Watching Daily At My Gates

October 18 Read Revelation 18:1-8

The antichristian kingdom grows richer and richer. Those who are her servants prosper. But along with this growth comes the growth of sin. Along with this growth comes persecution to those who have not been defiled with the mark of the beast. When it seems that she has won, an angel announces her destruction. Her cup of iniquity is full, and God in his sovereign power ends her influence upon this world. God’s people are called to live separately from her. Now, physically this is impossible. We must do this in a spiritual sense. We must not partake of her sins, but rather we must flee from them. Her destruction is sure because God, the almighty judge, will give the final sentence. May we continue to pray, “Thy kingdom come.” Sing Psalter 202.

October 19 Read Revelation 18:9-19

Paul, in the book of Romans writes, “The wages of sin is death…” As the antichristian kingdom falls, those words are borne out. As it falls, even those who enjoyed its debauchery will mourn. Will they mourn because of their sins? No, they mourn because of the consequences of it. They mourn because their pleasures are gone. What about us? Do we see what will happen to the wicked world? Do we want to enjoy its pleasures? These words are written for our comfort, of that there is no doubt, but they are also written for our warning. Let us flee sin and seek “the city which hath foundations.” Sing Psalter 23.

October 20 Read Revelation 18:20-24

The righteous are called to rejoice over the fall of the antichristian kingdom. We are allowed to do this because God who is the sovereign king of heaven and earth has decreed its fall. While this provides comfort during times of afflictions, it also gives to us warning to remain pure from the sins found in the world. We are called to live an antithetical walk. That is the only way to remain pure. As we go through this valley of the shadow of death, let us remember that we have an house prepared for us in heaven. It is an house that cannot be taken from us. Let us prepare ourselves for the eternal Sabbath before the throne of the lamb. Sing Psalter 300.

October 21 Read Revelation 19:1-5

We come to the end of another portrayal of the history of the world. It is also the end of John’s vision begun in chapter 17. The church triumphant rejoices over the fall of Babylon, the figure of the antichristian kingdom. These are the saints who cried out “How long,” at the revealing of the fifth seal. And not only the church is rejoicing, but also creation that is symbolized in the four beasts. God is victorious; there was never any doubt. We must remember to raise our voices in doxology to him who sitteth upon the throne in heaven. Sing Psalter 246.

October 22 Read Revelation 19:6-10

Are we making ourselves ready for the marriage feast that awaits us? We do this by study of God’s Word and living a life in accordance to that Word. This is not something that we can do once in a while. We must do this every day as we wait the final summons to the feast. We do this in the hope and hearty confidence that we are given through faith. We will be given those robes washed white in the blood of our Lord and Savior. God’s people are the truly happy ones as they are the called ones to the feast. Sing Psalter 333.

October 23 Read Revelation 19:11-16

Another vision is given to John. Once again he is given a glimpse into the very last things on the earth. The hosts of Satan are gathered together to make a last attempt against Christ and his people. Then Christ himself appears on the white horse of battle. He is arrayed in all the symbolic clothing that belongs to him alone. This is our King. He will give to us the victory over death, the grave, and hell. When the battle is over we shall sit before him in heaven with the church of all ages. Are we watching the signs, people of God? Sing Psalter 200.

October 24 Read Revelation 19:17-21

Our only comfort in life and in death is that we belong to our faithful Savior. That faithful Savior is the captain of the host that will defeat all that which belongs to the antichristian kingdom. As we read this vision, we know that the victory is sure. We know that Satan and all his hosts will be destroyed forever. What a truth! What a victory! What a comfort! Does this make us complacent in our lives on this earth? It had better not. In fact we must continue to “make our calling and election sure.” It had better spur us on to “work out our salvation with fear and trembling.” The work of sanctification wrought by the Holy Spirit in our hearts must be more and more evident as we wait this great and terrible day of our Lord. May we pray, “Lord, give to us the grace to live a life of sanctification.” Sing Psalter 234.

