We Should Embrace Our Homecoming to Eternity
After writing his psalms of praise to God, Isaiah continues the positivity by looking forward to the day when his people will receive deliverance from their enemies, about them going home.
Though the people view this as a physical rescue, many people today understand it as a spiritual one. In both cases we look forward to the time when we go home, either in body or in spirit.
Three times in Isaiah 27, he says, “in that day,” referring to God’s future rescue of his people, of them finally going home.
Each time, he uses this phrase to introduce a section of this prophecy, with the second part of three being the longest and most poetic. But it’s in the last section that we find a most encouraging proclamation.
On this long-anticipated day of deliverance, the trumpet call will reverberate throughout the land. God’s people living in exile will return home. Some have been languishing in Assyria, which conquered Israel in the middle of Isaiah’s ministry and deported many Israelites to Assyria.
Others sit exiled in Egypt. Though Jeremiah ends up there, it won’t be for another 150 years. His own people will drag him there as they flee Judea to avoid capture by the Babylonians.
It could be that Isaiah is looking forward in time, prophetically referring to Jeremiah and his crew. Or it could be that others have already fled to Egypt to escape the Assyrians. Regardless, this prophecy looks forward to when it’s time for them to return home.
When they come home, they’ll worship God on his holy mountain in Jerusalem. Imagine living far from home.
Then after years of longing to return to the country of your birth and your youth, you finally get a chance to go. And in this great homecoming, you worship God as the giver of this gift: your repatriation, both physically and spiritually.
In our spiritual homecoming, however, we’ll return to our Creator, spending eternity with him in heaven. What a glorious reunion our going home will be. We anticipate this in great expectation, and increasingly so for people as they grow older and their time to go home draws near.
A more tangible understanding of this homecoming appears in one of Jesus’s parables. We often call this The Parable of the Prodigal Son or The Lost Son.
After turning his back on his father and squandering his share of the inheritance on carnal pleasures, this young man realizes he needs to return home and seek his father’s forgiveness.
He slinks back in shame over what he has done with his life and how he disrespected his dad. He plans to grovel and ask for the smallest of mercies.
Meanwhile, his father has been scanning the horizon, watching for his son’s return for a long time. As soon as he spots him, Dad runs out to meet his boy, embracing him and kissing him. The father dismisses his boy’s request for forgiveness as irrelevant.
Instead, Dad reinstates his son as a member of the family, an heir to all he has. He throws a massive party in celebration of his boy’s return.
So it will be when we see Jesus in heaven, after the end of our time here on earth.
In our spiritual homecoming, we’ll return to our Creator and spend eternity with him in heaven.
Read more about the book of Isaiah in For Unto Us: 40 Prophetic Insights About Jesus, Justice, and Gentiles from the Prophet Isaiah available in e-book, paperback, and hardcover.
Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.