase "God's foolishness is wiserthan human wisdom" (1 Corinthians 1:25) mean to you?

Previous Page Thursday 03 December 2009
Next Page Saturday 05 December 2009