Isaiah 55:8-13 (ESV)
8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. 9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. 10 “For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, 11 so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.
12 “For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and the hills before you shall break forth into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. 13 Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress; instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle; and it shall make a name for the Lord, an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.”
This week we will explore more fully the message of God’s grace we heard about yesterday in Isaiah 55:1-9. We begin by reviewing a bit of yesterday’s reading, and continuing to the end of chapter 55. This beautiful message teaches several essential things. God’s message of grace (grace = good things for bad people) is totally different, and dramatically higher, than our thoughts. God’s message is communicated through his Word (which we hear through the Scriptures, in preaching, in the sacraments). This Word is powerful, and can be trusted to accomplish God’s purposes. That purpose is complete salvation, described in the beautiful words of v. 12.