October 25 Read Revelation 20:1-10

Once again John is shown a different view of what will happen before Christ returns. Once again in the cycle of the end of time we are brought back to an earlier point. We are brought back to the beginning of the new dispensation. Satan is bound that he can not marshal all the forces of evil to fight against the church of Christ. It is not as if Satan is completely neutralized. Nothing could be further from the truth. But during the new dispensation, Satan must wait until the time of the sixth vial when the way for the heathen nations is prepared for them to join themselves together to fight against the church. But this is also the time when the antichristian kingdom is brought together to be destroyed once and for all. Fear not, people of God, the victory is ours through Christ our Savior. Sing Psalter 358.

October 26 Read Revelation 20:11-15

John and we are offered a small glimpse into the Day of Judgment. On that day God will sit upon his throne and pass judgment on all those who have ever lived upon this earth. All will pass before him. Those who have attempted to avoid this day in some manner are not spared. Every living man and his works must pass before God’s gaze and judgment seat. For those whose works have been cleansed by the blood of the Lamb, the judgment is eternal life in heaven with God. For those whose works have not been cleansed, the judgment is the lake of the fire of the second death. This is a comfort for us, but it is also a warning to live lives pleasing to God. Sing Psalter 162.

October 27 Read Revelation 21:1-8

After being given a revelation into the final judgment, John is afforded a picture of the church of Christ gathered together for the rest of eternity. We see the church pictured as a city and a bride. Here we have the Old and New Testament pictures of her being brought together. Here we see the blessedness of this church as it is gathered together in joy without sorrow. What a blessing this glimpse is for us! We must still go through the last days, but we have this vision to sustain us as we wait the day of Christ’s return on the clouds of heaven. Now we see pictures, but then we shall partake of the real living water and will be granted the inheritance which was gained for us by the Alpha and Omega. Thanks be to God! Sing Psalter 125.

October 28 Read Revelation 21:9-19

John is transported in his vision so that he gets another view of the glorious church of Christ. He sees it described in earthly terms, but without the flaws that we see on earth. It is beautiful, it is complete, it is finished, and it belongs to Christ. Notice how both the saints of the old and new dispensations are represented in the apostles and tribes. The church is one and it is complete. Today we wait for that unity and completeness. We must do this in prayer and meditation upon God’s Word. Let us pray for the grace to do this day by day waiting for the coming of our Lord and Savior. Sing Psalter 198.

October 29 Read Revelation 21:20-27

The new creation will be different than the old creation. The most obvious difference will be that no sin will be present. And not only will sin not be present; that which reminds us of sin will be absent. There will be no night. The figure of always-opened gates shows to us that there is nothing that might harm the church. There is no need of the temple as God by his presence dwells with his people. All of this is hard for us to comprehend today, but the day is coming when it will all be reality. Pray without ceasing, people of God, and patiently await that day. Sing Psalter 134.

October 30 Read Revelation 22:1-7

In the continuing tour of the new heavens and earth, John is shown more features of that glorious place. He sees a river whose water brings life to the elect forever. We will see God face to face because our salvation is made complete with Christ’s coming. We do not have to doubt the reality of this vision as God himself has testified of its truth. He is coming quickly. Let us keep his sayings as we watch and wait for that glorious event. Sing Psalter 127.

October 31 Read Revelation 22:8-15

In the final verses of this chapter, John is reminded to speak the words of this vision to the churches and ultimately to us. It is our calling to keep these sayings. We are called to worship God. We do this as we prepare for the eternal Sabbath that will be ours in heaven. We do this as the blessed or happy ones. We are these because our transgressions have been forgiven through the blood of the Lamb. Let us look forward to the day in which we shall enter that city “which hath foundations whose builder and maker is God.” Abraham did this by faith and we must as well. Sing Psalter 1.

November 1 Read Revelation 22:16-21

Once again we are reminded that this revelation is Christ’s and not John’s. This affords to us a tremendous comfort and hope. It is comfort because we know that nothing can take us out of Christ’s hand. It is also comfort because we know that death is not the end but rather the beginning of our life in glory. It is hope because even though Satan and his hosts wage war against us, they cannot win. Our victory is sure in Christ. He is coming; are we waiting? Are we watching? Sing Psalter 309.

