By Dr. Judy Fentress-Williams
Judah is a small nation that lives in the shadow of the powerful Assyria. Her fate is tied to the whims of this mighty nation. In response to this reality, Isaiah offers prophetic words that may have been received as mixed messages. On the one hand Isaiah prophesies utter destruction for Judah. On the other hand he offers hope when he declares the destruction will not be complete. There will be a “remnant” and the line of David will be continued. With his words the prophet creates a picture of a peaceable kingdom where the lion will lay down with the lamb. This God wields power and establishes peace.
Psalm 29 describes a God who is God over all of creation. The potential chaos of the creation is subject to the God of creation. Even as the church anticipates the end of the world, we are reminded that the God who brought the world into being with his power and might will see us through to the end.
Are we uncomfortable with the idea of God wielding power in the world? Why?
To what extent do we, like Judah assume that forces other than God have primary power over our lives?
God, who formed order out of chaos, speak peace to the chaos of our lives. Remind us that you are the creator and sustainer of all that is and bless us with your peace.
Dr. Judy Fentress-Williams is Professor of Old Testament at the Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, Virginia.