Friday, 20th May 2022
Rev Daniel Xi An Poon
We understand a lot of knowledge and receive a lot of teaching, but what is our attitude to respond? God knows when we are facing a lot of troubles, our ways of dealing with them and our attitude towards them. But often we are too blind to see it, even when God has been reminding us through His Word. We must repent and return, through praying and fasting, really humble ourselves before God. We are not worthy, but God is willing to use us, we must understand this mystery. We think we have a lot of gifts, talents, skills, strength, knowledge… but we don’t recognize that all these are from God, and we are not worthy. We can be where we are today, we can have what we have today, we can do what we do today, all by the grace of God, nothing else.
Section One V1-13 He will Deal with the Prideful
What is pride? To see ourselves more than we see God. Do we really know who our God is? The servant with 1000 talents did not really know his master, instead of investing, he buried his talents under the ground. Are we also like this? Instead of doing what God asks us to do, we do what we want to do. We know God is watching and we know He will come back to judge us, but why are we still living in our own way? V1 ‘Woe to the crown of pride, to the drunkards of Ephraim, whose glorious beauty is a fading flower which is at the head of the verdant valleys, to those who are overcome with wine!’ Isaiah was using the perspective from above to see Ephraim, who indulged themselves into entertainment and enjoyment. God see them as the prideful and the drunkards. We may also be like that, being prideful for what we have, what we can do, who we know… but all these will become fading flowers. God does not want us to be a flower but to be a tree, planted by the living water.
V3-4 ‘The crown of pride, the drunkards of Ephraim, will be trampled underfoot; and the glorious beauty is a fading flower which is at the head of the verdant valley, like the first fruit before the summer, which an observer sees; he eats it up while it is still in his hand.’ The prophet was warning the people about the destructions that would come. We must stop our prideful mindset, stop indulging in our own success, because all these will only lead to destruction.
V5-6 ‘In that day the Lord of hosts will be for a crown of glory and a diadem of beauty to the remnant of His people, for a spirit of justice to him who sits in judgment, and for strength to those who turn back the battle at the gate.’ Who are the remnant people? Those who are willing to continue trusting in God, no matter how many kings have changed. God will remember us if we don’t give up on this path of faith, He will protect us to the end.
V9-10 ‘Whom will he teach knowledge? And whom will he make to understand the message? Those just weaned from milk? Those just drawn from the breasts? For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little, there a little.’ Are we mocking the prophets? Do we take the words of the servants of God seriously? When God told us to repent do, we really do it? Our disbelief will cause our blindness, and our pride will stop us coming closer to the heart of God. We must return and repent! The pandemic is talking to us today! Do not think we are ok, do not try to run away from the problems we are facing right now, but have the fear and trembling in God, be serious about what is about to come.
Section Two V14-22 He has His Arrangement
V14-15 ‘Therefore hear the word of the Lord, you scornful men, who rule this people who are in Jerusalem, because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death, and with Sheol we are in agreement. When the overflowing scourge passes through, it will not come to us, for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood we have hidden ourselves.”’ Do we really hear what God has to say to our lives? Our lives are full of lies and untruthfulness. Jesus has already given us the authority and power to heal and to cast our demon, but we often talk ourselves down, give ourselves excuses not to carry out the Great Commission. Jesus wants us to preach in and out of seasons, not by our own might or strength.
V16 ‘Therefore thus says the Lord God: Behold, I lay in Zion a stone for a foundation, a tried stone, a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation; whoever believes will not act hastily.’ This is our Lord Jesus Christ! But the people of Judah did not believe in it, they chose to ignore the warning and continue their life of enjoyment. What do we believe? Jesus has cancelled all the bondages we had with this world, we must raise up for Him, step out for Him, and let He be the Lord of our lives.
V20 ‘For the bed is too short to stretch out on, and the covering so narrow that one cannot wrap himself in it.’ We must stop lying on the bed and start walking out for God. We can choose the life we want to live in, do not be afraid, do not think that God will forsake us. Because He has His arrangement.
Section Three V23-29 We Must Listen
V23 ‘Give ear and hear my voice, listen and hear my speech.’ Our God will teach us, He will guide us, but are we willing to listen? V26 ‘For He instructs him in right judgment, his God teaches him.’ God has His way of doing things, and His ways are the perfect ways. When we really listen and follow, we will not need to worry. V29 ‘This also comes from the Lord of hosts, who is wonderful in counsel and excellent in guidance.’ God is out wonderful and excellent God, what is our attitude towards His teaching? Stop using our own patterns to learn and seek knowledge, and start listening.
以赛亚书 28 – 看啊，那伟大奇妙的神
V1 神对人说话，但人选择不听，不看神的伟大而是看人厉害，没有先神后人再大地，这就是骄傲。“祸哉”的意思就是“惨了”。神看他的百姓是从上俯看，他看以法莲 – 代表北国以色列 – 是“酒徒”。他们在“肥美谷的山上”自己建了首都，以为敌人无法攻击，便在其上享乐。我们是否也依靠自己建立的东西？神说他们“心里高傲，以所夸的为冠冕”，我们是否也像他们一样，夸自己的能力、儿女等？也许别人看我们好像花一样美好，但这却是“将残之花”。神要我们做千年巨木，屹立不倒，扎根在神栽种我们的地方。