60:1 Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD has risen upon you.
60:2 For darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the LORD will arise upon you, and his glory will appear over you.
60:3 Nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.
60:4 Lift up your eyes and look around; they all gather together, they come to you; your sons shall come from far away, and your daughters shall be carried on their nurses’ arms.
60:5 Then you shall see and be radiant; your heart shall thrill and rejoice, because the abundance of the sea shall be brought to you, the wealth of the nations shall come to you.
60:6 A multitude of camels shall cover you, the young camels of Midian and Ephah; all those from Sheba shall come. They shall bring gold and frankincense, and shall proclaim the praise of the LORD.
Darkness and hopelessness is something we all face in life. To the Israelites, this was a time in which they were being brought out of a time of darkness and suffering, after a lengthy exile. Due to their disobedience, they had been beaten down by harsh circumstances that were constituted by God’s judgement. However, because of God’s Grace He did not bring about judgment to destroy the nation, rather to redeem them and bring them back to Him. The time had now come for Israel to experience God’s Grace once again.
There are often times in the Christian life when we experience what it means to backslide and try and find joy in other things other then God. We begin to replace our love for God with relationships, money, wealth, education and so on. God in His Grace, will never let one of His own slip away from Him. In the midst of our darkest moments, God’s light shines ever so brightly to pave the way towards the road that leads us back to Him. We are never outside the reach of God’s love for us. Just as a parent has to reach out and lovingly discipline a child, so does our heavenly Father do the same in redeeming us and bringing us back to Him.
“Nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn” (Isaiah 60:3)
As mentioned in yesterday’s devotional passage, Israel was God’s light to the nations. When God had disciplined the Israelites (Judah more specifically) in exile for 70 years, He did not do so for punishment’s sake. He did so because he wanted his children to mature. Why did He want them to mature? Because they were His hands and feet on the earth.
Today we are light to the nations. As Peter wrote,
“But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9)
God’s message through Isaiah was meant for a specific time and people group but His heart has never changed. Now the Christians are the light-bearers we must walk in the light so we can bring glory to God and be the yeast the levies the lump.
“Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD has risen upon you.” (Isaiah 60:1)