- Centering prayer— Pray for illumination, “Lord, open my heart and mind by the power of the Holy Spirit,” and remain in silence.
- Read slowly, keeping any words or phrase that come to your mind, and mark on them.
- Close eyes and meditate on what you read.
- Take a note if you have question, inspiration.
Read Isaiah 17
Two oracles are recorded in chapter 17.
First oracle is against Damascus, the capital city of Aram(Syria), dating from the time of the Syro-Ephraimite alliance( Isaiah 7). During the Syro-Ephraimite war, Ephraim (another name for northern kingdom of Israel) and Aram (Syria) allied to attack Judah. Isaiah warned them not to depend on other nation(Assyria). And he predicts they will be unsuccessful, and that Israel will be destroyed by Assyria, and Assyria will be eventually destroyed. But God will save the remnants in Israel.
Second oracle is against idolatrous worship of people. Asherim is a cult images of Asherah, a sacred wooden poles. Those who forsake God for idols will be displaced as Israel displaced the Hivites and Amorites, who were original inhabitants of Palestine.
But Isaiah predicts that eventually God will defend His people.
1. What does God speak to you today in this chapter.
2. Reflection on “why do people worship idols?”
3. Close with silent prayer for two minutes.