Isaiah 60

Isaiah 60 Devotional
by Pastor Lawrence

           For the despised and forsaken city languishing in deep humiliation the Lord now brings great news.  Through his prophet, Isaiah, the Lord foretells a time in which the earthly city of Jerusalem will finally reflect the heavenly city of Zion.  In fact, the two will become one, although we don’t learn that explicitly until it is revealed to the apostle John in the book of Revelation, but much of what is revealed in that latter book builds upon what is revealed here in the last few chapters of the book of Isaiah. 

           In this chapter, Isaiah sees a shining and glorious city set high upon a hill and all the kings of the earth processing into its gates in order to offer their tribute to the one true God.  He sees every nation travelling from afar out of the darkness and into the light of this luminous spectacle.   Not only will all the believing exiles return to dwell in this holy place, but so too will their gentile neighbors who have attached themselves to them just as Ruth did with Naomi years before, and none of them will come empty-handed.  Each will be carrying an abundance of treasure, plundering the nations just as the Israelites plundered the Egyptians at the time of the Exodus.  In v.16, Isaiah says it this way: “You shall suck the milk of the nations; you shall nurse at the breast of kings.” 

           Elaborating on this great immigration, Isaiah foresees the ships of Tarshish bringing Gentiles from the far west carrying with them an abundance of silver and gold from their trading empires.  Likewise, he envisions Gentile traders from the south and the east bringing an abundance of flocks and of rams, gold, frankincense and praise to give as an offering unto the Lord in his holy temple.  These all shall minister in the house of God and bring their wealth to beautify his sanctuary.  For the Lord has made Zion a beautiful and radiant city, a place of wonder and of great joy for all the peoples.     

           Isaiah envisions all the walls of the city being rebuilt by foreigners and the gates of the city continually open in order to receive the wealth of the nations and the homage of their kings.  Any king or nation that refuses to come to honor the Lord and his kingdom will perish, but all the rest will bow down before the Lord and be grafted into the vine becoming one with the people of God.   There will be no more violence or destruction, sadness or mourning, but only joy and praise unto the Lord in his holy city from age to age.  As we read again later on in the book of Revelation, the sun and the moon will no longer be needed to bring light to the world, for the Lord himself will be their everlasting light and glory.

           This eschatological vision of the glory of the New Jerusalem would not only bring comfort, joy and hope to the exiles in Babylon, it would bring these same blessings to every generation of believers from that time until today.  For in every generation the seed of the serpent are craftily at work seeking to tear down the foundations, to cast off the authority and restraint of the Lord and his anointed one.  And at times it appears as if all is lost when the wicked come to power and have their way in this world promoting their perverse ways and threatening and persecuting the sons of God as prey.  But the Lord will have the final word.  The time for turning the tables is at hand, and in a moment the Lord will crush his enemies and accomplish in an hour what his people could not accomplish in a millennium.  It is then, and only then, that the greatest revival and renewal will take place that the world has ever seen and ever will see.  And at that time, the Lord’s people will not be able to contain their joy and their laughter because of what the Lord has done.  They will not be able to refrain from smiling in the presence of his heavenly glory.  Of course, we are not living in those days right now in the flesh, but hopefully, in the Spirit, we are already smiling at the fulfillment of God’s word by faith.