Isaiah 41* God's care of his people. (1-9) they are encouraged not tofear. (10-20) The vanity and folly of idolatry. (21-29)1-9 Can any heathen god raise up one in righteousness, makewhat use of him he pleases, and make him victorious over thenations? The Lord did so with Abraham, or rather, he would do sowith Cyrus. Sinners encourage one another in the ways of sin;shall not the servants of the living God stir up one another inhis service? God's people are the seed of Abraham his friend.This is certainly the highest title ever given to a mortal. Itmeans that Abraham, by Divine grace, was made like to God, andthat he was admitted to communion with Him. Happy are theservants of the Lord, whom he has called to be his friends, andto walk with him in faith and holy obedience. Let not such ashave thus been favoured yield to fear; for the contest may besharp, but the victory shall be sure. 10-20 God speaks with tenderness; Fear thou not, for I am withthee: not only within call, but present with thee. Art thouweak? I will strengthen thee. Art thou in want of friends? Iwill help thee in the time of need. Art thou ready to fall? Iwill uphold thee with that right hand which is full ofrighteousness, dealing forth rewards and punishments. There arethose that strive with God's people, that seek their ruin. Letnot God's people render evil for evil, but wait God's time. Itis the worm Jacob; so little, so weak, so despised and trampledon by every body. God's people are as worms, in humble thoughtsof themselves, and in their enemies' haughty thoughts of them;worms, but not vipers, not of the serpent's seed. Every part ofGod's word is calculated to humble man's pride, and to make himappear little in his own eyes. The Lord will help them, for heis their Redeemer. The Lord will make Jacob to become athreshing instrument. God will make him fit for use, new, andhaving sharp spikes. This has fulfilment in the triumphs of thegospel of Christ, and of all faithful followers of Christ, overthe power of darkness. God has provided comforts to supply alltheir wants, and to answer all their prayers. Our way to heavenlies through the wilderness of this world. The soul of man is inwant, and seeks for satisfaction; but becomes weary of seekingthat in the world, which is not to be had in it. Yet they shallhave a constant supply, where one would least expect it. I willopen rivers of grace, rivers of living water, which Christ spakeof the Spirit, #Joh 7:38,39|. When God sets up his church in theGentile wilderness, there shall be a great change, as if thornsand briers were turned into cedars, and fir-trees, and myrtles.These blessings are kept for the poor in spirit, who long forDivine enlightening, pardon, and holiness. And God will rendertheir barren souls fruitful in the grace of his Spirit, that allwho behold may consider it. 21-29 There needs no more to show the folly of sin, than tobring to notice the reasons given in defence of it. There isnothing in idols worthy of regard. They are less than nothing,and worse than nothing. Let the advocates of other doctrinesthan that of salvation through Christ, bring their arguments.Can they tell of a cure for human depravity? Jehovah has powerwhich cannot be withstood; this he will make appear. But thecertain knowledge of the future must be only with Jehovah, whofulfils his own plans. All prophecies, except those of theBible, have been uncertain. In the work of redemption the Lordshowed himself much more than in the release of the Jews fromBabylon. The good tidings the Lord will send in the gospel, is amystery hid from ages and generations. A Deliverer is raised upfor us, of nobler name and greater power than the deliverer ofthe captive Jews. May we be numbered among his obedient servantsand faithful friends.
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