Sunday, August 4: Isaiah 31 – 35
I recalled Jesus’ lament over Jerusalem as I read part of chapter 32. Isaiah writes:
9 You women who are so complacent,
rise up and listen to me;
you daughters who feel secure,
hear what I have to say!
10 In little more than a year
you who feel secure will tremble;
the grape harvest will fail,
and the harvest of fruit will not come.
11 Tremble, you complacent women;
shudder, you daughters who feel secure!
Strip off your fine clothes
and wrap yourselves in rags.
12 Beat your breasts for the pleasant fields,
for the fruitful vines
13 and for the land of my people,
a land overgrown with thorns and briers—
yes, mourn for all houses of merriment
and for this city of revelry.
Why they are not the same, there are some similarities between Luke 23, where Jesus is on the way to the cross:
27 A large number of people followed him, including women who mourned and wailed for him. 28 Jesus turned and said to them, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me; weep for yourselves and for your children. 29 For the time will come when you will say, ‘Blessed are the childless women, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!’ 30 Then “‘they will say to the mountains, “Fall on us!”
and to the hills, “Cover us!”’[b] 31 For if people do these things when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?”
As Isaiah reflects on the hardships that Israel will face, and as the people lament over the hardships Jesus is facing, the women mourn, but for all the wrong reasons. Wrong reasons because they fail to see the bigger picture. The bigger picture that says Israel’s pending fall in the days of the kings is due to the lack of the people’s faithfulness. Just as, the bigger picture says that Jesus went tot he cross because of our own unfaithfulness.
May we be blessed not to mourn, as the women once did, but rejoice knowing that God has interceded for us through Christ!
I made it to Milwaukee last night and are looking forward to the events of our Churchwide Assembly. Please keep us in your prayers as we gather, worship, and reflect on God’s mission for the ELCA.