This Is Our Heritage
Sing, O barren woman,
you who never bore a child.
Do not be afraid; you will not suffer shame.
Do not fear disgrace; you will not be humiliated…
For your Maker is your husband —
the LORD Almighty is his name —
the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer;
he is called the God of all the earth.
O afflicted city, lashed by storms and not comforted,
I will build you with stones of turquoise,
your foundations with sapphires.
(Isaiah 54:1, 4-5, 11; see also Isaiah 54:1-17)
Visual images can illuminate concepts. Nowhere is that more true than in this passage where Isaiah paints for us two pictures of fear and how God responds to each.
How do these two images, a barren woman and a beleaguered city, capture the character of fear?
How does knowing God as a loving spouse (v. 5) and as a rich developer (v. 10) help us to redefine the fearful situations in which we find ourselves?
Isaiah 54 ends with this strong affirmation: “This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD” (v. 17). How do these two images cause you to look forward more eagerly to your own inheritance from God?
O God, let me know that your love for me is more intimate than any of my deepest fears; and let me know that your plans for me are more spectacular than any of my shattered surroundings.
Taken from Be Not Afraid by David Ivaska. ©2000 by David Ivaska. Used by permission of InterVarsity Press, P.O. Box 1400, Downers Grove, IL 60515-1426. ivpress.com
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