OUR LORD WHO LIBERATES HIS PEOPLE FROM THE OPPRESSOR.
Isaiah chapter 19 verses 3 - 4 says this;
The Egyptians will lose heart, and I will bring their plans to nothing; they will consult the idols and the spirits of the dead, the mediums and the spiritists.
I will hand the Egyptians over to the power of a cruel master, and a fierce king will rule over them,” declares the Lord, the Lord Almighty.
The Egyptians in this passage are stand-ins for a global oppressor of God's people. Having undertaken to gain total control over the affairs of all men, the Egyptians meet blistering opposition from the Lord as He rises to defend His people.
As the text reveals, the oppressors, shocked that their plans are disrupted and reversed, become disheartened.
They try to come to grips with the overwhelming supernatural conter-actions to their activities and they resort to consulting idols and spirits of the dead using mediums and spiritists so as to receive insight into how to regain the upper hand in achieving their ambitions.
All the while, the organization of darkness will descend into an internecine civil war and their resources will dry up leaving them scrambling to hold the operation together.
As their resolve falters, their organization will be given into the hands of a fierce and cruel master who will assert control over their ranks using brutal retribution and intimidation tactics. The oppressive power of Egypt will itself be placed under extreme oppression by its leaders and it will disintegrate under the pressure.
Bless our Lord who delivers us and counteracts those who try to crush us.
OUR FATHER WHO INVITES US INTO A COVENANT WITH HIM IF WE LISTEN TO HIM
Isaiah chapter 55 verses 1 - 3 says this;
“Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy?
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and you will delight in the richest of fare.
Give ear and come to me; listen, that you may live. I will make an everlasting covenant with you, my faithful love promised to David.
This passage is a full-throated invitation by the Lord to those who are spiritually thirsty. He tells them that he will give sustenance to everyone who asks whether they have money or not.
At no charge, they can get wine and milk from the Lord so He asks them why they should spend hard-earned money on fake bread and on what does not satisfy?
The Lord exhorts people to listen to Him and they will experience rich and delightful food. He guarantees that if they listen to Him, they will live and He will make an eternal covenant with them of faithful love that was promised to David.
The passage in Isaiah sounds remarkably like this passage in Proverbs chapter 1 verses 20 - 23 that says this;
Wisdom cries aloud in the street, in the markets she raises her voice; at the head of the noisy streets she cries out; at the entrance of the city gates she speaks:
“How long, O simple ones, will you love being simple? How long will scoffers delight in their scoffing and fools hate knowledge?
If you turn at my reproof, behold, I will pour out my spirit to you; I will make my words known to you.
Here, the Spirit of God is crying in the street earnestly inviting people to listen to Him and guaranteeing that if they listen and heed His reproof, He would pour His Spirit to them and make His words known to them.
Another passage that has the same feeling is the invitation of Jesus to the weary in Mathew chapter 11 verses 28 - 30 that says;
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Bless our Lord who patiently calls out to us so that we may listen to Him and live.
OUR FATHER WHO FORGIVES AND RESTORES THOSE WHO REPENT
Isaiah chapter 59 verses 3 - 5 says this;
For your hands are stained with blood, your fingers with guilt. Your lips have spoken falsely, and your tongue mutters wicked things.
No one calls for justice; no one pleads a case with integrity.
They rely on empty arguments, they utter lies they conceive trouble and give birth to evil.
They hatch the eggs of vipers and spin a spider’s web. Whoever eats their eggs will die, and when one is broken, an adder is hatched.
This passage is an indictment recorded by the prophet Isaiah against the children of Judah.
The first verse here is written to the people of Judah citing the evil they have done including murder, false witness, backbiting and murmuring.
The people of God are also accused of bearing false witness in court and employing fallacious arguments to make their cases. They utter lies and they conceive of trouble by cavorting with it and after a gestation period, give birth to evil.
For all the evil that they do, the people of God know that they are desperate for salvation and they repent before the Lord for their wrong doing.
The Lord, in His mercy, makes a covenant with them and restores them, saying in verse 21;
“My Spirit, who is on you, will not depart from you, and my words that I have put in your mouth will always be on your lips, on the lips of your children and on the lips of their descendants—from this time on and forever,” says the Lord.
OUR FATHER WHO RESERVES AN INHERITANCE FOR HIS PEOPLE
Joshua chapter 17 verses 7 - 9 says this;
The territory of Manasseh extended from Asher to Mikmethath east of Shechem. The boundary ran southward from there to include the people living at En Tappuah. (Manasseh had the land of Tappuah, but Tappuah itself, on the boundary of Manasseh, belonged to the Ephraimites.)
Then the boundary continued south to the Kanah Ravine. There were towns belonging to Ephraim lying among the towns of Manasseh, but the boundary of Manasseh was the northern side of the ravine and ended at the Mediterranean Sea.
Joseph was sold by his brothers to slave traders who took him to Egypt and sold him to Potifar, the captain of Pharaoh's personal security team.
Joseph was falsely accused of trying to assault Potifar's wife. Joseph was put in prison. While there, he interpreted a dream for a prisoner who was Pharaoh's wine-pourer.
When the interpretation proved accurate and the wine-pourer went back to his job, Joseph asked him to mention him to Pharaoh so he could get out of prison.
