The Lord said, ‘Earth and sky, listen to what I am saying! The children I brought up have rebelled against me. Cattle know who owns them and donkeys know where their master feeds them. But that is more than my people Israel know. They don’t understand at all.’ You are doomed, you sinful nation, you corrupt and evil people! Your sins drag you down! You have rejected the Lord, the holy God of Israel, and have turned your backs on him. (verses 2-4)
Read Isaiah 1:1-9
We have a golden retriever puppy and spend considerable time training her. She can now sit, wait and even stay in one place when we go out of the room. When she does obey, we have been known to remark to our 13-year-old son, ‘If only you would obey like she does!’
But people aren’t like animals. They have minds of their own and go their own way. This is just what God’s chosen people of Israel did. And how God despaired! His words, ‘My people do not understand’, echo the pain God felt as he watched his people turn their backs on him.
Do you always understand? Do you always obey? I don’t. That is why you and I can give thanks that God did not only despair but also loved. He loved enough to send his Son to live on earth and become obedient in our place, obedient even to the point of going to his death.
Lord, help me to understand what you have done for me through Jesus Christ, and in understanding to obey. Amen.
by Anne Maczkowiack in ‘Renewed Hope for each Day’ (LCA, Openbook, 2000)
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