Sunday, April 13, 2008

He is Able to Deliver Thee!

"Behold, all ye that kindle a fire, that compass yourselves about with sparks: walk in the light of your fire, and in the sparks that ye have kindled. This ye shall have of Mine hand; ye shall lay down in sorrow." (Isaiah 50:11)

What a solemn warning to those who walk in darkness and yet who try to find a
way out into the light. They are represented as kindling a fire, and compassing themselves with sparks. what does this mean?

Why, it means that when we are in darkness the temptation is to find a way without trusting in the Lord and relying on Him. Instead of letting Him help us
out. We seek the light of nature, and get advice of our friends, we try the conclusions of our reason, and might almost be tempted to accept a way of deliverance which would not be of God at all.

All of these are fires of our own kindling; rush lights which will surely lead us unto the shoals. And God will let us walk in the light of those sparks, but the end will be sorrow.Beloved, do not try to get out of a dark place, except in God's time in God's way. The time of trouble is meant to teach you a lesson that you sorely need.

Premature deliverance may frustrate God's work of grace in your life. Just commit the whole situation to Him. Be willing to abide in darkness so long as you have His presence. Remember it is better to walk in the dark with God than to walk alone in the light.- The Still Small Voice.

Cease meddling with God's plans and will. You touch anything of His- you mar the work. You may move the hand of the clock to suit you, but you do not change the time; so you may hurry the unfolding of God's will, but you harm and do not help the work. You can open a rosebud but you will spoil the flower. Leave all to Him. Hands down. Thy will, not mine. - Stephen Merritt. "Streams in The Desert" p.99


As I mused on this devotional these past few days many things stood out to me, this is a solemn warning indeed.
The scripture starts with the word 'behold' the prophet is saying "take notice, look at this" all ye who kindle/start a fire. This fire has it's beginnings with people. Before this kindling there was darkness, and the devotional goes on to speak about this darkness in reference to the child of God, and His providence in the life of His child.

I did some research on this scripture in Matt. Henry's commentary as well as another. Both speak of a child of God going through a time of darkness, and both speak of those who reject Christ, remain in a lost condition, and create their own 'light' to live by, their own self righteousness. This devotional is speaking to the former of the two.

Obviously this is not a literal fire, it is a fire/light lit in the mind, it speaks of nature, or what I would call what is 'natural' to us, or our own understanding. We know the word of God warns us against this.
In proverbs we are told in wisdom to "lean not on our own understanding, but in all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct Thy path" (Prov. 3:5) God's word also tells us there is a way that seems right unto a man, but the ways thereof are the ways of death." (Prov. 14:12) How can one direct their path in darkness? They cannot. If you were put in a boat in the middle of the sea in complete darkness and told to row to land, could you? Again, I say you could not.

The text of the passage speaks of accepting a way of deliverance that would not be of God at all. That was really something that caused me to pause. Deliverance is a good thing, but if it is not from God it will not bring about a positive end. It should be our Lord's end that we strive for in our lives. Everything that is happening in this verse is the working of man's own hand, and the Lord warns that sorrow is it's only end. We are able to bring about our own deliverance in many circumstances.
Look at Jacob and Esau. Jacob stole the birthright and left. However a future meeting was waiting for Jacob from which he could not deliver himself, only God could. Sara delivered herself from barrenness via Hagar, only to the result of much heartache for all concerned.
Later we see Sara showing a submissive spirit toward a very dark time in her life. Oh, that we would have grace and faith to wait on the Lord, he is our Mighty Deliverer, our God who is able to Save.

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