Isaiah begins this prophecy by reminding his hearers of the pre-eminence of the family of Jesse. The royal line is already well-known to have been established through David but here it is David’s father Jesse who is identified as the ‘stem’ of the tree from which the shoot and branch will bear incredible fruit (v1).
This branch is described as having ‘the Spirit of the Lord resting on Him’ (v2). So far in Biblical history the Spirit has come upon specific people at specific times for a specific purpose (for example see Judges 6:34 and the story of Gideon). This branch is different from that as the Spirit will rest on Him. The Spirit described is a seven-fold Spirit: He is the Spirit of the Lord, of wisdom, understanding, counsel, strength, knowledge and fear of the Lord (v2).
The resting of this Spirit on the Branch will result in the establishing of righteousness judgement. He will not judge in the way men judge, i.e. by what they can see and hear, but instead will judge with righteousness and fairness (vv3,4). And the Branch will be dressed with righteousness and faithfulness as His belt (v5).
The result of this righteous judgement will be the ushering in of a new kingdom of peace where the whole of creation will once again live in harmony. The wolf and lamb, leopard and goat, calf and lion will cohabit (vv6,7). There will be no danger to children from deadly snakes (v8) and there will be no hurt or destruction (v9). God’s kingdom will be established with knowledge of Him filling the earth (v9). And nations will stream to the branch of Jesse (v10). He will be the rallying point and bless all nations of the earth.
Further reading: Revelation 5:1-10
To think about:
We live in a turbulent world. However we have the Holy Spirit living inside us. How can we offer or demonstrate peace to the world we live in?
|Artwork by Esther Sweeney|
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