Isaiah 17

Because of the importance of Israel and its people, and my personal love for The Land, I’m inviting you to join me through the key Old Testament book of Isaiah. Each day I’m posting some simple thoughts about this complex prophet.

Isaiah 17.

More doom. This time for Damascus, to the north.

There is some hope, however:

“At that time the people will turn and trust their creator, the Holy God of Jacob.” (v7, CEV)

Here’s what The Message says:

“Yes, the Day is coming when people will notice The One Who Made Them, take a long hard look at The Holy of Israel. They’ll lose interest in all the stuff they’ve made—altars and monuments and rituals, their homemade, handmade religion—however impressive it is.” (v7-8, MSG).

Oh, may that day be today! Can we lose interest in all the stuff we’ve made? All the altars? All the rituals of our handmade religions? All the programs of today’s church? All the lights, smoke, volume and smooth talk of many of today’s weekend worship services? Yes, this is what is used to encourage people to attend church in America. This is how churches compete with secular entertainment. I get that. I’m not against those things.

But, I believe our prayer each weekend as we step into a worship venue can be this: “God, may I see and hear You and only You today.” As we open our hands with humility and seek “The One Who Made Us” in our rituals, we will find “The Holy of Israel.” Let our hearts be impressed with the message from the Spirit rather than our senses impressed with the atmosphere of the room.

In John’s gospel, Jesus encourages us with these words: “God is Spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” (John 4:24, NIV).

May we continue to trust God, long before there’s a hint of “doom” in our lives. And may we trust our Creator even during times of hardship and struggle. For He is our God. And we are His people. He is our mighty Rock where we find protection. (v10, CEV).

(c) 2020. Rich Ronald.

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