Jesus is God’s chosen king who will save and restore His people.
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the broken hearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
2 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
3 and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord
for the display of his splendor.
4 They will rebuild the ancient ruins
and restore the places long devastated;
they will renew the ruined cities
that have been devastated for generations.
5 Strangers will shepherd your flocks;
foreigners will work your fields and vineyards.
6 And you will be called priests of the Lord,
you will be named ministers of our God.
You will feed on the wealth of nations,
and in their riches you will boast.
7 Instead of your shame
you will receive a double portion,
and instead of disgrace
you will rejoice in your inheritance.
And so you will inherit a double portion in your land,
and everlasting joy will be yours.
8 “For I, the Lord, love justice;
I hate robbery and wrongdoing.
In my faithfulness I will reward my people
and make an everlasting covenant with them.
9 Their descendants will be known among the nations
and their offspring among the peoples.
All who see them will acknowledge
that they are a people the Lord has blessed.”
10 I delight greatly in the Lord;
my soul rejoices in my God.
For he has clothed me with garments of salvation
and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness,
as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
11 For as the soil makes the sprout come up
and a garden causes seeds to grow,
so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness
and praise spring up before all nations.
As I read this passage again today, I was struck by how ‘active’ it is. That’s good – because I’ve been feeling a bit tired lately. Someone else is doing the activity.
This is a passage pointing to Jesus. The Spirit is upon Jesus because God has (actively) chosen him to: proclaim good news to the poor; bind up the broken-hearted; proclaim freedom for captives; release prisoners from darkness; provide for those who grieve and give them comfort, beauty, joy and praise. Yes, please!
But it’s not just that Jesus had a flurry of activity and now is having a rest at the Father’s side – He continues to do those things for us now. And he will continue to deliver us.
Jen Wilkin, an author and Bible teacher said this on the topic of how our salvation brings freedom:
Be assured of your justification. It was. One day, you were freed fully from the penalty of sin.
Be patient with your sanctification. It is. Each day, you are being freed increasingly from the power of sin.
Be eager for your glorification. It is to come. One day, you will be freed finally from the presence of sin.
Our justification has happened, our sanctification is happening now, and our glorification is coming and it’s all the doing of Jesus. Come, Lord Jesus.
Head: What other assurances do you see in this passage for God’s people?
Heart: What confidence have you drawn from Isaiah 61 today? Where is an area of your life you can see change and growth in holiness (even if it’s just a little bit)?
Hands: What is one way you can ‘delight greatly in the Lord’ today as you go about another day in your journey of growing in grace?
Prayer: Our Father in Heaven,
Thanks that you have loved us first and in your great love have saved us through Jesus. Thank you that you are our deliverer – a great and mighty king who has not left us in the mud and shame of our own doing. Thanks that the stench of sin has been replaced by the sweet aroma of Christ.
Lord, we confess that sometimes we are tired and we wonder why those who don’t love you seem to have it all together when we feel like we’re really struggling. Please forgive our doubting hearts and strengthen us for this short journey now in a land that is not our own. We are so looking forward to being your bride!
In Jesus name we pray and by the power of his Spirit,
A song to listen to: My Deliverer
Sarah Bailey- Rose City Presbyterian Church