(12 verses, 2:20 to read)
What I am about to READ
Israel, and all people, you have been given a new name. Rejoice!
MARK and LEARN
1-5: God has given His people a new name. Their name will no longer be “Forsaken” and “Desolate” but “My Delight Is in Her” and “Married.” The Lord would delight in His people and take them back as His bride.
6-7: In verse 1 the Lord says He will not remain quiet until He succeeds in glorifying Israel. In these verses the tables are turned. God graciously sets watchmen on the city walls whose duty it is to cry out day and night. The watchmen are to cry out to the Lord, giving Him no rest until he establishes Jerusalem as he has promised. The Lord is saying, “Don’t give yourselves any rest in your work of giving Me no rest.” We too are to call out to the Lord and, with our prayers, “hasten” His coming, that is, pray that He establish the new heaven and new earth as soon as possible.
8-9: The Lord again talks about how He would protect Israel from its enemies. His protection will bring two distinct blessings. The Israelites would not work in vain, only to have someone steal the fruits of their labor. And because they would be able to hold on to the fruits of their labor, they would be able to use it in worshiping God at His temple.
10: Here Isaiah speaks about “gates.” He’s talking about the gates of Gentile cities. In the various towns and cities across the world, gates would be flung open and God’s people would return to their homeland.
11-12: God gives His people names with rich and beautiful meaning. They will be holy, made pure and set apart for God. They will be redeemed, bought back from their captivity. They will be sought after, that is, the Gentiles will come to their light. And their city will no longer be deserted. The new Jerusalem will remain secure forever.
In Scripture, names are extremely important. Names were rich with meaning. They told us what people are like or what they do. For example, God tells Abram that his name will be Abraham, which means “Father of Many” (Genesis 17:5) – forever connecting his name to the covenant and promise that God made with Abraham. Also, take the name “Jacob” for example. Jacob essentially means “cheater” or “deceiver.” But God changed his name to “Israel,” which means “He strives with God,” because of the late-night wrestling match in Genesis 32. The promise God made to Abraham would continue with Israel.
Despite our unfaithfulness, our Lord remains always faithful to us. In the waters of Holy Baptism, Christ has changed our names from “Forsaken” and “Desolate” to “My Delight Is in Her” and “Married.” Through this lavish washing away of sin we have been united to Christ, our bridegroom (Romans 6). He will never break His promises to you. He will always love you unconditionally. He will never abandon you. Christ is always faithful to His Church – His holy, redeemed, and sought after bride.
Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Post below, or join the conversation in our Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/dailybiblemeditation/
Pastor Kevin Zellers, Jr.