吞滅死亡 DEATH IS SWALLOWED UP (Isaiah 以賽亞書 25:1-12)

讀經:  以賽亞書廿五1~12

SCRIPTURE READING:  Isaiah 25:1-12

釋義: 本章是一篇讚美的詩歌。主題不再是世界的遭遇(既然上章講明天地結局, 再也乏善可陳),先知鼓勵讀者把注意力放回那令宇宙改變的主宰, 和怎樣建立一個倚靠的關係。

INSIGHT:  This chapter is a song of praise.  The world’s devastation is no longer the theme (as the world’s ending has already been spoken of in the previous chapter, there is nothing left to say about that).  Instead, the prophet encourages the readers to place their focus back on the Master of the universe, and how to build a trusting relationship with Him.

本章首尾呼應的格式可以說明這點: 詩歌開始時說出耶和華是先知的神, 而先知尊崇祂(1); 接著講論神使外邦人的城毀壞(2-3)。而詩歌結束部份呼應這兩個論點: 神是他們等候的神(9)和神使摩押的城傾倒(10-12)。但主詞開始時是「我」, 結束段落卻是「我們」。顯示先知企圖游說讀者加入先知讚美、信靠神的行列。

The echoing of the beginning at the end illustrates this point:  The prophet starts by telling the readers that the Lord is his God, and he exalts Him (1);  then he speaks about God destroying the foreigners’ cities (2-3);  and these two declarations are echoed at the end:  The Lord is the God that they have been waiting for (9);  and God will make Moab’s cities fall down (10-12).  At the beginning the subject is ‘I’,  yet,  it becomes ‘we’ at the end,  which indicates that the prophet tries to persuade the readers to join him to praise and trust God.

詩歌的主體三次提到「在這山上」(6,7,10)。這是應驗「末後的日子,耶和華殿的山必堅立,超乎諸山,高舉過於萬嶺;萬民都要流歸這山」(二2)的福音性呼召。在這山上, 人在壓迫中得著保障(4-5)、可以享受筵席(7)、擦去眼淚和除掉羞辱(7-8)。

The main body of the song mentions “on this mountain” three times (6,7,10).  This is the fulfillment of the evangelical prophecy proclaimed before –  “It shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and shall be lifted up above the hills; and all the nations shall flow to it” (2:2).  On this mountain, people in distress find a stronghold (4-5), come to enjoy feasts (7), and have their tears wiped away and their reproach taken away (7-8).

本章最寶貴的應許就是: 「他已吞滅死亡, 直到永遠。」(8)這毫無疑問是彌賽亞性的預言, 而保羅清楚說明這應驗在基督的受死事上:  「弟兄們,我告訴你們說,血肉之體不能承受神的國,必朽壞的不能承受不朽壞的。我如今把一件奧的事告訴你們:我們不是都要睡覺,乃是都要改變,就在一霎時,眨眼之間,號筒末次吹響的時候。因號筒要響,死人要復活成為不朽壞的,我們也要改變。這必朽壞的總要變成不朽壞的,這必死的總要變成不死的。這必朽壞既變成不朽壞的,這必死的既變成不死的,那時經上所記「死被得勝吞滅」的話就應驗了。

In this chapter, the most precious promise is:  “He will swallow up death forever.”  (8)  Undoubtedly, this is a prophecy about the Messiah; and Paul clearly points out that it has been fulfilled by the death of Christ for us:  “I tell you this, brothers: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable.  Behold! I tell you a mystery.  We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet.  For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.  For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality.  When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written:  “Death is swallowed up in victory.”

死的毒就是罪,罪的權勢就是律法。感謝神,使我們藉著我們的主耶穌基督得勝。所以,我親愛的弟兄們,你們務要堅固,不可搖動,常常竭力多做主工;因為知道,你們的勞苦在主裡面不是徒然的。」(林前十五50-58)

“O death, where is your victory?  O death, where is your sting?”  The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.  But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” (1 Corinthians 15:50-58)

每日讀經 by 洪同勉牧師 Rev. Tommy Hung