Daily Devotions

Daily Devotions

for my house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples. Thus says the Lord God, who gathers the outcasts of Israel, I will gather others to them besides those already gathered.” vss. 7b-8

Isaiah 56:1, 6-8

As the prophet revisited God’s plans for Israel after the return from exile in Babylon, he realized that the old exclusive vision had to be revamped. Israel’s God had been too small. Now the prophet looked toward a new Israel that would include the outcasts of every nation. It’s this inclusive perspective of God’s rule that has guided followers of Jesus from the beginning. Wherever they went with the gospel they went first of all to the outcasts, the poor and the misfits of society, and welcomed them to the family. As long as the Church has followed that pattern of outreach, as more and more people on the fringes learned about the unconditional love of God, blessings have been present in abundance. There have been times unfortunately, when the Church, having become rich and prosperous, has lost that focus on the downtrodden. Old prejudices and biases have risen to the surface and the poor and needy have come to be seen as a threat to economic stability. Times like that call for prophets like Isaiah, men and women who can call us back to the gospel and the mindset of Jesus. And what a blessing it is when they show up in our congregations and doors are once more opened to the outcasts.

Thought for the Day: Why is my congregation so homogenous?


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