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God and Israel: Isaiah Devotional 2.18

Verse 6 summarizes Isaiah’s argument throughout the entire volume to this point, chapters 40-44.

First, God is: 1) God, 2) king, 3) redeemer, and 4) the Almighty Lord of Hosts. Second, he and Messiah are one, according to the New Testament. Finally, there is no other god who saves. The point of all this is that God in his great love for his own people pleads with them to turn back to him and be saved. His plea still stands for all Israel’s children and for Gentiles, as well. … Continue readingGod and Israel: Isaiah Devotional 2.18

Isaiah’s Flip-Flops: Isaiah Devotional 2.14

I don’t believe God’s purpose in specifying a remnant is to limit the number of people who finally enter the gates of his kingdom. (Neither should we.) Other places in Scripture claim that number will be as many as the sand in the sea and the stars in the sky. Rather, God seeks to emphasize that only those who believe, repent, and faithfully (continuously until the end) trust in and follow God as Lord, Savior, and King will be saved. Because God makes a promise to save Israel does not mean that he will save the arrogant, the hard of heart, or those unrepentantly disobedient to his will. That has never been God’s purpose. By means of the cross of his holy Servant, Jesus Christ, God gives everyone–Israelite and Gentile alike–opportunity to repent, be saved, and find their rest in him. … Continue readingIsaiah’s Flip-Flops: Isaiah Devotional 2.14

Big Picture and Details: Isaiah Devotional 2.13

he overarching theme of the second volume of Isaiah (chapters 40-66) is the advent of Messiah. Interwoven with the theme of Messiah as God’s true representative is the counter theme of the falsity of idols. The dividing line is between believers and non-believers, between God-followers and idol worshipers. There is no line between Gentiles and the sons of Jacob. God rejects the idol worshipers among his “own” people and from among the Gentiles. Conversely, God gives his singular Servant Messiah to believers from among his own people and to believers among the Gentiles. Thus speaks Isaiah, God’s prophet. … Continue readingBig Picture and Details: Isaiah Devotional 2.13

Covenant to a Race: Isaiah Devotional 2.12

Since the religious leaders of the Israelites in Jesus’s day misunderstood their own Scripture to the extent that they missed their own Messiah, why should we, who have the Holy Spirit, plus the hermeneutical key that Jesus gave his disciples (himself), and the example of all the New Testament writers–why should we make the same literalistic mistakes that they did? We have no reason today to suppose that Isaiah had no spiritual understanding. Even if the bulk of his listeners may not have, can we not grant that God’s Spirit broke through to Isaiah? Otherwise, why would he be quoted so often in the New Testament? I believe that the New Testament quotes Isaiah so often because Isaiah prophesied the Christ. … Continue readingCovenant to a Race: Isaiah Devotional 2.12