Today’s Bible reading* includes some very encouraging promises for God’s people. Yes, Isaiah spoke to a specific group of people in a specific nation in history.
But God’s Word is still very applicable to us today.
God points to the coming of John the Baptizer to announce Jesus the Messiah’s soon arrival.
“Comfort, comfort my people,” says your God. “Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and announce to her that her time of hard service is over, her iniquity has been pardoned, and she has received from the LORD’s hand double for all her sins.” A voice of one crying out: Prepare the way of the LORD in the wilderness; make a straight highway for our God in the desert. Every valley will be lifted up, and every mountain and hill will be leveled; the uneven ground will become smooth and the rough places, a plain. And the glory of the LORD will appear, and all humanity together will see it, for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.
Isaiah 40:1–5 (CSB)
He bases these promises on the very character of God. Because He is God, He will help.
Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will hold on to you with my righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10 (CSB)
For I am the LORD your God, who holds your right hand, who says to you,
“Do not fear, I will help you.
Isaiah 41:13 (CSB)
“I am the LORD. I have called you for a righteous purpose, and I will hold you by your hand. I will watch over you, and I will appoint you to be a covenant for the people and a light to the nations, in order to open blind eyes, to bring out prisoners from the dungeon, and those sitting in darkness from the prison house. I am the LORD. That is my name, and I will not give my glory to another or my praise to idols. The past events have indeed happened.
Now I declare new events; I announce them to you before they occur.”
Isaiah 42:6–9 (CSB)
God promises to make things right for His people. But it’s important to remember that we live in an “already, but not yet” overlap of the “current age” (ruled primarily by the “prince of the power of this age”) and the “age to come”, ruled by Jesus for the rest of eternity. Not everything has been made right yet. The Kingdom of God has not yet arrived in its fullness.
Stay faithful. Stay clean in your walk with God. Stay alert. Stay ready.
There is still more to come. Just wait!
* Chapters covered in today’s reading: