A few weeks ago, I was having a coffee with my good friend and mentor Doug Lanksford and we were discussing whether it was even necessary for a Christian to read the Old Testament; as I believe there is a school of thought which suggests that we don’t have to. We both agreed that we disagreed with this statement because we are reminded that Jesus himself would have studied the equivalent of The Old Testament and indeed quoted from it numerous times in his dealing with the church authorities and other (Roman) leaders of the time. He even quoted scripture when defeating Satan in the desert. So, if Jesus studied and knew the Old Testament, as we now call it, then, shouldn’t we? Doug also said that some people referred to the Old Testament as ‘the wrath of God’, and the New Testament as ‘the love of God’. Again we both rejected this idea; as the love of God is the same today as it was yesterday and will be tomorrow. God never changes, it is us who needs to change. I heard on the radio recently somebody say ‘the heart of the human problem is the problem of the human heart’. There is a great line in the song Indescribable by Chris Tomlin which says ‘You know the depths of my heart yet you love me the same’. God loves us because He loves us because He loves us. Thank you Lord.
So what can we learn from these two amazing pieces of scripture?
God is telling his people to rise up. That Jerusalem will be restored. Israel’s oppressors paid nothing for them and will not be paid in return. God will reveal himself to them and reveal his power. Isaiah talks about the messenger of the good news that ‘the God of Israel reigns’, but he also prophesies about the agony that God’s messenger will go through (v14)
Wow, what an incredible piece of scripture. Written some 700 years before it happened. We all know the truth of Creation and how God spoke the world into being, ‘God said ‘let there be light’ ’,but here we have God using his ’powerful arm’ (NLT version). I have this picture of God rolling up his shirts sleeves because he had some hard work ahead. That our salvation was more difficult than Creation itself. Wow, wow, wow. I am literally in tears as I think about this and the incredible gift that we have been given.
Lord, thank you for this beautiful day.
Thank you for this magnificent planet that You created for us to live on. Please help us tend it more carefully.
Thank you that we have Your Word to teach and guide us, but most of all Lord thank you that you sent your only Son, Jesus, to live amongst us, to show us the way, but that He died on the cross so that our sins might be forgiven is just incredible.
Father, thank you for Your amazing Grace. Amen
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