Isaiah 20 is quite a sight as God speaks through Isaiah to the people of Egypt who are about to be led away as captives. Isaiah is told to “Go, and loose the sackcloth from your waist and take off your sandals from your feet, and he did so, walking naked and barefoot”. I don’t think that is the outfit for Sunday worship, although God certainly may call us to do things we may not be comfortable with. But God is sending a message that while we may think we are in control, clothed and shod, He may call us out of that comfort zone to do His work.
God used Isaiah and his obedience to send a message of what was to come for the Egyptian captives and Cush exiles. They were going to be stripped of what they had and moved from their comfort zone to a place of captivity and discomfort. And God removed their status and place of comfort then. They didn’t see it coming, but it is the result of how they have lived. You can’t just ignore God’s ways. There is a price to pay for disobedience.
It was obvious to those who watched from the coastland. “Behold, this is what has happened to those in whom we hoped and to whom we fled for help to be delivered from the king of Assyria”! Why is it so obvious to those around us but we can’t see it when we are in the middle of it? Sin blinds us. It always takes us further than we want to go and keeps us longer than we want to stay because we can’t see the outcome and the price while in the middle of it.
But make no mistake, there is a price. God cannot just ignore it. We can’t escape without payment for that sin. God’s standard is that we live a life free from sin. But the problem is that not one of us will meet that requirement. We are not perfect and we will miss the mark. So we have a problem, just like these folks did. And God will deal with us unless we can pay that debt. Jesus went to the cross to give us a way to deal with our sin. He died and rose again to set us free from sin. What we need is a relationship with Him, a personal saving relationship based on His love for us. Have you dealt with the sin in your life? Don’t wait until you are “naked and barefoot with buttocks showing” because you can’t pay the price for your sinful choices.