Isaiah 54:1-8. God’s Hope For His People. 12-31-18


Kevin E. Jesmer                                                                                                     12-31-18

Isaiah 54:1-8

Key verse: 54:2

“Enlarge the place of your tent, and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out; do not hold back; lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes.” (ESV)

    Dear Lord Jesus, thank you for a wonderful 2018. You accomplished so much. Your glory shines forth from near us to around the globe. I pray that in 2019 we may see more of you and your glory. Free us from the things that tether our hearts and souls and help us to follow you more closely in the coming year. Grant me your word in my heart today. Grant me vision for 2019. I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen!

Part 1: Prepare For A Glorious Future (1-4)

Verses 1-4, “Sing, O barren one, who did not bear; break forth into singing and cry aloud, you who have not been in labor! For the children of the desolate one will be more than the children of her who is married,” says the Lord. 2 “Enlarge the place of your tent, and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out; do not hold back; lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes. 3 For you will spread abroad to the right and to the left, and your offspring will possess the nations and will people the desolate cities. 4 “Fear not, for you will not be ashamed; be not confounded, for you will not be disgraced; for you will forget the shame of your youth, and the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more.”

In Isaiah’s time, childlessness brought shame. It symbolized hopelessness. That is how the people felt during the Babylonian captivity. But God encouraged the hopeless and brokenhearted to sing and shout for joy. God promised his people that they will spread out. One day their shame and disgrace will be forgotten. God urged his people to prepare for this glorious future by enlarging their tent and strengthening their stakes. They had to surrender their fear and despair to God, grow their faith and anchor their hearts in God to accomplish this.

There is so much hope in God. The hope in God is a real hope, for it a hope planted and nurtured by the all-powerful Creator. It is a hope that he accomplishes through us in our lives and ministries. Without Jesus I would be hopeless. But with Jesus I have a real hope.

Before meeting Jesus, I lived without hope. As a young man at twenty years old, I had a small hope that I could complete college and get a career job. Then I would marry and have a family. I never, ever thought about life beyond family life and definitely not about eternal life. Due to the power of sin, even getting a satisfying career job was becoming a pipe dream, let alone being able to maintain a family.

It was when I accepted Jesus, that Christ filled my heart with hope. It was real hope because it was hope with God’s power behind it. God gave me a new heart and mind and life, a new career, a family, a ministry. He is growing my children into Christians. The hope never ends. He is leading me all the way to eternal life in the Kingdom of Heaven.

There are times when I become disappointed in God’s hope for my life while I live in this world. It is all because I am trying to hold onto my own hopes for a certain kind of ministry for example. Or I am wanting God’s plans to unfold in my way and in my time. In either case the problem is not with God and God’s hope. The problem lies with me. And I thank the Lord for being patient with me and helping me to accept his hope as my hope and his timetable as my timetable.

What do we do when Christians are filled with God’s hope? Look at verse 2, “Enlarge the place of your tent, and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out; do not hold back; lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes.” (ESV) We need to live, reflecting the hope of God, which is really the fact that God’s Kingdom will grow and expand and God’s people will bear fruit by his grace. We need to expand the place of our tents. The whole point is joining in God’s work in expanding his kingdom.

This could take on many forms. It could be related to ministry. It could be in education and training. It could be building a family and a church.  In 2019 I want to expand the place of my tent in regards to ministry. I would like to start the monthly Canada educational prayer meeting. I would like to work to build up KBC (my church). I want to mentor the several people that God has brought into my life. I want to encourage my family to be followers of Jesus. It could mean enlarge the scope of one’s compassion and heart and vision. It could mean enlarge the length and breadth of our prayer.

Part 2: The Holy One is Your Redeemer (5-8)

Verses 5-8, “5 For your Maker is your husband, the Lord of hosts is his name; and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer, the God of the whole earth he is called. 6 For the Lord has called you like a wife deserted and grieved in spirit, like a wife of youth when she is cast off, says your God. 7 For a brief moment I deserted you, but with great compassion I will gather you. 8 In overflowing anger for a moment I hid my face from you, but with everlasting love I will have compassion on you,” says the Lord, your Redeemer.”

In anger, God briefly abandoned his people and allowed them to suffer. But his underlying purpose was always redemptive. God is the LORD Almighty, the God of all the earth, who can and will redeem his people. God is like a husband to his people. He loves them. He has committed himself to them and has deep compassion for them.

Our God shows everlasting kindness to his people. I can say that God never abandons me. He has shown kindness to me. There have been times of spiritual dryness. There have been times of depression and distress. But these proved to be times or spiritual discipline. They were times of sanctification. In 2012 God used emotional distress to stop me from doing one thing (the house church) so that he could lead me into another ministry, (KBC and the mission to the North). There were hardships, but they were for a brief moment and it was all because of his love and his grace on my life. There was definitely a purpose.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for being kind and compassionate and giving us a glorious hope in Christ. Enlarge my heart and strengthen my faith in you.

One word: We have a real hope, therefore expand the place of our tents.

Interact with us using Facebook

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.