In todays passage we hear the Lord’s voice in a truly fatherly tone. He reminds us through his prophet Isaiah, that all our needs are met by him and him alone. Even the sky, which he made, is a protective canopy, the very ground upon which we stand with unquestioning security was created by him. Even the thoughts we have, and the words we speak have been given to us from God. Nothing is truly man made, he says, so why be afraid of mere humans? How can they possibly have the power to inspire such a dread of oppression? He reminds us that it is he, our father, that will comfort us and release us from our captivity. We are God’s own people, he reminds us, and as such, we will not be prisoners, we will not starve and neither will we die.
Isaiah 51:12-16 NLT
“I, yes I, am the one who comforts you. So why are you afraid of mere humans, who wither like the grass and disappear? Yet you have forgotten the Lord, your Creator, the one who stretched out the sky like a canopy and laid the foundations of the earth. Will you remain in constant dread of human oppressors? Will you continue to fear the anger of your enemies? Where is their fury and anger now? It is gone! Soon all you captives will be released! Imprisonment, starvation, and death will not be your fate! For I am the Lord your God, who stirs up the sea, causing its waves to roar. My name is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. And I have put my words in your mouth and hidden you safely in my hand. I stretched out the sky like a canopy and laid the foundations of the earth. I am the one who says to Israel, ‘You are my people!’”
It is so easy to go through life trying one’s best not to draw attention to ones self. This is best achieved by blending in and doing what everyone else seems to be doing. This is really just a huge fear of the anger of those who we perceive as potential enemies. My goal is to realise that under the protection of God, while I am safely in his hand, those imagined enemies simply melt away. My new faith in Jesus acts like a genuine release from the prison of anxiety and fear that once held me in its grip. I can rejoice in the promise that in Jesus I will never again be imprisoned, starved or threatened with death again. But what is far more wonderful, is that the Lord has put his very own precious words into my mouth, and therefore I will serve him with my mouth. I will cry out in prayer to the Lord that he will greatly bless and empower me to speak his word boldly to his people.
Isaiah 51:1-53:12, Ephesians 5:1-33, Psalms 69:19-36, Proverbs 24:7