The next part of Isaiah 61:1-4 is half what sounds like good news and half what doesn't. The first part is great, but the second part sounds potentially scary.
"to proclaim the year of the Lord's favour" (vs. 2)
I like this. I can live life in this.
God has won! We can declare Jesus' victory over sin and death on the cross! This victory means that God's blessings are poured out into the lives of those who choose to follow Him - although those blessing may not always look the way we think they should.
In the Old Testament, the year of the Lord's favour was also known as the Year of Jubilee. A time every 50 years when all Israelites who had become slaves would be set free and all land that had been sold to pay a debt would be returned to its original owners. Debts were completely forgiven.
This is exactly what Jesus did for us on the cross. He forgave all our debts and restored to us what was ours in the beginning.
"and the day of vengeance for our God" (vs. 2)
It's tempting to skip this point. We don't like to talk about this aspect of God's character. But it goes hand-in-hand with Jesus' victory over sin and death on the cross.
In that moment, Satan's power was destroyed. And he will be ultimately defeated when Jesus comes again. Jesus' entire life and ministry pointed to God's ultimate win.
This really is the hope of what Jesus came to earth for. Jesus came to bring God's ultimate victory - to reconcile us to God and restore our relationship with Him.
The first two posts in this series can be found here:
Message of Freedom
Broken-hearted Captives Freed