The Calling of a Great Prophet

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Samantha Carpenter

Out of all the prophetic books in the Bible, Isaiah is the longest—one reason he is often considered the greatest prophet of Israel. His ministry spanned a period of some 60 years and included the defeat and exile of the Northern Kingdom of Israel at the hands of the Assyrians. However, the message of Isaiah is largely to the remaining kingdom of Judah as they, too, faced judgment and exile. His book also foretells of a future time when God would regather His people and restore their national homeland. He predicted the Galilee would see a great light and that a child would be born to carry the weight of the government and sit upon the throne of David.

The call of this great prophet, however, was not one to great fame or fortune. It was to speak to a people who would not hear nor understand what he told them. I wonder how many of us today would consider that to be a successful ministry. What kind of prophet is rejected by the people he is called to speak to?

That, however, is the life and calling of Isaiah. He saw God’s judgment fall upon the Northern Kingdom of Israel, and He knew it was coming to the Southern Kingdom of Judah if they did not change their ways. But the people did not believe him. King Uzziah had just died, but during his 52-year reign, he had brought great stability and prosperity to the citizens of his kingdom. He had shared the throne with his son, Jotham, who then took over with a smooth transition of power. Everything looked good on the outside.

But idolatry was still a plague in their midst. Isaiah then witnessed Jotham’s son, Ahaz, take the throne and lead the kingdom into full idolatrous rebellion. He not only participated in child sacrifice and worshipped the pagan gods, but he also set up an altar to one of them in the great temple in Jerusalem. God revealed to Isaiah the destruction of Judah and Jerusalem that would eventually come as a result.

Isaiah was not considered a great prophet because of a large following or wealthy ministry but due to his anointed oracles and purity of vision. To learn more about the calling of the great prophet Isaiah, please join me for this week’s Out of Zion podcast on The Greatest Prophet. Walk Thru the Bible with me each week by downloading our Bible reading plan, and get started reading right away! Invite your friends and family to join us! I can’t wait to Walk Thru the Bible with you! {eoa}

Dr. Susan Michael is USA director of the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem and host of the Out of Zion podcast.

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