1 July 2015Isaiah 63:7-14
“I will recount the gracious deeds of the Lord, the praiseworthy acts of the Lord, because of all that the Lord has done for us, and the great favour to the house of Israel that he has shown them according to his mercy according to the abundance of his steadfast love.” (v. 7)
Psalm: Psalm 36
Our God is a great God. God does stuff. And because God does stuff we have something to celebrate.
However, as is often the case in the writings of the Old Testament prophets, we keep getting it wrong. It is a simple dilemma, if we have a God who has done all these great things, why do we keep turning away from God?
Isaiah writes a short testimony of God in this passage, along with the problem that currently it feels like God is not doing anything. He has laid out in this passage some examples of where God has acted, and linked that to people's responses, such as God delivering the Israelites from Egypt by doing amazing things. We have a God portrayed in the Old Testament as an emotional God, who grieves, who gets angry, who gets sad, and all in response to God's own people. If they suffer, God gets sad. God grieves when they walk away. God gets happy when they are together with God. So Isaiah tells his readers that when his people suffer so does God.
Within these words there is also a future echo of Jesus. We see Jesus as the Saviour. We know he suffered. We know he redeemed us. But the readers of Isaiah didn't know Jesus. They did know that they had a God who was special, and Isaiah points out that part of what makes our God special is that God responds to people emotionally.
This is indeed worthy of praise.
- It is the middle of the week. What do you have from this week that you can give praise for?
- What makes you happy? Sad? Angry? Grieved? What helps with the negative feelings? How might you respond with the positive feelings?