Go out, go out through the city gates; prepare a way for the people! Build it up, build up the highway; clear away the stones! Raise a banner for the peoples. Look, the LORD has proclaimed to the ends of the earth, “Say to Daughter Zion: Look, your salvation is coming, his wages are with him, and his reward accompanies him.”
We live in a noisy world. Every day, we are inundated by messages from our social media feeds, email, billboards, and even video advertising at the gas pump. Each voice vying for our attention promises its product will be transformational. The cries escalate to cacophony as the various platforms strive for your attention, claiming they have the best message you’ll ever hear. It’s arguably worse at this time of year when companies clamor for your hard-earned dollars, promising a Christmas to remember if only you will buy their product.
Are you also tired of the ceaseless, empty promises broadcast by manufacturers, political candidates, and others? Maybe you, like me, long for some truly good news; a message of genuine hope and truth that stands out from the rest.
A Message of Hope
Friends, this message of hope and truth exists. It’s the best message you’ll ever hear, and its promises outlast even the most stalwart human commitment.
In today’s passage, God speaks through Isaiah, informing His beleaguered people that salvation is on the way, bringing His wages and His reward with Him. Even better, the message is for all peoples “to the ends of the earth,” meaning not just for the descendants of Israel alone. This salvation is for you and me, too.
But wait – what does it matter if salvation comes along with its own wages and accompanied by its own reward? How do someone else’s earnings and compensation benefit us?
I’m glad you asked.
The Best Message
Our salvation is not a thing – it’s a Man; specifically, Jesus, the Son of God and Son of Man. He comes to bring good news to the poor, heal the brokenhearted, give freedom to the captives and prisoners, and to comfort all who mourn (see Isaiah 61:1-3). And friend, we are all poor, brokenhearted, captive to sin and imprisoned by our own evil desires. If we are wise, we all mourn our hopeless state because “the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23).”
This means that by our insistence on doing things our way; by rebelling against our Creator and refusing to submit to His design, we have earned death. Yet Jesus brings His wages with Him, not to flaunt His dearly-bought Life before us as a tease but with an offer for us to share in it.
If we submit to Jesus’s Lordship, then He covers us in His righteousness. In love, He graciously shares the abundance of His recompense with us. In Him, we find abundant, everlasting life! If you really want this to be a Christmas to remember, celebrate the Christ who gave all so that you can share in His reward. His is the only Christmas message you’ll still remember a hundred or a billion years from today.
If you haven’t truly submitted to the Lordship of Jesus, why not do it now? He’s given you a choice – life and blessing or death and curse. Choose life and find out how marvelous the Savior really is!