More Permanent Than Landscapes

Is. 54:10 - “The mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but my steadfast love shall not depart from you, and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,” says the LORD who has compassion on you.

It’s happened to every adult. As grownups each of us has driven through a location that was familiar during our childhood days to discover that the landscape you once thought permanent such as the greenery of fields and farms on the edge of town, has changed to the bustling activity of suburban life.

God told his people that even when landscapes which they believed to be most permanent (mountains and hills) were gone, God’s faithfulness would still endure. God is not the one who changes. Even when we prove ourselves to be faithless, in his compassion God seeks us, calls us and in love disciplines us so that we would once again experience his covenant of peace.

The next time you drive down the road and start thinking about how much the scenery around you has changed, think about Is. 54:10 and that even though the landscape may change, it’s comforting to know that we worship a God who doesn’t!

Jeremy Dehut

(Originally posted 11/11/13)

It All Comes Down to This

Isaiah 7:9b - "If you are not firm in faith, you will not be firm at all" (ESV).

Have you ever watched a great sporting event, where the game had been a close contest the whole way? One team would score then the other team would score. One would have an incredible moment of defense then the other would respond in kind. These are the games I like to watch! Sure, the occasional blowout is fun, but true competition is exciting to see. In these types of games as each team makes its final play the announcer will typically remind the spectators, "It all comes down to this!" By that he means that the game will be won or lost based on the final basket, the last block, a momentary burst of speed...and then it's all over. As a Divine announcer in the game of life, Isaiah made such a statement to Ahaz, the king of Judah in a moment of crisis. And what did it all come down to? Faith.

Early in his reign, Ahaz was confronted by two kingdoms that had decided to attack him. Probably most upsetting to Ahaz was that his northern familial neighbor, Israel, was one of the kingdoms! When he heard word of their plans he and the people of Judah "shook as the trees of the forest shake before the wind" (Is. 7:2). They were terrified! There are moments in our lives where betrayal and overwhelming odds appear capable of destroying us. Like Ahaz, in these moments we need to be reminded that a life of faith is what it all comes down to. Like Ahaz, we need to be reminded that faith is not automatic but a choice on our part to remember the kind of God we serve.

Based on what God has revealed about Himself in the past, we need to choose to believe in Him today.  We need to choose to believe that things such a earthly odds and having the "upper hand" mean nothing to Him. We need to choose faith. The flip side is that if we reject faith in God and His promises, we don't stand a chance. Without faith in God, we have nothing. Faith in God is what it all comes down to. When the final buzzer has sounded and God has been declared the winner, whose team will you be on?

Jeremy Dehut

(Originally posted 8/24/09)