Devotions and Readings for December 7-13, 2014

Devotion: Use this resource at home to guide your household’s daily devotions. You can do this alone, as a couple, as a family; in the morning, during the day, or at night. Find a routine that works best for you.

Pray: Light a candle and open your devotion time with a prayer.
God of justice, you made a covenant with your people and promised light and justice to the nations. Help us be beacons of light and givers of justice to all people of the world, for the sake of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

Reflect: Reflect on the key verses from Sunday’s reading.
I am the Lord, I have called you in righteousness, I have taken you by the hand and kept you; I have given you as a covenant to the people, a light to the nations, to open the eyes that are blind, to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon, from the prison those who sit in darkness.  Isaiah 42:6-7

Study: Study the reading and consider the background.
The book of Isaiah was written for three distinct time periods. Chapters 1-39 were written about the period when the Northern Kingdom of Israel fell to Assyria. Its message was of warning of exile. Chapters 40-55 were written during the time of exile in Babylonia. It was a dark time for Israel and the message was one of waiting and hope. Chapters 56-66 were written after the people had returned from exile, and praised God for God’s goodness and faithfulness to God’s people.

Isaiah 42 is one of four “servant songs.” In these servant songs God promises that an unknown servant (likely the nation of Israel) would come and administer justice to the nations. This is a message of hope for an exiled people, not only that they would be saved, but that they would be exalted to a position to bless all the nations with justice.

Read: Read the following daily readings to deepen your understanding of Sunday’s text. After the reading, ask the follow-up questions.
Follow the book of Isaiah, as the prophet proclaims salvation to Israel.

Sunday, Isaiah 42:1-9, Light to the Nations
Monday, Isaiah 42:10-20, A Hymn of Praise
Tuesday, Isaiah 42:21-25, Israel’s Disobedience
Wednesday, Isaiah 43:1-7, Restoration and Protection Promised
Thursday, Isaiah 43:8-21, Restoration and Protection Promised
Friday, Isaiah 43:22-28, Restoration and Protection Promised
Saturday, Isaiah 44:1-8, God’s Blessing on Israel

Where is God in this story? How are God’s promises fulfilled?

Connect: Connect in conversation with others in your household. Discuss the following questions, or simply check in with “Highs” and “Lows.”

  • What was a high point of your day? What was a low point?
  • Who in your community lives in darkness? How can you shine light on those living in darkness?
  • How does God’s light shine through you? How do people know you follow God?

Do: By acting on what we learn, we make God’s word come alive. Do the following activity this week.
Spend 10% of your Christmas gift budget on people outside your family/friend circles. Donate to a charity or buy gifts for those who cannot afford gifts.

Bless: Close your devotion with a blessing.
God of all creation, through your word open our eyes to see the new things you are doing. Help us rejoice in your faithfulness in the past and look forward to it in the future. Amen.

Copyright © 2014 Clergy Stuff.. Used and adapted with Permission. Find more at Blessing written by Pr. Chip Borgstadt. Scripture quotations from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used with permission. All rights reserved.

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