Luke 1 Part 4–Mary’s Confirmation and Celebration

What would you do? Mary, a young teenager and promised bride to be, was visited by an Arch angel. She does not question the Angel’s veracity or even the message.  Still, Mary does what many in her spot would do– she ran to her Aunt Elizabeth to simply ask, “What now?”  There is little doubt that her head was spinning with the overwhelming thoughts of being pregnant, a virgin, betrothed, and carrying the Messiah. 

Then, as she enters the house of Her aunt–wife of one of the Levitical temple servants, ancestor of Aaron. Immediately the future Herald of Christ (John) jumps in his mother’s womb.  Elizabeth was then filled with God’s Spirit and affirms what Mary was already told by Gabriel. One can only imagine the boost that gave the heart of this amazing young woman. 

 Mary responds, according to Luke, with a heart of praise and conviction to carry and raise this Child. She would do so to honor God, fulfill the Abrahamic covenant, and change the world.  Luke’s is the only Gospel that took the time to look at the precursors to the birth of our Lord.  It was an incredible part of the story.  In a time and culture that would have thrown a single mother to the trash heap, God prepared the people who needed to protect and prepare Jesus’s mom for the raising the Son of God.  God would not allow this to happen in any other way. 

Why is it significant?  This back story was reported by the only Gospel writer that was completely independent. He gathered information from many sources to give account for the average seeker that was clear and complete.  Luke thought it was critical for the all to know how widely the world was affected by the life of Christ. As such He looked at family, shepherds, kings, and mystics as they were touched by the Savior.

This story shows believers the absolute passion Mary had for her call.  It adds a clear legitimacy to the life and story of this young woman.  It was not a sweet excuse for a young girl’s mistake, nor was it a fairy tale to authenticate the claims for a misguided rabbi.  It is the clarity for the reality of a very complex event that would change the world.  Jesus is God. He became flesh, and He lived to show the world the heart of God; culminated by His ultimate sacrifice at the cross.

Mary was a singularly critical figure to history because she raised this child. What’s more, she did it with a humble heart and grateful spirit.  We should serve God with a humble heart and grateful spirit as well.  We should model the sacrifice and commitment we have and will see in Luke’s account. The common denominator  is that all involved completed their journey out of their Love of God.  I simply pray that I can have as deep a love for my Lord!

God Bless You 


39 In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a town in Judah, 40 and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, 42 and she exclaimed with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. 45 And blessed is she who believed that there would be[g] a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord.”

Mary’s Song of Praise: The Magnificat

46 And Mary said,

“My soul magnifies the Lord,
47     and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant.
    For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed.
49 for he who is mighty has done great things for me,
    and holy is his name.
50 And his mercy is for those who fear him
    from generation to generation.
51 He has shown strength with his arm;
    he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts;
52 he has brought down the mighty from their thrones
    and exalted those of humble estate;
53 he has filled the hungry with good things,
    and the rich he has sent away empty.
54 He has helped his servant Israel,
    in remembrance of his mercy,
55 as he spoke to our fathers,
    to Abraham and to his offspring forever.”

56 And Mary remained with her about three months and returned to her home.

Luke 1 Part 3–God’s Mom, Wow!

Execution is everything.  Gabriel had already spoken to Zachariah about the Herald that was his son.  Now several months later Gabriel made his second announcement to a young virgin in Nazareth, named Mary.  His announcement would divide time.  He told this young girl she would carry the Son of God and be the mother of God on earth.  How amazingly overwhelming the thought of being a mom, much less the mom of the Son of God? Unlike Zachariah, Mary said she would be the servant of the Most-High God, Adonai. 

Mary would take on a task that would be unparalleled in history.  Those of us who have raised our families know that moms are tireless and sacrificial from beginning to the end.  They are bear-like in their protection, nurse-like in their nurture, and “Christ-like” in their sacrifice.  We can never overstate the critical nature of God’s choice of a mom for His Son.  History shows us God chose well! The Lord Jesus is the most definitive figure ever to stalk the panorama of Human History! (Kierkegaard) His Mom, Mary watched His growth, His life , His ministry, and His death. She saw His legacy and the building of the early church. It would have been a gut-wrenching and life giving. I can only imagine Luke’s discussions with Mary, they would have been amazing.


God Bless You


In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed[b] to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!”[c] 29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”

34 And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”[d]

35 And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born[e] will be called holy—the Son of God. 36 And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.” 38 And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant[f] of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.

