Isaiah 54 – Shaken, but not Stirred

Hey FBE-ers!

I am continuing my meditation through Isaiah 54. You can catch last week’s here, and the one before that, here.

Almost 5 years ago I stood atop Masada near the Dead Sea.
It is an ancient fortress built upon a cliff.

Soon after the Roman destruction of the Temple in 70AD, it was one of the last holdouts of Jewish rebels.
It took thousands and thousands of Roman soldiers and Jewish slaves something like 3 months to conquer the fortress.

Our tour guides taught us that while the soldiers and slaves toiled below, in the desert heat, the Jews atop the fortress could swim in the thousands and thousands of gallons of water stored in the many cisterns of the fortress and feast out of the many storehouses.  They taught us that when the Romans finally broke through, the Jews decided to die by their own hands, committing mass suicide, instead of being slaves to Rome.  Before dying they poisoned all of the cisterns but one and burnt all of the food stores but one. Thus, they shared little of their stores with the Romans, but made sure the Romans knew the luxury in which they lived their last days.

I’ve heard, but have been unable to confirm, that Israeli jets will still tip their wings toward Masada in salute.

The story of Masada can be an inspiring story.
However, Masada is a ruin today.

An ancient, deserted ruin.

Every human fortress in history has been overthrown,
and every present fortress will one day be thrown down.

That is a fact.

Though people may stand their ground in their fortresses for a time,
their standing will not last in human-built fortifications.

But God is an unconquerable fortress.
When He plants His feet nothing will move Him.

When He speaks a Word it is immediately so, and it is eternally so.

So…
Hear this Word:

To me this is like the days of Noah,
when I swore that the waters of Noah would never again cover the earth.

So now I have sworn not to be angry with you,
never to rebuke you again.

Though the mountains be shaken
and the hills be removed,

yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken
nor my covenant of peace be removed,

says the LORD, who has compassion on you.
Isaiah 54:9-10

The earth will one day be rolled up like a scroll.
But the Love of God lasts forever.

And He has declared that His covenant of peace with us will never be removed, His love not be shaken, His anger never again kindled against us as before, and His rebuke is removed.

All of this because of what Christ did for us:
Isaiah 53:10-11
Yet it was the LORD’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,
and though the LORD makes his life a guilt offering,
he will see his offspring and prolong his days,
and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand.

After the suffering of his soul,
he will see the light of life and be satisfied,
by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many,
and he will bear their iniquities.

He was crushed so that He could become an indestructible fortress of our love and worship of God.

Christian,
Hear His words to you:

To me this is like the days of Noah,
when I swore that the waters of Noah would never again cover the earth.

So now I have sworn not to be angry with you,
never to rebuke you again.

Though the mountains be shaken
and the hills be removed,

yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken
nor my covenant of peace be removed,

says the LORD, who has compassion on you.
Isaiah 54:9-10

Walk today in His love.
Believing that His love is an unconquerable fortress around you.

He is not waiting for you to screw up to rebuke you.
On the contrary,
He has removed His rebuke from you.
His anger is no longer directed toward you.

He has breathed love and a covenant of peace upon you.

Live today in full confidence of His love.

If you find yourself shaken by the trials of life…
shaken by the darkness of the present age…
shaken by your tendency to wander from His ways…

If you find yourself shaken,
do not be stirred up into shame and fear.
Do not be stirred up into depression an dismay.

He has sworn not to be angry with you as He was before you were in Christ.
He has sworn never to rebuke you again as He would before you were in Christ.
His love and mercy and grace over you is an immovable fortress.
Instead, Stand in His fortress of Love.

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints,
(Ephesians 6:10-18 ESV)

Shaken and Standing With You,
Nick

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I've been on staff at FBE since 2012. Where I first was hired as a creative coordinator, I am now the Pastoral Assistant. I married my beautiful best friend, Ashley Garcia on December 19, 2015. Knowing God is a constant and endless pursue, third wave coffee is a must, punk rock and hardcore keep my spirits high.

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