Isaiah 9:2, 6-7
2 The people who walked in darkness
have seen a great light;
those who lived in a land of deep darkness—
on them light has shined.
6 For a child has been born for us,
a son given to us;
authority rests upon his shoulders;
and he is named
Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
7 His authority shall grow continually,
and there shall be endless peace
for the throne of David and his kingdom.
He will establish and uphold it
with justice and with righteousness
from this time onward and forevermore.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.
Isaiah’s memorable prophecy is one overflowing with light, hope and peace. Isaiah spoke into a time of great darkness and anxiety. The future of the kingdom looked bleak. Israel in exile reflected judgement on the nation. But Isaiah promises that this will not be forever. God is faithful and God will prevail.
The description of the great king to come is not one that looks particularly like an earthly king. Would that our leaders and rulers were wise, strong, caring and peaceful! There is a sense in the transition from child to son to one with authority, that God’s plans unfold with certainty and are unstoppable! There is a weightiness to the title and designations they contain, and it is deeply reassuring.
During this pandemic, holding to hope, that resolution will come, and that all will be well is hard. Many are suffering, many are struggling, and uncertainty is prevalent in many things. As we cry, Maranatha, Come, Lord Jesus, we place our lives and the state of the world into the eternal perspective and into God’s trustworthy hands. This is the hope that we have as Christians, and it the light in the darkness that we offer to the world.
Sometimes we ourselves too may feel overwhelmed by darkness or despondency. The fragility of life can feel burdensome and hard to cope with. As you read the text for today again, which word or phrase do you most notice? Is there a part that starts to shimmer, even if slightly, for you? What do you need to hold onto today as you await your Lord? Which words of help, help you cry – Maranatha, Come, Lord Jesus?
Let us pray.
Hope of the World!
Maranatha, come Lord Jesus!
Maranatha, come Lord Jesus, Light of the World! The prophets foretold your reign of peace. Give peace in our hearts this Advent season as we seek to be prophets for a new generation. In this time of pandemic, when so many people are suffering, help us to speak words of peace into places of challenge and situations of struggle. As we await your second coming, to judge the quick and the dead, remain present with us in our fellowship, as we share the peace. Help us today, and every day to worship you, to hear your word, and to do your will by sharing your peace with each other. We ask this in the name of the one born in Bethlehem.