Luke 1 Part 2–The Calling of God’s Herald

It seems simple enough, live a good life, serve the Lord as you were called, and things would be simple.  Well that was what Zachariah must have been thinking when he entered the Holy of Holies that day.  Not so much.  There stood Gabriel, God’s messenger waiting for him.  The message was a great message–You guys are going to have a baby.  Not just any baby–the Hearld for the coming of the Lord.  Oh, and by the way, name Him John!  Zachariah was in shock.  He asked a question that seemed fair enough, “How can I be sure?”  Gabriel responded–“I am Gabriel, I stand in God’s presence He sent me to give you a message and you want me to give you some proof?”  Gabriel shut Zachariah’s mouth until John was born.

  
What a great start to a great account.  God had this planned from the beginning.  He knew the players and the pieces.  Nothing in what was to come was left to chance.  The cool thing is that same God knows us as well.  He is never surprised by our lives.  He is not always pleased with the choices we make, but he is never caught off guard.  That is why we can be confident to seek him and ask him for life, guidance, and protection each day.  He is God.  He commands angels and He loves us.  We need to trust and follow Him each day knowing He has a plan for our lives–Just like John the Baptist.


God Bless You


In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah,[a] of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years.

Now while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty, according to the custom of the priesthood, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. 10 And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense. 11 And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. 12 And Zechariah was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him. 13 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. 14 And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, 15 for he will be great before the Lord. And he must not drink wine or strong drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. 16 And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, 17 and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.”

18 And Zechariah said to the angel, “How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in years.” 19 And the angel answered him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news. 20 And behold, you will be silent and unable to speak until the day that these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their time.” 21 And the people were waiting for Zechariah, and they were wondering at his delay in the temple. 22 And when he came out, he was unable to speak to them, and they realized that he had seen a vision in the temple. And he kept making signs to them and remained mute. 23 And when his time of service was ended, he went to his home.

Luke 1–The Gospel From a Doctor’s Perspective

So how does one lay out the amazing story of the Life of our Lord Jesus. It has a great deal to do with audience, with whether it is a personal account or one based upon the compilation of facts from others.  Luke, Paul’s companion, and personal physician had the opportunity to hear the story of Jesus from many apostles and other witnesses as he traveled with Paul. So, as a doctor, he gathered as many of the facts from as many perspectives as possible.  His goal was to compile a complete picture for Theophilus (lover of God)–to assure his decision to follow Christ was based on solid fact and a complete picture.

Each Gospel has a flair–Mark was the Dragnet version, “Just the facts, ma’am!”.  John was written as a personal account addressing things the other Gospels did not focus upon.  After all, John was there! Matthew was another personal account but told for the benefit of skeptical Jews that needed to realize how many prophecies were fulfilled by Christ’s coming.  Luke was unique. He was an outsider looking in.  He was compelled by the Lord.  He was addressing the new Church.  People that were not necessarily born into the chosen but adopted by God’s grace.   In that quest, Luke sought detail and consistency. 

As we move through this account of Jesus, we will see so much of the life of Jesus, and we will be blessed in so many ways.  This is going to be a fun adventure into the Christmas season.  So, let’s begin!

God Bless You


Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us, just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us, it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught.

Isaiah 66–Isaiah’s Concluding Prophecy

So, in closing , God makes His position clear; I created all this!  The heavens are my throne and the earth my footstool! Please know that it is not your sacrifices that impress me, it is your hearts.  Make no mistake; I know the difference.  I watched my beloved speak of me with Love–and they are persecuted.  I hate it, but, know this–that behavior will not go unpunished.  As any father, I will love my kids–I absolutely adore them.  So, those that harm them will face the wrath of an angry Father.  

But here is the thing, I love My kids from every nation and people. I will bless those that love Me no matter where they are from or who they are! Conversely, there will be no mercy on those that hate Me and prey on My people.  there will be a reckoning like none other.  In short, be ready for I will be back, and you will know it when it happens.  In the meantime, I love you and will be there with and for you until My return! 

Few would say that God was not making His conclusion clear.  He loves His own.  It is not a thing that you can pretend.  Seek first His kingdom and righteousness; and all these things will be added to you! Matthew 6:33

Help me , Father, to walk in your ways and live a life worthy of Your Love.

