As I read through Isaiah 41-44, I noticed a cycle of God declaring His character and then Isaiah calling the people to respond in worship; however, Isaiah does not point out the typical characteristics of God associated with worship. Often in scripture worship of God correlates to God’s holiness, but Isaiah emphasizes God’s care for His people.
“When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue is parched with thirst, I the Lord will answer them; I the God of Israel will not forsake them. I will open rivers on bare heights, and fountains in the midst of valleys. I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water.”Isaiah 41:17-18
God is powerful even in the situations that seem the most hopeless such as deserts and valleys. Another repeated theme in these chapters is that God does not forsake His people. This is one of the declarations made by God in these verses. In contrast, God condemns the idols of the people declaring them useless. It is easy to turn to things of this world to satisfy us or bring comfort in moments of hardship; however, when confronted with the power and care of our God, the uselessness of our idols is exposed and the worthiness of God is highlighted.
Next, the passage goes on to describe the future Messiah, Jesus, by saying,
“A bruised reed he will not break, and a fainting burning wick he will not quench; he will faithfully bring forth justice. He will not grow faint or be discouraged till he has established justice in the earth; and the coastlands wait for his law.”Isaiah 42:3-4
How compassionate is the God that we serve? Even in our brokenness and weakness, he will not desert us. He is faithful!
In light of all of this, Isaiah calls the people to respond in praise.
“Sing to the Lord a new song, his praise from the end of the earth, you who go down to the sea, and all that fills it, the coastlands and their inhabitants.”Isaiah 42:10
We serve a God worthy of all praise. He is above everything in heaven and on earth. His name is above every other name. Not only does Isaiah declare the truth of who God is, it also declares the truth of who we are.
“But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: ‘Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name and you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through the fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. I give Egypt as your ransom, Cush and Seba in exchange for you. Because you are precious in my eyes, and honored, and I love you.”
Let that truth lead you to worship. Remember who God is and who He says you are. God is compassionate and gentle. We serve a God who brings redemption even in the midst of our brokenness and never forsakes us.