TEXTS AND APPLICATION: Today Pam and I travel to another state to attend the funeral of a dear friend tomorrow. In that light, today’s reading has special significance to me.
These chapters continue the “woes” on the nations as God announces judgment, but with the “woes” also come the promises of God’s restoring His people. The God of the Bible is a promise-keeping God; indeed, He keeps His promises to a people who don’t always keep theirs to Him. We call that “mercy” and “grace.”
In particular, that grace will someday allow us to be with Him: "Your eyes will see the King in His beauty; you will see a vast land" (Isa. 33:17). Though scholars differ a bit on identifying this King, it’s quite likely this texts pictures the Messiah in His reign. If so, the text tells us that we will see our Redeemer in all His beauty.
Picture that: God created us in His image to worship Him. We reject that gift, choosing instead to be our own gods and sin against our Creator. He so loves us, though, that He sent His Son to pay our price — to suffer death in our place. When we turn to Him in faith and repentance, He restores our relationship. Then, He assures us that even though we once rejected Him, He does not reject us. He will allow us to be with Him forever; we will see Him in all His beauty.
Today, our friend has joined all the believers of the ages in seeing Jesus. That’s beautiful. That’s amazing. That’s powerful. That’s love. That’s reassuring.
And, that’s real. If it were not so, this life would make little sense. Because this promise of the future is indeed real, though, everything must be different today.