“O Israel, the Righteous One, the Holy One of Israel, has preserved you!”
-Grace’s words, The Israel Letters, Letter One
When Grace starts writing the Israel Letters
When Grace starts writing the Israel Letters, she begins by referring to a passage from Isaiah:
“Thus says the Lord,
The Redeemer of Israel, their Holy One,
To Him whom man despises,
To Him whom the nation abhors,
To the Servant of rulers:
“Kings shall see and arise,
Princes also shall worship,
Because of the Lord who is faithful,
The Holy One of Israel; and He has chosen You.”
“In an acceptable time I have heard You, and in the day of salvation I have helped You; I will preserve You and give You as a covenant to the people,
To restore the earth, to cause them to inherit the desolate heritages…”
The Book of Isaiah (Hebrew: ספר ישעיהו) is the first of the Latter Prophets in the Hebrew Bible and the first of the Major Prophets in English Bibles.The book is identified by a superscription as the works of the 8th-century BCE prophet Isaiah ben Amoz, but there is ample evidence that much of it was composed during the Babylonian captivity and later…Read more about the Book of Isaiah
Grace is well aware of points on which Christians and Jews disagree. She understands why Christians see their Messiah in Isaiah’s words, but she also sees today’s Israel fulfilling God’s original covenants with Abraham and Jacob. She is rejoicing with Israel on their return to the homeland following the attempted annihilation and suffering caused during the Holocaust. The Israel Letters was written during the spring and summer of 2014, just as Israel was going through a terrible war with Hamas. Grace sought to encourage her beloved “elder brother” in faith Israel.
Christian and Jewish Perspectives
Grace has taken into account Jewish rabbinic thought on the passages from Isaiah..:
“Origen, a prominent and influential church father, conceded in the year 248 CE – eight centuries before Rashi (Jewish rabbi and scholar) was born – that the consensus among the Jews in his time was that Isaiah 53 “bore reference to the whole [Jewish] people, regarded as one individual, and as being in a state of dispersion and suffering, in order that many proselytes might be gained, on account of the dispersion of the Jews among numerous heathen nations.”
(Read the complete article at Outreach Judiaism.org )
…and Christian thought:
“Into this crisis, Isaiah speaks a word of hope in these chapters. God will send a servant who will do justice. Indeed, it appears that much of second Isaiah (chapters 40-55) addresses the return of the Israelite’s to their homeland and the promise of a restored temple and nation. The disorientation of exile is replaced by a new orientation that is more than just returning to the way things were before exile. God has something much more in mind.”
(Read the complete article at Working Preacher.com)
AT THE BEGINNINNG of Letter One, Grace says, “O Israel, the Righteous One, the Holy One of Israel, has preserved you!” As, indeed, He has!
Prayer from Letter One of The Israel Letters
The Lord Preserved You
Lord of Mercy, Great and Holy One, pour out your Spirit of Compassion on Israel. They cannot see you, and yet they know you. They cannot touch your face, but you can touch theirs. Wipe away their tears. Heal their great sorrows. Gather the fragments of this great people’s soul and heal them. Restore them that they may turn completely to you, their Great and Mighty God, for you alone are their Redeemer. You are the Holy One of Israel, and we worship you
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
This post is a basic overview of Letter One. More scriptures, insights and what has been my biggest “treasure” found in God’s word from writing Letter One are coming. I hope you will visit the links included on this page to get Jewish and Christian thought on Isaiah’s writings. Michael Freund’s article link about Israel’s Independence Day is wonderful: More than just blue and white 4th of July.
If you haven’t read The Israel Letters and are curious about the letter writer Grace (a Christian who loves Israel and the Jewish people) please visit my author’s website at www.theisraeltrs.com for more information – at least until this blog site is really up and going and Grace has a proper introduction!
Blessed be the Holy One of Israel always,
©2016, Nancy H. Montgomery, The Israel Letters Bible Study