Read Isaiah 25:6-12
Again, we’re looking ahead to what God will do. Isaiah sees a day when God destroys ‘the shroud that enfolds all peoples, the sheet that covers all nations…’ Where what is enveloping us all over the world is lifted, and all sorts of stuff is wiped away – tears, disgrace, and death itself. That day will be one of celebration – feasts and joy on the mountaintop. The mountain is the place of God’s presence, it symbolises people coming to God to be where He is.
But there’s a contrast in vv.10-12. Moab represents the enemies of God – those who reject Him, who oppose Him, who stand in defiance against Him. And the picture there is pretty dark and dirty. Brought low; so low that they are trampled underfoot like straw in the manure. ‘God will bring down their pride… He will bring down your high fortified walls and lay them low; He will bring them to the ground, to the very dust.’
There is undoubtedly a bringing down low of this world going on. All our pride and self obsession. All our humanly constructed efforts at making ourselves safe and making ourselves happy. All our God-less life-building, as individuals and cultures and nations.
And Isaiah paints a powerful picture for us of two endings to this. One is at the mountaintop – a coming to God and finding things lifted from us – tears, fears, trials shared by the whole world, and even death itself, as we choose to come into the presence of the God we need and worship. And one is in the manure – brought down so low we’re pressed into the mud, spread eagle flat down in it, without hope and help.
Everyone is welcome to the mountaintop. God calls us to meet Him there. And to find that one day – not yet today, but one day – we’ll be feasting with Him in celebration of Him lifting us up there. There’s a choice to make there – in the experience of being laid low that we’re all going through now, will you stop putting God off and come to Him, that you might find in the end He lifts you up? Or will you just keep getting squared down into the mud with your pride and the fortress you’ve built for your life?