Saturday, December 7, 2013

December 7

Isaiah 9:2-6
The people walking in darkness
    have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness
    a light has dawned.
You have enlarged the nation
    and increased their joy;
they rejoice before you
    as people rejoice at the harvest,
as warriors rejoice
    when dividing the plunder.
For as in the day of Midian’s defeat,
    you have shattered
the yoke that burdens them,
    the bar across their shoulders,
    the rod of their oppressor.
Every warrior’s boot used in battle
    and every garment rolled in blood
will be destined for burning,
    will be fuel for the fire.
For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given,
    and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
    Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

I close my eyes and I hear a choir loud and clear singing from The Messiah.  I am filled with wonder and hope.  I know this promised child, but for the people of Isaiah’s day they were looking to the future.  They needed the promised child who would bear the burden of the government.  

Before this passage begins, distress, gloom and darkness fill the verses.  There is a feeling of no hope and separation from God.  Then chapter 9 opens putting the gloom behind and looking to the future.  Suddenly there is a vision of a great light!  This light brings joy to those in deep darkness.  Isaiah reminds them of when Gideon defeated Midian, delivering Israel from oppression.  The people remember this as a time to rejoice.  Jesus is the child that was promised, the great light to deliver us.

And so the promises ring out every Christmas in song.  A child is born!  And he will be called, Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

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