God Bless You


This is what the Lord says:

“Heaven is my throne,
    and the earth is my footstool.
Where is the house you will build for me?
    Where will my resting place be?
Has not my hand made all these things,
    and so they came into being?”
declares the Lord.

“These are the ones I look on with favor:
    those who are humble and contrite in spirit,
    and who tremble at my word.
But whoever sacrifices a bull
    is like one who kills a person,
and whoever offers a lamb
    is like one who breaks a dog’s neck;
whoever makes a grain offering
    is like one who presents pig’s blood,
and whoever burns memorial incense
    is like one who worships an idol.
They have chosen their own ways,
    and they delight in their abominations;
so I also will choose harsh treatment for them
    and will bring on them what they dread.
For when I called, no one answered,
    when I spoke, no one listened.
They did evil in my sight
    and chose what displeases me.”

Hear the word of the Lord,
    you who tremble at his word:
“Your own people who hate you,
    and exclude you because of my name, have said,
‘Let the Lord be glorified,
    that we may see your joy!’
    Yet they will be put to shame.
Hear that uproar from the city,
    hear that noise from the temple!
It is the sound of the Lord
    repaying his enemies all they deserve.

“Before she goes into labor,
    she gives birth;
before the pains come upon her,
    she delivers a son.
Who has ever heard of such things?
    Who has ever seen things like this?
Can a country be born in a day
    or a nation be brought forth in a moment?
Yet no sooner is Zion in labor
    than she gives birth to her children.
Do I bring to the moment of birth
    and not give delivery?” says the Lord.
“Do I close up the womb
    when I bring to delivery?” says your God.
10 “Rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad for her,
    all you who love her;
rejoice greatly with her,
    all you who mourn over her.
11 For you will nurse and be satisfied
    at her comforting breasts;
you will drink deeply
    and delight in her overflowing abundance.”

12 For this is what the Lord says:

“I will extend peace to her like a river,
    and the wealth of nations like a flooding stream;
you will nurse and be carried on her arm
    and dandled on her knees.
13 As a mother comforts her child,
    so will I comfort you;
    and you will be comforted over Jerusalem.”

14 When you see this, your heart will rejoice
    and you will flourish like grass;
the hand of the Lord will be made known to his servants,
    but his fury will be shown to his foes.
15 See, the Lord is coming with fire,
    and his chariots are like a whirlwind;
he will bring down his anger with fury,
    and his rebuke with flames of fire.
16 For with fire and with his sword
    the Lord will execute judgment on all people,
    and many will be those slain by the Lord.

17 “Those who consecrate and purify themselves to go into the gardens, following one who is among those who eat the flesh of pigs, rats and other unclean things—they will meet their end together with the one they follow,” declares the Lord.

18 “And I, because of what they have planned and done, am about to come[a] and gather the people of all nations and languages, and they will come and see my glory.

19 “I will set a sign among them, and I will send some of those who survive to the nations—to Tarshish, to the Libyans[b] and Lydians (famous as archers), to Tubal and Greece, and to the distant islands that have not heard of my fame or seen my glory. They will proclaim my glory among the nations. 20 And they will bring all your people, from all the nations, to my holy mountain in Jerusalem as an offering to the Lord—on horses, in chariots and wagons, and on mules and camels,” says the Lord. “They will bring them, as the Israelites bring their grain offerings, to the temple of the Lord in ceremonially clean vessels. 21 And I will select some of them also to be priests and Levites,” says the Lord.

22 “As the new heavens and the new earth that I make will endure before me,” declares the Lord, “so will your name and descendants endure. 23 From one New Moon to another and from one Sabbath to another, all mankind will come and bow down before me,” says the Lord. 24 “And they will go out and look on the dead bodies of those who rebelled against me; the worms that eat them will not die, the fire that burns them will not be quenched, and they will be loathsome to all mankind.”

Isaiah 65–God’s New Heaven and New Earth

Isaiah 65 is a difficult chapter.  It is broken into several parts. It begins with a promise of restoration for the remnant of Israel.  It is a breath of fresh air for those exiled to Babylon.  In the short term it describes the return after exile in nice and hopeful detail.

There is however a clear message of judgement for the rebellious.  God goes into detail about the peoples’ sin, their ignoring God, and worshipping other gods.  He even details eating pork and other non-kosher foods.  It is not God attacking the nation’s dietary laws, it is a Father exasperated by His chosen’s apparent disregard for their national identity and their covenant to trust and follow Him.

