’God’s promises should become our prayers.’’ Warren W. Wiersbe: ‘With the Word’, p.490.
Isaiah had seen a glorious vision of the restored city of Jerusalem (Chapter 60). As we have seen, this was a multi-layered vision. It had to do with the literal restoration of the city and its re-population after exile and captivity. But Isaiah was also seeing the Messianic age: the coming of Jesus and the growth and witness of His church. In addition, he was catching a glimpse of the ultimate ‘golden era’ when Jesus comes to the earth a second time, and His Kingdom is established in all its fullness.(For example, verses 8 and 9 clearly await a still future fulfilment.)
The question is, ‘What will fill the gap between the vision and the reality?’ ‘What will bring this great picture of the future to pass?’ The answer is: ‘Prayer will; persistent, persevering prayer is what is required.’ (See Luke 18:1-8). Isaiah himself was committed to being a praying man who would put his own shoulder to the wheel of intercession to help to bring this about (1). (Note that preachers must also be people of prayer if their messages are to be effective.) But the prophet could see that God was calling others to join with him in ceaseless, fervent, untiring intercession (6, 7). F.B. Meyer sees in these verses an echo of Christ’s unceasing intercession for us: ‘’…He ever lives to intercede for us, praying when we are silent, watching when we sleep…His prayer rises for his people night and day. Perhaps they would not pray for themselves, if his intercessions did not incite. Certainly his sifted Simons would drift beyond hope, if He did not pray for them…The prayers of Jesus hover over the world like the dove over the weltering chaos of creation.’’
What will cause the church to arise and shine brilliantly as she is intended to? (1). What will bring many people to this light? (2). What will bring about church growth on a large scale? (4, 12). What will cause God’s people to be known in this world as the bride of Christ; forgiven and reconciled to Him? (4, 5). What will ‘’Remove the stones’’ or ‘’Clear the debris’’ as The Message puts it? (10). What will clear the way for progress? Prayer is the answer to all these questions. There is a need for committed and continual prayer. On New Year’s Day 2015 the challenge is, ‘Will you enlist in this army of untiring pray-ers to see the church become all the Lord wants her to be? Will you take your stand where God ‘posts’ you on the ‘’walls’’ (6) ‘’till’ He makes His church everything He wants her to be? The church cannot stand in this world if its members are not kneeling. We cannot shine in public unless we are seeking in private. When will the head knowledge of this truth start to affect our lives? In what year will it begin to fill our prayer meetings and affect our personal lives? How about this new one?!!
‘’I’ve posted watchmen on your walls, Jerusalem. Day and night they keep at it, praying, calling out, reminding GOD to remember. They are to give him no peace until he does what he said…’’ The Message.
Prayer: I am turning up for duty dear Lord. I want to enlist. Please enrol me in your prayer army.