GIFTED: The Presence of Change

By Campus Missionary Mary Rowley

In chapter 61, Isaiah gives a visual description of salvation. “[God] has clothed me with the garments of salvation; he has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels” (verse 10). To Isaiah, salvation is an adornment, something you wear, something other people can see. It’s beautiful and makes you stand out in a crowd.

It’s only logical, therefore, that he follows it up with this. “For as the earth brings forth its sprouts, and as a garden causes what is sown in it to sprout up, so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise     to sprout up before all the nations” (verse 11). Salvation is something that grows, Isaiah says. It’s visible and powerful. It causes change.

Salvation is definitely unique. It gives us the presence of Jesus; it even makes us Jesus, in a sense. This unique presence leads us to ask our favorite Lutheran question. What does this mean?

If we have truly been adopted as sons, we have the same goal as Jesus does, even the same goal that God did when Isaiah was first written. We are to be examples to others who don’t have what we have – yet. Our whole lives should be centered around our salvation. It should be so engrained in our lives that it is obvious and intriguing to everyone else. We should want our salvation to grow, expand, and cause change in the lives of others.

As Isaiah says in the beginning of chapter 62, “For Zion’s sake [we] will not keep silent” (verse 1). That’s our battle cry. We are fighting the battle against the devil, but we have Jesus on our side, and he has already won. This year, let’s not keep silent. Instead, let’s show our salvation to everyone so that change can come of it.