Archive for July 27th, 2016

Isaiah 5

Isaiah 5 begins with the prophet telling a story about a vineyard.  The owner cleaned it, planted it, tended it, cared deeply for it only to have it yield a harvest that was no good.  What a frustration when one goes to all that work and the outcome is not at all what was expected or should have resulted from the hard work that was done.  Isaiah goes on to translate the story to real life.  “For the vineyard of the Lord of hosts is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah are his pleasant planting; and he looked for justice, but behold, bloodshed; for righteousness, but behold, an outcry”!

It’s a picture of His people and how they have not turned out anywhere close to what was expected based on the love and care God has given them for generations.  They are such a disappointment compared to God’s desires and expectations.  God has requirements for His people.  When we fail to meet those, there are consequences.  “Surely many houses shall be desolate, large and beautiful houses, without inhabitant”.  Obedience is such an important expectation God has for us.  We are to walk in His presence and with His purpose.

It isn’t negotiable.  God’s plans are not up for discussion.  He has a standard – holy and just – and we are measured against that.  We all fall short because we are sinners.  And with that, there is a price to pay.  “Therefore my people go into exile for lack of knowledge; their honored men go hungry, and their multitude is parched with thirst”.  It’s not mean for God to punish our disobedience.  His standards are perfect and clear.  Left to deal with those standards on our own, we’ll fall far short.  That’s why Jesus had to come to earth and die on the Cross.  He alone is the one way we have to deal with our shortcomings in obedience.

He can’t tolerate our sin.  His holiness and righteousness, His character, requires Him to deal with us directly.  “For they have rejected the law of the Lord of hosts, and have despised the word of the Holy One of Israel. Therefore the anger of the Lord was kindled against his people, and he stretched out his hand against them and struck them”.  Scripture is full of examples of God dealing with His sinful people.  Isaiah paints the prophecy clearly and throughout history we see God’s consistent ways when people fall short of His standards.  There is a price for sin.  Jesus paid that price if we’ll make Him our Savior and Lord!

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