November 2 Read Isaiah 14:1-11

It is obvious from verse 1 that chapter 14 is connected to chapter 13. Verse 1 begins with that little word “for.” This word says that a reason is being given. The reason that God will destroy Babylon is that he will have mercy upon his people. Our sovereign God cares for us and will have mercy upon us even though we do not deserve it. As we sing in our Psalter, “Our sins rise up against us, prevailing day by day.” Then the next line reads, “But Thou will show us mercy and take their guilt all away.” God cared for Judah, and he will care for us. Blessed be our sovereign, merciful God. Sing Psalter 170.

November 3 Read Isaiah 14:12-23

In the beginning of this passage we see the intent of Satan. Ever since he induced Eve to fall, he had been scheming to prevent Christ’s coming. He had used many nations and evil rulers as his pawns. In every case God had thwarted his plans. Babylon is no different. Satan would use them to try to cut off the church from this world. God would permit it as far as it was in his plans to chastise his wayward children. But the sovereign God would not permit Satan to completely eradicate Judah. He would send his Son who would crush Satan’s head. Our salvation is sure! Thanks be to God. Sing Psalter 379.

November 4 Read Isaiah 14:24-32

There is much comfort in this passage for the people of God. Judah is being told of its impending captivity as well as her deliverance. These things are sure. That is the teaching of verse 27. Nothing or no one can disannul the things of Jehovah. Notice God uses his covenant name here. This in itself is blessed assurance for God’s people. Then in the last verse of this section we are told that Jehovah has founded Zion. That gives to us the confidence to trust in him and his promises. The day is coming when he will release us from the captivity of this Babylon. Our pilgrimage will be over, and we will inherit the blessed promised land of the new heavens and the new earth. Trust in Jehovah, people of God, and his sure promises. Sing Psalter 134.

November 5 Read Isaiah 15:1-9

There is much history between Israel and Moab. As you may remember they are related. Moab is the son of one of Lot’s daughters. It was Moab who would not let Israel pass through their land as they made their way home from Egypt. Balak and Eglon were Moabites. The day will come when God will bring judgment upon Moab. Through that judgment Israel would be delivered. We have our Moabites as well. The nominal Christian world will be brought to judgment. In that way we, and all of God’s people, will come to glory. Sing Psalter87.

November 6 Read Isaiah 16:1-5

This chapter and the one preceding it tell of the upcoming punishment of Moab because of its sin. In the midst of the foretelling of afflictions comes the one way of escape. That way is in following the God of Judah. Will it happen? Not for most of Moab, as they will follow the way of their reprobate fathers. The righteous judge will be found in Jerusalem–the picture of the church of God. In his judgment will come deliverance for the faithful in Judah and for the faithful in the church throughout all ages. No matter who rules and rages in the world around us, the Moabs of all time will be destroyed, and his almighty hand will preserve God’s people. Sing Psalter 224.

November 7 Read Isaiah 16:6-14

The wicked have pride, but the righteous are also guilty of the same sin. We must learn from Moab’s burden not to walk in her ways in order that we do not suffer her punishment. Moab was noted for her beautiful vineyards. She took pride in them. God would destroy them all. This is the lot of those who are without Christ. We also see of God’s victory over such things that people think are gods. Now we know that there are no other gods but Jehovah. But do we sometimes make gods of things on this earth? Let us pray daily to be delivered from the sin of pride and all that goes with it. Sing Psalter 308.

November 8 Read Isaiah 17:1-6

Back in chapter 7 Isaiah had promised to Ahaz that Israel and Syria, whose capital is Damascus, would not prevail against them. Here in this chapter we have a prophecy of their fall. Israel was once one of the mightiest countries in that world. Now it would be reduced to a handful of the very poor who would remain in it. The rest would be scattered by mighty Assyria and would never return. In the judgment of these two nations, Judah would be saved. This is a picture of our salvation when all the wicked are judged at the end of time. The virgin would bear a son, and that son will return and take us to the heavenly Canaan. Sing Psalter 244.

