#Impact on Jesus week 23

6/19/17

Hope you all had a great Father's Day.

I have found it a little harder than I thought in Isaiah looking for the Impact moments on Christ. So much of the first five chapters is all about the punishment God was sending down on Israel and Judah. I cannot imagine being Isaiah and having to be the one writing these words telling the "chosen people of God" that their sin was going to lead them to devastation. It must have been heart wrenching for Isaiah, not to mention dangerous because of how much he would have been hated for it.

Yet, Isaiah 6 tells us of the "encounter" Isaiah had with the Lord and why he delivered these heart wrenching, gut busting messages.

Isaiah finds himself in a vision, in the Holy presence of God. Even in his vision, Isaiah could not bear the torture of sense of sin on his lips and the lips of his people. But in Gods mercy, he provides a painful solution to Isaiahs pain, seating his lips with a hot coal. It sounds like punishment, but to Isaiah it was like a soothing balm on his lips. Sin and holiness do not mix.

Next, Isaiah hears the "call" of the Lord! "Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?"

In his haste to want to please the Lord, Isaiah throws his hand up like an excited school boy and says, "Here I am, Send Me!"

God accepted his offer with these words (and I paraphrase) "Go! Tell them my message! But know up front, few will listen, few will hear, few will see, but tell them anyway!"

Isaiah agonized over these last words. Basically he was being told he carried a message that would save his people from Gods coming punishment, but no one was going to listen to him. Isaiah cries out, "How long do I have to do this Lord!"

The answer was simple, "Until I say it has been enough!" (My paraphrase again.

I looked at these words and realized Jesus, prior to coming to earth must have been asked the same thing, and like Isaiah he answered the call. But the end of his journey was much different:

"Of all the ones the Father has given me, I have lost none!"

Firstly I am grateful Jesus before he came, and once he grew into the understanding of why he came, was willing to raise his hand and say, "Here am I, send me!"

#Impact #EnjoyTheShepherd

6/20/17

"Be careful, keep calm and don't be afraid." Isaiah 7:4

The kingdom of Judah was in the eyesight of the kings of Israel and Aram. It says the heart of the king of Judah and all the people was "shaken, as the trees of the forest are shaken by the wind." 7:2

Things did not look good. Ahab, king of Judah was not a man after Gods heart. Yet, for Davids sake, God still stood for the people. However, what they faced was more than they could imagine. Left to themselves they would certainly have been trampled under the feet of these two other kings. Yet God sends Isaiah to say "don't be afraid."

God offered to give Ahaz proof everything was going to be okay, but Ahaz refused to specify a sign, so God gave this one:

"The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel (God with us.)" 7:14

As Jesus read these words, I am sure he could sense the severity of the situation the people of Judah faced. As he read of their trembling hearts, I am sure he felt their anguish. However, God stood for them! Therefore, no weapon formed against them would work.

Then Jesus reads the "sign." A child, born to a virgin. As he grew older and came to the full understanding of the miracle of his birth, Jesus would have read these words and realized, "This is talking about me!"

That means everything that followed would have become extremely important to Jesus. He would have wanted to know the purpose of his life. He would have wanted to know what he was going to accomplish. Therefore, Jesus, a son born of a virgin, would have paid very close attention to the words he heard and read because he grew to understand there was something of great importance that he was going to accomplish.

That is why verses like 8:11 spoke so clearly to him "The Lord spoke to me with his strong hand upon me, warning me not to follow the way of this people."

And verses like "do not fear what they fear and do not dread it (death)" 8:12

And "The Lord Almighty is the one you are to regard as holy, he is the one you are to fear, he is the one you are to dread, and he will be your sanctuary;" 8:13-14

And "Bind up the testimony and seal up the law among my disciples. I will wait for the Lord . . . I will put my trust in him." 8:16-17

Jesus, realizing who he was, gave himself to these things and whenever things seemed uncertain, or hard, he would remember these words:

"Should not a people inquire of their God?" 8:19

I am so thankful that God put these words in Isaiahs mouth before the king Ahaz in order to prepare Jesus to live out these glorious words. I pray my life will be impacted by this passage just as Jesus' was.

#impact #EnjoyTheShepherd

6/21/17

It has been a long day! Mowing yard, hauling hay, delivering sheep, and helping a friend fix his trailer! Just got home.

Isaiah 9 delivers this famous passage:

"For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the Increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David's throne over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this." 9:6-7

As Jesus read these words and came to understand that he was the "child" and "son" who would reign on Davids throne, he could have gone in several directions.