After the seas are all cross’d.
(as they seem already cross’d)
After the great captains and engineers have accomplish’d their work.
After the noble inventors,
after the scientists, the chemist, the geologist, the ethnologist,
Finally comes the poet worthy of that name, The true son of God shall come singing his songs.
Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass
Some people claim that Isaiah was the greatest of the Old Testament prophets. His career spanned the turbulent period from King Uziah’s death, about 740 B.C. to the end of Sennaacheribs siege of Jerusalem in 701 B.C. Judah’s kings, especially timid and shaky Ahaz, persistently wanted to rely on political deals with foreign powers, usually Assyria or Egypt, to save the country. But Isaiah would not hear of it–“Tremble, you women who are at ease… (32:11a).”
Isaiah’s ministry began with the famous “call” in ch. 6 to which you are no doubt familiar. The theologian/writer Fred Buechner, taking substantial liberty with Scripture, paraphrases Isaiah’s call (in ch. 6) this way:
There were banks of candles flickering in the distance and clouds of incense thickening the air with holiness and stinging his eyes, and high above him ,
“That is what a prophet does,” Buechner ends. “And Isaiah went and did it.”
Listen with me to the words of Isaiah. They ring true for his generation and for ours. Enjoy Isaiah this Advent Season. Have a Blessed, wonderful Christmas season. Come, let us glorify the Lord and praise his name forever!