Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Isaiah, Day 3 Readings

Destruction and Salvation and a Reminder that God is Completely in Control

Today's first reading is a good encapsulation of the main dual theme of Isaiah -- God is promising both destructive judgment and restorative salvation to the Jewish people.  (Other prophets, like Jeremiah, offer a more detailed explanation of how the judgment is a part of the salvation.)  Here, God promises that the main city, Jerusalem, will be assailed and defeated because the people continue to ignore God's teaching.  However, for those few who are truly faithful, there is also the promise that God will more than restore the people -- God's people will be the envy of all the world.

Read Isaiah 29:1-24  (NIV)   (NRSV)   (CEB)
[links to Bible Gateway open in a new window]

The second reading offers a poetic reminder that God is completely in control of events.  It is meant to be a source of deep comfort to the faithful who are enduring some of the judgments of God -- in the form of oppression by foreign armies and governments.  God created the world; God alone has the ultimate power for what can happen in the world.  God is everlasting and will endure beyond the suffering, and God will share some of this patience and endurance with the faithful -- so that they will one day enjoy the God's blessings fully.

Read Isaiah 40:1-31  (NIV)   (NRSV)   (CEB)
[links to Bible Gateway open in a new window]

Reading the Bible in Its Entirety

If you are planning to read the Bible in its entirety, you should read Isaiah 27-39 today.