Isaiah chapter 40 – from lost cause to a new hope.
In chapters 1-39 we read about the future messianic King. We learn about God’s promise to David being offered to each and every generation of David’s descendants. And with each generation there’s a new hope as this search for the real king continues. But, one by one, their unfaithfulness leads to disappointment and they do not inherit the benefits of that promise.
By the end of chapter 39 we are left with Hezekiah making a deal with the Babylonians, that turns out to be a really bad decision. He’s not the promised king the people are looking for. Hezekiah fails as did David and Solomon….and the others.
Israel is in exile and those promises of a future king are unfulfilled.
There’s little hope left.
And then comes chapter 40.
Check out how that chapter begins:
Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her that her hard service has been completed, that her sin has been paid for, that she has received from the Lord’s hand double for all her sins. [Isaiah 40:1-2]
Here’s a great article from The Bible Project which walks us through Isaiah chapters 40 and up: https://thebibleproject.com/isaiah-and-the-suffering-servant-king/
Also, in case you missed it, here’s a link to Clint’s message from last Sunday which challenges us to put the message of Isaiah 40 under scrutiny in our own lives: http://thewellnz.org/holy-fear-isaiah-40/
Image courtesy of: davewebster14