The book of Isaiah belongs to Yahweh– the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Moses. It was initially written for the kings and the people of Judah and Israel leading up to, and during, the Babylonian exile (598 – 538 BC). It is a Jewish book long before it is a Christian book. But the book of Isaiah shapes the Christian’s understanding of their Messiah as much as any other in the Old Testament. The New Testament quotes Isaiah more than all the other prophets together, and do so in a way that declares Jesus Christ ultimately and supremely fulfils the promises made to God’s people in Isaiah.
The series of devotional notes that follow are intended to launch Christians into their own engagement with God through the book of Isaiah. They are not intended to be deeply academic, nor are they fixed and final. Instead they are the fruit of my own prayerful reflections on the text throughout 2019. Because of my Christian presuppositions, and my interest in the depth given by Isaiah to the person, character and ministry of Jesus Christ; this commentary will focus on the ‘forward-looking’ sections of Isaiah which anticipate a greater King-Servant-Saviour who far outstrips any of the characters inhabiting the near history of the author and his people.
Finally, the thoughts that follow are intended to stimulate your following of Jesus Christ, as his disciple. The life of a disciple involves growth and transformation, so that in the end, we have become like our Lord. I am concerned for this process, and the reading of the Bible as foundational to this life of discipleship.