Isaiah 40:21-23, 25-26, 28 - Do you not know? Do you not hear? Has it not been told you from the beginning? Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth? It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers; who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them like a tent to dwell in; who brings princes to nothing, and makes the rulers of the earth as emptiness. ... To whom then will you compare Me, that I should be like him? says the Holy One. Lift up your eyes on high and see: who created these? He who brings out their host by number, calling them all by name; by the greatness of His might and because He is strong in power, not one is missing. ... Have you not known? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; His understanding is unsearchable.
As we roll into month two of 2021, we are reminded of some wonderful news from the prophet Isaiah. For all the turmoil that has embroiled the world in recent months, one thing remains clear: God reigns in the heavens, and He hasn't missed a thing. He knows every one of our cares and concerns and is ever ready to hear our pleas—no matter how desperate or catastrophic they might be.
That God was a good listener was good news for Isaiah. He lived in a world rocked by violence and uncertainty. The armies of Assyria and, later, Babylonia were on the march, and there was precious little Israel (or most any other nation in their path) could do to stop them. With the Babylonians came the destruction of Jerusalem, the end of the Davidic dynasty, and the forced exile of many Jews to Babylon. These were tough times for the children of Israel; their nation was overrun, and the lives of its citizens were broken and scattered.
But through it all, Isaiah knew and trusted that God reigned supreme over all things—no matter how hopeless things appeared. "He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might He increases strength. Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint" (Isaiah 40:29-31).
But Isaiah didn't only speak to the concerns of his generation. He also speaks to us—directly. When we're downtrodden by life and fumbling for answers, the prophet reminds us that there is One who has "borne our griefs and carried our sorrows," One through whose "wounds we are healed," One who will "make many to be accounted righteous, and He shall bear their iniquities" (see Isaiah 53).
That's right. Isaiah spoke of Jesus—the Word of God come into the flesh to save us from our sins (see John 1:1-18; Galatians 1:3-5)?
THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, thank You for telling us about Jesus through Your prophet, Isaiah. In Jesus' Name we pray. Amen.
This Daily Devotion was written by Paul Schreiber.
1. What is there in nature that seems to reflect the work of some divine being?
2. Why do you think Isaiah used the term "grasshoppers" to describe mankind?
3. Does knowing that Isaiah spoke about a coming Messiah hundreds of years before Jesus' birth impact your faith in any way?
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