Today's devotion from Isaiah 39 and 40.
After God's merciful restoration of Hezekiah's health, which was remarkable enough to draw the attention of Merodach-baladan of Babylon, Hezekiah makes a terrible mistake. When the Babylonian envoy arrives, Hezekiah boasts in his treasury instead of in his God. This is tragic in two ways. First, it robs God of the glory that He is due. Second, it reveals the wealth of Jerusalem labeling them a target for a rising regional power.
What we see in chapter 39 is that no matter how good the man or how powerfully God works in his life, there is no one, not even a king, that we can trust completely. Even when he hears what he has done, his response is selfish, "The word of the LORD that you have spoken is good...There will be peace and security during my lifetime." (Isaiah 39:8, CSB) This good king, who's prayer changed God's heart because of his faithfulness, didn't care that those behind him would be exiled and made eunuchs because of his decision.
This is the backdrop for for a song that seemingly comes from nowhere. God, seeing the situation, wants to comfort His people, but how? How do you comfort a people that will be carried away from their homes and families? How do you comfort a people who's "good" king is still a self-centered average man?
"Prepare the way of the LORD in the wilderness; make a straight highway for our God in the desert." (Isaiah 40:3, CSB) These words will echo throughout the Gospels preceding, ushering in, and pointing to the ministry of Christ. He is the only true hope Jerusalem or anyone else would ever have.
Today, as you're browsing FaceBook, watching the news, or scrolling Yahoo! you will undoubtedly see political banter and articles. You will see people championing this cause or calling out that person. Remember that none of these are truly where our hope should rest. Even the best among us is not worthy of our faith or hope.