December 12, 2018: Day 11 – Isaiah 7

For background to this chapter you should go to I Kings 16.  There are a lot of historical events that are taking place in this chapter.  But this is also the chapter around which revolves the reason why it is such a powerful Advent book of the Bible.  Look at vs.10-14 and you should be able to settle into the Christmas story pretty comfortably.  Ahaz is the king of Judah, which is one of the two nations which composed what was at one time Israel.  Israel at that time, at least the nation called Israel, had turned completely against the Lord and had allied itself with foreign nations and was looking to attack Judah.  Ahaz, petrified of this new alliance, didn’t know what to do, whether he should ally himself with this new group, who had actively turned against the Lord, or hang in there and stand firm with the Lord.

So the Lord commands Isaiah to go and have a talk with him.  If you doubt, Ahaz, that the Lord is on your side, then ask of Him a sign, any sign you may want.  Hang in there, don’t buckle under the military pressure, know that God is on your side.  But if you doubt, ask for a sign, anything you want.  Ahaz refuses to ask for a sign, so Isaiah provides one for him.

The young girl, one of his wives?, his daughter?, will have a son.  Notice the Hebrew does not say a virgin, but a young girl, but that’s okay because the New Testament does say a virgin to describe Mary.  I have no problem with God performing a real miracle in the birth of Jesus even if Isaiah does say that it is a young girl.  God takes it another step and allows the Holy Spirit to perform a miracle which will define our relationship with him, he takes our lives and turns them for the good, whether we realize it or not.  

The name of the child will be Emmanuel, God with us.  This is what Advent is all about, waiting for this child to come.

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