Sunday, March 03, 2024

Sunday Scripture


Pretty graphic by Abby at Little Birdie Blessings

 Here's the third in our new series for Sunday Scripture!  Back in 2018, I did a simple study from Rachel Wojo called Everything Beautiful.  You can read about it here: Everything Beautiful Bible reading plan. My answers and input on this series will be a combination of what I learned back then, and what I found in looking over the Scriptures now, six years later.  I'm going to attempt to SOAP the passages too, though some of them are longer. 

S= "Comfort ye, comfort ye My people, saith your God.
"Speak comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned; for she hath received of the LORD's hand double for all her sins.
"The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
"Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain;
"And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together; for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.
"The voice said, Cry.  And he said, What shall I cry?  All flesh is grass, and all the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field:
"The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: because the Spirit of the LORD bloweth upon it: surely the people is grass.
"The grass withereth, the flower fadeth; but the word of our God shall stand forever."  (Isaiah 40:1-8)

O= C.I. Scofield tells us that Isaiah chapters 40-48 deal with "The Greatness and Transcendence of God".  Isaiah 40:1-2 are titled by Scofield "The prophet's new message".  Verses 3-5 deal with "The mission of John the Baptist".  The remainder of chapter 40 presents "The greatness of God and man's insignificance."

The Daily Walk Bible shares some interesting information:

"Beginning with chapter 40, Isaiah changes the focus of his message.  For 39 chapters his major message has been the condemnation resulting from the waywardness and wickedness of God's people.  But now comes a heartwarming message of hope and comfort.  The next 27 chapters declare the coming salvation of the Lord.  He is sovereign over creation; He is sovereign in the protection and selection of His nation Israel.  And thus there can be certainty that He will comfort and deliver His people."

Warren Wiersbe notes, "Though Isaiah wrote a century before the fall of Judah, his words greatly encouraged the exiles when they read them in Babylon."

Some cross-references include:

For "voice of him that crieth in the wilderness" (v. 3) --

 "He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Isaiah."  (John 1:23)

"As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah, the prophet, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.  Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth; And all flesh shall see the salvation of God."  (Luke 3:4-6)

For "glory of the Lord" (v. 5) --

"[The desert] shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and singing; the glory of Lebanon shall be given unto it, the excellency of Carmel and Sharon; they shall see the glory of the LORD, and the excellency of our God."  (Isaiah 35:1)

For "grass" (v. 6) -- 

"For all flesh is like grass, and all the glory of man like the flower of grass.  The grass withereth, and its flower falleth away.  But the word of the Lord endureth forever.  And this is the word by which the gospel is preached unto you."  (1 Peter 1:24-25)

A= Warren Wiersbe notes that this passage speaks with 

*The voice of comfort -- (verses 1-5) --  "tells you that God knows how to measure your chastening and that He forgives and gives you a new beginning."
* The voice of confidence -- (verses 6-8) -- "assures you that His Word stands in spite of the frailty of man."

 For this Scripture, there were a number of ways to apply it as prompted in the journal.  

"No scenery can match the beauty of God's Word." -- Rachel Wojo

The question was asked: Which of my own thoughts have blocked the beauty of God's Word?

My response in 2018: I really can't think of any.  God's Word is incredibly beautiful and completely trustworthy.

Answering this same question in 2024

My response: I do think, though, that we can block the beauty of God's Word by not believing it, or by making statements like "I can't" when His Word clearly tells us we can.

This prompt was given, along with a list: Today I will keep my eyes open for God's beauty in one or more of these places.

These are the places I circled: The words I read; the places I go; the music I hear; the weather I experience; the rest I receive; the grace I give.

In 2024 I jotted down a few details regarding these things. Concerning the places I go, I noted that Lord willing, we would be spending that night at our camp, a beautiful provision by God that wasn't even a dream on the horizon in 2018.  For the weather I experience, I noted the warm temperature -- in the fifties.  And, though it fit none of these categories as such, I also noticed the simple but beautiful artist's rendering of a winter scene on a mug I was sipping coffee from. 

A journaling prompt was this: List one or more ideas to remind myself to intentionally look for God's beauty throughout the day.

2018:We are expecting a large winter storm here today, with many inches of snow.  I know that watching the falling snow outside our windows will show me God's beauty.  I also think I will play some music CDs and look for God's beauty in that way, also.

2024: We set a timer each morning to remind us to catch the dawn light which is so beneficial to us in so many ways -- not the least of which is its beauty.

P= "Lord, I praise You for the beauty of Your Word.  It is not only more beautiful than any scenery or music (which, after all, are created by You), but it will stand forever.  It is unchanging, unfailing.  I can count on it every day.

"In today's  Scripture passage, I was so blessed to be reminded that You desire to comfort Your people and to make the rough places of life plain to us.  I thank You for all this, in Jesus' name, Amen."

And there is the Sunday Scripture for this week!  I'd love some input on this series so far.  How do you think it is working?


  1. Wow, this was all so lovely. My first thoughts were that you were singing from Handel's Messiah, as this is one of my favorite sections of that wonderful musical blessing sent by God to Handel when he was inspired to write it into music. Now I am singing it in my head. I loved the pictures and that you set your alarm to awaken with the dawn and enjoy the most beautiful part of the new day together. That is a lovely gift from God also. Thank you for sharing these wonderful thoughts and passages with us. Comfort ye my people! Saith your God! Amen!

    1. Amen! Yes, I heard that music in my head too when I was working on this post. And that sunrise was so amazing. We usually don't see one so beautiful.

  2. PNW Vickie2:25 PM

    Confession: I don't always read through your Sunday post, but today I did and was so blessed by all of it. Thanks for sharing in this way. Blessings . . .

  3. Oh, I am glad you were blessed by it, Vickie! I feel as if my Sunday posts can get rather long, so I don't blame you for not always reading through them. But I'm glad you did this time and that it was a blessing to you.


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