I wrote this a few days ago as I was reading along with an Advent reading plan. These are the thoughts that flowed out of that reading.
The contrast between chapter 10:20-34 and 11:1-10 is rather stark. God is pronouncing judgment via the Assyrians, assuring Israel that there will be destruction and yet a remnant will remain. He promises that His indignation will relent. His anger will be turned toward those who oppress Israel, as it was with Egypt and other enemies of Israel. Chapter 10 comes to an end with a strong decree that God will wipe out Assyria with might and sheer strength.
Chapter 11 begins with a tree shoot springing up from the root of Jesse, King David’s father. This One will have God’s Spirit upon Him, to lead Him in wisdom and understanding, in counsel and strength, and in the knowledge and fear of God. Not only will the Spirit of God lead him in these things, but it will be His delight (v1-3a)
To those of us seeking to follow Christ ... By allowing the Spirit to lead, our hearts can be opened to the mysterious and wondrous heart of God, so that our hearts become aligned with His, our minds with His thoughts, and our ways as His are. It will be as a delight to us. We will be made into a people upon whom the Spirit of God can freely rest, thus our hearts will be transformed into delighting, enjoying, longing, and desiring after God; We'll be made to walk how He says to out of love and concern for us, to live as directed because it leads to fullness of life in Jesus.
The Branch is above superficial judgment of the eye, by what meager words He hears (v3b). But rather by the righteousness of God, He views the world and through that He judges. Yet, His concern is not initially on the “sinners” and “vile,” but it mentions He will, with righteousness, judge the poor (V4). The poor? As in materially poor, monetarily poor, or poor in spirit (Matt 5:3)? (I am going with poor in spirit) He will judge the poor because they are unpretentious, broken and weak people who know their need. These desire to be fixed and hold on to even the smallest thread of hope, that the day is coming for all things to be undone and set in perfect order! These are the ones He comes for, because they are the ones who inherit the kingdom of God. After this comes His judgment of the earth (v4-5).
After judgment come harmony, peace, newness and total restoration (v6-9)! No longer will the weak be devoured, no longer will the defenseless be destroyed, no longer will the lost be ashamed and led astray … NO LONGER will the fallenness of this world wreak its havoc into every last sphere, insisting on upheaval of peace and order, creating chaos, pain, hurt and remorse. NO LONGER will God sit by in long-suffering and patience as His beautiful creation groans under the weight of the curse, longing with anticipation and heart ache for the day when ALL IS MADE NEW! NO LONGER will God postpone His burning white-hot judgment due for Satan, all of hell’s demons, and darkness. No longer will God patiently watch as His bride is taken advantage of both from the inside and outside. No longer will death, despair, and brokenness prevail! Rather in that day, the ultimate realization of love, peace, comfort, joy and completeness will be ushered in with great to do! In that day we will all see our Savior, the wonderful and awesome Jesus whose throne will be glorious (v10)
That is the waiting and longing of Advent!