The passage for today is Isaiah 9:1-8. You can read this passage online or on your phone by following along with The Essential Jesus reading plan on bible.com, or you can read it in your physical Bible. Take a few minutes to read Isaiah 9:1-8 carefully, inviting the Holy Spirit to speak to you as you read.
What did you see in the text? What is the main point being communicated? Here are some of the things that I saw.
Today’s reading contains another famous prophecy of the Messiah from the book of Isaiah. We know this one from countless Christmas readings because it talks about the Messiah’s birth. “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.” The prophecy about the government being on the Messiah’s shoulders means that he will rule his people. Israel will have a good king again. In fact, Israel will have a great king! He will be a wise, strong, and godly ruler. He will govern the people with justice and righteousness. And the people will praise him, as the passage proclaims: “And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” The son who is given to us is God himself! This prophecy declares that Jesus is divine, for it would be sacrilegious to call a mere human “Mighty God” or “Everlasting Father.”
Things do not always go well in this world. In fact, it seems that more often than not, if anyone is in charge, that person must be the devil. But a time is coming when Jesus will reign here on earth, and “the government” will fully and finally be on his shoulders. In the meantime, it is our responsibility as his followers to proclaim his reign to the world – that Jesus is the true and rightful king of creation. It takes faith to see this reality, but one day we will see it with our eyes. And we, too, will call him Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Mighty God, may your reign spread across the earth as the waters cover the seas. May all people turn to you with glad and humble hearts. May the rulers of this world submit to you as the rightful king. Come, Lord Jesus. Amen.