Cross and Flame - Christ (cross) and the Holy Spirit (flame).

Called to be a Witness

Called to be a Witness

Our theme for the past 7 ½ months has been “Knowing God”.  The theme has kept us on target as we have explored the Scriptures, sang hymns and worshipped together.  We have sought to hear, see, and experience God in our lives.  Today we discover God’s purpose for us as we live out our soul salvation as part of the body of Christ called the Church.

The prophet Isaiah calls us to look closely at the relationship God has with Israel.  It could be called a love/hate relationship but there is no turning away on God’s part because He has chosen Israel as His own.  We have to look at a few other Scriptures to fully grasp the message that is being given to us today.

  • Is 42:1 – Here is my servant, whom I uphold; my chosen one in whom I delight.
  • John 15:16 – You did not choose me; but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit – fruit that will last.
  • Is 43:1 – …Fear not, for I have redeemed you. I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
  • Is 42:3 – I am your savior
  • Is 43:4 – You are precious in my sight … I love you
  • Is 43:7 – Sons and daughters called by His name, created and formed you

This is not some whimsical power play to amass a group of followers.  God is declaring who He is to the Israelites; then He tells them their purpose is tied to who He is to them and who they are to Him.

  • They are created for God’s glory
  • They are witnesses to God

God wants them to KNOW Him (become intimate, familiar, close to Him)

God wants them to BELIEVE Him (trust Him; get close enough to know that He is the real deal as compared to the idol gods that they worship – Deut. 8:15-16)

God wants them to UNDERSTAND Him because He is the one and only true God. (It seems that His chosen people had a problem declaring inanimate things to be sacred and ascribing to them some kind of power.)

They are His witnesses to the other nations that this is the real God and He is God all by Himself.  As witnesses, they declare that they have been present when God has moved.  They have seen, heard, and known by personal presence that God is who He says He is.  A WITNESS is not one who gets their information secondhand and tells it as though they were on the scene of the occurrence.

God is calling for real witnesses – people who know Him up close and personal and are willing to share their lives with others in order that God may be glorified.

  • 14-17 – written reminders of WHAT God has done for Israel and WHO He is to them. This passage refers to the exodus from Egypt.
  • 18 – If you thought that was awesome, you haven’t seen anything yet. – I can imagine that they were going “Say what?”
  • 19 – Behold (check this out) I’m going to do a NEW thing.
  • The God we serve is about doing new things. One can only imagine that dealing with the children of Israel was like a bad roller coaster ride.  But God’s mercy prevails.  He chosen them and made them people of purpose to live out His plan.

Isaiah 65:16-17 we hear prophetic words about a new heaven and a new earth.

2 Corinthians 5:17 we are a new creation.  Forget the old things, the former things. They have passed away.  We are a new creation destined for new EXPERIENCES.  There are new BLESSINGS to receive.  There are NEW WAYS TO FULFILL GOD’S PURPOSE.  There are FRESH REVELATIONS from God.   Our TALK is infused with good words.  We build up rather than tear down.  Our WALK or BEHAVIOR is more reflective of the Christ in us than the world around us. Our THINKING is now seared in the ways of God.  We have been destined for whatever God has planned knowing that all things will continue to work together for the good of those who love the Lord and are called according to His purpose.

TO GOD BE THE GLORY

Amen

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