Thursday, September 02, 2010
Today’s Topic: Come Home
Today’s Text: Isaiah 12:2 “Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The LORD, the LORD, is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation.”
Before you read ahead, please take a moment and read the context of Isaiah 11:10 – 12:6. It is important to getting the big picture.
Now, let’s review. God is promising to the Israelites that the day is coming when He will establish His King and Kingdom on the earth. His people, who have been scattered all over the earth for generations, will be reclaimed and reunited in Israel and become a great nation again under the reign of Jesus Christ, the Root of Jesse. All enemies will be cut off (11:13). All competition for recognition and prestige will end (11:13). They will become the most powerful and dominant nation of the world (11:14). God will make the way easy for them to return to the Promised Land (11:15-16). It will be the time of God fulfilling His covenant to Abraham as a testimony to His faithfulness.
Then in chapter 12 we have the songs of praise that the people will sing when the promise has been fulfilled. The people will proudly and boldly proclaim the marvelous works of Almighty God to save them and bring them into the Promised Land permanently. The whole earth will be overwhelmed with the greatness of God.
That’s the historical and prophetic picture of what happens in God’s chosen people Israel. But there is a bigger picture for us today. Notice the spiritual applications to our lives today:
- People are living in the bondage of sin, held captive by its deceptive influence on the fleshly desires we all have to seek acceptance and recognition. They are scattered all over the earth seeking fulfillment in a myriad of ways, all of which drive them deeper into sin and further from their true homeland in Christ.
- Jesus has raised up a banner for all the world to see, so that people can be reclaimed and reunited in God’s true family. That banner is the cross, where Jesus died to pay for the sin of the world and reconcile people to God. Jesus declared that truth in John 3:14 when He said, “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.” Then in John 12 Jesus said, “But I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself.”
- God has made the way easy to come home. He has prepared every path of your life with crossroads that lead to Him. You may have ignored them, or been so focused on the path of self-fulfillment that you didn’t see them, but they have been there. If you will open your eyes and look you will see the path of God leading you to the cross where your life can begin.
- Once you come to the cross, the joy of salvation will so fill your heart that you will burst forth in words of praise so that others will be able to hear about God’s greatness. No longer will your heart be filled with complaining or criticism. No longer will resentment and bitterness rule your thought life. There will be no more grudges harbored in a heart of unforgiveness, because you will have experienced ultimate forgiveness from the Lord and will be ready to do the same for others no matter what they have done.
Everyone reading this today can relate to one point on this path. Maybe you are the one who is still living on your own path, rejecting every crossroad that would lead you to Jesus so you can fulfill your own desires. I have news for you – God never gives up designing crossroads in your life to draw you to Jesus. You will come across one even today.
Maybe you are the one who has started toward Jesus, but the desires and influence of the world are distracting you. Don’t stop moving to the point of repentance and surrender to Jesus. Consider how unfulfilling and literally deadly the pursuits of the world have been. Now consider what you are missing by not having the fullness of Jesus Christ the Lord living in you by the power of the Holy Spirit. Choose life, not death.
Many of you have already met Jesus at the cross. Why has the singing stopped? Why has the proclamation of the greatness of God been replaced with the pursuits of personal well-being in the world? Why have we stopped living like we really believe the truth of these words:
Surely God is my salvation: I will trust and not be afraid. The LORD, the LORD, is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation. With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.
It is time for the followers of Jesus to stand up and do what Isaiah says we will do when the day of salvation comes.
“Give thanks to the LORD, call on his name; make known among the nations what he has done, and proclaim that his name is exalted. Sing to the LORD, for he has done glorious things; let this be known to all the world. Shout aloud and sing for joy, people of Zion, for great is the Holy One of Israel among you.”