Monday, September 15, 2008

Isaiah 21

Part of what encouraged me to begin blogging was this post by on Girl Talk. She shares how the Lord has worked in her heart about meditating on Sunday's message(s) the following day. I am often guilty of forgetting quickly (or not fully processing at all) the messages God gives me through His ministers. I thought that writing about them on Mondays would help me, not only to share what God provides for me, but also to keep it for myself in a more memorable form. Of all the good gifts brought to me on a proverbial shovel, preaching is most certainly of utmost value. How ungrateful of me to treat it as worthless.

The Lord has blessed us with a wonderful church in our area. My pastor is a very careful Bible expositor. Several months ago, the Lord laid on his heart to preach a series of messages on the book of Isaiah. Now, when Pastor Minnick preaches through a book, like any good Bible expositor, he does not feel at liberty to omit passages he comes to for any reason. If there were any good reasons to skip a chapter, he basically admitted to us last evening that Isaiah 21 would have several. But the blessing of the message was the more vivid for the realization that God Himself had placed this obscure passage in this long prophetic book "for our instruction" (1 Cor. 10:11).

The passage predicts a horrifying overthrow of the kingdom of Babylon. Isaiah's vision is not even detailed, merely the prophet's reaction to it. To make things more baffling, the timing of the event prophesied is unclear. However, God had spoken these things to drive home to His people Israel the message of the whole prophesy, "Trust in the Holy One of Israel alone, for He only is salvation." Though Israel may have been tempted to trust Babylon for security, God assures His people that Babylon is only as strong as the true Sovereign of the Universe allows her to be.

In the end, a remarkable application for God's people today is found in Isaiah's response to the destruction of these wicked people. Isaiah is stunned and physically sickened by what he sees will happen to them. Pastor urged God's people present in the service to have a real compassion for the fate of lost people. God has told us what destruction will befall those who fail to turn to Christ for salvation, and we ought not glibly go about our lives unmoved by the certain terror that will befall them. May God help me be a more fervent evangelist as I dwell on the judgment that awaits my neighbors.

1 comment:

Sally said...

That is a great message. It is so easy to sometimes get caught up in our lives that we forget about the fate of others eternally. My pastor has been preaching over the book of revalations every Sunday morning so this point in particular has been driven into me lately because of what is to come. I have been trying to be more mindful daily as well.