211.25: Isaiah 40: Good News in the Old Testament. Judgment Ceases and Comfort is Here!

Several times, years ago, I had the pleasure and honor of singing Handel’s Messiah in a mass choir. That’s a choir of 30-40 people, along with a local symphony orchestra and professional soloists. What an experience! Technically, I’m a 2nd soprano singing between alto and soprano. Sometimes, I could manage the soprano part if it didn’t go too high. I would have loved to sing the soprano part of Messiah, but it was way too high. I had to settle for alto. Still, the altos had a significant part as did all the voices. I’ve embedded videos of the songs of Handel’s Messiah at the bottom.

Why bring this up? Well, Handel, got his inspiration for the start of his Messiah oratorio from Isaiah chapter 40. When you listen to the performances, you’ll see that it’s just about word-for-word in the King James version.

See, in the prior chapters, as well as in 2 Kings, God was warning the people of both kingdoms, Israel and Judah, of the coming wrath. All they had to do to avoid it was turn away from worshiping the false gods of their neighboring pagan nations and follow the One True God. Yet, they didn’t. Israel was attacked and carted away by the Assyrians and Judah was attacked 3 times and carried away to exile in Babylon.

Chapter 40 of Isaiah is the start of his Gospel prophecies. He’s telling the people that though you’ll go through hard times, God comforts, God is all-knowing and He’s bigger than any other thing in this world. Let’s dig in…

Keep reading in my blog where there are links to dig deeper and watch the special music videos of Handel’s “Messiah” at the bottom….

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