And the Glory of the LORD

stand-in-the-gap.jpg(Third in a 52 part introspective devotional series, weekly more or less, based on the Scriptures that inspired George Federick Handel to write The Messiah.)

And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.” Isaiah 40:5

Ever since the beginning of the created universe there has been a promise of a savior (Genesis 3:15). How difficult it must be for a people to believe that a messiah would be given to them in fulfillment of thousands of years of prophecy especially when they have been told they will be taken into captivity. And yet this is exactly what happened.

What is remarkable about this, beside having the messiah come at last, is how it happens. The setting is really quite different that one might expect for spectacular rescues or inspiring salvations. A group of proud, arrogant, stiff-necked people will carried off to captivity in a land that is completely strange to them. There they will be told they cannot worship their God and that they must pay homage to a man. They will adapt, make new homes, blend into their new world, and lose hope of returning to the home of their ancestors and the promise of a messiah. And at that point of no hope comes revelation.

“The glory of the LORD will be revealed.” In other words, salvation will be given. As the way has been prepared, the messiah will come with salvation. It is this salvation that is the glory of the LORD. It is the same salvation offered and given to us today. What’s more is how it is revealed.

It is spoken by the mouth of the LORD. There is no other place, person, potentate, or power that can bestow salvation. This singular manifestation of glory can only occur as part of the sovereign grace of God. It cannot be sought, bought, or taught. God alone can prepare His people (Matthew 1:21) to be given life (Romans 6:23).

I wonder if I am like the captive that knows the prophecy of salvation but has for all practical purposes given up the hope in the darkness of despair that this world brings?

—————-

I pray that I will hear from the mouth of You, Oh LORD, the revelation of Your glory. Let me be encouraged in knowing that Your sovereign grace has been revealed already and Your voice is in the mouth of prophets today speaking forth Your gospel that “all flesh will see it together.” In the name of Your Son, the glory revealed to us, Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.

[see the entire series here]

*about the picture — This is from the October 4, 1997 national gathering of Promise Keepers in Washington, DC.  I was there among the other 1.4 million men for the prayer, praise, worship, and more prayer.

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