Wow, just wow. I went from one place to another as I was reading this chapter. When I read vs.1-2 the only thing I could think was: America. “I said ‘Here I am, here I am’ to a nation that did not call on my name.” You know me well enough by now to know that this is not a call or a supplication to place God back in the schools or back in the country. This is a cry out to those who would say that we need to keep God in America and yet they overlook the poor and the powerless and those who do not have a home and those whom Isaiah would have identified as the people that we need to serve the most. When we say that we are Christian and our Christianity is limited to being fired up about keeping prayer in school or or not taking it out of the pledge of allegiance I would classify that as “a people who provoke me to my face continually.”
The power of this passage is then magnified starting at vs.17 and following which should bring to our mind Revelation 21 where we read about a new heaven and a new earth, where we read about there being no more weeping or crying. The prophet goes even further and says that there will be no infant death, there will be no ending of life until well after we are in our 100s. These promises from Isaiah make me happy because they are so well rounded.
We see the promise of God being by our side but also a promise of a reality where the wolf and the lamb will feed together and not on each other. In order for that to happen, if you look at vs.25, the lion needs to change its eating habits and the serpent the same. But the result of these changes in our outlook on life will produce a life where there is no destruction and no one is hurt. I think it is worth becoming a vegetarian for that, at least if I were a lion or a snake.