In the dark of early morning I woke today, thinking of King Hezekiah.
Not my normal thought mode on blinking away sleep! But this whole picture of the Messiah’s line and strands cut off has been rolling repeatedly in my brain. Comments on recent posts have reinforced it. And so did my speaking last Saturday at a Ladies’ luncheon about wool and spinning… and weaving…
At which point weaving, weaving, began weaving itself into the fiber imagery in my head. So I thought of how the loom picture pops up here and there in scripture… including in Hezekiah’s mournful words, on hearing prophecy of his own imminent death: “I have rolled up my life, and He is cutting me off the loom!” (my own paraphrase of Isaiah 38:12 NIV).
I lay there, silently wondering if an absence of heirs was increasing Hezekiah’s grief. I didn’t recall reading of any sons born to him before this time, and his son Manasseh, who did inherit his throne, was born three years later, during the fifteen-year life extension God granted Hezekiah.
If so, here we are with more fiber strands, and another “cut off” imagery…
…to add to the one Monday’s and Tuesday’s posts mentioned: Manasseh’s line would not prosper. God Himself would cut it off from ever occupying the throne of David (after King Coniah/Jechoniah). (Those two posts represented it as one strand cut off in a cord.)
Cut off. A phrase the Bible repeats at least two hundred times!
Hezekiah speaking of himself as a weaving cut off a loom.
And Husband just came upstairs here and related this to “the stump of Jesse…”
A stump is a cut off tree.
Jesse’s tree gets cut to a stump. But a shoot springs out of it.
“You ought to have a picture of a stump with a shoot…”
Too bad I never realized I’d need such a thing when that poplar we cut down sent up that desperate bunch of shoots the next spring. Or when the broken off peach tree and plum tree both did the same thing.
All we could think of for photo op was sumac, growing all over the hill (and valley), which Husband fights war with, trying to eliminate — but can’t. Because they keep sending out these other shoots…
Strands broken off in a yarn — or deliberately cut off.
And Jesse’s lineage cut to a stump!
Yet, from it, a single shoot springing forth...
All those attempts of enemies — of the enemy — to cut off the line of the Savior, so that He might not come and set us free…
Yet always a strand, always a weaving’s extension, always a shoot to grow stronger than the stump from which it sprang. Because “the Spirit of the LORD has done this,” and “not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit,” says the LORD.
More on the shoot of Jesse next time.
Seeking the Christ Child (in the Old Testament)
In the weeks leading up to Christmas, I am searching for prophecies and foreshadowings of the Christ child, book by book. I plan to post (nearly) every weekday (leaving myself some margin) a short peek at some hint or promise of the coming baby who would make all the difference. Like the wise men, I’ll be Seeking the Christ Child, but in Old Testament promises and foreshadowings, and sharing what I find. I hope you’ll join me, because if it turns out as rewarding as the past spring’s pre-Easter explorations, this focus could make this one of the richest, most blessed Christmas seasons yet.
Previous posts in this series: