The soaring vision of Third Isaiah is compelling on many levels, a solid reason for it to be so familiar and so often quoted. The prophet knows clearly the suffering of most people who endure poverty and disease and exploitation. They despair about their future and may believe their God is unable or unwilling to bring about any new condition.
The prophet asserts in his vision how God will transform all that they have known into a reflection of the Kingdom, a place of peace and prosperity, of justice and community, of well being and compassion, of healing and reconciliation. The blessings will extend to generations going forward, embracing the young and the old.
The vision of community shared in Is. 65:25 - the familiar The wolf and the lamb shall feed together .... - is also rich in imagery and details which reveal a transformation of community into truly sacred space.
In Luke 21, Jesus is at the Temple with his disciples. They're awestruck by the magnificence of this great edifice, its bright white stones, its glittering gold ornaments, its imposing size over anything anywhere in this part of the world. Yet Jesus begins painting a picture of this colossal structure in complete ruins. In the disciples, it sparks discussion about the coming of the end of the age. They ask how will they know when that time has come.
Jesus indulges them with some horrific imagery, but then brings them back to the present to focus them on their faith, discipleship, and mission.
Learn more about the transformed community in Isaiah and the faithful discipleship that Jesus expects by checking out the sermon video below, and the downloads below the video panel.