Saturday, February 7, 2009

Unmoved In an Earthquake - Isaiah 24 part 2

"The earth is broken asunder, the earth is split through,
the earth is shaken violently.
The earth reels to and fro like a drunkard,
and it totters like a shack,
for its transgressions are heavy upon it,
and it will fall, never to rise again. (vs 19-20)

Here is another somber dose of reality regarding sin and its consequences. Here is the continuing oracle of the fading and withering effect of the fall. There is nothing good in sin. It deceives us into thinking it is good but in the end its way is death. Sin always and only destroys. It never edifies. It never makes us better. It always makes us worse. Sin should be hated at all costs.

Is there any other enemy this murderer named "sin" into my bosom and embrace him as if he were my best friend. that we embrace as readily as we do sin? If a murderer broke into my home to kill my family would I welcome him and offer him tea and toast? Yet over and over and over I welcome Foolish woman that I am - I need God's grace.

In Isaiah 14 the people have put their hope in the creation rather than in the Creator. They are idolators and this world is their idol. Idols will always fail us. This world will fail us if it is our hope. The beauty and splendor of creation should point us to the greater beauty and incomparable splendor of its Creator. He should be our great hope and our glorious treasure. Hear Matthew Henry's words on these verses:

"Those who lay up their treasure in the things of the earth place their confidence in that which will shortly be utterly broken down and disolved. Worldly men dwell in it as in a castle, an imperishible tower; but it shall be removed like a shack, so easily so suddenly, and without any loss to the Great Landlord. It shall fall and not rise again; but there shall be a new heavens and a new earth in which shall dwell nothing but righteousness."
Isaiah declares that "the earth is broken assunder." There is a present sense in which so much in this life is broken - just look around. There is a future sense in which all of this world will end broken under God's just judgment. It is sin that is the cause of it all. The weight of sin is heavy upon this world. ("For its transgression is heavy upon it, and it will fall, never to rise again.")

Sin is a burden - a heavy burden. It destroys nations, churches, families and individuals. Either we will recognize the weight of this burden as Christian did in Pilgrim's Progress, flee to the cross of Christ, and have our burden removed by the power of the gospel; or we will carry this burden throughout life, heaping more and more of its baggage upon us, and finally carrying its guilty weight throughout eternity. Oh how blinding is the burdening effect of sin that we would choose anything other than the gracious offer of Christ!

Here is an oracle of judgment yet in the midst of all this wrath there is also a glorious thread of mercy proclaimed. In verses 13-16 we are told of the remnant whose hope is in the LORD and who raise their voices in praise to Him. "They raise their voices, they shout for joy. They cry out from the west concerning the majesty of the LORD."

Oh saints, in Christ we are redeemed from the pit that our sins deserve. There is sure and certain hope in the Rock of our salvation.

"God is our refuge and strength,
a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear,
though the earth should change,
and though the mountains slip into the heart of the sea;
though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains quake at its swelling pride."
(Ps 46:1-3)

The earth will crumble but "there is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy dwelling places of the Most High. God is in the midst of her, she will not be moved." (Ps 46:4-5)

Secure in His grace & unmoved in the earthquake,


1 comment:

  1. Hi Lori! So glad to have this website. We have a blog also, but it's just kept up every now and then. I'm so glad to be in touch again. I love hearing your thoughts!