On this mountain the Lord of hosts will make for all peoples
a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wines,
of rich food filled with marrow, of well-aged wines strained clear. – Isaiah 25:6
Greetings to all of you in the Love of Jesus Christ:
What is your vision? What wonderful future do you envision for yourself, your family, your nation, your world? What do you imagine is God’s vision for the human family, for all of Creation?
I have long been inspired by Isaiah’s vision of the “Mountain of the Lord.” I first heard Isaiah’s vision on my first trip to Tucson. I was in 9th grade and was offered a chance to play bassoon in the Arizona All-State Orchestra. In between the band and the orchestra, the concert featured the All-State Chorus. Nearly 100 young voices sang a beautiful rendition of Isaiah’s vision of the Mountain of the Lord, where people will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks, and they shall make war no more. They sang about the Messianic Banquet, where God has prepared a rich feast for all peoples. They sang about the Peaceable Kingdom, where the wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid. And I was absolutely hooked. These images from Isaiah, set to music by a creative composer, communicated through the beauty of a choir of human voices, absolutely convicted me that THIS is what God wants for our world – a world free from violence, a world where all of us share everything, a world of love and hospitality.
Isaiah’s vision still speaks to me. In fact, his vision seems more beautiful all the time. What would the world look like if we allowed ourselves to be guided by Isaiah’s vision? What kind of public safety system would we create if our ultimate goal was for there to be NO violence, no weapons of war, no swords or spears, no tools of destruction, only tools of production like plowshares and pruning hooks? What kind of immigration system would we create if we believed that EVERYONE is welcome at the messianic banquet on God’s holy mountain — if we allowed ourselves to be guided by Isaiah’s vision that God has prepared a feast of rich food and well-aged wines for ALL peoples? Could we stop all domestic violence and child abuse if we kept in front of us all the time Isaiah’s vision of the wolf laying down with the lamb, his vision of a world where those with more physical strength do not ever even threaten to abuse it?
I invite you to live with Isaiah’s vision of shalom, of God’s deep peace — a peace that includes justice, nonviolence and safety for all. And I invite you to share with me any visions that inspire you to think, speak, and act in ways that embody God’s steadfast love and amazing grace in our all too fragmented world.
Dios les bendiga!
Regional Minister and President
Christian Church in Arizona