Guest post by Jeanette Andrade
October 7 Scripture Selection: Isaiah 34-36
Food for Thought: Is. 35:1-10
It is helpful to read Isaiah 35 along side Hebrews 12:1-24 for its similarities and exhortations. In both, the Lord is concerned with encouraging His people. He desires that they be strong, free from fear, able-bodied, and completely restored. Both speak of holiness, but in terms of what the Lord does for them in His grace. In Hebrews 12:15, He urges them to “look carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God,” which would be to fall back into relying on adherence to the Law to make one pure instead of receiving freely the righteousness provided by Jesus our Mediator (Heb. 12:24).
Redeeming us and cleansing us, the Lord has made us spiritually pure (I Pet. 1:18, 19). However, He recognizes the ill-effects of sin and imperfections (weariness, discouragement, bitterness, weakness, doubt) and desires to correct us as a Father would (Heb. 12:1, 5-11). The Good News is that, even in our imperfections, He receives us. In fact, Isaiah 35:8, 9 says that even a “fool” will not go astray on the Highway of Holiness (Remember? Jesus is the Way! (John 14:6)):
“A highway shall be there, and a road, and it shall be called the Highway of Holiness. The unclean shall not pass over it, but it shall be for others. Whoever walks the road, although a fool, shall not go astray. No lion shall be there, nor shall any ravenous beast go up on it; It shall not be found there. But the redeemed shall walk there.”
The Lord loves us so much that He does not want to see us held back or weighted down by anything. And as long as we keep looking to Jesus, the Author and Finisher (Completer) of our faith and what He did (Heb. 12:2), we will walk free from all those things. With Him and His living water (John 4:5-14; Is. 35:6, 7), any spiritual condition (and physical one, too, for all who believe!) of blindness, deafness, dumbness, and lameness is healed (Heb. 12:13).
With all Jesus has done for us, we have every reason to “strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees,” and allow the Lord to continue to do a marvelous work in us. For the Lord is faithful and will perfect that which concerns us (Ps. 138:8; Phil. 1:6), as long as we willingly receive His correction as sons and daughters. Then we will do as Isaiah 35:10 expresses: “And the ransomed of the Lord shall return, and come to Zion with singing, with everlasting joy on their heads. They shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.”
Digging Deeper (What scriptures can further enhance today’s reading?):
Getting Personal (What has God shown you in today’s reading?):
Confession of Faith (Example: Lord, based on Mat. 1:21 and 23, I understand that Jesus is God, and I receive Him as my personal Lord and Savior.):
Important Events on This Day (birthdays, anniversaries, etc.):