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1. What is the first thing you hear in the morning? Alarm? Radio? Children? Pets? How do you respond?
2. What is the Lord emphasizing with the rhetorical questions in verses 1 and 2? Has He in fact divorced Israel (see Isaiah 49:14ff)?
3. Verses 4 – 9 present the third of four “Servant Songs” (see Isaiah 42:1 – 7; Isaiah 49:1 – 7; Isaiah 52:13 – 53:12). How would you describe the servant’s mission? His relationship to God? How does He differ from the nation of Israel (see chapter 48:8)?
4. What new element about the servant (not found in the earlier songs) is added in verses 6 – 9? Consider the response of the people to Isaiah in chapters 28:9, 10 and chapter 30:9 – 11. What might cause the servant to be mistreated like this? What gives the servant confidence and hope in spite of such ill-treatment?
5. What might the prophet mean by those “in the dark” (verse 10; see also chapter 49:14)? What are they to do? How might the example of the servant encourage them?
6. In the view of many rebukes against idolatry in chapters 40 – 48, what does he mean by those who “provide themselves with flaming torches”? What will happen to those who try to find solutions apart from God?
7. How would you describe your current relationship with God? Why?
- casual date?
- going steady?
8. What would it mean for you to start your day by listening to God? How might you do so?
9. Recently, has the voice of Jesus to you been one that sustains you when weary or one that cuts like a sharp sword? Why? How is that related to your attitude of love and obedience to Him?
10. Have you ever been verbally or physically abuse because of your faith? How did you respond? What did your relationship to God feel like at the time? How does the apostle Paul apply verses 8 and 9 to us in Romans 8:31 – 39? In what situation do you need to lay hold of that confidence today?