The final section, however, is the most wonderful part of the chapter.  It is the Father’s description of what lies ahead.  “See I will create a new Heaven and a new Earth!”  It was not only a promise to Israel, but it was a promise to all God’s chosen.  Face it, then and now there was pain, poverty, injustice, and death.  Families were in disarray, lives were wasted, and people were in states of hopelessness–SOUND FAMILIAR?  This was a loving Father’s reminder to His beloved that this is a dot on a very long line! What we must look forward to is a place of beauty, of love, and of peace.  No more injustice, no more pain, and no more separation from God.

For the nation of Israel, that was a promise that could not come too soon.  From their inception, they were always hated by the world, because they were different! They chose to follow one God and allow Him to dictate their journey! It seemed ludicrous to many and offensive to the rest.  Living lives of selflessness and humility had to be fake and pompous, right?  The promise is clear, if we will trust and follow our Lord, then we will enjoy eternity with Him.  We will live in a new Heaven and new earth without pain, without death, without ridiculous bickering, or injustice. I would humbly argue that such a promise is worth our love and devotion.  It was made for us, and planned for us by a Father that simply loves His own.  Embrace it and follow Him!

God Bless You


“See, I will create
    new heavens and a new earth.
The former things will not be remembered,
    nor will they come to mind.
18 But be glad and rejoice forever
    in what I will create,
for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight
    and its people a joy.
19 I will rejoice over Jerusalem
    and take delight in my people;
the sound of weeping and of crying
    will be heard in it no more.

20 “Never again will there be in it
    an infant who lives but a few days,
    or an old man who does not live out his years;
the one who dies at a hundred
    will be thought a mere child;
the one who fails to reach[a] a hundred
    will be considered accursed.
21 They will build houses and dwell in them;
    they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
22 No longer will they build houses and others live in them,
    or plant and others eat.
For as the days of a tree,
    so will be the days of my people;
my chosen ones will long enjoy
    the work of their hands.
23 They will not labor in vain,
    nor will they bear children doomed to misfortune;
for they will be a people blessed by the Lord,
    they and their descendants with them.
24 Before they call I will answer;
    while they are still speaking I will hear.
25 The wolf and the lamb will feed together,
    and the lion will eat straw like the ox,
    and dust will be the serpent’s food.
They will neither harm nor destroy
    on all my holy mountain,”
says the Lord.

Isaiah 64–The Reality of Sin and Forgiveness

Isaiah makes the case for a fallen Israel.  Now, remember this is a long time before any of the devastation was present.  It had to be strange reading by the king, but looking back, we know God revealed to Isaiah a full picture of the fall, the dispersal and the redemption and restoration of His people.  Still Isaiah seems to humbly be approaching the Lord and requesting a life of forgiveness, redemption, and restoration–WHY? Because that is what Dads do.  No matter how mad God becomes, He still loves us more.

So, Isaiah reminds God of His greatness and glory.  Additionally, He is reminding God that We are His kids.  He asks God to relent from His anger, though well-deserved and asks that we be forgiven and restored.  While the request is for the Israel of Isaiah’s time, it pours over thousands of years to present day when we and the world can know Christ personally and God eternally. We need to become humble and realize the scope of God’s Love and our sinful hearts. Like Isaiah, we need to approach the Lord with reverence and gratefulness.  He loves us and wants us to be personally connected to Him for now and forever.  We, like Isaiah, know God’s love and ability to forgive and restore us.  We simply need to accept the love and walk in submission to His leadership.  

God Bless You


[a]Oh, that you would burst from the heavens and come down!
    How the mountains would quake in your presence!
[b]As fire causes wood to burn
    and water to boil,
your coming would make the nations tremble.
    Then your enemies would learn the reason for your fame!
When you came down long ago,
    you did awesome deeds beyond our highest expectations.
    And oh, how the mountains quaked!
For since the world began,
    no ear has heard
and no eye has seen a God like you,
    who works for those who wait for him!
You welcome those who gladly do good,
    who follow godly ways.
But you have been very angry with us,
    for we are not godly.
We are constant sinners;
    how can people like us be saved?
We are all infected and impure with sin.
    When we display our righteous deeds,
    they are nothing but filthy rags.
Like autumn leaves, we wither and fall,
    and our sins sweep us away like the wind.
Yet no one calls on your name
    or pleads with you for mercy.
Therefore, you have turned away from us
    and turned us over[c] to our sins.

