Isaiah 62:1-3 - For Zion's sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem's sake I will not be quiet, until her righteousness goes forth as brightness, and her salvation as a burning torch. The nations shall see your righteousness, and all the kings your glory, and you shall be called by a new name that the mouth of the LORD will give. You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the LORD, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God.
Have you ever noticed how attracted people are to shining things? It doesn't matter if it's gold, silver, diamonds, or even glass; if it shines, people love it. It attracts our attention; it makes us want to look at it more closely -- even to take it home, if we can.
Isaiah the prophet uses shining language to talk about God's people. He says he is waiting for the time when our "righteousness goes forth as brightness, and (our) salvation as a burning torch ... You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God."
What righteousness is this that Isaiah is talking about? Of course, he is talking about what Jesus has done for us and for everyone who believes in Him -- that Jesus has taken away our sin and made us clean, new, beautiful creations of God. He did this when He took our evil upon Himself and destroyed it through His death on the cross. When He rose from the dead, He raised us also from death, pure and spotless in God's eyes.
Because of Jesus' salvation, we are shiny now; and Isaiah expects the world to notice. "The nations shall see your righteousness," he says, "and all the kings your glory." God's Holy Spirit shines through us. As He lives in and through us, we become as noticeable and attractive as a crown in somebody's hand. Who could resist a closer look? What a great thing God has done for us!
But God is doing something even greater (and more humbling) for us. Isaiah says, "You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God." We all know that crowns aren't meant to be kept in somebody's hand. They belong on a head. If God is carrying a crown in this passage, He must mean to give it to someone, right?
And who is that someone? Who could it be but our Lord Jesus Christ? We are the crown He has won so dearly through His sufferings and death. And this is the paradox: most crowns bring honor to the one who wears them; but in this case, Jesus gives honor to us. We are not worthy; by nature, we are nothing more than a crown of thorns, but He has made us His own crown of beauty.
THE PRAYER: Thank You, Lord, for making us Your own and giving us Your beauty. Amen.
This Daily Devotion was written by Dr. Kari Vo.
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