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How we think about the future determines our present attitudes toward life and behavior.
The people of Jerusalem in Isaiah’s day believed their future was only “distress and darkness, the gloom of anguish, and thick darkness” (Isaiah 8.22).
They professed belief in God but were so distant from God that they turned to messages from the dead for guidance (Isaiah 8.19-20).
Isaiah made it clear that “those who speak like this will have no dawn!” (Isaiah 8.20).
On the other hand, interwoven within the message of chapters 7-9 was the person, Immanuel, which means “God with us.” A future vision of Immanuel makes all the difference in the world with present attitudes and actions.
Good News – God is with Us
The future coming of Immanuel causes us to view the present with a new perspective.
The people who trust their own human potential are bound to experience darkness. Yet, those who have no dawn, are given the dawn of God’s grace.
This is God’s message that was fulfilled by Jesus some 700 years after it was first proclaimed.
2 The people who walked in darkness
have seen a great light;
those who lived in a land of deep darkness—
on them light has shined.
3 You have multiplied the nation,
you have increased its joy;
they rejoice before you
as with joy at the harvest,
as people exult when dividing plunder. (Isaiah 9.2-3)
The great light is a gift from God. Humans cannot produce it, nor are they responsible for it.
God’s light came in the presence of a person. Immanuel, God with us, was among humans in the person of Jesus Christ.
Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life” (John 8.12).
We have an opportunity to walk with Jesus, the light of the world, and to never again walk in darkness. Truly, this is cause for rejoicing.
God is with us through Jesus. He brings God’s well-being to our world. No doubt, this is cause for joy and exultation.
Freedom and Well-Being
The future world under Immanuel, God with us, was free from bondage.
For the yoke of their burden,
and the bar across their shoulders,
the rod of their oppressor,
you have broken as on the day of Midian. (Isaiah 9.4)
In the nation’s past, God used Gideon to free the people from the Midianites (Judges 6-7).
When God came among the people through Jesus, he said, “If the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8.36).
As we walk in the light as followers of Jesus Jesus, we experience freedom from sin peace with God.
Isaiah. also, prophesied that Immanuel would bring peace and well-being to the world.
For all the boots of the tramping warriors
and all the garments rolled in blood
shall be burned as fuel for the fire. (Isaiah 9.5)
God conquers our hearts. He turns enemies into his friends through the work of his Son, Jesus Christ (Immanuel).
When people live in a love relationship with God they extend peace to others. Someone rightly said, “I can’t call God my Father and not call you my brother or sister.”
How will God bring this glorious future to the world? He does so through a person.
For a child has been born for us,
a son given to us;
authority rests upon his shoulders;
and he is named
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9.6)
Jesus is the King of all kings. He is in fact what kings are only in name.
Seven hundred years before Jesus entered Jerusalem as “God with us,” Isaiah prophesied that he wouldn’t conquer with a mighty army in arrogance, war, oppression, and coercion.
Instead, he would conquer the enemies of God by becoming vulnerable, transparent, and humble – turning enemies into friends.
Take a moment today to meditate on the qualities of our King Jesus.
— Wonderful Counselor – Contrast the wisdom of Jesus with the foolishness of human wisdom.
— Mighty God – Jesus possessed God’s true might. This power is so great that it can absorb all the human evil which can be hurled at it until none is left to hurl.
— Everlasting Father – Through Jesus we see that God’s fatherhood does not impose itself on its children, but rather sacrifices itself for them.
— Prince of Peace – He is a peaceful king, who comes in peace and establishes peace as he conquers our hearts in self-giving love.
Accomplished by God
We live “between the times,” as the scholars say. The Messiah (Immanuel) has come and we are already living in the government of the King of all kings.
However, the final consummation of the kingdom has not yet arrived.
As we live between the time of the initiation and the end of God’s rule, let’s determine to walk in the light of Jesus. Truly, we know that God will be with us to help.
His authority shall grow continually,
and there shall be endless peace
for the throne of David and his kingdom.
He will establish and uphold it
with justice and with righteousness
from this time onward and forevermore.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this. (Isaiah 9.7)
This vision of a confident future should affect our attitudes and behavior every day of our lives. May God grant it to be so.
About This Blog
Rudy Ross is an excellent student of Isaiah. Rudy and I have a video you can see on the Bob Spradling YouTube Chanel.
Rudy will bring a different dimension to Isaiah than what is in my blog. I hope you will check out and enjoy my interviews with him.
I am indebted to a book by Dr. John Oswalt on Isaiah for his insights into this powerful book.
If you have a prayer request, please email me at email@example.com or private message me on Facebook. The Maywood Baptist prayer team will pray for you.