Category Archives: July

As Christians under the New Covenant, we also have an anointing: But you have an anointing from the Holy One (1Jo. 2:20). In the New Testament sense, anointing has the idea of being filled with, and blessed by, the Holy Spirit. This is something that is the common property of all Christians, but something we can and should become more submitted and responsive to.

The Messiah announces that He is here to heal the damage that sin brings. Sin has done great damage, so there needs to be a great work of redemption. Because sin impoverishes, He will preach good tidings to the poor. Because sin breaks hearts, He will heal the brokenhearted. Because sin makes captives, He will proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound. Because sin oppresses, He will proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord. Because sin is a crime that must be avenged, He will proclaim . . . the day of vengeance of our God. Significantly, Jesus stopped reading before this sentence. He stopped in the middle of the prophecy, because to proclaim . . . the day of vengeance of our God is relevant to His Second Coming, not to His first coming. The comma in year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance has stood for almost 2,000 years. This shows us something of the nature of Biblical prophecy: it may “shift gears” and time frames quickly, and without warning. We can compare a whole year of grace to a single day of vengeance.

Because sin brings grief, He will comfort all who mourn. The extent of the comfort and restoration is beautifully described. Instead of the ashes of mourning, He gives His people beauty. Instead of the mourning itself, He gives His people the oil of joy. Instead of the spirit of heaviness, He gives His people the garment of praise. Why do we sit in the ashes, why do we mourn, why do we indulge the spirit of heaviness when Jesus gave us something so much better? The word beauty has in mind a beautiful crown or head ornament. It is translated exquisite hats in Exo. 39:28 and headdresses in Isa. 3:20. In mourning, ashes would be cast upon the head (2Sa. 13:19). Here, the ashes are replaced with a beautiful crown. That they may be called trees of righteousness: The restored place of God’s people is glorious. The are as strong, beautiful, and useful as trees – and trees of righteousness at that. Most wonderfully, when people look at the trees, they see they are the planting of the Lord. D. Guzik

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