Friday, July 17, 2020

17 July 2020 - Isaiah 4

Today’s devotion is from Isaiah Chapter 4.

Isaiah used the phrase “in that day”, in chapter 3 and the beginning of chapter 4. These words should be understood in the context of the coming judgment of God as described in chapter 3. The idea of seven women taking hold of one man and begging him to marry them all would have been no less astounding in Isaiah’s day than in Brunei in 2020. He is prophesying about a terrible outpouring of God’s anger against the unfaithful people of God that would severely curtail the number of available men for the women to marry.

Isaiah chapter 4:2-6 states that, “In that day the Branch of the Lord will be beautiful and glorious”. This is a clear reference to Jesus who will be with the survivors in Israel. God shall reveal His Glory after He has disciplined His people. In Isaiah 2 v:6-8, God clearly wants His people to throw away their superstitions, and their occult practices such as divination and the worship of idols.

Sometimes we think we are smarter than God. We think we know what is best for us. We make decisions based on convenience and making ourselves feel good, rather than asking God what His will is. God wants us to hunger and thirst after Him. He tells us in Isaiah 55:6-8, “Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways.”

It is very easy to think and act like other people in the world, but this is not the way God wants us to be. We need to seek Him out regularly and be aware that our way of doing things is not necessarily His way. Isaiah says in 4:4, “He will cleanse by a spirit of judgment and a spirit of fire.” In Isaiah’s time and in our own, people often allow other things to get in the way of doing God’s will. When God gave Moses The Ten Commandments, the first and second commandments were, “You shall have no other gods before me” and “You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God.”

Idols are not just blocks of wood or metal carved into images. They are anything that gets in the way of God! God knows the best way to do things. He should be the priority in our lives. Have we let other things take His place in our hearts? Does He need to bring a spirit of judgment and a spirit of fire into our lives? I hope not, because this sounds very painful! Do you need to spend some time seeking Him afresh and enjoying “times of refreshing from the Lord” as Peter says in Acts chapter 2? Do you practice the belief that the Presence of God is the greatest place to be?

Suggested prayer: Father God, I seek You now. You know the beginning and the end of all

things. In You we live and move and have our being. You need to be greater in my life and I need to become lesser. May we take the yoke of Jesus through our lives afresh. May You forgive us for allowing other things to get in the way of our walk with you. I choose to repent and rededicate my life to You this day. In Jesus Name. Amen.