Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Come, You People of the Promise, verse 2

The people who walk in darkness will see a great light; those who live in a dark land, the light will shine on them. Isaiah 9:2

The Israelites had been walking in darkness for many, many years. God had promised that He would send the Light of the World, which His people desperately needed. I think this hymn writer captures the feelings of the people quite eloquently - "gloom and sorrow our companions as we longed for signs of day."

God hadn't abandoned His people! He hadn't forgotten His promise. The people needed hope and healing. I am sure the people who trusted in God with their whole hearts encouraged each other with passages like this from the Psalmist and prophets:

O Israel, hope in the LORD; for with the LORD there is lovingkindness, and with Him is abundant redemption. Psalm 130:7

'For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.' Jeremiah 29:11

This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope. The LORD’S lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:21-23

“For behold, the day is coming, burning like a furnace; and all the arrogant and every evildoer will be chaff; and the day that is coming will set them ablaze,” says the LORD of hosts, “so that it will leave them neither root nor branch. But for you who fear My name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings; and you will go forth and skip about like calves from the stall. You will tread down the wicked, for they will be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day which I am preparing,” says the LORD of hosts.
Micah 4:1-3

Their deliverer was coming!

There was the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man. John 1:9

The Light of the World would be sent to dwell among them, God in flesh, God with us, Emmanuel.

Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.” John 8:12

Praise God for sending the Light into our world! And ponder, in this Advent season, how His light is shining through you.

Come, You People of the Promise
Words by Joy Patterson

Come, you people of the promise,
Sing for joy! The time is near!
God, the covenant fulfilling,
Soon among us will appear!
As proclaimed in prophet’s story,
Christ will come in humble glory—
God with us, Emmanuel!

Long in darkness we have waited,
Through the shadows made our way,
Gloom and sorrow our companions
As we longed for signs of day—
Great our need for hope and healing,
Some great light our God revealing,
God with us, Emmanuel!

God’s own Son shall dwell among us;
Shadows vanish in that light.
Earth shall know his peace and justice:
Christ who comes shall rule in might.
Let our joy dispel all sadness:
He who comes turns tears to gladness—
God with us, Emmanuel!

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