- 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 56
God’s salvation for all.
Some biblical scholars classify the book of Isaiah into three; the first Isaiah (1-39), oracles against Israel and other nations. The second Isaiah (40-55), prophetic message of restoration of Israel. And the third Isaiah (56-66), prophetic message of salvation for all nations.
Prophet Isaiah speaks for God calling for all to do justice, do what is right, keep the Sabbath. “foreigner,” “eunuch,” represent those who are outside of the covenant of God according to the Law of Moses. Justice and righteousness are universal law and sheer joy of Sabbath rest is open to all mankind. All who love the name of the Lord and to be his servants, are welcomed into full membership of the people of God. God’s community includes Israel and foreigners. Their presence, prayers, their sacrifices will be acceptable to God. Even Temple is open to all, “a house of prayer for all nations.” (v7). Jesus quoted it when he cleansed the temple. (Matthew 11:17)
This prophecy is different from that of the first and second Isaiah in message, which emphasized the redemption of Israel. It is shifted away from Jews centered religion to more universal religion. God’s salvation is extended to all nations, which is new Israel, gathered from the ends of the earth, will be greater than the old Israel, because they are not confined by social, political, or racial status, but they are welcomed by moral and spiritual.
Jesus fulfilled that new age by completing all requirement of the Law, “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)
1. What does this passage tell you about God?
2. What does this passage tell you about people.?
3. What does this passage tell you about yourself and God’s will for you?