December 17, 2017. "Hope for Defeated People." Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11.
How many of you like art? What kinds of art do you like? What is your favorite work of art? Art is an important means of communication. Today Isaiah paints a bleak picture of God's people. Isaiah 61 uses picture language to describe a glorious future with an ordination service, prison release, national celebration, renewed city, forest of mighty trees, wedding, and spring garden. Many people today experience the agony of defeat. They need to see a picture of hope. People yearn for a spiritual renewal. People yearn for a moral revival. People yearn for a social revival. The Third Sunday on Advent is called Rejoice Sunday. The people of Israel rejoiced over the coming of the Lord. The people of Israel had this-worldly hopes. We rejoice over the coming of Christ. Our hopes are this worldly and next worldly. The Bible gives us a picture of hope for defeated people.