Verse of the Day 11-27-22

A voice of one calling:
“In the wilderness prepare
the way for the LORD;
make straight in the desert
a highway for our God.
Every valley shall be raised up,
every mountain and hill made low;
the rough ground shall become level,
the rugged places a plain.
And the glory of the LORD will be revealed,
and all people will see it together.
For the mouth of the LORD has spoken.” Isaiah 40:3-5

The call in these verses to preparation reminds us of Israel’s liberation from Egyptian captivity (Exodus 12-13). The wilderness became a place of God’s provision. God guided his people, fed them manna from heaven, and led them to Sinai (Exodus 13-19). Then, when the Israelites left Sinai (Numbers 10), God remained with them during the 40 years of wilderness wandering. Wilderness served as a place of preparation in Israel’s history-the place where a work of God was brewing. Isaiah’s words here capture this same sense. A straight way in the desert (Isaiah 40:3) evokes the idea of a new exodus out of captivity-not from Egypt this time but from Babylon. Nothing will obstruct this new highway. Valley will be raised, mountains and hills will be lowered and rough ground will be made smooth (v. 4). The preparation is made so that “the glory of the Lord will be revealed” (v. 5). This is not a private revelation, for “all people will see it together” (v. 5). A future exodus on a grand scale will display the glory of God before the nations. The hope of these verses was not realized in Isaiah’s lifetime or even when the Israelite remnant returned to Jerusalem from exile (in Babylon) in 538 BC, the year after the Medo-Persians conquered the Babylonians. This prophecy was fulfilled with the ministry of John the Baptist, who, as God’s messenger and the Messiah’s forerunner, called people to prepare the way of the Lord (Mark 1:2-3) through repentance and baptism (Mark 1:4-5). In Isaiah 40, the voice said that the way was prepared for the Lord, and in the ministry of John the Baptist, the way was prepared for Jesus. Reading Isaiah 40 in light of the Gospels, we discover that the new exodus is being led by God himself, that Jesus is the Word become flesh (John 1:14).

Today’s Bible Reading:

Daniel 4, 2 Peter 1, Psalm 119:97-112 and Proverbs 28:17-18


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