This passage records what Isaiah saw and heard regarding the future of Judah and Jerusalem. If you go to Jerusalem, you will see that the Temple Mount area is not level ground but a low hill. Isaiah’s vision is that at some point in the future, the Temple Mount will be the highest mountain around, so high that people will come from everywhere to access God. In fact, God will teach those who come to this mountain how to live. God will be the great teacher. No longer will there be a need for weapons of war or even learning about war. How wonderful it would be for us and the world if that time had already come!
In The Message, the first words in today’s scripture reading are “There’s a day coming . . .” It is a reminder that we are still waiting for that day, and Isaiah is quite descriptive about what that day will be. While waiting, we are both living in the present and living into the future. We are expanding our lives to benefit the world around us in the same way that God’s gifts make our lives more meaningful.
Isaiah’s words in verse 5 invite us to live and walk in God’s light; to get on board with what God is doing among us, with us, and through us; to listen carefully; to think creatively; to be studious; to pray; to benefit from the witness of others; and to be open to God’s presence with us. That is possible now, in spite of our slipping and sliding and trying to stay upright on the unlevel ground of everyday life.
Spend a few minutes reflecting on your life today, the week ahead, and God’s presence with you.
God, I want to walk in your light this day, to work and serve with you, to grow in loving you and others. Guide me, I pray. Amen.
Advent is a season for turning our minds to the coming arrival of the Christ child. Isaiah looks forward to a future day when peace will reign in Jerusalem. All nations will come to hear the wisdom of the Lord. The psalmist rejoices in going up to Jerusalem in his own day. Jerusalem is a center of peace and a place for righteous judgment among the nations. Both readings inform Jewish expectations of a bright future with the arrival of the Messiah. Paul tells the Romans that part of receiving the reality of the Messiah is self-preparation. We should put aside immoral living and put on the Lord Jesus Christ. Matthew looks forward to the future return of the Son of God, which will happen at an unexpected time.
Read Isaiah 2:1-5. How do you look to the Bible’s stories, prayer, and the Holy Spirit to help you work toward God’s reign?
Read Psalm 122. What does it mean for you to pray for peace?
Read Romans 13:11-14. How do you stay awake to salvation’s nearness?
Read Matthew 24:36-44. Who in your life lives as though they expect the Son of Man? What does it look like to be ready to meet Christ?
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