Friday, July 31, 2009

Separation

As I was reading in Isaiah this morning, the words weighed heavy on my heart:

"Behold, the Lord's hand is not shortened, that it cannot save, or his ear dull, that it cannot hear; but your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear" (Isaiah 59:1-2).


The passage continues with its sad tune describing my heart and my situation before God:

"Therefore justice is far from us, and righteousness does not overtake us; we hope for light, and behold, darkness, and for brightness, but we walk in gloom. We grope for the wall like the blind; we grope like those who have no eyes; we stumble at noon as in the twilight, among those in full vigor we are like dead men. We all growl like bears; we moan and moan like doves; we hope for justice, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far from us. For our transgressions are multiplied before you, and our sins testify against us; for our transgressions are with us, and we know our iniquities: transgressing, and denying the Lord, and turning back from following our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart lying words. Justice is turned back, and righteousness stands afar off; for truth has stumbled in the public squares, and uprightness cannot enter. Truth is lacking, and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey.


I had to stop there with my reading as household duties called, but God was kind to bring to my mind Scriptures to keep me from despair:

"...remember that you were at one time separated from Christ, alienated from the common-wealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ" (Ephesians 2:12-13, ESV).

As I consider these words, my heart swells with joy!

Alas, when I could come back to this chapter, great hope lies within it as well:

"The Lord saw it, and it displeased him that there was no justice. He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no one to intercede; then his own arm brought him salvation, and his righteousness upheld him...'And a Redeemer will come to Zion to those in Jacob who turn from transgression,' declares the Lord" (Isaiah 59:15-16, 20-ESV).


Those who were in darkness have seen a great light! Praise be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord that I am one of those who has seen a great light!

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