November 9 Read Isaiah 17:7-14

Have we forgotten the God of our salvation and the rock of our strength? As we have gone through life will this be said of us? If it is, then we will be smitten by the troubles found in the rest of the chapter. If God is not our rock, we will have no salvation. A rock is something strong, something to build on and have no worry. Without God as our rock, our life will be a continual worry. Let us go in faith and pray to God, the rock of our salvation, each day. When we do this in faith we can be assured that the storms of life will not prevail against us. Sing Psalter123.

November 10 Read Isaiah 18:1-7

God brings to his people this word of comfort. It may not seem like comfort as it speaks of judgment to a nation. It is a type of judgment that is extreme. But in that judgment God assures his people that he will never leave them. In this world which offends God at every turn—just listen to the nightly news and see in what new way he is trampled—we know that the day will come in which evil will be brought to judgment and God’s people will come to glory. The two go hand in hand. Wait, people of God, for that day. Be patient for our God comes quickly. Sing Psalter 300.

November 11 Read Isaiah 19:1-8

Egypt was one of the major world powers of that day. It had the audacity to come up against Assyria. It also is a picture of both the complete wicked world and of hell itself. Their civilization was very advanced with accomplishments in both academia and the arts. But they knew not God. Because of this failure every aspect of their society would be burdened until Alexander the Great would come and would end Egypt’s domination. Egypt’s judgment was part of Judah’s deliverance. This world’s judgment is part of our deliverance. Let us not become enamored with this world; let us look unto the world to come. Sing Psalter 420.

November 12 Read Isaiah 19:9-17

The wisdom of the world is foolishness indeed. These were the words of the apostle Paul to the church at Corinth. But as we see from verses 11-12, these words were also spoken by Isaiah. As Egypt’s wisdom became folly, they became afraid of little Judah. We must take these words to heart. Many in the world profess a type of wisdom. We might be inclined to follow it. But if we do, we will suffer Egypt’s fate. We must be discerning about what we see and read. And we must apply God’s wisdom, found in Scripture, to all that we see and read. Only in this way will we find the peace that passes understanding. Sing Psalter 337.

November 13 Read Isaiah 19:18-25

Now Isaiah looks further ahead until the time when the Gentiles shall be brought into the church of Christ. Israel’s enemies would now be one with them in the cause of Christ. Not all, of course, but only those whom God would call. Historically many Jews did move to Egypt. In fact, the Greek translation of the Old Testament would be written there. This truth had to be hard for Israel of old. The idea of Gentiles being one with them was unbelievable to them. We must learn from this. Christ’s church is universal. It is a catholic church. Let us always pray for the day when the whole church from all over the globe is gathered together in heaven. Sing Psalter 237.

November 14 Read Isaiah 20:1-6

The history of this chapter is useful for its interpretation. Isaiah was sent by God to the people of Judah during the time of Hezekiah to warn them against dependence on Egypt and Ethiopia instead of Jehovah. He shows to them by his appearance in their midst what would happen to the heathen upon whom they were placing their trust. Upon whom do we place our trust? Is it upon Jehovah the sovereign God of heaven and earth? Or is it upon some man, group of men, or man’s accomplishments? Let us trust in God our maker and redeemer. Sing Psalter 152.

November 15 Read Isaiah 21:1-10

Isaiah now prophesies of the destruction of Babylon who had taken Judah captive. Remember these are prophecies. God had given to Isaiah messages concerning Judah’s future. He has shown them their sin, he has told of the coming captivity, and now he foretells the deliverance for the true people of God. God does bring to us deliverance. Are we waiting for it? Are we praying for it? In praying for God’s will to be done, we are praying for the persecution which will be ours in the last days. But out of that persecution will come deliverance as Christ appears on the clouds of glory to take us to the new Jerusalem. Sing Psalter 380.

November 16 Read Isaiah 21:11-17

Notice those last few words of verse 17. When God speaks, whatever he speaks comes to pass. Think of Genesis 1. He spoke and there was light and the rest of creation followed. John 1 tells us Christ is the Word. When he will speak at the end of time, the world will be over, and the church will be brought together into heaven. He speaks today in the various natural occurrences such as floods, tornadoes, earthquakes, etc. God speaks throughout our lives. God speaks, are we listening? Sing Psalter 85.

