Isaiah 11 is such a Christian passage don’t you think?
Referring to Jesus, Paul, in Romans 15:12 writes: “Isaiah says, “The Root of Jesse will spring up, one who will arise to rule over the nations; the Gentiles will hope in him.”
The idea of the Spirit resting on Jesus in Luke 4:18. His concern for the needy. His ruling with a rod. His drawing all nations to him. It all sounds very much like Jesus.
And yet, if Paul is thinking of Isaiah 11, he doesn’t make it plain. What he offers, rather, is not a quote from Isaiah, but a summary of His teaching. Jesus is really the only logical subject for this chapter, and yet it is not quoted or referred to directly in all of the New Testament.
The writer is offering his readers a glimpse into the future, and he uses terminology they will understand. The time promised will be like no other – when the hunter and prey live together in peace, when the innocent are not harmed by their innocence, when all the earth knows of the Lord, and all yield to His rule.
It’s God’s dream.
It will be made possible by the work of Jesus, but it has yet to happen. It is the time John wrote about in Revelation, when the seventh angel sounds his trumpet and the plan of God is accomplished – “just as he announced to his servants the prophets,” prophets like Isaiah.
One should not imagine that God will just “flip a switch” and this glorious time will appear. It will appear slowly, as the people of God, made possible by the Son of God, live lives of holiness like God, and call all mankind to follow them into His presence. But until the people of God embrace the dream of God and begin to live it in their lives, it will remain only a dream in a world mostly characterized by nightmares.