Bible Reading: Isaiah 41:10-20
“For I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, “Fear not, I am the one who helps you.” (Isaiah 41:13)
We live in evil times. Day by day, I realise just how strong Satan’s rule over this world is. He is working effectively and ingeniously to bring down the church and attack God. This age is really an evil age. Built upon post-modernism and the ideologies of relative truth, Satan is working tactically to lure people away from Christ, the Truth.
To you, this might be an abstract concept. However, it is very much concrete. You must have heard statements along the lines of, “that is true for you but not for me, let’s respect each others opinions” or “we can’t judge because they are different, they have the right to express themselves”. Satan is gearing ideologies and philosophies behind these claims to break down firm faith in those who believe in God. The world is ecstatic and passionate about these lies, and Satan uses that to indoctrinate us at all times. We hear it on the news, in our TV shows, on social media, from our friends, from our schools – there is no way to escape. In his subtle craftiness, Satan is luring us away from God without us, even realising.
Satan’s ruling is vast, and his power is mighty. His success can be evidently measured by the lack of concern in Christians who care little to none about these lies we are surrounded with, and about the truth of Scripture which is our only defence. In such a world, it is easy to be discouraged and dismayed. We often feel small, incapable and alone as we battle to stay afloat in the tempest of this world. Not only is Satan’s lies choking us from all sides, but it is also the fact that he succeeds in afflicting us that causes us the falter. Day after day again, we succumb and fall into the devil’s traps. We are helpless and weak, and a lot of the time God feels distant and unhelpful. Where are His faithfulness and steadfast hope?
Despite our doubts and fears, God declares in promise, “fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10). God’s promises are a certainty. There is no doubt or question about God. If God says He will uphold, then He will uphold. Trust in Him, and in retrospect, praise Him for His abundant faithfulness.
Concerning our enemy, God promises, “those who strive against you shall be as nothing and shall perish” (Isaiah 41:11). God, the LORD, is on our side. He is for us, and He is fighting the ultimate battle for us. Despite the brokenness and sinfulness of the world today, God will reign victorious above all, and His rulership will be established. In the end, we are victorious because God’s righteousness will overcome evil.
Concerning our present helplessness, God promises, “When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue is parched with thirst, I the LORD will answer them; I the God of Israel will not forsake them” (Isaiah 41:17). God is our stronghold. He is our source of life. Only in Him will we find rest and comfort and fulfilment. To the broken who knows there is no other water, God is a gushing stream. Through His Word, God promises to water our dry and hopeless faith. In His love, He promises to lavish us joy, satisfaction and hope in Him. He is who we ultimately need, and He is there, waiting for us.
What is the end goal of all this? v 20 says, “that they may see and know, may consider and understand together, that the hand of the LORD has done this, the Holy One of Israel has created it.” God works all things for His glory, that He may be known and uplifted above all heaven and earth. When God works for our good, He is most glorified. When we are most helpless yet saved and restored by the almighty God, His Name is lifted on high, and He is glorified.
Have you put your trust in God today? Is He your stronghold in these evil times? As John Piper puts it, “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him”.
Lord, You are my one and only hope. These days are evil. Satan is working ever so harder to pull Your people away from You. I need help, God. Please forgive me because over and over again, I fall back into sin. Please strengthen me. In You, I hope that You will win the final victory against evil, and in You, I hope that You may fill me and satisfy me only in Your person. As You have promised, do not leave me. Uphold me and flood me with satisfaction in Your person alone through Your Word. Thank You, God, for Your promises. In Jesus’ name, amen.