And yet, O Lord, you are our Father.
    We are the clay, and you are the potter.
    We all are formed by your hand.
Don’t be so angry with us, Lord.
    Please don’t remember our sins forever.
Look at us, we pray,
    and see that we are all your people.
10 Your holy cities are destroyed.
    Zion is a wilderness;
    yes, Jerusalem is a desolate ruin.
11 The holy and beautiful Temple
    where our ancestors praised you
has been burned down,
    and all the things of beauty are destroyed.
12 After all this, Lord, must you still refuse to help us?
    Will you continue to be silent and punish us?

Isaiah 63–A Story From Three Perspectives

Isaiah 63 could easily be a script to a Hollywood movie.  It looks At Israel from 3 perspectives; the Father that avenges His chosen’s enemies, a grateful child that recognizes and regrets their rebellion, and a humble recipient that begs for forgiveness for their wicked behavior.  The title could be “Three Genres”. 

In the first genre, the audience would see the rage of a Heavenly Father tired of seeing His chosen attacked and abused by all that are around them.  In His mind, these are His precious treasures, and no one will help them.  So, as any great Dad would–The Father interceded.  It was not pretty, and the enemies were destroyed “Hollywood Style”.  The Father wanted to make clear that while there are times when he has had to discipline them–no one can mess with His kids and not pay a price!

Act two is staged in a quiet forest, where a Lovely child tells the story of a Father’s patience and love for Children that chose to rebel.  She sings the praises of the patience of a Father that would love despite the rebellion.  One can hear the beautiful and humble grateful heart of this child of the King.  She knows she did not deserve the effort, but also that Her Heavenly father would Have it no other way.

Then the final vignette.  This vignette is in a chapel on a hill where a child who has given the Father a very difficult time realizes the err of their ways and repents and asks for the pardon the awful behavior.  In that, the Father gladly scoops up the child and forgives the child without a second thought.  It is a scene like the prodigal son with fine robes, fatted calves and celebration that lasts for days.  All are reunited, redeemed, and restored and the family of God walks in peace and unity…

The closing credits display three verses–Romans 5:8, 2 Chronicles 7:14 and I John 1:9…

God Bless You


Who is this who comes from Edom,
    from the city of Bozrah,
    with his clothing stained red?
Who is this in royal robes,
    marching in his great strength?

“It is I, the Lord, announcing your salvation!
    It is I, the Lord, who has the power to save!”

Why are your clothes so red,
    as if you have been treading out grapes?

“I have been treading the winepress alone;
    no one was there to help me.
In my anger I have trampled my enemies
    as if they were grapes.
In my fury I have trampled my foes.
    Their blood has stained my clothes.
For the time has come for me to avenge my people,
    to ransom them from their oppressors.
I was amazed to see that no one intervened
    to help the oppressed.
So I myself stepped in to save them with my strong arm,
    and my wrath sustained me.
I crushed the nations in my anger
    and made them stagger and fall to the ground,
    spilling their blood upon the earth.”

Isaiah 62–A Prophet’s Prayer

It is difficult to be gifted with the gift of prophecy.  Prophecy has two parts: foretelling the future and forthtelling the truth.  In part, many admire and are amazed at the accuracy of Isaiah’s prophecies about Jesus and about Israel.  Remember, at the time of these prophecies, Jerusalem, was prosperous and proud.  They were very sacrosanct and holy–they were just ignoring God.  They were checking boxes like mad, but had no heart for their Creator, Savior, and Provider.

Israel, like most still loved themselves more than God.  They did not mind making God a part of their lives as long as He did not interfere.  That is why much of Isaiah’s prophecy is simply calling them out for their sins of commission and omission. Here in chapter 62, We are blessed to see this prophet’s love for God and God’s chosen.  He personally prayed for their restoration.  for the return of their name and dignity.  The normally blunt and harsh prophet is now bearing his broken heart for these people, God’s Chosen.

We are also His chosen.  Isaiah wants us to also enjoy the blessing and restoration that is due God’s people.  When we trust the Lord as our savior, He will bring us into His family and, like Israel, will gather us and care for us.  This world is not our home.  We are being prepared for an eternal life in God’s presence.  Here there will be no fear, no darkness, no tears, and no regrets.  We will be new creations in the Heavenlies, in God’s loving family.  Like the Israel described in this passage, we will be restored and renewed in the image of our Lord.  What an amazing promise and gift.

