For the month of January, our Scripture Memory passage at Harvest Jacksonville is one of great hope… of new beginnings… of promise… Isaiah 43.18-19.
Although I usually prefer to memorize Scripture in the KJV or NKJV, I actually memorized verse 18 years ago in the NIV (1984), so I will stick with that translation for this passage:
18 Forget the former things;
do not dwell on the past.
19 See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.
“For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
and his name shall be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (ESV)
“For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (NKJV)
While most Bible translators place do not place a comma between “Wonderful” and “Counselor” (ESV, NASB, etc.), some don’t (KJV, NKJV). While it may not seem like a big deal, it does change the number of names from 4 to 5. One needs to remember that the original Hebrew did not have punctuation marks, so the translator is forced into making an interpretive decision. I think that 4 names is correct, partially because it keeps the symmetry of the list, with each name having at least two words.
One thing I like better about the KJV/NKJV rendering is the use of the word “unto.” There is two reasons for this. First, I grew up hearing the familiar, majestic language of the King James Version every Christmas. So there is some nostalgia involved. Second, I cannot seem to get Handel’s Messiah out of my head. I simply cannot imagine the choir singing “For TO us a child is born” instead of “For UNTO us a child is born.”
But in making reference to Handel’s Messiah, I must acknowledge that, Handel having used the King James Version, his song supports the idea of FIVE names: Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.
Regardless of whether Isaiah was prophesying about a coming Messiah who would be Wonderful and a Counselor OR a Wonderful Counselor, there is not doubt He was talking about our glorious Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
I recently did a personal Bible study on walking with God. Using a concordance, I found 62 Scriptures that really spoke to me directly on the subject. Over the last few weeks I narrowed the list down to 12 favorite Scriptures on the subject, which I hope to put to memory:
And I will walk among you, and will be your God, and ye shall be my people. – Leviticus 26.12
For the Lord is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly. – Psalm 84.11
Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me. – Psalm 119.133
Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee. – Psalm 143.8
Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not on thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. – Proverbs 3.5-6
Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee. Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. Turn not to the right hand nor to the left; remove thy foot from evil. – Proverbs 4.25-27
The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him. – Proverbs 20.7
And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them. – Ezekiel 36.27
The LORD God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places. – Habakkuk 3.19
For we walk by faith, not by sight. – 2 Corinthians 5.7
This I say then, walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. – Galatians 5.16
I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth. – 3 John 4