Read Isaiah 50
Israel’s Sin and the Servant’s Obedience
50 This is what the Lord says:
“Where is your mother’s certificate of divorce
with which I sent her away?
Or to which of my creditors
did I sell you?
Because of your sins you were sold;
because of your transgressions your mother was sent away.
2 When I came, why was there no one?
When I called, why was there no one to answer?
Was my arm too short to deliver you?
Do I lack the strength to rescue you?
By a mere rebuke I dry up the sea,
I turn rivers into a desert;
their fish rot for lack of water
and die of thirst.
3 I clothe the heavens with darkness
and make sackcloth its covering.”
4 The Sovereign Lord has given me a well-instructed tongue,
to know the word that sustains the weary.
He wakens me morning by morning,
wakens my ear to listen like one being instructed.
5 The Sovereign Lord has opened my ears;
I have not been rebellious,
I have not turned away.
6 I offered my back to those who beat me,
my cheeks to those who pulled out my beard;
I did not hide my face
from mocking and spitting.
7 Because the Sovereign Lord helps me,
I will not be disgraced.
Therefore have I set my face like flint,
and I know I will not be put to shame.
8 He who vindicates me is near.
Who then will bring charges against me?
Let us face each other!
Who is my accuser?
Let him confront me!
9 It is the Sovereign Lord who helps me.
Who will condemn me?
They will all wear out like a garment;
the moths will eat them up.
10 Who among you fears the Lord
and obeys the word of his servant?
Let the one who walks in the dark,
who has no light,
trust in the name of the Lord
and rely on their God.
11 But now, all you who light fires
and provide yourselves with flaming torches,
go, walk in the light of your fires
and of the torches you have set ablaze.
This is what you shall receive from my hand:
You will lie down in torment.
This chapter begins with a reflection on those who have forsaken God, followed by an example of the One who will never forsake us. As Israel chose to live in sin, they ran away from God, the very One with the power to sustain and save them.
However, the middle of the chapter gives us a picture of what it truly looks like to be a follower of God. In each instance, this person (who foreshadows Jesus) entrusted himself to his Creator. He is willing to be beaten, mocked, and condemned because he knows that the Lord will sustain Him. He “set his face like flint,” meaning he was completely resolved on being faithful to the Lord. He’d rather follow God than succumb to the fear of man.
These verses illustrate the difference between a life that is marked by self-confidence and one that is rooted in confidence in God. Particularly in the last section of the chapter we see two distinct responses to darkness. There is one who even in the darkness chooses to rely on the Lord for strength. But there is another for whom when darkness befalls them, they do all they can to get out on their own. So they light their own fire, or go their own way, which leads to destruction.
The key lesson for us is that we must decide in advance that our situation will not decide our faithfulness. We must choose to be faithful when we are beaten and faithful when we are celebrated. Because as followers of Jesus we want to live how he lived. From the gospels, it’s clear that Jesus was completely resolved on following His Father no matter where it led. He knew His Father would provide in the midst of His pain. Ultimately, He knew that the Father would provide ultimate vindication. Even when our life isn’t going how we’d want it to, our Father is with us and for us. Faithfulness to Him is the goal for we know He has our best interests in mind. Whether we experience our vindication on earth or in eternity we know it is coming. So harden your resolve, set your face like flint, and stay faithful to the Father!
- What most stood out to you about this passage?
- How do you remind yourself that the Lord is near when your life’s situation doesn’t make it feel like He is?
- Where have you been rebellious recently? What would it look like to replace that rebellion with righteousness?
Did You Know?
According to an article from GotQuestions.org, flint is a very hard, dark rock that is used figuratively in the Bible to express hardness, as in the firmness of horses’ hoofs (Isaiah 5:28), the toughness of an impossible task (Deuteronomy 8:15; Psalm 114:80), and the inflexibility of unwavering determination (Ezekiel 3:8–9). Our resolve to be faithful to God should feel like flint. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, we must be firmly faithful no matter the situation!
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6 thoughts on “Isaiah 50”
Tucked inside this chapter is a verse I set to memory years ago that has been a solace to my soul: “Because the Sovereign Lord helps me, I will not be dismayed. Therefore, I have set my face like flint to do his will, and I know that I will triumph” (v7). My daddy had an impressive arrowhead collection filled with various shapes of flint rock which could have been used in past days as stone tools or to start fires. After a heavy rain, we would often find them washed up on our country roads. Maybe this is what drew me to this verse. By nature, I can become stubborn & self-sufficient which always leads me away from the light of his marvelous grace. Instead I get to choose what only he can offer—wisdom, understanding, and hope as I obey and place my trust in him. “Morning by morning new mercies I see. All I have needed Thy hand hath provided, great is thy faithfulness, Lord unto me” (Chisholm).
We had a grand here for a couple of nights and she got up early one morning, just so we could be together, just she and I. We had some amazing conversations. As adults we ask and kids talk about what they want to be when they grow up. As followers of Christ we should be showing them by example, leading them to the Word and giving them direction about God through His word. This is where when they need help it will come from. (by the way I did not as well for my children what I know now better about but here is some hindsight wisdom for you younger peoples). What does your life look like as you grow up spiritual? This is a great question to ask our littles. Yes we can assist with the world “growing up” but to have them rooted and grounded in the Word of God so that as the fiery darts come they know how to fight. Col 1:9-12 9 And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy; 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.
1. Filled with knowledge of his will. 2. Walk worthy 3. Bearing fruit (Nate’s message yesterday) 4. Being strengthened 5. Giving thanks WOOHOO!!!
Thank You God for the opportunity to Love on my children, rights some wrongs. Thank You for the opportunity to help teach my grands about You!!! Thank You for wisdom for their parents and us as Grandparents to show them YOU!! Help me to walk this way no matter what comes. I desire to learn more and more until You take me home. Thank You for this prayer of knowledge, walking worthy, bearing fruit, being strengthened and giving thanks all the more in Jesus name amen
I was reminded of an old Christmas story by Paul Harvey last night at church… “The Man and the Birds”.
“And then, he realized that they were afraid of him. To them, he reasoned, I am a strange and terrifying creature. If only I could think of some way to let them
know that they can trust me..
That I am not trying to hurt them,
but to help them. But how? Because any
move he made tended to frighten them, confuse them. They just would not follow. They would not be led or shooed
because they feared him.”
(You will have to open the link and either read or listen to Paul to hear ‘the rest of the story’)
This story reminds me of Isaiah. How Isaiah tried to compare and contrast what it looks like to be a follower. How to relate to the Israelites.
Take a listen… it’s all in God’s hands and His timing. (Galatians 4:4 and Isaiah 49:8)
***just wanted to add what a phenomenal message yesterday at HC! You have some anointed pastors! What a gift!
***and the worship team…beautiful! But that cello player…😍 great addition!
Amen and I know GOD was loving that cello also.
Christi, what a great story to share. Thank you!😃