I love the promises in Isaiah 61:1-3 and 10.
Good tidings will be preached. In Luke 2:10-11, the angel announces Christ’s birth. That’s definitely good tidings! Jesus’ ministry, His love for the hurting, His death allowing us to be saved, His resurrection giving us hope–good tidings! And it’s preached–it’s told and shared–all around the world.
Broken hearts will be healed. Those shattered pieces that used to be your heart–God can put those back together. He can bring healing–spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically! He might not always heal physically, but He will heal spiritually. Every. Single. Time.
Captives will be set free. This could mean literally getting out of jail or a persecuted country, but I think it’s talking more about spiritual freedom. Being set free from Satan’s rule. The chains of sin breaking. Escaping the punishment we deserve because Jesus took our place.
It could also mean we don’t have to be bound by fear, shame, etc. We are more than conquerors in Christ (Romans 8:37), so we can live in freedom and face whatever comes our way.
Those who mourn will be comforted. He is our Comforter and Peace-Giver, and one day He will wipe away every tear (Revelation 21:4).
Beauty will replace the ashes. Back in Bible times, ashes (usually on the head) represented sorrow. God will take away those ashes, that sorrow, and replace it with a beautiful crown (as some other versions say).
The oil of joy will be given in place of mourning. Oil (usually olive oil, I think) was often a sign of prosperity or of the Holy Spirit. So maybe it’s saying, instead of mourning/despair, we’ll have hope and peace (because of the Spirit) and our needs will be taken care of.
Instead of a heavy spirit, there will a garment of praise. “Garment” could mean “celebration clothes” (ERV), like instead of “sackcloth and ashes” we’ll dress up like we would for a wedding or something. It could also mean “heart” (MSG) or “spirit” (NLV), so basically we’ll be happy and praising God instead of being sad.
We’ll rejoice in God, because He has clothed us with salvation and righteousness. Clothed in salvation and righteousness–what does that mean? I think part of it is being covered by the blood of Jesus: God can’t see our sins anymore. I think another part is how we dress, the clothes we wear. Are they modest? Not extravagantly expensive (because they’re a certain brand that we just had to have)? Different from the world’s? The way we dress can be a sign of our salvation, showing that we want to obey God and bring glory to Him.
And rejoicing in God. Praising Him. Being delighted by the things He does, the way He is. Choosing to find our joy in Him instead of in things that will break, fail, disappear, etc. Letting Him fill us with joy until it overflows.
This is what God will give us–has already given us! Isn’t it great? 😊
P.S. The picture is a rough drawing I did of verse 3: beauty instead of ashes (crown, roses), garment of praise/celebration clothes or the clothes of salvation/righteousness (the gown), joy (the music notes)…