Click this link to hear an audio version of the below text narrated by SOTH member Jerry Rhinehart: https://sothrichfield.podbean.com
Isaiah 52:1-12 (NIV)
52 Awake, awake, Zion, clothe yourself with strength! Put on your garments of splendor, Jerusalem, the holy city. The uncircumcised and defiled will not enter you again. 2 Shake off your dust; rise up, sit enthroned, Jerusalem. Free yourself from the chains on your neck, Daughter Zion, now a captive. 3 For this is what the Lord says: “You were sold for nothing, and without money, you will be redeemed.” 4 For this is what the Sovereign Lord says: “At first my people went down to Egypt to live; lately, Assyria has oppressed them. 5 “And now what do I have here?” declares the Lord. “For my people have been taken away for nothing, and those who rule them mock,” declares the Lord. “And all day long my name is constantly blasphemed. 6 Therefore my people will know my name; therefore in that day they will know that it is I who foretold it. Yes, it is I.” 7 How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!” 8 Listen! Your watchmen lift up their voices; together they shout for joy.
When the Lord returns to Zion, they will see it with their own eyes. 9 Burst into songs of joy together, you ruins of Jerusalem, for the Lord has comforted his people, he has redeemed Jerusalem. 10 The Lord will lay bare his holy arm in the sight of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth will see the salvation of our God. 11 Depart, depart, go out from there! Touch no unclean thing! Come out from it and be pure, you who carry the articles of the Lord’s house. 12 But you will not leave in haste or go in flight; for the Lord will go before you, the God of Israel will be your rear guard.
List the words which are predecessors to words/ideas that describe the church— what it is, should be.
How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation and say “Our God reigns!” Lord renew the church today as You did for the people of Jerusalem. Allow Shepherd of the Hills and the whole Christian Church to rise up to bring good news into the same world who mocks and blasphemes Your Name. Let us sing songs of joy and work to serve and share Your love so all nations to the ends of the earth will see Your salvation. Let us bring the light of Your love into the lives of those who struggle with darkness. Strengthen our congregation and allow us to do Your will as we worship and serve You in Richfield, in Milwaukee, in the United States, and across the world. Amen