We are bridging between two books in the Prophetic Stream today as we read from the International Standard Version this week.
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God, we pray that all of us would realize the gravity and seriousness of our callings the way Isaiah and Jeremiah did. There are nations yet to bring into Your Light – and you will use us to do that as we are willing and available. Amen
Isaiah is offering parts of the vision of the new heavens and the new earth. It is the answer to prayer for a longing earth and the people who have been hoping for God’s Kingdom to come in full. Trademarks of this time are that new nations are “taken aboard”, a new name is given to all, the atmosphere of God reigns, there is a new heaven and earth…because what has been hoped for has arrived at our current presence. What was always thought of to be “up there” is now among us; that is a new heaven and earth. <—-the fascinating concept could be discussed for 1,000 years! and it probably will still be a fascinating discussion 1,000 from now. The evil is separated and gone. Peter speaks of this in 2 Pt. 3:10ff, John speaks of this in its final state in Rev. 21-22. Revelation especially expands on Isaiah’s vision described. Other aspects is that people will be living the length of years similar to lifespans before Noah’s flood.
Isa. 65:20 asserts that those who die under 100 years of age will be accursed souls who died in their youth. Apparently a time is coming when we will be seeing Methuselah-types again. Won’t this be a wonder? Plenty and prosperity and peace will be common. Tension and frustration will be unheard of.
66 – Isaiah talks clearly about those who are received of the Lord and those who are rejected. There have been people who have lived by the rules of their own choosing and obeying which rules of God that suited them [vv. 3-4]. Obeying what we want to obey when we want to obey it – is not obeying. This great book of Isaiah then ends with comforting words akin to tender motherhood for his beloved followers and terrible reckoning for the disobedient. There are several of Jesus’ quotes that come from this portion of Isaiah. And this ends the words of one of the greatest writers of all time. For his powerful and poignant contribution to Israel’s prophecy, Isaiah was executed by the diabolical king Manasseh; son of the righteous king Hezekiah. Hebrews 11:37 talks of Isaiah’s execution wherein he joined the other saints in glory.
Jer. 1 – Jeremiah had the dismal task of warning Jerusalem of being over run by Babylon. He is called to ministry and he is called to a ministry in a time when people don’t want to hear it. He ministered in Jerusalem during its final decades before Babylon stormed in … and there is no record of even one convert to encourage his work. Truth is he could have volunteered to go to Nineveh or Babylon and be among an elite writing team for a literary revival was in progress. But he followed his difficult call from God and he stuck to his post and henceforth his writing is still touching hearts nearly 2700 years later. This instead of having his work be celebrated, his life lived in luxury, only to have his writing become filler for an archaeological dig along with his own bones. He was reluctant to accept his calling from God. He was about 20 years of age when his calling came. He was intimidated and felt he was too young to affect anything. But he was to tell them that an army was coming – they were as motivated and angry as a boiling pot ready to pour over the land. His calling is rich with imagery, ominous in its pulsing immensity and encouraging in that God would be present and walk him through his assignment step by step and word by word. Jeremiah is in for an intense “rest of his life”!