God’s Saving Word: Justice and Peace
Isaiah 11:1‒9: Today’s reading is a prophecy of hope for the Israelites who have been oppressed by the Assyrians. (The Assyrian oppression and attack are described in Isaiah 10). The prophecy is in the form of an oracle about a new king who will arise and whose reign will usher in a time of peace and the restoration of Israel and Judah
The Peaceful Kingdom
11 The royal line of David is like a tree that has been cut down; but just as new branches sprout from a stump, so a new king will arise from among David’s descendants.
2 The spirit of the Lord will give him wisdom
and the knowledge and skill to rule his people.
He will know the Lord’s will and honor him,
3 and find pleasure in obeying him.
He will not judge by appearance or hearsay;
4 he will judge the poor fairly
and defend the rights of the helpless.
At his command the people will be punished,
and evil persons will die.
5 He will rule his people with justice and integrity.
6 Wolves and sheep will live together in peace,
and leopards will lie down with young goats.
Calves and lion cubs will feed[a] together,
and little children will take care of them.
7 Cows and bears will eat together,
and their calves and cubs will lie down in peace.
Lions will eat straw as cattle do.
8 Even a baby will not be harmed
if it plays near a poisonous snake.
9 On Zion, God’s sacred hill,
there will be nothing harmful or evil.
The land will be as full of knowledge of the Lord
as the seas are full of water.
Today’s Key Verse: Isaiah 11:2, 3a
The spirit of the LORD will give him wisdom and the knowledge and skill to rule his people. He will know the LORD’s will and honor him, and find pleasure in obeying him.
The chapter opens with an oracle concerning a king who will be a descendant of David. Christians interpret this passage as referring to Jesus, the Messiah (see Luke 1:32). How is this king described (verses 2‒5)? How is his kingdom described (verses 6‒9)? How do you envision a world in which peace reigns?
God of love and peace, teach me to know your will. My desire is to honor and obey you. May your justice reign throughout the earth. Your kingdom come, O Lord! Amen.
Isaiah 25:1‒9: A hymn of praise in celebration of deliverance from oppression.