prepare the way

05 Dec

161205Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that she has served her term, that her penalty is paid, that she has received from the LORD’S hand double for all her sins. A voice cries out: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. Then the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all people shall see it together, for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.” A voice says, “Cry out!” And I said, “What shall I cry?” All people are grass, their constancy is like the flower of the field. The grass withers, the flower fades, when the breath of the LORD blows upon it; surely the people are grass. The grass withers, the flower fades; but the word of our God will stand forever. Get you up to a high mountain, O Zion, herald of good tidings; lift up your voice with strength, O Jerusalem, herald of good tidings, lift it up, do not fear; say to the cities of Judah, “Here is your God!” See, the Lord GOD comes with might, and his arm rules for him; his reward is with him, and his recompense before him. He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep. (Isaiah 40:1-11, NRSV)

Where is the wilderness?

When I hear wilderness, I think of trees and lots of them. Darkness, overgrowth, and lots of undergrowth too. But is that the wilderness?

In Isaiah, the wilderness is the desert. The barren land no one would be in.

And does this passage mean low spots will be raised and mountains will be flattened? I would love to see that, it would be really interesting to see that happen.

I think what Isaiah is saying, while we may actually see valleys rise and mountains made low, is that we are supposed to help everyone see that when Jesus gets here when His kingdom comes to the fullness of its being, we will all be on the same level. All hierarchy will be done away with and we will all be equal in the eyes of God. When this happens, the kingdom will be fulfilled.

So do what you can to lift the lowly and humble the proud, doing it all in love, as we are all equal in the eyes of God.


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