Instead of the thornbush will grow the juniper, and instead of briers the myrtle will grow.
This will be for the Lord’s renown, for an everlasting sign, that will endure forever.”
This prophetic passage speaks of the restoration that the Lord will undertake that will be to His glory forever because that which was fallen and cursed, He will uproot and replace with that which is living and blessed.
Genesis chapter 3 verse 18 - 19 speaks of the consequences of the fall of mankind and part of the curse was that thorns and thistles would dominate the land and men would have to struggle against these noxious plants to grow food to survive.
It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.”
The Lord Jesus, in His victory over sin and death, will restore creation from the curse and return it to a blessed abode for men that will be a sign of the Lord's victory forever.
The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned.
This prophecy of Isaiah is speaking forward to a time when the world, that was in total spiritual darkness, would see a great light. We who stumbled around in pitch blackness with no knowledge of truth, would suddenly see a brilliant light shining.
This prophecy is about Jesus who said in John chapter 8 verse 12;
“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
To bring everyone who follows Him out of darkness and into the light, Jesus had to die on a cross and shed His blood to pay for our sins.
It is this that we commemorate today as we read in Luke chapter 29 verse 19 - 20;
And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.”
In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.
Let us remember the death our Lord suffered for us until He returns.
When the Lord brings you into the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Hivites and Jebusites—the land he swore to your ancestors to give you, a land flowing with milk and honey—you are to observe this ceremony in this month:
The Israelites were leaving the land of Egypt after the final plague of the death of all the first born of the land.
As they prepared to go, the Lord, through Moses, instructed them that when they arrived in the land promised to their ancestors, they were to observe this special ceremony;
On the same month as their departure (Aviv), for seven days they were to avoid bread with yeast and they were not even to have any yeast within their borders.
On the last day of the seven day ceremony , they were to have a feast to finalize the week of no yeast and they were to tell successive generations that this ceremony was to commemorate when the Lord freed the children of Israel from bondage and took them to the land promised to their ancestors which was a land flowing with milk and honey.
This ceremony represents the freedom from bondage that the Lord gave His people.
Yeast, and its ability to permeate every corner of the lump of dough, symbolizes sin and enslavement to it. The avoidance of yeast parallels the avoidance of the entanglement of sin.
The ceremony of the unleavened bread represents to us who are saved by Jesus, a call to avoid sin as we who are saved are set free from bondage and are longer slaves to sin but rather slaves to righteousness.
Bless our Lord who saves us out of bondage of sin and brings us into His kingdom of righteousness.
OUR LORD WHOSE WISDOM LIFTED HIM FROM SERVANT TO EXALTED KING
Isaiah chapter 52 verse 13 says this;
See, my servant will act wisely; he will be raised and lifted up and highly exalted.
In this verse, the prophet Isaiah summarized the destiny of the servant of God, Jesus.
He prophesied that the servant of God would act wisely which the Lord Jesus fulfilled by heeding every word that He, by the Spirit of God, heard from the Father. He obeyed the Father's voice even unto death and this wisdom gained Him an everlasting kingdom.
The prophecy goes on to say that God's servant would be raised and indeed He was raised from the dead. After dying on the cross for our sins, Jesus lay three days in a grave but the grave could not hold Him and He rose bodily from death and was witnessed alive by many people.
The prophecy then said that the Lord's servant would be lifted up and Jesus fulfilled this when He ascended into heaven in the sight of many people. He was lifted up into the clouds and received into heaven.
Isaiah then prophecied that the servant of God would be highly exalted. The Lord Jesus, upon being received into heaven, was seated at the right hand of God the Father and He was crowned as King of kings and was made the Lord over all things in heaven and on earth and under the earth.
The great and mighty Lord Jesus Christ rules His Kingdom in the midst of His enemies and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
And Jacob noticed that Laban’s attitude toward him was not what it had been.
Then the Lord said to Jacob, “Go back to the land of your fathers and to your relatives, and I will be with you.”
So Jacob sent word to Rachel and Leah to come out to the fields where his flocks were. He said to them, “I see that your father’s attitude toward me is not what it was before, but the God of my father has been with me.
This passage is an excerpt from the narrative in Genesis that tells of Jacob's departure from the household of his father-in-Law, Laban.
Even though Laban had been unfair towards Jacob many times, nevertheless, Jacob worked tirelessly and honestly for Laban and his hard work increased Laban's prosperity.
Jacob, seeing that he had spent so much time enriching Laban, negotiated an agreement of compensation from him and under this agreement, Jacob began to get ahead with an increase of his own flocks and this is when the trouble began.
Laban's sons began muttering that Jacob was becoming rich off of their father and Jacob noticed that Laban's attitude towards him had changed.
Jacob consulted with the Lord over the fluid situation and the Lord directed Jacob to go back to his ancestral home and assured him that He would be with him.
Jacob sent a message to his wives Rachel and Leah to meet with him discreetly and he told them what was going on and that the Lord was with him in his plan to leave Laban's household.
The complex relationships between all the parties in this narrative make for compelling drama as conflict arose between Jacob and Laban who was both Jacob's employer and father to both his wives.
In the deteriorating conditions, under consideration was not just the matter of leaving one's job but involved breaking bonds between family members including grandchildren.
It is in these perilous circumstances that trying to reach a solution using human calculus is not likely to end well. With so many variables and with so much at stake, Jacob did the correct thing and consulted with the Lord.
The Lord, with a vantage point that gives Him a view into the eternal destinies of men, instructed Jacob to go back to the land of his fathers and when Jacob obeyed, the gears of redemptive history turned and the Lord's plan for our salvation moved inexorably along its course.
As it says in James chapter 1 verse 5, "If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you."
Genesis chapter 13 verses 4 -5 says this about Abram's arrival at a place near the towns of Bethel and Ai;
and where he had first built an altar. There Abram called on the name of the Lord.
Now Lot, who was moving about with Abram, also had flocks and herds and tents.
This passage tells of the movement of Abram and his household through the land along with the household of Abram's nephew named Lot who was travelling with them.
They came to a place near Bethel and Ai where Abram had previously set up an altar and here, Abram halted the migration and at his altar, he called on the name of the Lord.
An interesting spiritual dynamic is suggested in this passage that an altar, once built and used, retains spiritual momentum from previous interactions and so when Abram arrived back the location that he had an altar, he was able to continue using it in his service and prayer to the Lord.
It was here that Abram sought the counsel of the Lord relating to the conflicts that were beginning to occur between his household and the household of Lot due to the population pressure on the land they were in.
Here, Abram was able to follow the Lord's counsel and separate from Lot and was able to prosper as the Lord led him.
Bless the Lord who gives wise counsel to those who ask it of Him at the altar of prayer.