Today’s Reading: Isaiah 10:1-11:16 (additional reading Psalm 56:1-13 and Proverbs 23:6-8)
In his letter to the Romans, Paul notes that even the created world was affected by the fall of mankind, and it too will be returned to peace and wholeness by Christ Jesus. Romans 8.20-21: For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
Isaiah illustrates the same truth in today’s reading. “The wolf and lamb will be friends; the leopard will sleep beside a goat and not eat it. Bears will no longer threaten the cattle and mothers will no longer scream when they see a cobra wrapping itself around their infant child.” (Isaiah 11:6-7)
Isaac Watts sings it this way: “No more let sins and sorrows grow, nor thorns infest the ground; he comes to make his blessings flow, far as the curse is found.” Even the weeds are redeemed by Jesus.
In today’s reading God tells Israel and Judah that though they have been punished, they will be restored. As a result, they will no longer hate each other; the jealousy shall depart. They will not squabble and fight like selfish brother and sister; they will be best friends, bosom buddies as it used to be called. Nor will the peace between people limited to a few tribes of Jews. In Isaiah 2 we find that all the nations will come together at the house of the Lord so that God can teach us his ways and cause us to walk in his paths.
God gave us the “ministry and message of reconciliation because He is reconciling the world to himself” (1 Corinthians 5.18-19). “He makes us one, breaking down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility” (Ephesians 2.14-16).
It is said that when he was 16, Charles Spurgeon was a mess. But he saw in a church the peace with the Father which Jesus offered and he accepted the great gift of Christmas. The angels announced it: peace with God and on earth, peace among those with whom he is pleased. Do we have the courage to apply the cross to our animosity with others?
How has God called you to peace?
Do we have the courage to apply the cross to your animosity with others?
Father, Thank You for giving us peace with You. Help us to be people of peace and live in unity with one another. In Jesus’ name, Amen