Whether it’s a nation, a church, or a family, groups of people need leadership. Of course, Jesus is ultimately everyone’s leader, but God’s design is for there to be “under leaders” representing Him and causing groups to work together in an orderly way to achieve His vision.
When leaders stop representing Him and begin to represent themselves, we have a problem. They turn their positions into self-serving roles. When leaders reject God, they reject wisdom, and become like spoiled children trying to lead. Their rebellion displays foolishness.
Rebellion and selfishness go hand in hand. When God’s people turn from him, they inevitably turn to self-centered lifestyles. In fact they begin putting themselves on a pedestal.
That’s what we see in these chapters of Isaiah. And God responds to their wicked ways. He is going to remove Himself from the scene – and believe me, that doesn’t make for a pretty sight.
Yet when our God has a rebuke for errant ways, He always has a promise of restoration to go along with it. In the 4th chapter of Isaiah we have promises of glorious days ahead – when the people turn back to God – and he will turn back to Him.
Our society in these times is in need of soul-searching. There are many who have not only turned away, they have mocked their Creator. Those of us who pray, should be praying for a turn-around.
We need God today – just as they did in the days of Isaiah! Today, just as in those days, there are self-centered, foolish leaders trying to lead – for their own gain.
Let’s pray for them – and check out our own leadership in our homes and on the job. Christ-centered leadership is the only kind that works.
God’s great mysteries are being revealed by God to Paul – and he in turn reveals them to us. “God did not reveal it to previous generations, but now by His spirit He has revealed it to His holy apostles and prophets.”(3:5)
There are two major revelations – which if we can receive, our lives will be transformed.
The first is that we are saved by grace and not by works. (2:8-10) That’s a concept that many repeat, without really knowing what it means. It means that salvation is not about being a “good” person, but about receiving the forgiveness provided by Jesus through the cross. It’s a free gift for us to receive – and honor.
None of us should feel that we have been good enough to earn God’s gift. We can’t earn it; it’s too big. What we can do is receive the gift and allow our Father to work within us, creating the masterpiece He had in mind when He designed us.
The second key revelation is that salvation is provided for all people who receive it. No longer are the Jews the only ones who are God’s people. All of us have a chance to be.
Now don’t get me wrong. Salvation is offered to all people of every nation, but not all will receive it. It’s a two-way deal and we have to buy in on it to have the gift in our lives.
I think of it a little like a contract for a purchase. A contract may be presented to you for the purchase of your home, but until you accept it and sign it, the offer doesn’t go forward. It’s the same with your salvation. An offer has been presented to you, but you have to accept it to receive the benefits.
I want to receive every detail of my Father’s offer. And I want to make sure that I receive every benefit available!