Today’s Tasting: Isaiah 1-4
Isaiah was a prophet chosen by God and this is his prophecy concerning Judah and Jerusalem in which he records the visions he saw during the reigns of several kings in Judah.
In chapter one Isaiah declares the people a rebellious nation. They have not only forsaken God, but they have spurned Him as well. It reached the point where God recoiled at their sacrifices as well as their feasts and appointed festivals. They go through the rituals of worship and sacrifice, but their hearts have turned so far away from God that their actions have become a deep burden to Him. Because of this He declares, “I hate it with all my being.”
Chapter two concerns Judah and Jerusalem in the last days when all nations will go to worship before Mt. Zion, which is declared the mountain of the LORD. It also speaks of “the day of the LORD”, which will be a day of terrible destruction for all who are proud and lofty, living their own lives without regard to God. All that they value will be destroyed and removed as the fearful presence and splendor of the LORD will rise to shake the earth.
Chapter three declares judgment on Judah and Jerusalem and finds that God has removed support of these nations. The people still continue to parade their sin and they do not hide it. They have brought disaster upon themselves but have no answers.
Chapter four is a prophesy of ‘The Branch of the Lord’, which is Jesus Christ the Messiah. Those who are left in Zion will be declared holy, as the Lord will wash away all the filth of the people and the land. He will cleanse the bloodstains from Jerusalem by a spirit of judgment and a spirit of fire. God will create a canopy over Mt. Zion to protect all who are there and it will be a shelter and a refuge and a hiding place from the storms and rain.
This passage is so timely for us this day. God says to us that He HATES that we go through the motions of a godly life, in praise and worship and even tithes and some sacrifice given in the spirit of religion, but our hearts have turned away. We are not fully connected or wholly engaged with Him. Other things distract us so that our time with Him is cut drastically. Things of the world have captured our hearts, hearts that should be fully devoted to Him.
We are not coming to His holy mountain to spend time in His presence like we should. We are not seeking Him for the daily cleansing we need. We flaunt our busy, neglecting schedules in His face, so proud of what we are accomplishing on our own. We are not seeking His best for us. We are not reaching outside our busy lives to the things that are truly important to Him. (Read Isaiah 1:16-19).
He says to live in the light of the Lord, (Isaiah 2:5). He wants to be your “shelter and shade from the heat of the day and a refuge and hiding place from storm and rain.” (Isaiah 4:6). He is waiting for you right now. Give Him your focus, your time and your heart and He will give back to you the life He has planned especially for you.
On a personal note: I recently decided to give up daily time on Facebook. This was no easy decision. I find nothing wrong with connecting with friends and I loved connecting with far-away family there, but honestly, for me it was becoming an overwhelming, time-consuming part of my day…every day trying to keep up with everyone’s posts, even though I tried keeping my own posts up-lifting, encouraging and event godly, (sounds pretty self-righteous, huh?).
The words ‘obsession’ and ‘addiction’ were forming in my spirit. And, most of what I was gleaning from there was honestly worthless to me, (There were a few exceptions including Bible Feast Blog!). Who needs soap operas or reality TV when you are on Facebook throughout your day? They are pretty much the same. The life details of my connections certainly could not deliver me in times of trouble!
Listening to my spirit and deciding to put God in that place has meant all the difference to me and affects all the other things that I must include in my day. I have time now to study for a certification I have wanted to go after. I’m also seriously looking at enrolling in an online study program. What I am trying to say is, focus on time with God instead of what the world offers and He will open doors to the other things He has in store for you. I can’t do everything in 24 hours, so I release the unimportant stuff and let Him direct my time.
Question: At the end of your life when the scales are balanced, will what you do for eternity, what you do with Jesus, out-weigh what you do for yourself in this present life? What you do for eternity is what truly matters.
What are you wasting your time and life in right now? What can you release to God? What can you give up to acquire a keener focus on Him? Walk in the light of the Lord and let Him direct your steps. (Proverbs 3:6).
Be blessed today.
Tomorrow’s Delight: Isaiah 5-8
San Antonio, TX