This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says: “Only in returning to me and resting in me will you be saved. (Isaiah 30:15)

Thought:

Much of today’s passage sounds negative. It reads like a fairly classic piece of Old Testament scare-mongering that leaves non-believers feeling threatened and condemned. It is the kind of scripture they just can’t listen to. It turns them off and they run from it, warning others that God is judgmental and dangerous. Non-believers seem to think if they pay no attention, then the truth of God’s word won’t affect them. They seem to think that if they just don’t admit to God, then he isn’t really there. It’s like putting your fingers in your ears and shutting your eyes as tight as you can and just pretending it isn’t really happening. I feel I need to point out again that the Lord is not actively trying to scare people into submission. Ignoring good advice and listening to lies is likely to invite disaster in any circumstance. There is no doubt in my mind that we can always trust the advice and guidance written in the Bible for every circumstance in life. But, not everyone wants to admit that the word of God, as written in the Bible, is the truth. I wonder if they will be able to find the whole truth anywhere else.

Word:

Isaiah 30:12-17 NLT

This is the reply of the Holy One of Israel: “Because you despise what I tell you and trust instead in oppression and lies, calamity will come upon you suddenly— like a bulging wall that bursts and falls. In an instant it will collapse and come crashing down. You will be smashed like a piece of pottery— shattered so completely that there won’t be a piece big enough to carry coals from a fireplace or a little water from the well.” This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says: “Only in returning to me and resting in me will you be saved. In quietness and confidence is your strength. But you would have none of it. You said, ‘No, we will get our help from Egypt. They will give us swift horses for riding into battle.’ But the only swiftness you are going to see is the swiftness of your enemies chasing you! One of them will chase a thousand of you. Five of them will make all of you flee. You will be left like a lonely flagpole on a hill or a tattered banner on a distant mountaintop.”

Goal:

I have now given up trusting anything or anyone to help me except the Lord. I have found that everything else is flawed. When I came to faith a couple of years ago, I knew that I was actually returning to faith. I knew that the word of God was true as a young boy, but I had tried very hard to find a more tangible, more human philosophy to trust. I had wanted to rely on science for certainty, and money for security and women for love. But I found that only in returning to God, and resting my whole weight on his promises was I safe. My soul has stopped raging and is quieter now. I know I have a solid base to build my life on and so I am more confident. I have a genuine spiritual strength in Christ that was never there before. My goal is to support those who also want to return to and find rest in God.

Today’s readings:

Isaiah 30:12-33:9, Galatians 5:1-12, Psalms 63:1-11, Proverbs 23:22

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