Civilized behavior the world over demands that a proper host or hostess offers some sort of sustenance when welcoming visitors into their homes. Who among us doesn't feel compelled to quiz their guests, even before they get a chance to sit down, about what we might be able to get them? We might ask with enthusiasm when the coffee has just perked, the wine is nicely chilled, or the soft drink selection is vast - or we might ask with trepidation when an unexpected arrival finds us with nothing but two swallows of orange juice and some suspicious-smelling milk in our refrigerator. But still we ask.
As the creator and sustainer of planet Earth and our universe, God is the ultimate host. In this week's Old Testament text, Isaiah describes the surprising, miraculous future of deliverance that awaits Israel - God is preparing a new place for them in a reclaimed, irrigated, well-watered wilderness. Once God has prepared this home and brought the Israelites into it, God acts the part of...
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