Thursday, January 30, 2014

"Sometimes I wonder if people know THIS God"

Day #34:  Daily Bible Reading - January 31st

Scripture Reading:  Isaiah 23 - 28 ...

"Wail!  Be silent!  Be ashamed!  Wail!  Wail!!"  That's Isaiah 23.

"The LORD is going to lay waste the earth and devastate it. ... Earth's inhabitants are burned up, and very few are left. ... The earth is broken up, the earth is split asunder, the earth is thoroughly shaken ... it falls - never to rise ... In that day the LORD will punish the powers in the heavens above and the kings on the earth below ..."    That's Isaiah 24.

Do you know THIS God?  Most people don't.  He is the LORD of the heaven and the earth, and His judgment is just and certain upon all who do not know Him.  The Bible is HIS book - ALL of it.  Jesus spoke more of hell than of heaven and warned of God's coming judgment.  It appears that most people don't know this God.

Yet, it is THIS God who is the God of salvation.  It is He who will reign on Mount Zion (24:23).  For those who know Him ... for those who KNOW Him, a feast will be prepared on Zion for the peoples of the nations who know Him.  "The Sovereign LORD will wipe away the tears from all faces; He will remove the disgrace of HIS people from all the earth" (25:8).

Those who know this God find peace and rest as they trust in Him (26:3-4).  Those who know this God desire but one thing:  "Your name and renown are the desire of our hearts" (26:8).  To these God says, "Go, my people, enter your rooms and shut the doors behind you; hide yourselves for a little while until His wrath has passed by.  See, the LORD is coming out of His dwelling to punish the people of the earth for their sins" (26:20-21).

THIS God is still the God of Israel ... those descended from Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.  Whatever people may think of the political state of Israel, these people, and others of their race around the world, are special to God, and the city of Jerusalem, Mt. Zion, will feel the very feet of the Savior, the eternal Son of God, Jesus Christ.

"In days to come Jacob will take root, Israel will bud and blossom and fill all the world with fruit" (27:6).  "And in that day a great trumpet will sound.  Those who were perishing in Assyria and those who were exiled in Egypt will come and worship the LORD on the holy mountain in Jerusalem" (27:13).  The temple mount will again be host for the worship of the One, True God.  "In that day the LORD Almighty will be a glorious crown, a beautiful wreath for the remnant of His people" (28:5).

In the midst of God's pronouncements of judgment, He reveals the way for those who are His to come to Him:  "See, I lay a stone in Zion, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone for a sure foundation; the one who trusts will never be dismayed" (28:16).  Peter quotes this verse in I Peter 2:6 and points to Jesus as the fulfillment of Isaiah's words.  THIS God has provided a way through the cross of Christ for sinners to escape the coming judgment.

I hope YOU know THIS God!  "Your name and renown are the desire of our hearts!"  (Isaiah 26:8).

"LORD God Almighty, You alone are God.  Your judgments are just and right.  Yet, Your promises are sure and Your salvation delivers those who place their trust in the One Who is the Cornerstone!  Blessed are those who know You, the only true God, for we will be saved on the day of judgment and will feast at the Wedding Supper of the Lamb!  Thank You, LORD, for Your amazing grace, in Jesus' name, Amen"

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