Sweet Again – Our Daily Bread ODB Devotional + Insight: 29 November 2020
On this mountain the Lord Almighty will prepare a feast of rich food for all peoples.
Read: Isaiah 25:1–9
Bible in a Year: Ezekiel 35–36; 2 Peter 1
Russian wedding customs are filled with beauty and significance. One such custom takes place during the reception as the toastmaster proposes a toast in honor of the couple. Everyone takes a sip from their raised glass and then shouts, “Gor’ko! Gor’ko!” meaning “Bitter! Bitter!” When the guests shout that word, the newlyweds must rise and kiss each other in order to make the drink sweet again.
Isaiah prophesies that the bitter drink of desolation, ruin, and the curse upon the earth (ch. 24) will give way to the sweet hope of a new heaven and new earth (ch. 25). God will prepare a feast of rich foods and the finest and sweetest of drinks. It will be a banquet of continual blessing, fruitfulness, and provision for all people (25:6). There’s more. Under the sovereign reign of the righteous King, death is swallowed up, bitter tears are wiped away, and the shroud of disgrace is removed (vv. 7–8). And His people will rejoice because the One they trusted in and waited for will bring salvation and turn the bitter cup of life sweet again (v. 9).
One day, we’ll be together with Jesus at the wedding supper of the Lamb. When He welcomes His bride (the church) home, the promise of Isaiah 25 will be fulfilled. The life once bitter will be made sweet again.
What makes you long for God to make what is bitter sweet again? While you wait for Jesus’ return, what are some things you can do to make others’ bitter experience sweet again?
God, as I witness and experience so much pain, suffering, ruin, and death, sometimes it’s difficult to believe You’ll make what is bitter sweet again. Help me to put my hope in You, the One who’s promised to give me beauty for ashes and joy for mourning.
Isaiah 25:6–8 announces a great feast accompanied by the promise of God’s redemption of the earth from the dark cloud of death that hangs over it. The mountain mentioned in verse 6 refers to Mount Zion, on which Jerusalem stands. The promise of the great feast on that mountain shows the centrality of Israel for God’s purposes. But the promise of the feast for “all peoples” shows that Israel doesn’t exhaust the extent of God’s blessings (v. 6). In fact, it’s the means through which God will bless all nations—seen especially through Israel’s king who comes to Zion (Zechariah 9:9; Matthew 21:1–5).
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