Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | May 5, 2017

“And He saw that there was no man, And was astonished that there was no one to intercede; Then His own arm brought salvation to Him”

Today’s devotion comes from Isaiah 42:14-25.

“14 “I have kept silent for a long time,
I have kept still and restrained Myself.
Now like a woman in labor I will groan,
I will both gasp and pant.
15 “I will lay waste the mountains and hills
And wither all their vegetation;
I will make the rivers into coastlands
And dry up the ponds.
16 “I will lead the blind by a way they do not know,
In paths they do not know I will guide them.
I will make darkness into light before them
And rugged places into plains.
These are the things I will do,
And I will not leave them undone.”
17 They will be turned back and be utterly put to shame,
Who trust in idols,
Who say to molten images,
“You are our gods.”

18 Hear, you deaf!
And look, you blind, that you may see.
19 Who is blind but My servant,
Or so deaf as My messenger whom I send?
Who is so blind as he that is at peace with Me,
Or so blind as the servant of the Lord?
20 You have seen many things, but you do not observe them;
Your ears are open, but none hears.
21 The Lord was pleased for His righteousness’ sake
To make the law great and glorious.
22 But this is a people plundered and despoiled;
All of them are trapped in caves,
Or are hidden away in prisons;
They have become a prey with none to deliver them,
And a spoil, with none to say, “Give them back!”

23 Who among you will give ear to this?
Who will give heed and listen hereafter?
24 Who gave Jacob up for spoil, and Israel to plunderers?
Was it not the Lord, against whom we have sinned,
And in whose ways they were not willing to walk,
And whose law they did not obey?
25 So He poured out on him the heat of His anger
And the fierceness of battle;
And it set him aflame all around,
Yet he did not recognize it;
And it burned him, but he paid no attention.”  Isaiah 42:14-25.

———————–

Despite all that God had done for Israel in giving them the law and miracles, they were still not willing to obey the law and they did not walk in God’s ways.

“You have seen many things, but you do not observe them;
Your ears are open, but none hears.”  Verse 20.

“… And in whose ways they were not willing to walk,
And whose law they did not obey?”  Verse 24.

And, despite being punished, they “paid no attention”.  Verse 25.

“But this is a people plundered and despoiled;
All of them are trapped in caves,
Or are hidden away in prisons;
They have become a prey with none to deliver them,
And a spoil, with none to say, “Give them back!”  Verse 23.

And, God states:
“14 “I have kept silent for a long time,
I have kept still and restrained Myself.
Now like a woman in labor I will groan,
I will both gasp and pant.
15 “I will lay waste the mountains and hills
And wither all their vegetation;
I will make the rivers into coastlands
And dry up the ponds.”  Verses 14-15.

This Scripture reminds me of Isaiah 6:18-13.

“8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?”  Then I said, “Here am I. Send me!”  9 He said, “Go, and tell this people:

‘Keep on listening, but do not perceive;
Keep on looking, but do not understand.’
10 “Render the hearts of this people insensitive,
Their ears dull,
And their eyes dim,
Otherwise they might see with their eyes,
Hear with their ears,
Understand with their hearts,
And return and be healed.”

11 Then I said, “Lord, how long?”  And He answered,

“Until cities are devastated and without inhabitant,
Houses are without people
And the land is utterly desolate,
12 “The Lord has removed men far away,
And the forsaken places are many in the midst of the land.
13 “Yet there will be a tenth portion in it,
And it will again be subject to burning,
Like a terebinth or an oak
Whose stump remains when it is felled.
The holy seed is its stump.”  Isaiah 6:8-13.

But, even in all of the apparent hopelessness of all of this Scripture, there is the hope in Isaiah 6:13.  God provided and preserved a remnant, that hope in One of that remnant, a “holy seed” Who is Jesus Christ, the Redeemer and the Servant and the Savior and the Son of God.

Nevertheless, other doctrine teaches that there is still hope in man to obey the law and to follow in God’s ways and to repent.

But, Reformed Doctrine recognizes and teaches “Total Depravity” of man and further recognizes and teaches that the only hope is in God doing everything necessary for salvation from “Unconditional Election” (which is similar to providing that remnant) through “Limited Atonement” (which is the work of Jesus Christ), through “Irresistible Grace”, and “Preservation of the Saints”, the “T”, “U”, “L”, “I”, and “P” of “TULIP”, the Five Points of Calvinism, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation.

And He saw that there was no man,
And was astonished that there was no one to intercede;
Then His own arm brought salvation to Him,
And His righteousness upheld Him.”  Isaiah 59:16.

“26 Help me, O Lord my God;
Save me according to Your lovingkindness.
27 And let them know that this is Your hand;
You, Lord, have done it.”  Psalm 109:26-27.

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