"And the Lord (אָדוֹן) said, 'Because this people [Judah] draw near with their mouth and honour me with their lips, while their hearts/inner selves/intentions (לֵב) are far from me, and their fear/honour (ירא) of me is a commandment taught by men, therefore behold, I will again do wonderful/unusual/amazing (פלא) things with this people [Judah], with wonder (פלא) upon wonder (פֶּלֶא). And the wisdom (חָכְמָה) of their wise men (חָכָם) shall perish, and the understanding (בִּינָה) of their understanding men (בין) shall be hidden." - Isaiah 29:13-14
Are our hearts close to God, or far from him? Do we genuinely honour God and fear him? It would be good for us to shut down our internet for awhile and examine our hearts closely. What are we aiming for? What is the true desire of our hearts? Is it to build a civilisation in which we don't need God?
God wants genuine worship and relationship. He wants our inner selves to be close to him.
We've all heard the commandment to fear God. But what does that really mean? How do we know if we are really fearing God?
God is able to do wonderful and amazing things. In the context here, the wonderful things include both judgment on the ruthless and salvation for the humble and poor. God will turn the tide in a wonderful and amazing way. A great reversal will happen. Now the proud and arrogant hold sway. But one day the meek shall inherit the earth.
Every civilisation has its wise men who are supposed to have a greater understanding of why things are happening and what the future holds. In our civilisation, our wise men are our scientific experts. But if a civilisation's wisdom is founded on atheism, it will surely come to naught. God is being totally ignored right now. The wisdom of our wise men will perish, because it is built on the faulty foundation of atheism. Our experts don't know as much as they think they know, as in Isaiah's day.
Father, may our hearts turn and fear you. Forgive us for our arrogant atheism. Science proves more and more every day that you exist, but we simply will not humble ourselves to the evidence. May we as a nation turn back to you. May we allow Covid-19 to humble us to you and not make us more self-sufficient and prideful. May we accept the lesson you are trying to teach.
Please empower your church in evangelism. Give every disciple of Jesus wisdom how to represent you well. Forgive us for our sins, and may we keep in step with the Spirit. In Jesus' name, amen.
- Jeff Coleman