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Daily Devotions – Victory Feast

Photo by Nils Stahl on Unsplash

 

Click this link to hear an audio version of the below text narrated by SOTH member Jerry Rhinehart: http://sothrichfield.podbean.com

 

Isaiah 25:6-9 (NIV)

6 On this mountain, the Lord Almighty will prepare a feast of rich food for all peoples, a banquet of aged wine— the best of meats and the finest of wines. 7 On this mountain he will destroy the shroud that enfolds all peoples, the sheet that covers all nations; 8 he will swallow up death forever. The Sovereign Lord will wipe away the tears from all faces; he will remove his people’s disgrace from all the earth. The Lord has spoken. 9 In that day they will say, “Surely this is our God; we trusted in him, and he saved us. This is the Lord, we trusted in him; let us rejoice and be glad in his salvation.”

 

God is going to prepare an incredible banquet.  It is a victory celebration.  The time of fear is gone, death has been defeated.  Rejoice!  While living in Port Elizabeth, South Africa my wife and I were riding in a bus (a VW minibus to be precise) filled with 14 other passengers.  On this day, at a familiar street corner, traffic stopped as we and other vehicles witnessed a man yelling at a woman on the other side of the street.  We all looked on as the man began to hit and kick the woman, trying to rip a baby out of her arms.  Why didn’t anyone stop him?  Fear.  Many of us were in shock at what we were watching, but we were also afraid that what was happening to her was going to happen to us.  Even as I share this story now, I have a different fear: I’m concerned that we’ll think this is something that only happens far away when, in truth, the same physical, verbal and emotional abuse can happen right here at home. Are we standing against it?  Are we afraid?  Christmas is the promise that God is battling the forces of sin, death and the devil.  That God is fighting for us.  This passage concludes, “Behold, this is our God; we have waited for him, that he might save us”.  In Advent, we wait for that day of feasting.  We wait with expectation for the day when violence and fear are overcome.  We wait with eager anticipation, knowing that God has already defeated death.  This gives us hope and helps us to stand against injustice and hurt.  We know our destiny is secure and that not even death can keep us from sharing in the glory of that day.  Let us pray:  Lord of all life, we rejoice in your victory over death and praise you for the salvation that you offer to us.  Give us faith and hope, helping us to stand against the suffering and evil of this world.  We pray this in the name of Jesus, our victorious king.  Amen.

Click here for to hear Nathan Shields in Song on Isaiah 25  

Oh my God
I will praise your perfect name
You forethought
of the world with perfect aim
Shelter me from the heat
you provide what I need
you’re my comfort in the storm
I hear the song of the ruthless
finally losing form

on this mountaintop
we will be made new
he’ll lift the veil of
shadow that’s over you
death is only a curse
it’s a gift from the earth
He will take it from your hands
He will swallow it up
with his terrible love

I’ve no claim
to the cleansing of my own hands
I’ve been saved
by a God who became a man
and he has set out a feast
from the West to the East
made for any who would eat
He will wipe every tear
Our Salvation is here