Chronological Bible Reading Plan - Day 198
Passage of the Day: Reference of Today’s Chronological Bible Study: Isaiah, Chapter 18-22 [NIV] To study these chapters, go to this link -
Highlight Passage: Isaiah 20: 1-2 : [NIV] … 1 In the year that the supreme commander, sent by Sargon king of Assyria, came to Ashdod and attacked and captured it — 2 at that time the Lord spoke through Isaiah son of Amoz. He said to him, "Take off the sackcloth from your body and the sandals from your feet." And he did so, going around stripped and barefoot.
My Journal for Today: I read another big historical gulp of God’s word in Isaiah’s book of prophesies, in this case Chapters 18-22 [linked above for your reading. However, today rather than going through each chapter and exposing prophesy after prophesy, God’s Spirit had me hone in on one short passage in Isaiah 20, the first two verses where God commanded Isaiah to walk around stripped of clothing, which would have been considered nakedness by the peoples of his day.
So, we might say about God’s word, “What’s that all about, Lord?”
And here’s what my Parson’s Commentary says about that highlight passage:
>>> GOD’S COMMAND TO ISAIAH TO WALK ABOUT [culturally] NAKED FOR THREE YEARS WAS A HUMILIATING EXPERIENCE. GOD WAS USING ISAIAH TO DEMONSTRATE THE HUMILIATION THAT EGYPT AND ETHIOPIA WOULD EXPERIENCE AT THE HANDS OF ASSYRIA. BUT THE MESSAGE WAS REALLY FOR JUDAH: DON’T PUT YOUR TRUST IN FOREIGN GOVERNMENTS, OR YOU WILL EXPERIENCE THIS KIND OF SHAME AND HUMILIATION FROM YOUR CAPTORS.
GOD ASKED ISAIAH TO DO SOMETHING THAT SEEMED SHAMEFUL AND ILLOGICAL.
>>> AT TIMES, GOD MAY ASK US TO DO THINGS WE DON’T UNDERSTAND. WE MUST OBEY GOD IN COMPLETE FAITH, FOR HE WILL NEVER ASK US TO DO SOMETHING WRONG.
Have you ever felt that God was leading you or “asking” you to do something which was very politically incorrect or unpopular or even outlandish or unrealistic? Well, that was what God commanded of Isaiah as he was giving messages to the various nations in the passages I was charged to read today. Here Isaiah was giving tough words from God to Assyria, Egypt, Edom, and Ethiopia; and he was doing this while stripped and seemingly ridiculously dressed (or rather, undressed).
But Isaiah did what God commanded him to do because it was God Who was calling the shots; and Isaiah had made a covenant with God to follow Him… no matter what was God’s leading (see Isaiah 6). Is that our attitude in following Christ? How many times have I harkened back to Christ’s command to His disciples (from Luke 9: 23 ) … for us to deny our selves, take up our crosses daily, and follow HIM.
But do we do this in the way in which He’s asking us to follow Him?
I’m going to link you to a beautiful and lyrical version of the old hymn, I Surrender All, performed by a soloist in the group, Selah; and I ask you to take a few moments to stop and take in this powerful piece, directing us to ask ourselves if we are living our lives in the way Isaiah was asking to people to live as commanded by God’s prophesies. God’s command to His people then and now is to live lives of total surrender to Yahweh. Here is that link for your meditation:
And I will pray that Isaiah’s message to the peoples and nations of his day is God’s timeless message to all of His children … to SURRENDER ALL to Him.
My Prayer Today: … Lord, I surrender all! And I pray that all who read here with me do too. Amen