God Bless You


Because I love Zion,
    I will not keep still.
Because my heart yearns for Jerusalem,
    I cannot remain silent.
I will not stop praying for her
    until her righteousness shines like the dawn,
    and her salvation blazes like a burning torch.
The nations will see your righteousness.
    World leaders will be blinded by your glory.
And you will be given a new name
    by the Lord’s own mouth.
The Lord will hold you in his hand for all to see—
    a splendid crown in the hand of God.
Never again will you be called “The Forsaken City”[a]
    or “The Desolate Land.”[b]
Your new name will be “The City of God’s Delight”[c]
    and “The Bride of God,”[d]
for the Lord delights in you
    and will claim you as his bride.
Your children will commit themselves to you, O Jerusalem,
    just as a young man commits himself to his bride.
Then God will rejoice over you
    as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride.

O Jerusalem, I have posted watchmen on your walls;
    they will pray day and night, continually.
    Take no rest, all you who pray to the Lord.
Give the Lord no rest until he completes his work,
    until he makes Jerusalem the pride of the earth.
The Lord has sworn to Jerusalem by his own strength:
    “I will never again hand you over to your enemies.
Never again will foreign warriors come
    and take away your grain and new wine.
You raised the grain, and you will eat it,
    praising the Lord.
Within the courtyards of the Temple,
    you yourselves will drink the wine you have pressed.”

10 Go out through the gates!
    Prepare the highway for my people to return!
Smooth out the road; pull out the boulders;
    raise a flag for all the nations to see.
11 The Lord has sent this message to every land:
    “Tell the people of Israel,[e]
‘Look, your Savior is coming.
    See, he brings his reward with him as he comes.’”
12 They will be called “The Holy People”
    and “The People Redeemed by the Lord.”
And Jerusalem will be known as “The Desirable Place”
    and “The City No Longer Forsaken.”

Isaiah 61–The Most Lovely Prophecy

We have discussed repeatedly the idea that Isaiah was not only a prophet, but a true evangelist.  Of the many beautiful prophecies, Isaiah penned; none are more promising than Isaiah 61.  In a verse, Isaiah lays out the mission of the Lord and the mission of His chosen ones.  Just read and let this passage pour over you like a warm shower.  Let it reach into your spirit and remind you of the love of our Heavenly Father.  

From the beginning God wanted His kids to enjoy a full and meaningful life.  He wanted to restore all that had been lost.  He addresses all the pains of poverty, sickness, sadness, capture, imprisonment and blindness.  He understood that every need is unique, and that God cares for each of our needs personally and completely.  Isaiah speaks of restoration and vindication for God’s own.  He heals and restores them so that they can bring the same ministry to the world.

Christ has come.  He calls each to a personal relationship with God.  If we will follow, we will live eternally with Him in Heaven and will see Him prepare, protect, and provide for us while we are traveling through.  We must trust the Lord and know He always keeps His promises.  We can never forget that He will be there for us now and forever. Thanks Isaiah for sharing God’s beautiful promise.  Help me, Lord to trust You to carry it through.

God Bless You


The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
    because the Lord has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
    to proclaim freedom for the captives
    and release from darkness for the prisoners,[a]
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
    and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
    and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
    instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
    instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
    instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
    a planting of the Lord
    for the display of his splendor.

They will rebuild the ancient ruins
    and restore the places long devastated;
they will renew the ruined cities
    that have been devastated for generations.
Strangers will shepherd your flocks;
    foreigners will work your fields and vineyards.
And you will be called priests of the Lord,
    you will be named ministers of our God.
You will feed on the wealth of nations,
    and in their riches you will boast.

Instead of your shame
    you will receive a double portion,
and instead of disgrace
    you will rejoice in your inheritance.
And so you will inherit a double portion in your land,
    and everlasting joy will be yours.

“For I, the Lord, love justice;
    I hate robbery and wrongdoing.
In my faithfulness I will reward my people
    and make an everlasting covenant with them.
Their descendants will be known among the nations
    and their offspring among the peoples.
All who see them will acknowledge
    that they are a people the Lord has blessed.”

10 I delight greatly in the Lord;
    my soul rejoices in my God.
For he has clothed me with garments of salvation
    and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness,
as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest,
    and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
11 For as the soil makes the sprout come up
    and a garden causes seeds to grow,
so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness
    and praise spring up before all nations.