God’s Word of Joy
Isaiah 62:1-12: Today’s reading is the third oracle that celebrates Jerusalem’s restoration. Two other oracles are found in Isaiah 60 and 61. Jerusalem’s former names, “Forsaken” and “The Deserted Wife” (verse 4), describe the city’s status during the time of exile. Jerusalem will now be called by a new name.
1I will speak out to encourage Jerusalem;
I will not be silent until she is saved,
And her victory shines like a torch in the night.
2Jerusalem, the nations will see you victorious!
All their kings will see your glory.
You will be called by a new name,
A name given by the Lord himself.
3You will be like a beautiful crown for the Lord.
4No longer will you be called “Forsaken,”
Or your land be called “The Deserted Wife.”
Your new name will be “God Is Pleased with Her.”
Your land will be called “Happily Married,”
Because the Lord is pleased with you
And will be like a husband to your land.
5Like a young man taking a virgin as his bride,
He who formed you will marry you.
As a groom is delighted with his bride,
So your God will delight in you.
6On your walls, Jerusalem, I have placed sentries;
They must never be silent day or night.
They must remind the Lord of his promises
And never let him forget them.
7They must give him no rest until he restores Jerusalem
And makes it a city the whole world praises.
8The Lord has made a solemn promise,
And by his power he will carry it out:
“Your grain will no longer be food for your enemies,
And foreigners will no longer drink your wine.
9But you that planted and harvested the grain
Will eat the bread and praise the Lord.
You that tended and gathered the grapes
Will drink the wine in the courts of my Temple.”
10People of Jerusalem, go out of the city
And build a road for your returning people!
Prepare a highway; clear it of stones!
Put up a signal so that the nations can know
11 That the Lord is announcing to all the earth:
“Tell the people of Jerusalem
That the Lord is coming to save you,
Bringing with him the people he has rescued.”
12You will be called “God’s Holy People,”
“The People the Lord Has Saved.”
Jerusalem will be called “The City That God Loves,”
“The City That God Did Not Forsake.”
Today’s Key Verse: Isaiah 62:12a
You will be called “God’s Holy People,” “The People the LORD has saved.”
Jerusalem has been described as a city clothed with “splendor” (Isaiah 52:1) and as a bride clothed with “salvation and victory” (Isaiah 61:10). In today’s reading, how is Jerusalem described (verse 5)? What does this say about God’s relationship with Jerusalem? What are the new names by which Jerusalem will be called? How do these names reflect Jerusalem’s transformed status?
Almighty God, you call each of us by name and invite us to be in relationship with you. You have promised never to forsake us. Renew my soul with the transforming power of your love. In your holy name, I pray. Amen.
Isaiah 65:17-25: God’s new creation will be one of peace and joy.