Isaiah 44:1-8 Revelation 2:8-11
Masked Persecution?

Isaiah 44:1-8

     But now hear, O Jacob my servant,
         Israel whom I have chosen!
2   Thus says the Lord who made you,
         who formed you in the womb and will help you:
     Do not fear, O Jacob my servant,
         Jeshurun whom I have chosen.
3   For I will pour water on the thirsty land,
         and streams on the dry ground;
     I will pour my spirit upon your descendants,
         and my blessing on your offspring.
4   They shall spring up like a green tamarisk,
         like willows by flowing streams.
5   This one will say, “I am the Lord’s,”
         another will be called by the name of Jacob,
     yet another will write on the hand, “The Lord’s,”
         and adopt the name of Israel.

6   Thus says the Lord, the King of Israel,
         and his Redeemer, the Lord of hosts:
     I am the first and I am the last;
         besides me there is no god.
7   Who is like me? Let them proclaim it,
         let them declare and set it forth before me.
     Who has announced from of old the things to come?
         Let them tell us what is yet to be.
8   Do not fear, or be afraid;
         have I not told you from of old and declared it?
     You are my witnesses!
     Is there any god besides me?
         There is no other rock; I know not one.


Revelation 2:8-11

8 “And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write: These are the words of the first and the last, who was dead and came to life:

9 “I know your affliction and your poverty, even though you are rich. I know the slander on the part of those who say that they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. 10 Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Beware, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison so that you may be tested, and for ten days you will have affliction. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life. 11 Let anyone who has an ear listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches. Whoever conquers will not be harmed by the second death.


New Revised Standard Version (NRSV), copyright © 1989 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.