I'm posting this scripture meditation on behalf of Michael. All typos are mine! JCB
"they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more." v. 4b
This magnificent vision is shared by the prophet Micah [4:2-6]. It is especially astounding here in Isaiah because the people are on the verge of return from long exile in Babylon and it would be natural for vengeance to be in their hearts. Isaiah, surprisingly, counsels otherwise. War shall not be learned anymore.
It remains a powerful if unfulfilled vision. War continues to be learned from the continence of our military to the common fighting on our streets. War as a way to solve conflict predominates.
What if were different? That's the question Isaiah echoes through the ages. What if it were different? What if the weapons of war were turned into implements of agriculture, the means of well-being?
There seems little we can do. Expect perhaps when vengeance rises in our own hearts and we reach for the plow instead of the spear.
© 2008 by Michael W. Hopkins