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Seek the Lord -- While He May Be Found, pt 4
by Alex M Lindsay
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Reference: Isaiah 1:1-20

Previously, in the book of Isaiah, it was revealed that the LORD's righteous servant (the Messiah) was going to suffer and be punished for our sins (Isaiah 52:13 - 53:12). After dying, not only will the LORD (Jehovah) be satisfied with this offering, but the Messiah Himself will also be satisfied (implying that He will rise from the dead - see Isaiah 52:15; 53:10-12). This will ultimately result in the universal Kingdom of the Messiah (Christ). In Isaiah 54 this Kingdom shall expand from being a blessing to Israel to also being a blessing to all nations. See Isaiah 11:10 cp. Romans 15:8-12; Isaiah 42:1-9; 52:15; 60:1-3; 65:1 cp. Romans 10:19-20. In Isaiah 55 the prophet now calls all men to respond to the merciful call of the LORD to repent, to believe, and to receive His salvation - to be blessed in the kingdom of the victorious Messiah.

This challenging passage presents a choice - an opportunity for change. It requires that we think about our values and the direction of our life. It requires that we think and take action - with heart, mind, and soul. Change is needed. Change is offered. Change is required. We cannot coast through life.

We must stay engaged with what is going on - what is happening around us; what is happening to us; and, more importantly, what is happening in us. What we think and what we do is important. What God thinks and what God is doing is more important.

A Call to Priorities - Isaiah 55:1-2
We need to recognize the thirst of our souls (Psalm 42:1-2). There is only one way to satisfy that thirst: God and His Word. Vainly we try to satisfy ourselves. We hunger and thirst for something the world cannot provide (Psalm 42:5, 11; 25:1-22; 56:3-4, 10-11; 63:1-8; 119:49-50, 92-93, 107, 174-175; Matthew 16:26; Luke 12:15-21). When the Son of God came to earth, He addressed this need (John 4:6-14; 6:5-15, 25-29, 33-35, 63; 7:37-39).

A Call to God's Promises - Isaiah 55:3-5
When God shows us a need, He also offers a solution to that need. His Word is given, not so that we remain vexed and hopeless, but rather to show us how He would deliver us and bless us (Exodus 15:22-26; Psalm 71:19-21; I Thessalonians 5:24). The Son of God is the subject, when "the sure mercies of David" are mentioned (Acts 13:34-39 cp. Psalm 16:10; Romans 1:1-4; II Samuel 7:1-29).

Christ died for our sins, rose from the dead, and has established His "everlasting covenant" with us through the Gospel (Hebrews 8:6; 12:22-24; 13:20-21). He is gathering together a people, that before were not an established nation of people, and is turning them into His own holy and spiritual nation, establishing His Kingdom forever (I Peter 2:9-10; Isaiah 65:1; 9:6-7).

Call to Pursue God - Isaiah 55:6-7
There is an urgency about God's promises (Proverbs 18:10). We should respond when we know that God is calling us. To delay is to deny. We are either for Him or against Him. There is no neutral. We either believe and show our faith through action, or we are not believing Him and showing it through inaction. See Psalm 27:8; James 4:14, 17; Matthew 12:30; John 3:18-21; 12:35-36; II Corinthians 6:2; Hebrews 3:7-13; James 2:17-18 cp. Jeremiah 13:27; Proverbs 1:20-33.

God is aware of all our thoughts. He warns us that our thoughts are as important as our actions. God also warns us that thoughts lead to actions. He requires repentance of thought, word, and deed. See Genesis 6:5; Psalm 139:2; Jeremiah 17:9-10; Matthew 5:21-22, 27-28; 9:3-4, 12:33-37; 15:7-20; II Corinthians 10:3-5; Psalm 94:1-15; 51:5-10; 19:12-14.

Seeking the Lord does not mean acting religious. We can't fool God. This is not a game, where we make a few promises and the Lord just says that it's okay now. We need to make sure that we are not trying to give God a pacifier. We need to make sure that we are not trying to take a pacifier ourselves! Honesty requires that we call out to God and confess our unwillingness and lack of desire - our weakness and unspirituality - our disobedience and rebellion. God wants to fix who we are, not just what we do. He already knows everything about us. He wants us to agree with Him, so that we can be forgiven, cleansed, and changed. See Job 42:5-6 (note Romans 7:18 cp. Philemon 6) Proverbs 21:27; Psalm 119:176; 139:23-24; Mark 9:24; Isaiah 1:1-20; Daniel 9:3-20; II Chronicles 7:14; Colossians 1:21-22; I John 1:5 - 2:2; James 4:1-10; Hebrews 4:12-16; 10:19-25.

A Call to Perspective - Isaiah 55:8-11
God has a new outlook for us. His Word is our life-line. Using the Scriptures, His Spirit connects us to the heart and mind of God - to the very presence of God. We may know Him, enjoy Him, and become like Him. See Psalm 1:1-3; 19:7-14; 119:9, 11, 24, 59, 105, 130; Jeremiah 9:23-24; John 5:24; 6:63; 15:1-8; Colossians 3:16; Hebrews 4:12-13; 8:6-13; 10:16-25; II Corinthians 3:18; 5:17; I Peter 1:15 - 2:3; Titus 2:11-14; I John 2:15-17; Romans 11:33 - 12:3 cp. 8:28-39.

A Call to Prosperity - Isaiah 55:12-13
Israel was promised prosperity in their land as evidence of God's faithful promises (Deuteronomy 33:26-29). Though we look forward to a new and prosperous world in the future (Psalm 37:11; II Peter 3:13), the material prosperity mentioned in Isaiah 55 is primarily, for us, a metaphor of inward spiritual blessings and the advancement of Christ's kingdom. God certainly will take care of our physical needs, but our spiritual health and wealth is of greater concern (Matthew 6:19-33; Ephesians 1:3; I Timothy 6:6-12, 17-19; III John 2; Philippians 4:19 cp. 1:21).

God is not just giving us tasks and burdens to bear. He is not forcing us to do / not do things just to prove that He is God. God is protecting us and blessing us. He wants us to have fruitful abundant lives, filled with love, joy, and peace. See Psalm 16:11; Proverbs 10:22; John 10:1-11; 13:34-35; 14:27; 15:1-8; 16:33; 17:13, 19-26; Romans 5:1-5; Galatians 5:22-23; Philippians 4:4-13, 19; I John 4:7-19; 5:1-5.

Originally delivered January 21, 2018
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