Voices of Our Past: Isaiah | By Tom Petty
Week 1, Day 2 | November 30
Scripture: Isaiah 49:1-6
The Bible is a book about promises, hopes, and dreams.
Prophets in the Bible have a fascinating role as custodians of the hopes, promises and dreams of their society, while also warning people when they are engaging in harmful behavior that will jeopardize their hopes.
One of the most important prophetic voices is Isaiah. He warned his people that their behavior would lead to decline and defeat but repentance and returning to God would insure their hopes and dreams for a Messiah, culminating in new heavens and a new earth. Isaiah presented a vision of a better day for his people. Isaiah describes in vivid Hebrew poetic imagery the immense blessings enjoyed by the people of God who receive the word of God.
Central to Isaiah’s message was the challenge to faith. He pleaded with the nation’s leaders not to turn to the mighty empires of Egypt and Assyria, but rather to trust in the living God.
In the centuries between the prophets and Jesus, the prophetic dreams never completely died. They remained alive in people like Elizabeth and Zechariah, Mary and Joseph, Anna and Simeon and even among the humble shepherds.
Jesus and his followers quoted Isaiah more that any other writer. Jesus, the Messiah, came as a fulfillment of the promise given to Abraham and repeated to the prophets. He was the fulfillment of their hopes, desires and dreams. He was the wonderful counselor, mighty God, everlasting father and prince of Peace, light in the midst of our dark world. Advent calls us to readjust our eyes to see the glimmer of light in the darkness.
We keep the promises, hopes and desires of God alive in our world as we trust, follow and obey Him.
PRAYER: Lord, may I demonstrate by my life today that I completely trust you to fulfill your promises in my life. Amen.
Tom Petty serves as a Deacon at FBC. He and his wife Margaret joined FBC when they relocated to Greensboro after serving in missions in France for 35 years.