Deeper Roots – Isaiah 40:3-5



December 7, 2022

A humbled and open heart is fertile soil for God’s seeds of wisdom to be planted. Deeper Roots is focused on analyzing God’s word to discover truths, values, and lessons for application to our lives. Periodically, a scripture or passage calls for further exploration, like Isaiah 40:3-5.

Listen! It’s the voice of someone shouting,
“Clear the way through the wilderness
    for the Lord!
Make a straight highway through the wasteland
    for our God!
Fill in the valleys,
    and level the mountains and hills.
Straighten the curves,
    and smooth out the rough places.
Then the glory of the Lord will be revealed,
    and all people will see it together.
    The Lord has spoken!”

Isaiah 40:3-5

Our Deeper Roots passage in Isaiah shows how we should live in a posture of preparation and expectation. Our passage is from the prophet Isaiah, who prophesied during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah (kings of Judah). Isaiah spoke with directness about the state of the nation and the times to come. Chapter 40 is a shift from describing God’s judgment (Ch 1-39) to His deliverance, salvation, and restoration of His people. After announcing God’s shift of wanting to comfort His people (v1-2), Isaiah begins to announce the clearing of pathways in the wilderness. A leveling and straightening of pathways for the Lord’s glory to come. Isaiah is certain that these events are to happen because God had spoken them.

The voice of the prophet is designed to raise awareness of what is happening or what is to come. In this instance, clearing the way is in preparation. In the same way that you can’t walk through the forest without clearing a path, God cannot enter into a nation or believer’s heart without preparation. When highways are built, there’s a leveling of the earth that takes place, otherwise, our cars are in for a bumpy ride. We, too, must make adjustments to our lives in order for the Lord to enter. As children of God, we are called to soften our hearts, lower our pride, and align our actions with God’s will. We are called to actively participate in the process, not spectate.

Isaiah issued these prophetic messages years before the arrival of Jesus Christ, and yet they are still relevant to God’s people. This foreshadowing, along with several others, was cited by each of the Gospels (Matt. 3:1–4; Mark 1:1–4; Luke 1:76–78; John 1:23). All alluding to the role of John the Baptist, a voice in the wilderness shouting to prepare our hearts and minds for the coming of Jesus Christ. And as we sit and reflect in the stillness of Advent, this prophetic message is still applicable to Christians today. We need to humble ourselves(flesh). We need to get our spiritual houses in order (yield to the Holy Spirit). We need to prepare our spiritual bodies for Jesus Christ’s second return. For no man knows the day or time, yet we must remain in a posture of expectation and preparation. The real question to ask yourself is, “Have you cleared the way?”

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