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The Last Days

The Last Days

30 June 2011

Today’s Reading: Isaiah 1-3; Titus 3

Scripture:

2 In the last days, the mountain of the Lord’s house will be the highest of all— the most important place on earth. It will be raised above the other hills, and people from all over the world will stream there to worship. 3 People from many nations will come and say, “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of Jacob’s God. There he will teach us his ways, and we will walk in his paths.” For the Lord’s teaching will go out from Zion; his word will go out from Jerusalem. 4 The Lord will mediate between nations and will settle international disputes. They will hammer their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will no longer fight against nation, nor train for war anymore. (Isaiah 2:2-4 NLT)

It’s good to be back in Isaiah again. Next to Psalms, it’s the longest book in the Bible. Isaiah’s ministry as a prophet to the nation of Judah lasted over 50 years and spanned the reign of four kings of Judah – Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah. About eighteen years into Isaiah’s ministry, the northern nation, Israel, fell to Assyria.

Isaiah’s prophecies aren’t all chronological, but grouped more by the content of the message, the first 39 chapters more about judgment and the last 27 chapters focused on comfort and hope.

Isaiah, more than any other prophet, was looking forward into three eras when he composed his prophetic messages: The immediate future, fulfillments related to the coming of the Messiah, and the far future related to the church and the end times.

Isaiah’s messages are written in the language of nations, but there is such a Spirit-quickening sense that the messages of correction and the messages of hope apply to us who are living out our faith as part of Christ’s church. Thoughtfully reading the prophecies of Isaiah helps to “Teach us God’s ways, so we can walk in his paths.”

Prayer:

Father, Help me to understand more clearly how Isaiah’s words apply to me and to my fellow Christ-followers as we live out a part of history that Isaiah spoke about over 2700 years ago. May I live in the fear of God that moved Isaiah and look forward with the same confident assurance you gave him. You truly are the Eternal Holy One. Amen.

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