Saturday, May 26, 2018

Isaiah 56

Today's reading in our daily plan is Isaiah 56. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
  • God expresses the joy that it brings him when people willingly decide to do what is good and consciously turn away from evil. He points deeper and sheds light on two groups of people (eunuchs and foreigners) that were viewed by Israelites as outcasts. He says they belong even though they may not feel like it all the time.  In contrast, God promises judgment on the leaders of Judah that continually deny God and live for themselves. 

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
  • For the eunuchs, it was easy for them to feel rejected because they were denied participation in temple rituals.  For the foreigners, it was easy for them to experience self-pity because they were not a part of the family tree of Israel. God felt otherwise and said they both have an eternal place and everlasting name with Him. At the same time, God was trying to teach the Israelites that He cared about other nations and that they should do the same.
  • Feeling rejected doesn’t only apply to eunuchs and outsiders of Israel. This passage transcends into the present day when people can both reject others or feel rejected by others. The principle is that no matter what, God cares for us and thinks that we should display those same feelings to others.

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
  • Have you ever felt like you don’t belong? Has there been a group of people that always seems to reject you no matter how hard you try to fit in? Regardless of how cut-off you actually feel, God says that if you put your trust in Him, there will always be a place for you.