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.
This is the culmination of 400 years of Babylonian captivity. Today is a day to rejoice!
“Today I am doing something new, something you cannot say you have heard before.” (v7, CEV).
The Lord says He tested the people of Israel in the hard times of captivity, tested them to refine them as silver is refined in the fire. You’ve heard this example, I’m sure: As silver is purified there is a black dross that separates from the genuine silver. How does the silversmith know when the silver is perfectly refined? When the dross is completely burned off and he can see his reflection in the pure silver.
So, today, the refining process is complete. Israel finally, once again, is reflecting the image of God, not of other idols or gods.
So, this leads to their freedom!
“I am the holy LORD God. The One who rescues you. For your own good, I teach you and I lead you among the right path… Now leave Babylon! Celebrate as you go! Be happy and shout for everyone to hear: “The LORD has rescued, has redeemed His servant Israel!” (v17,20, CEV).
He has redeemed us, too. The people of Israel were rescued by God at the hand of King Cyrus. We are redeemed by Jesus!
Celebrate! Be happy! Shout as you go!
And as for the people of Babylon? “There is no peace, says the LORD, for the wicked.” (v22, NIV).
I believe the flip side is also true. There IS peace in abundance for those who live in goodness and grace. In Jesus, there is freedom from the captivity of sin and an overflow of peace. His perfect Shalom. His perfect joy!
If you’re new to this journey through Isaiah, you can start here.
(c) 2020. Rich Ronald.