November 17 Read Isaiah 22:1-14

Isaiah now prophesies of the coming siege and defeat of Jerusalem. This would not be a battle in which Judah’s soldiers would fight valiantly. Rather they would be shut up inside Jerusalem and await its destruction. What did they do in there? Did they pray? Did they worship? Did they listen to God’s messengers? They did not; instead, they ate and drank supposedly without a care. This is the reaction of the wicked. Their judgment is recounted in the last verse. They would die. Thanks be to God for giving us a Savior. Let us go to him at all times. He will deliver us. Sing Psalter 134.

November 18 Read Isaiah 22:15-25

There is a beautiful figure of speech in this passage of Holy Scripture. In Bible times nails were driven into buildings to hold up utensils that were needed quite often. They were significant in the daily life of the people of that time. A wicked leader, Shebna, was going to lose his nail, and all that pertained to him would fall. But God would not leave Judah leaderless. A faithful man, Eliakim, would be given his position. This man would have a sure place; this man would be a picture of Christ who leads his people to eternal glory. May our prayer be that God gives to us the nail of grace firmly fixed in his house forever. Sing Psalter 271.

November 19 Read Isaiah 23:1-9

Again Isaiah turns to the judgment of the wicked. In this case it is the city of Tyre. Tyre was known for providing materials for the building of Solomon’s temple. From its land, Phoenicia, came wicked queen Jezebel. It was a rich country, but wicked in that it worshipped Baal. Its cup of iniquity would be full, and Jehovah decreed its destruction at the hands of Nebuchadnezzar. The people of Judah also in captivity would see that Jehovah was a sovereign God and must be obeyed. We, too, must recognize and bow before the sovereignty of God in our lives. Sing Psalter 182.

November 20 Read Isaiah 23:10-18

Tyre was not utterly destroyed. At the end of seventy years when the Medes and Persians defeated the Chaldeans, Tyre returned to its homeland and took up business once more. We might wonder at this because their wickedness also returned with them. But God would establish his church there. There are numerous references in the book of Acts to Christians in that country. God is sovereign and he watches over his people of every nation and race. Sing Psalter 195.

November 21 Read Isaiah 24:1-12

The next four chapters form one prophecy. It appears to be a prophecy of the destruction of Judah and Jerusalem and its subsequent restoration. We can also look at it as a prophecy of the destruction of the world and the establishment of the New Jerusalem where Christ will reign with his church for ever. Notice that this destruction is total. Every class of people will be affected. Every aspect of life will be taken away including that of joy and gladness. This is what will happen to this world. We cannot make it better; it is doomed to total ruin. We must never forget that our home is not here but rather we must look for that “city which has foundations.” Sing Psalter 133.

November 22 Read Isaiah 24:13-23

Even though Judah would be taken into captivity, God’s true believers would be preserved no matter where they were taken. Not only would they be preserved, they would be brought together at a time appointed by God. Isaiah is given a peek into the new dispensation when Christ will come, gather his church together, and reign gloriously with them in a kingdom in which sun and moon are not needed. The wicked will everlastingly be punished and the church will live forever. Thanks be to God! Sing Psalter 198.

November 23 Read Isaiah 25:1-5

Once again we see one of those songs of praise which are sprinkled throughout Isaiah. Isaiah has had to prophesy of many terrible things for the people of God, but yet he could testify, like Paul, that all things work together for Judah’s good. He could do that because Jehovah had done wonderful things. He was and is faithful, and he is truth itself. As we live our lives on this earth, are these our testimonies? Can we say with the Psalmist, “The Lord has done great things for us; whereof we are glad.”? Sing Psalter 357.

November 24 Read Isaiah 25:6-12

It must have been hard for Judah to hear these words of Jehovah through Isaiah. They would have to share their precious mountain, temple, and faith with Gentiles. God would be the God of those with whom he had told them previously not to fellowship. We must be careful in this as well. God’s church, the body of Christ, is “an holy catholic church.” We must take in those from all races if they are those whom God has taken in. Let us joyfully await that day when the church of all tongues is united together speaking the language of God. Sing Psalter 354.