After two years, Pharaoh himself had a dream and he called all the wise men to interprete it. The wise men of Egypt could not interprete it but the wine-pourer remembered Joseph in prison and told Pharaoh about him. Joseph interpreted the dream to be a warning about an upcoming season of plenty followed by a season of famine.
Because of his insight, Pharaoh appointed Joseph to be the Prime Minister of Egypt and Joseph guided the country through the seasons of plenty and drought. Egypt became very strong because of the accurate interpretation of Pharaoh's dream.
Soon, Joseph reconciled with his brothers who had sold him as a slave and they, along with their father Jacob, came to Egypt to live because their own homeland was ravaged by drought.
They thrived in Egypt and their numbers grew with each of the brothers having many descendants.
The Egyptians became concerned about the growing influence of the sons of Jacob in Egypt and they enslaved them and used them for their building projects.
Under the heavy yoke of Egyptian oppression for four centuries, the descendants of Jacob cried out to the God of their fathers and He heard them and prepared Moses and sent him to Egypt to save his people but the Egyptians were not willing to set the slaves free.
The Lord demonstrated His power to the people of Egypt by striking them with plagues of various kinds and after ten severe plagues, they relented and released the children of Jacob and the Lord led them on a long journey back to the land that was promised to their ancestors.
When they arrived at the promised land, the territory was divided among the twelve tribes of the sons of Jacob.
Among those tribes, was of course, the tribe of Joseph. Joseph, who had been given a wife by Pharaoh, had two sons with her: Mannaseh and Ephraim.
An allocation of land was given to the descendants of Joseph and that portion was divided into two areas. One was for Ephraim and the other was for the descendants of Mannaseh.
The passage here is a description of a section of the border that encircled the area of land allotted to the descendants of Mannaseh, the son of Joseph, the son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham.
At the sacrifice I am preparing for you, you will eat fat till you are glutted and drink blood till you are drunk.
This terrifying warning against Gog by the God of Israel is a summons to the carrion birds and wild animals to a feast of the fallen hoards who attacked His people.
The Lord, in His might, will bring upon Gog and Magog, the oppressor of God's people, utter destruction so that their weapons would would be left strewn around the landscape in huge quantities and their bodies would lie unburied all over the countryside.
As Ezekiel 39 verses 12 - 16 says, the clean up after the destruction of Gog would take seven months and even after that, a more thorough cleanup would be needed to finally cleanse the land of the dead.
Such will be fate of Gog and Magog when they assault the Lord's people to oppress them and destroy them.
OUR FATHER WHO HEARS OUR PRAYERS WHEN WE EARNESTLY SEEK HIM
Hezekiah, the king of Judah, received a letter from Sennacherib, the King of the Assyrians telling him that he shouSennacheribld not be deceived by the God of Israel because there was no one who was going to deliver Judah out of the hands of the Assyrian army.
In the letter, Sennacherib told Hezekiah the names of all the kingdoms that he had conquered and he pointed out that the gods of those kingdoms were not able to save their kingdoms from him.
Hezekiah was dismayed by the letter and he tore his clothes in distress.
Preparing to inquire of the Lord about the situation the kingdom of Judah was in, Hezekiah put on sackcloth and went up to the temple and spread the letter he had recieved before the lord.
Then the pivotal verse of Isaiah chapter 37 verse 15 says this;
And Hezekiah prayed to the Lord:
A verse that starts like this should immediately catch our attention.
Hezekiah, a man who was committed to the Lord with all his heart and had followed the Lord's instruction throughout his life, was about to pray to God and how such a man prays is likely to be very instructive. The prayer, recorded in verse 16 - 20, said this;
“Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, enthroned between the cherubim, you alone are God over all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth. Give ear, Lord, and hear; open your eyes, Lord, and see; listen to all the words Sennacherib has sent to ridicule the living God.
“It is true, Lord, that the Assyrian kings have laid waste all these peoples and their lands. They have thrown their gods into the fire and destroyed them, for they were not gods but only wood and stone, fashioned by human hands. Now, Lord our God, deliver us from his hand, so that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that you, Lord, are the only God.”
Hezekiah spread out the threatening letter before the Lord and he first acknowledged the supremacy of the Lord as the God over heaven and earth.
He then asked the Lord to look at the letter and see the words of ridicule that were used by Senacherib.
Hezekiah acknowledged that Sennacherib and the Assyrians were a formidable force who had laid waste other kingdoms and destroyed their gods.
Hezekiah highlighted the fact the gods of these other kingdoms were made of wood and stone by human hands and unable to deliver their kingdoms from Assyria and in fact were themselves thrown into fire by Sennacherib and destroyed and so Hezekiah presented an opportunity to the Lord.
Whereas Sennacherib was able to tear down other kingdoms who followed false gods who were powerless to save any one, Hezekiah asked the Lord to deliver them from Sennacherib and the whole world would know that the God of Judah was the only true God.
The Lord sent Isaiah the prophet to Hezekiah to inform him that because he had prayed to God regarding Sennacherib, the Lord had marked the Assyrians for destruction.
When people arose the next morning, the Assyrian army of 185,000 soldiers had been completely destroyed and Sennacherib, aghast at what had befallen him, quietly withdrew and met his end at the hands of his own sons.
The God of the kingdom of Judah supersedes all earthly powers and has the might to crush any force that moves against His people.