A vision of beauty and hope – The Marshall Democrat-News


Advent! It’s a time of preparation and expectation.
In the Book of Isaiah, chapter 2, the reader finds a vision of a beautiful mountain. The prophet Isaiah is called by God to pronounce God’s coming judgment on the people of Jerusalem and Judah. But Isaiah is also given a beautiful view from the top of God’s mountain, a vision of hope, of God’s plan to restore God’s chosen people someday, to bring peace and justice to the nations through God’s anointed one, the Messiah.
Let’s look at the future through Isaiah’s eyes. He has a vision, a beautiful, vivid word picture of what life will be like someday, in the last days, when God’s people finally turn back to God. This is a good Bible passage to kick off this Advent season, the season when we prepare ourselves for Jesus’ coming, for Emmanuel – God with us. Because Jesus is our second chance. Jesus is our view from the mountaintop. Jesus is our reminder from God that God has a plan to undo the damage of our sin and restore us to him. Jesus’ birth is the first step in the fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy. So, what does Isaiah see?
Jesus the Messiah is going to heal our separation from God. In Isaiah’s vision, he sees an undoing the Fall, when Adam and Eve’s sin built a wall of shame and death between them and God and drove them out of God’s presence. Our sin separates us from God and every good thing that God supplies – love, wisdom, joy and peace. Our sin separates us from each other. Our selfishness and pride keep us from experiencing intimacy with others. Everything sad is going to come untrue. What a great vision. That’s the hopeful vision Isaiah saw, the hopeful vision that will be fulfilled when Jesus the Messiah comes again someday.
Isaiah’s vision also includes Jesus the Messiah going to heal our separation from each other. “The law will go out from Zion,” from verses 3-4, “the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. He will judge between nations and will settle disputes for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore.’
This Advent season is our chance to remember, to celebrate, to announce to the world that the Messiah has come and that we have been called to walk in the light of the Lord. And as we walk in God’s light, we will choose justice and peace, because through Jesus we have been restored to God and restored to each other. For this time leading up to Christmas, I hope that you will focus on how you can heal any separation between you and God and between you and your brothers and sisters in this world of every race and creed, that you may share more of Jesus’ light and life with a world that needs so badly to know God’s hope and God’s peace.

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