Translations: Chinese GB Big5

Abraham

Isaiah 51:1-3
"Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness and who seek the LORD: Look to the rock from which you were cut and to the quarry from which you were hewn; look to Abraham, your father, and to Sarah, who gave you birth. When I called him he was but one, and I blessed him and made him many. The LORD will surely comfort Zion and will look with compassion on all her ruins; he will make her deserts like Eden, her wastelands like the garden of the LORD. Joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and the sound of singing."


Comment

What is the analogy he is drawing between their condition and that of Abraham. Both were seeking the righteousness which comes from the Lord. Both are called to exercise faith in being reckoned righteous. "What does the Scripture say? 'Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.'" Rom 4:3 And what quality of faith is acceptable to God? Of Abraham's faith it is written, "he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised." Rom 4:20,21 Abraham believed God, despite the circumstances. And he being one became a multitude. This is what God calls us to. God will overcome the circumstances to fulfill his promise and also, though we being but a remnant in the world, will multiply and rule the earth in its time.

One becoming many is a theme of the natural world which God created. It gives life and significance to the genealogies in the Bible. So also we are called to make disciples. Being fruitful as a Christian is not just developing a Christlike character. Being fruitful also involves replication. It is not something one necessarily force, for it is a natural byproduct of abiding in Christ. "He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit;" John 15:5

Isaiah speaks of a time in which Zion is devestated as a result of God's discipline upon her sin. Realize that it is in this very context that God promise the blessing. So if you've screwed up and have been subjected to the discipline of the Lord, do not lose heart. For with humiliation comes humility. And with humility comes the blessing.

"My son, do not make light of the Lordís discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,  because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son." Heb 12:5,6

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