Wednesday, June 05, 2024

2024.06.05 Hopewell @Home ▫ Isaiah 60

Read Isaiah 60

Questions from the Scripture text: What does Isaiah 60:1a command? Why (verse 1b–c)? What covers the earth (Isaiah 60:2a–b)? What light will Israel have (verse 2c–d)? Who will come to it (Isaiah 60:3)? What does Isaiah 60:4 call these nations? How will believing Israel respond to this (Isaiah 60:5a–b)? How big will this ingathering be (Isaiah 60:5-6)? What will it supply (Isaiah 60:7)? How will they seem to travel (Isaiah 60:8-9b)? What are they called again in Isaiah 60:9c? To what/(Whom!) will they come (verse 9e–f)? Why? Who will do what in Isaiah 60:10a–b? Why does this need to be done (verse 10c)? Why will it be done in this way (verse 10d)? What will have to be done (Isaiah 60:11a–b)? Why (verse 11c–d)? What will happen to those who do not serve the church (Isaiah 60:12)? Whose contribution is described in Isaiah 60:13? As being for what purpose? Who honor Israel in Isaiah 60:14a–c? Calling her what (verse 14d–e)? What will have happened to them (Isaiah 60:15a–b)? Then what will happen to them (verse 15c–d)? Whom will the Lord make to “nurse’ them (Isaiah 60:16a–b)? And what will Israel know in that day (verse 16c–d)? What upgrades will be made to their buildings (Isaiah 60:17a–d)? And what upgrades to their societal structures (verse 17e–f)? What won’t happen there anymore (Isaiah 60:18a–b)? And what will happen (verse 18c–d)? What won’t they have anymore (Isaiah 60:19a–b)? Why not (verse 19c–d)? Causing what changes in lighting (Isaiah 60:20)? What will the people be like in that day (Isaiah 60:21a)? With what resultant covenant blessing (verse 21b)? How, and to what end (verse 21c–e)? How will the Lord multiply them (Isaiah 60:22a–b)? When (verse 22c)?

What does the coming of the Servant usher in? Isaiah 60 prepares us for the first serial reading in public worship on the Lord’s Day. In these twenty-two verses of Holy Scripture, the Holy Spirit teaches us that Christ’s coming has initiated a restoration of Israel that is of an international  and spiritual Israel that ultimately belongs to an altogether new, glorious, and eternal creation. 

The arrival of the covenant Mediator (Isaiah 59:22) is now described as the rising of the light of Israel—YHWH Himself being not light not only for them (Isaiah 60:2), but for gathering the nations to them (Isaiah 60:3). Thus, the spiritual descendants of Israel from the nations will more than compensate for the Israelites who have been lost (Isaiah 60:4-5, cf. Isaiah 49:20–23). 

Note that the gathering of the nations and their wealth is unto the purpose of worship: “gold and incense” (Isaiah 60:6), “flocks ascending on My altar” (Isaiah 60:7), “house of My glory” (verse 7), “the place of My sanctuary” (Isaiah 60:13), “City of YHWH, Zion of the Holy One of Israel” (Isaiah 60:14; cf. Hebrews 12:22; Revelation 14:1; Revelation 21). 

This is far more than just restoration from exile. Enemies who had been raised up for chastening (Isaiah 60:10c) are not merely removed but transformed into servants for the worship of God’s international assembly (Isaiah 60:10-12). And the transformation described in Isaiah 60:15-18 is otherworldly, as from a different creation altogether. 

Indeed, in this new creation, heaven and earth collide, and the Lord Himself is the light of the place (Isaiah 60:19-20, cf. Revelation 21:23, Revelation 22:5). In this new world, it is the godly and pleased people themselves (Isaiah 60:21a–b) who are especially the work of the Lord (verse 21c–f, Isaiah 60:22c)—each individual being as fruitful and impressive as a great nation (verse 22a–b).

This is the new and everlasting covenant, the final and forever administration of the covenant of grace, when the kingdom of grace becomes the kingdom of glory. Christ has come. This morning has dawned (cf. Romans 13:11–14). How much, then, ought we to live as those who belong to the kingdom!

What are your hopes in life? How do they align with the hope in this chapter? How does Jesus make Israel glorious? Who are gathered into this glorious Israel? How can/could this happen?

Sample prayer:  Lord, forgive us, for we have been so consumed with smaller things that we have not rejoiced like we ought that Christ’s coming has brought glory to Israel and brought us into that glory. Forgive us for forgetting that worshiping You is the great reason that You have gathered us to Your people. And forgive us for being so satisfied with this creation that we are not sufficiently eager for the new creation. By Your grace and mercy, make us to be the branch of Your planting and the work of Your hands, that You may be glorified. Hasten it in its time, we ask through Christ, AMEN!

Suggested songs: ARP72C “May Waving Grain on Hilltops Thrive” or TPH471 “The Sands of Time Are Sinking” 

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