November 25 Read Isaiah 26:1-7

What beautiful words we find in verse 3! Perfect peace is impossible to achieve without the help of our Father who has given to us the Prince of Peace. While we go through this valley of the shadow of death, we will fear no evil because the Prince of Peace is with us. He has made it possible for us to trust in Jehovah who is everlasting strength. No matter what path he has selected for us to walk, we will find the peace that passeth understanding. Let us trust in our covenant God today and every day. Sing Psalter 232.

November 26 Read Isaiah 26:8-14

We find two verses of note in this section of Scripture. First of all verse 9. Our covenant God knows that we have need of him. Even in the night we can come to him, and he will hear us. As the morning dawns and we do not know how to face the day ahead, his directive to us is to seek him early. Then in verse 12 we read that he will and has given to us peace. Whatever trouble we are in, there is a way of escape ordained by our heavenly Father who has done all things in us and for us. People of God, whatever afflictions we face, our God will deliver us because we have an advocate in heaven who has gone through affliction. Sing Psalter 391.

November 27 Read Isaiah 26:15-21

Faithful people in Judah, as they continued to be oppressed, came to God in prayer. In hearing their prayers, He answered them by calling them to him for refuge and taking vengeance upon those who troubled his people. Do we know what it means to hide in Jehovah? Do we pour out our needs to him through Christ our redeemer? God is our God. He will care for us now and until the end when, by vanquishing our foes, he will deliver us to eternal glory. Let us flee to him who has promised us a covering under his wings. Sing Psalter 231.

November 28 Read Isaiah 27:1-13

In this chapter we have the assurance from God that though his people have been taken captive and scattered from Babylon to Egypt, they would be gathered and taken to Jerusalem by their gracious God. It is all of God’s grace that this would take place. We also see a looking ahead until Christ returns and gathers the church from the four corners of the world and delivers it unto the new Jerusalem. This, too, is all of grace. Sing Psalter 381.

November 29 Read Isaiah 28:1-6

This chapter was probably written before the fall of the ten tribes to the Assyrians. The first four verses deal with those ten tribes. These are the apostate church. They had been given all the advantages of the church, but they had rejected those advantages and of course God himself. We see a description of their destruction. The remnant who still remained in Judah were to be saved. We will see that as we continue through the chapter. What are we doing with the advantages that God has given to us? Do we cherish his word and ways? If we do not, we will be like Ephraim of old. Sing Psalter 246.

November 30 Read Isaiah 28:7-15

The sins that were the cause of Israel’s destruction were not foreign to Judah. Judah was guilty of committing those same sins. Judah’s leaders whether prophet, priest, or king were guilty of leading the people in an evil way. Judah, too, would be chastised for those sins. This is a lesson for us. Those who are leaders must lead only by the Word of the Lord. It must be his Word alone and not man’s or man’s interpretation. We must keep ourselves clean from the world’s evils. Only in this way will we enjoy the rest that will be ours during the eternal Sabbath. May we strive to do this each and every day. Sing Psalter 83.

December 1 Read Isaiah 28:16-21

Once again Isaiah brings forth the good news of the Messiah. He uses an older figure for Christ-that of the cornerstone. David used this in the Psalms and Jesus himself referred to it. This stone has a twofold effect. Those who believe will have a sure foundation that can never be moved. It is a precious stone to us. For the unbeliever they will only mock until Christ uncovers their devious ways and sends them to eternal destruction. Let us trust on that sure stone our Savior. Sing Psalter 320.

December 2 Read Isaiah 28:22-29

Isaiah uses a common occurrence in Judah to teach them how God works. Just as a farmer or gardener has certain techniques that he uses on certain crops, so God uses certain techniques upon the peoples of this world. He has planted and cared for his crop. The time will come when he will harvest them. The fruit he will store in his barn, and the chaff will be destroyed. Let us be instructed even as we see the workings of farmers around us. This is for our instruction and comfort. Sing Psalter 1.