55 Isaiah Part 2 (4)

Be loved by the Lord

Isaiah 43:1-7
Romans 5:1-11
T O Jacob, O Israel

 "Who is blind My servant, Or so deaf as My messenger whom I send? ... You have seen many things, but you do not observe them; Your ears are open, but none hears.", and there is it at 42:19-20. This "servant" will point at Israel. Israel at the time of Isaiah did not right see eyes and was deaf persons. In particular, it seems that became to the sorrowful words "blind person ......", and it is the scolding from God to them, they did not to lend an ear to the cry without looking, while the poor people exploited by a landowner and a noble suffer. And because Isaiah belonged to the same rank as them, "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?"(24), and I hear it is confession of Isaiah himself. A man of power swinging around incoherent "self responsibility" without thanking for whom abducted by an Iraqi warlord and even tasted danger, and the present times which follow such "government" and submit pursuit to a pain of a victim, and even write pursuit to ache of a victim. This scolding which is said "is deaf" and "is blind" here, isn't it piling up in this age of ours? It became the terrible times.

 A text of this morning is 43:1-7. An article of scolding to Israel which I took now (After 42:18) becomes a background of this point. In Verse 1, it is thus, "But now, thus says the Lord, your Creator, O Jacob,". When Isaiah uses an appeal named "Jacob", it may be almost said that it seems to be conscious of the "crime" which involve weakness of his human being and a lump of an ego. When we watch articles of after Genesis Chapter 25, it is written each state that Jacob deceived and betrayed his father Isaac and his older brother Esau and his uncle Laban so many times, but, Jacob means "the person who pushed it aside", it was his way of life traced since his birth. This condemnation assumes that his descendants inherit such a way of life, but it is expressed in other words with "Israel" immediately. With Israel, it depends on that Jacob met The Lord and was called there with "Your name is Israel."(Genesis 32:22-29). Afterward, Israel became use as a name to the descendant people of a blessed contract which was chosen.

U I redeemed you

 In Verse 1, "Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;", and there is, this will be the reason. Originally "redeem" is a meaning of that "I bought it back". But it was a law term in Israeli civil law, and it was a meaning of "When somebody lose land and become a slave, to return it to an original state of their life and profit who fell into an inconvenient state.". The person having the compensation responsibility was the relative who is the nearest to the person concerned. It is the declaration of God that "I have redeemed you;", and it is the meaning of that God bears the responsibility, and by declaring so, it means that God have come to be the nearest for him. "I have called you by name;"(1), and there is, it will be the words that put friendly feeling and a blessing of such God.

 It seems that this declaration told within "Chapter and verse of a servant" was realized on the cross of Jesus. But if we hear this declaration of God so, according to the declaration of the blessing of God, we may understand the defense of God told "You are Mine! When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, Nor will the flame burn you.". Don't you think so? Water and fire are saying of disasters and war damages that Israel really experienced many times, but this is not only Israel. It has not died up all areas of the world to the present age either. It is said that 20th century is the war century, but the 21st century seems to continue spreading by force to already exceed it. However, even though we repeat such a hardship, we may stand up if we hear that there is solace of God there. The reason is that there is a helping hand of God there by all means. We should hear declaration of God heartily. We have heard it many times that "Do not fear," is the advice of faith.

 "For I am the Lord your God, The Holy One of Israel, your Savior;"(3) Here, a claim of God which is seen in Isaiah many times, "I am the Lord your God", "The Holy One of Israel" and "Your Savior" are collected all together. And that center is "The Holy One of Israel". "Israel" is conscious in there, and a claim to be special people of God in Israel is there. As for it, the people who are conscious of among God especially are called Israel, and faith is asked there.

V Be loved by the Lord

 It will be as new Israel based on faith. "I will bring your offspring from the east, And gather you form the west. I will say to the north, 'Give them up!' And to the south, 'Do not hold them back.' Bring My sons from afar, And My daughters from the ends of the earth, Everyone who is called by My name, And whom I have created for My glory, Whom I have formed, even whom I have made."(5-7), and there are. Perhaps north, south, east and west in here will make Israel a basic point. No, in a thing such as Israel, it may want to say the center is God. The salvation of God does not assume only old Israel anymore but it begins to flow toward people who believe the Lord of the whole world. "Behold, the former things have come to pass, Now I declare new things;"(42:9), "Behold, I will do something new,"(43:19). It may be said that this is new Israeli creation.

 Here, it is told twice that "Do not fear, for I am with you;". This is asked again to the Israeli faith that they had the problem from the origin corrupted in festival religion and felt "God has left them in the distance". "I have given Egypt as your ransom, Cush and Seba in your place."(43:3). This seems to point at King Cyrus of Persia taking possession of these countries, as compensation to liberate Israel. However, Egypt is a great empire of the world, even if it lost the former power. Both Cush (Ethiopia) and Seba were the countries which prospered with Egypt. This is declaration of God that large country is considered to be a victim for worthless Israeli liberation. "I will give other peoples in exchange for your life."(4), and this will be the same declaration, too. God does not leave them in the distance at all, but He is going to pull back Israel from the place where they are at a loss and left, by paying big sacrifice. "Since you are precious in My sight, Since you are honored and I love you,"(4), and this big sacrifice occurs at the same time on the cross of Jesus. Israel had to know that the base of their faith was built on " love" and "grace" of God, it was paid holy sacrifice by Him, but not "faith" of their self-consciousness. Faith to believe our Jesus starts from Jesus. If we hear it thus, we can hear that such message of Isaiah is telling us that God's eyes are poured to the present age, already in the times of prophet. We must hear that the message which has been inherited in the genealogy of prophets always have been told to the present age.

 The present age was the world of the Bible. And we are kept alive in the present age of God especially. By a blessing of the cross! Surely we will be loved than Israel of the Isaiah times by God. Though we are never equal to Israel in a thing without value to be loved by God!!

 However, a servant is a slave to the last. Because there is it in 53:6 when "But the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him.", and when it is for the hardship of the servant to have been given by the Lord, he will put his heart and soul into a slave. I understand that it is contents of having "kept silent". If it is so, this servant of silence is remind of Jesus on the cross, appearing? "And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross."(Philippian 2:8), and it is indicated in this testimony of Paul. God who loved the obedient is affected. "Therefore also God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name,"(2:9), and I hear the declaration that a road of new life established for us, here. "He will not be disheartened or crushed, Until He has established justice in the earth; And the coastlands will wait expectantly for His law."(42:4), and we must hear this coastlands are world countries. There is a figure of God whom we must really stare at only Jesus on the cross. I want to pay more attention heartily to this One.