Tag Archives: Isaiah 1

Two Unlikely Characters

I love Bible study! Be it on my own or listening under the teaching of others. And one of my favorite times is the Teen Class at Victory Baptist Church. I co-teach with a couple of fella’s whose characters are as far from one end of the spectrum as the other, but both bring such wisdom to the table and allow the kids to see that God’s method of understanding is personal.

This past Sunday I sat with the youth and listened to a lesson from co-teacher Doug that I told him I was totally going to steal and not give him credit. I wouldn’t do that… at least not entirely. Below is what I gleaned from Doug’s wisdom on Isaiah chapter 1.

Isaiah 1:1-3 

1The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz, which he saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah.

Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the Lord hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me.

The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib: but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider.

God uses two unlikely Characters… hmmm…. Just like Doug and me, to teach a lesson about the rebellious heart. The ox and the ass. Two animals who knew more about submission to authority than the nation of Israel. But before we step out of the stall and consider ourselves to be above that, perhaps we should check the bottom of our shoes to see what we’re treading in.

It seems that no matter how far I come in my walk with Christ, I still always have plenty of path before me. I have nowhere near arrived! There has always been a rebellious, just roll with it, side to me that gets me into trouble. I never give God full control. I always hold back just a little of Shari to mess things up.

Israel had unfortunately kept a lot of themselves in their Nation and rebelled again and again on God their Creator.

Doug’s lesson had four wonderful points that are so very worthy of pondering.

  1. We were Created by God.
  2. We were Stolen by Satan (separated from God through sin)
  3. We were Bought back through the blood of Christ! Glory!
  4. We were Gifted life by God

We were created in God’s image (Genesis 2:16-17). The ox and the ass know their masters here on earth, although they too can be rebellious and stubborn. But so much can be learned from God’s creation.

We have several critters around our home, but the three who I deal with beneath my feet daily are Izadora, Versace and Callie. A Chihuahua, a Jack-Huahua (1/2 Chihuahua and Jack Russell) and a calico cat. The dogs are adoring creatures who just want to love us continually. They cannot get close enough. Callie the cat is a vicious creature who loves nothing more than to come from nowhere to grab your bare feet with her claws and scare the daylights out of you! She is self-absorbed and could care less if you like her, so long as you feed her. True story! But which creature sounds more like God’s human creation?

That’s because Satan stole our hearts. Oh my goodness! That thought makes me so sad. When Satan tempted Eve in the garden, he tempted her with something that would steal her heart from her Creator God. She fell, Adam fell and because of that, we are all a fallen, stolen creation from the Savior. (Romans 6:23) The wages of sin is death. Once we get to the age of knowledge, when we can determine right from wrong, Satan has us in his clutches, just like he did Eve underneath that tree.

But praise God! We were bought back. 1 Peter 3:18 ~ For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit.

It’s a price my mind cannot fathom. I try. But I just can’t wrap my mind around the physical pain that He endured for me, and His separation from His father. How could He love me that much (John 3:16) even in my rebellion? A point Doug brought out that sorrows my soul is that Christ even did it for those who will never accept Him as Lord. He loves us all the same.

God’s greatest gift to us was the freedom of life.

Doug’s favorite verse is Matthew 11:28. It’s one of mine too and it’s a reminder that we do not have to live with the burden of sin and strife.

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

The ox and the ass know where to go when it’s time to rest. They go to master’s crib. We too should find ourselves cradled in the arms of God when life gets too much. O God… to be so wise…

Thanks Doug for the thoughts, and thank You Jesus for your word.

But Now… You didn’t even notice

chick face

For almost twenty seconds I was proud of myself! When reading the “But Now” Chapter this morning (Isaiah 1) I read in verse nine about the remnant that God had left who serve Him,

Except the Lord of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and we should have been like unto Gomorrah.

And I thought… hey! I’m that remnant! And just as I was patting myself on the back the 2nd time I felt the distinct feeling that even from the couch I had been kicked in the pants. Conviction poured into my soul as I read on…

11 To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the Lord: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats.

Did you catch it? I sure did. To what purpose is what you’re doing helping me out? You do, you write, you sing, you teach, and it’s all good… but that’s the desert of my meal. What about the meat and potatoes. The stuff that sticks to the ribs and will make it through the fire. The things you do are the pretty things, and I’m sick of it… what about the real work?

Isaiah 1: 21-23 ~  

 How is the faithful city become an harlot! it was full of judgment; righteousness lodged in it; but now murderers.

Thy silver is become dross, thy wine mixed with water:  Thy princes are rebellious, and companions of thieves: every one loveth gifts, and followeth after rewards: they judge not the fatherless, neither doth the cause of the widow come unto them.

What a sad indictment to leadership. To “Shari quote it” Thy princes (leadership) are hanging out with lowlife (and not to win them to Christ), but they rather love what they receive for serving (as a matter of fact that’s why they do it, not for Me) and the people who need your help, you don’t even notice.

But now… you didn’t even notice.

For me it’s another day of serving Jesus doing the pretty stuff. And God’s all about it! There’s nothing wrong with it; we need the pretty stuff, but what about the ugly stuff that nobody wants to do? Like visiting the elderly and sick, helping the homeless, picking up the snotty nosed kid for the church, telling someone you don’t even know that Jesus loves them and wants to save their soul. What about those things? God wants the pretty stuff, but not if that’s the only thing we’re about.

God called them a murderer. That’s serious business. That means somebody’s blood is on our hands…And we didn’t even notice.