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Such beautiful feet

(A) For thus says the LORD - "You were sold for nothing, and you shall be redeemed without money.” For thus says the LORD God: “My people went down at the first into Egypt to sojourn there, and the Assyrian oppressed them for nothing. (B) Now therefore what have I here,” declares the LORD, “seeing that my people are taken away lately? Their rulers wail,” declares the LORD, “and continually all the day my name is despised. (C) Therefore my people shall know my name. (D) Therefore in that day they shall know that it is I who speak; look and see me.” 
(E) How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness, who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, “Your God reigns.” The voice of your watchmen—they lift up their voice; together they sing for joy; for eye to eye they see the return of the LORD to Zion. Break forth together into singing, you waste places of Jerusalem, for the LORD has comforted his people; he has redeemed Jerusalem. (F) The LORD has bared his holy arm before the eyes of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God. Isaiah 52: 3-10
 
The extract in bold above is from the ancient book of Isaiah in both Jewish and Christian Bibles. Written around 590 BC, it seems complicated – but is it?

(A) Over many preceding centuries the descendants of a man named Jacob (later renamed Israel) had been persecuted (in Egypt) and terrorised and captured many times including by Assyria. Gratuitous violence, “for nothing.”

(B) In around BC 597 these Israelites had gone under yet again – to the new rising and powerful neo-Babylonian Empire. History records that their troops in that year had totally devastated Judea and its capital city, Jerusalem, and deported most of its people to Babylon.
 
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‘There is no pit so deep that Jesus is not deeper still.’ (Corrie Ten Book, Holocaust survivor, 1892-1983)
(C) No sooner has this occurred than the LORD God expresses his resolve – “my people shall know my name”. His name? Yes. What will that achieve? Well, the name of a person encompasses the whole of the being of that person. The name of this LORD God has delivered them out of Egyptian slavery and out of Assyrian violence. Will he do the same now that they have been totally defeated by Babylonian forces?

(D) “Therefore in that day they shall know that it is I who speak; look and see me.” This is a very interesting statement indeed. The LORD God tells them that they will both hear his actual voice (“It is I who speak”) and also see him (“Look and see me”). This will take place “in that day”. What day is that? Has that day yet arrived? Yes – and No.

Yes – the LORD God’s voice has been heard in Jerusalem – when Jesus, Son of God, Son of Man, came to earth to inaugurate his realm. What’s more, the LORD God was visibly seen – as Jesus – at that time. And No – Jesus promised to return – only at the day of his second return will all be complete. 

(E) The song by Leonard Smith also describes the beautiful feet - of Jesus -

How lovely on the mountains are the feet of him 
Who brings good news, good news, 
Announcing peace proclaiming news of happiness. 
Our God reigns, our God reigns! 
 
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‘Jesus walking on the earth is more important than man walking on the moon.’ (James Irwin, US astronaut and moon walker, 1930-1991)
He had no stately form; He had no majesty. 
That we should be drawn to Him. 
He was despised, and we took no account of Him, 
Yet now He reigns with the Most High. 

It was our sin and guilt that bruised and wounded Him.
It was our sin that brought Him down.
When we like sheep had gone astray our Shepherd came
And on His shoulders bore our shame.

Meek as a lamb that’s led out to the slaughterhouse,
Dumb as a sheep before its shearer,
His life ran down upon the ground like pouring rain
That we might be born again.

Out of the tomb He came with grace and majesty; 
He is alive, He is alive. 
God loves us so see here His hands, His feet, His side. 
Yes we know He is alive.  Our God reigns, our God reigns! 

(E) Truly, “The LORD has bared his holy arm before the eyes of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God”, fulfilling the promise made by the LORD God to the Israelite people in BC 597.
 
Sinner Syvret

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