God’s plan for light to overcome darkness
Heavenly Father, thank you for giving us Your son. May the light of gospel shine bright in our hearts and lives.
Read Isaiah 9:1-2, 6-7
9 [a]Nevertheless, there will be no more gloom for those who were in distress. In the past he humbled the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the future he will honor Galilee of the nations, by the Way of the Sea, beyond the Jordan—
2 The people walking in darkness
have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness
a light has dawned.
6 For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
7 Of the greatness of his government and peace
there will be no end.
He will reign on David’s throne
and over his kingdom,
establishing and upholding it
with justice and righteousness
from that time on and forever.
The zeal of the Lord Almighty
will accomplish this.
MeditationIn whatever darkness you might find yourself, you can trust that Jesus, the light of the world, has come to redeem, to heal, to bring hope.
It has been suggested that the book of the prophet Isaiah should be called “The Gospel According to Isaiah” because so much of what Isaiah prophesied points to a “servant” would come to dwell among humankind and faithfully carry out God’s plan for salvation.
The land of Zebulon and the land of Naphtali were the two most northern regions of the Promised Land.
The Assyrian invasions had brought great suffering and driven the people into darkness. It was there in this ravaged land around the Sea of Galilee that God would send a child to carry out His plan to redeem sinners, heal brokenness, and bring hope for today, tomorrow, and forever. He would be the light of the world.
In verses 6 -7, we learn a number of important things about this promised child. The child would be born; humanity was to be added to his divine nature – and he would be given; God would give us His beloved Son. Foretold to be a king, he would be a servant leader, ruling with justice, mercy, and grace, bearing our burdens.
This gift of a king would be called Wonderful Counselor. The Hebrew behind “wonderful” is used in other settings to mean “miracle,” or “signs and wonders.” The counsel of this ruler would be perfectly wise, absolutely faithful, and overflowing with love. Also called Mighty God, God of creation, and Lord of heaven, he would be worthy of all honor and praise. He would be called Everlasting Father, the idea in Hebrew being that, through him all things were created and sustained – and he would be called Prince of Peace, the one who would reconcile us to God.
The northern tribes of the Promised Land were the first to suffer from the Assyrian invasions, and they were the first to receive the witness of the Messiah who would bring light into their darkness. But no matter where or when the gospel comes, to any place, to any heart, darkness is changed to light. Jesus was born to redeem sinners and to bring peace, hope and joy to believers, from the very beginning and into eternity. For those who receive him, he is Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. And because of the ardent commitment of God to His promises through His Son, there will be no end to the Messiah’s reign. Let your mind and heart be filled with amazement as you consider God’s great gift this Advent season.
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