Friday, October 27, 2006

Devotional Note for Isaiah 38-40

Psalm 73:28: “It is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge; I will tell of all Your deeds.”

Mark 1:35: “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where He prayed.”

Deuteronomy 8:3, Matthew 4:4: “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”

Date: 25th October 2006 (Wednesday)

Text: Isaiah 38-40

Discovery through A.C.T.I.O.N.S. (Psalm 119:18-Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in Your Law)

Adoration-for who God is

Chapter 38-40 are the turning point of the book of Isaiah. All the three chapters highlight to us that God is living, faithful, Almighty, Sovereign, and Eternal Savior, Creator, and God of gods! There is none like Him!! The message and point of these three chapters can be summarized as below:
38: Prayer answered! (God answered king Hezekiah’s request for healing grace, God added 15 years to Hezekiah’s life)

39: Pride punished! (King Hezekiah with pride showed the Babylonian envoys what was in his storehouses. He exalted wealth, not God! God sent Isaiah to foretell the exile to Babylon. The wickedness of Hezekiah’s son Manasseh was a major cause of the captivity, II Kings 21:1-16)

40: Power renewed! (Isaiah preached about three ‘voices’ and asked rhetorical questions to awaken and assure the Israelites of the Sovereignty and the Might of God; His grace never fails, He holds the future!)

38:19: God is faithful!
39:5: God is Almighty!
40:8: The Word of our God stands forever.
40:10: The Sovereign Lord comes with power and His arm rules for Him!
40:17: God is the Lord of lords.
40:22: God is the great Creator of heaven and earth.
40:26: God is wise, powerful, and mighty! He calls each of the starry host by name!
40:28: God is everlasting, will not grow tired or weary, no one can fathom His understanding.

Confession-for what I sin

39:2: For pride within me, exalting my own wealth or ability more than God and His goodness, forgive me O Lord.

39:8: For selfishness within me, only think of my own security and peace, forgive me, O Lord. Change my heart and guard my morality and conduct, that I may always live in your providence, my descendant as well.

40:19-20: For idolatry caused by our hands and within our hearts, forgive us, O Lord.

Thanksgiving-for what God does

38:5-7: God hears our prayer and sees our tears. God is mighty Deliverer. God performs miracle, all fear is gone!

38:16: God can restore us to health and let us live.

40:1: God always comforts His people and speaks tenderly to them, ends punishment upon them and forgives all their sin.

40:3,6,9: God spurred the remnant of Israelites through three ‘voices’:
v.3-5: “A VOICE of one calling: In the desert prepare the way for the Lord, make straight in the wilderness, a highway for our God. Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain. And the glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all mankind together will see it!”

v.6-8: “A VOICE says, Cry out. And I said, What shall I cry? All men are like grass…Surely the people are grass…The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever!”

v.9-11: “You who bring good tidings to Zion, go up on a high mountain. You who bring good tidings to Jerusalem, lift up your VOICE with a shout, lift it up, do not be afraid; say to the towns of Judah, Here is your God! See, the Sovereign God comes with power, and His arm rules for Him...He tends His flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in His arms, and carries them close to His heart: He gently leads those that have young.”

40:11: God is good shepherd, characterized by both strength and gentleness.

40:29: God gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. God would renew the strength of those who hope in Him.

Inspiring verse(s)-for what help it gives

38:17: “Surely it was for my benefit that I suffered such anguish. In Your love you kept me from the pit of destruction; You have put all my sins behind Your back!”

40:29: God gives strength to the weary, and increases the power of the weak.

40:31: Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

Obedience-for what it teaches or orders

38:2: Imitate the wholehearted devotion and faithfulness of Hezekiah, do what is right in God’s eyes.

38:19-20: I as father should tell my children of God’s faithfulness and salvation, that they may sing of God’s goodness all the days of their lives in the temple of God.

40:1-31: I should learn to hear God’s voice day by day, and put my hope in God.

Now-action-for what I must do
1. Share with my children / family today of God’s faithfulness, saving grace and goodness, and sing song of praise together (38:19-20)

2. Pray for the sick that they may experience God’s mighty healing grace in the name of Jesus (38:2). Call a or visit a sick person today, pray aloud a short prayer for them: “God, restore him/her to health and let him/her live…In Your love, keep him/her from the pit of destruction, put his/her sins behind his/her back! Save him/her that he/she may sing all the days of his/her life in the temple of the Lord!” (38:16-17,20)

3. Practice two ‘H’ every day: Hear God’s voices (40:3,6,9), and Hope in God for power renewal (40:31).

4. Be a messanger of comfort (40:1, II Corinthians 1:3)

Supplication-for strength and wisdom to do

38:2: “Remember, O Lord, how I have walked before You faithfully and with wholehearted devotion and have done what is good in Your eyes.”


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