Isaiah Lesson 9 Isaiah 41-45 Pastor Barry Bruce/ The Gathering
July 4, 1776-2016 “In God We Trust”
As we celebrate our 240 years of American independence let us be forewarned not to take that independence for granted. Originally the thirteen American colonies declared themselves a new nation (the United States of America) and no longer part of the British Empire, but we were never expected to be independent of the God of our fathers. Of this Declaration Of Independence John Adams had written to his wife Abigail:
“The second day of July, 1776 (John was off by two days because of revisions in the document), will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more”.
Did you all get that…”commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty”. This God, by the way is no other than the God of the Jews who came to us by directing Abraham, called the father of the Jewish nation, and then through prophets who foretold the promised Messiah, Jesus, who was crucified and then resurrected. His followers survived the persecutions of the Roman Empire and rose up through the emperor Constantine. Then came the Roman Catholic Church, which was split by the Protestant Reformation beginning in 1517 only to float into “the New World” in 1620 on the Mayflower. By 1630 20,000 Puritan Christians immigrated to America from England to gain the liberty to worship God as they chose. A religious revival, called “The Great Awakening” swept the colonies in the 1730s and 1740s which paved the way to the revolution by causing people to realize ones personal relationship to God, and that all men are created equal and no king ruled over people by divine inspiration, especially if he was a tyrannical one! Make no mistake about it. God had everything to do with the founding of this nation and the founding fathers. Most were devout Christians and yes, some were influenced by a form of Deism (a belief that God dose not interfere with His creation), but only a handful were steeped in that belief. God is stamped all over their early quotes and documents. Most of our presidents have also believed in this God and one of them even signed the establishment by congress of our national motto as “In God We Trust.” (84th congress/ July 30, 1956 by President Dwight D. Eisenhower). If Americans “trust in God” then we best keep His word. To do otherwise will bring a much deserved curse. This curse, according to God’s word, (the Bible) is for everyone who comes against this God and His nation of Israel.
Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren said in 2010, “Israel’s ties with the United States are in their worst crisis since 1975 … a crisis of historic proportions.” Author and scholar Dennis Prager concurred, “Most observers, right or left, pro-Israel or anti-Israel, would agree that Israeli-American relations are the worst they have been in memory.” In the spring of 2011, David Parsons, spokesman for the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem, said: “There’s a traditional, special relationship between America and Israel that Obama is basically throwing out the window in a sense.” David Rubin, a U.S.-born Israeli author and expert on the Middle East, put it this way: “President Obama is very harmful for Israel and very dangerous for the future of Judeo-Christian civilization.” http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/viewSubCategory.asp?id=1521
The Helper of Israel Isaiah 41:1-4, 8-12, Genesis 12:1-3
The Lord speaks through Isaiah to Islands and the nations, both then and now, like a judge in a court: “be silent”, “Come forward and speak”, “Let us meet together in judgment”. The Lord then makes His opening remarks in verse 2 by referring to Israel’s beginnings with His calling of Abraham (“one stirred up from the East” and “called into righteousness to His service”, “by a path his feet have not traveled before”). God identifies the nation Israel as His servant, chosen one and friend who He “took from the ends of the earth and “called” from its “farthest corners”. He tells Israel not to fear and that “all who rage against her will be ashamed and disgraced (Consider those who participated in the holocaust and those who did nothing. Are they not ashamed and disgraced by the history they made?), “ those who wage war against her will be as nothing at all”. This same promise was given to Abram (His name later changed to Abraham. Genesis 17:3-8) on the outset of God’s promise to Him and the nation that would come from Abraham’s obedience. “All peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” says Genesis 12:3b. Jesus will bless anyone who will call upon His name, “To them He gave the right to be called the sons of God”. John 1:12
Useless Idols and the all-knowing God Isaiah 41:22-29, 42:1-9, Matthew 12:14-21, Isaiah 43:3,44:24-28, 45:22-25, Philippians 2:9-11
The Lord mocks those who trust in idols (an idol is anything you exalt before God) and sarcastically calls them to foretell the future…then in this prophecy, given nearly150 years before the birth of King Cyrus, God foretells how this king will deliver the Jews from Babylonian captivity (verse 25) and reminds scoffers that He was the first to tell Zion this news (Verse 27). Later, in Chapter 45:1,13 God names Cyrus and says he will rebuild Jerusalem and set the exiles free. Here is an instance of someone whose name and deeds are recorded by God long before his birth. (So much for the philosophy of a Deist) Cyrus was the first ruler of the Persian Empire. He brought down Babylon in 539 B.C. and issued the decree allowing the Jews to return to Jerusalem (Daniel 1:21; Ezra 1:1-4). At the time of the prophecy of Isaiah, Jerusalem was a prosperous city that would not be destroyed for more than 100 years by the Babylonian king, Nebuchadnezzar. Furthermore, Isaiah introduces Jesus in 42:1-9 (see also the fulfillment in Matthew) and reminds Israel that He is their only savior in 43:3. In 44:24-28 God makes His concluding argument and gives His warning to all nations in 45:22-25: “Turn to Me and be saved”… No man is equal to God and no nation better than His…Don’t mess with Israel! They will find deliverance in the Lord.