Saturday, May 24, 2008

Precious Memories Isaiah 43:23-28


• Memorial Day is a very special holiday. It is striking different than most holidays because it is not about celebrating with family as much it is about remembering those who have sacrificed themselves for us.
• I am not aware of a single giddy song that has been penned like Frosty the Snowman was for Christmas. I am not aware of any special chocolates candies being sold or gifts being exchanged.. No Memorial Day is more about deep thoughts about those who have laid down their lives for us and remembering exactly what is that we have forgotten.
• In truth, it is sad that we have to take the time, set aside a day and have it preprinted on a calendar. We should have the presence of mind to hold these brave and valiant servants in a higher regard and not let their courageous service slip away.
• That is why I think what we say and do hear today is gravely important. What we remember here today is of astounding importance because it points others as well as our own hearts to what is most important.
• As we look at this mornings text I pray if will be painfully clear what it most important what or who should be remembered most of all. Who is it that gave their live in service for us and our countrymen in such a way that they should be remembered above all others?

Isaiah 43:22-28 "But you have not called upon Me, O Jacob; And you have been weary of Me, O Israel. 23 You have not brought Me the sheep for your burnt offerings, Nor have you honored Me with your sacrifices. I have not caused you to serve with grain offerings, Nor wearied you with incense. 24 You have bought Me no sweet cane with money, Nor have you satisfied Me with the fat of your sacrifices; But you have burdened Me with your sins, You have wearied Me with your iniquities. 25 "I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake; And I will not remember your sins. 26 Put Me in remembrance; Let us contend together; State your case, that you may be acquitted. 27 Your first father sinned, And your mediators have transgressed against Me. 28 Therefore I will profane the princes of the sanctuary; I will give Jacob to the curse, And Israel to reproaches.




We Have Forgotten God

But you have not called upon Me, O Jacob; And you have been weary of Me, O Israel. 23 You have not brought Me the sheep for your burnt offerings, Nor have you honored Me with your sacrifices. I have not caused you to serve with grain offerings, Nor wearied you with incense. 24 You have bought Me no sweet cane with money, Nor have you satisfied Me with the fat of your sacrifices; But you have burdened Me with your sins, You have wearied Me with your iniquities
• The first portion of our text can be summed us as “We Have Forgotten God.” Listen to the words of God as He directly speaks to our shame. Not only does God address the shameful lack of attention, but his neatly lists them for us.
o First the Great Adonai reminds us that we have forgotten God as we have forgotten our relationship with Him. It is brought to our attention that we pay little attention to our relationship with God as we do not call upon the name God.
o But this portion of Word does not address just the fact that we are indifferent towards God, but that we are worship something else other that Him. Our actions of piety are really about ourselves. We are living religion and not faith.
o As the Lords address our lack of desire, “Nor wearied you with incense,” He does not beat around the bush. He openly and honestly tells that we have not worn Him out. He is not bone weary from being overcome with so many requests. We have not worn out our welcome because we have spent too much time with Him. Yahweh’s ears do not ache because we have prayed too much.
• Quite the contrary has happened. Verse 24 call us out. Isaiah 43:24 You have bought Me no sweet cane with money, Nor have you satisfied Me with the fat of your sacrifices; But you have burdened Me with your sins, You have wearied Me with your iniquities.
o We have not brought our Redeemer God the sweetness of our sacrifices, but we have devoured sin like candy. We have weighed Him down with our sins and burdened Him with our faults. We kept bringing Him our sin and piling up the trophies our offences, indiscretions and purposed transgressions
o Instead of carrying to God the offering of our sins in which we admit We Have Forgotten God, we need to confess our failure and take purposeful steps to live for Him.


God Has Not Forgotten Us
God shifts out attention in this next verse as He directs us to how He is still fulfilling His side of the relationship. And even though we have forgotten God we need to understand that God has not forgotten us.

25 “I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake; And I will not remember your sins.
• Like unfolding the flaps of a gift box to see what is inside, El Shaddi, the Almighty, opens up for us how He has not forgotten us.
o God pulls away the tissue paper to reveal to us the excellency of God's gift of salvation. Look at the focus of who does the salvation work for us.
o I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake. It can unmistakably be seen God is the One who cleans the sin in our life. He and only He as the Almighty have the capabilities to remove the stain and the stench of sin that is ground in to our souls like grass on the knees of a 5th grader after recess.
o What is even more important and drastically more impressive is His faithfulness found the second half of this verse - I will not remember your sins. Not only does God not forget us but he purposely forgets our sins.
o This is where God’s remembrance of us comes into play. It His remembrance to continually forget the sins we have committed against When we yield ourselves to Him and with a penitent heart ask for forgiveness He no longer remembers
o Hebrews 8:12 For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more."
o We should find great satisfaction and have supreme gratification in these words as we find that we can feel confident that our Savior will not leave and will not fail.
o And if we do have fleeting moments of faith … if we do find ourselves feeling as sure let us be reminded these words in Isaiah 44:21 “Remember these, O Jacob, and Israel, for you are My servant; I have formed you, you are My servant; O Israel, you will not be forgotten by Me! It is true that God Has Not Forgotten Us.




Remember Our Situation
There is still a point that must be addressed. This point deals with us. We must Remember our Situation. Let us look at the Text again to see what we are talking about.

26 Put Me in remembrance; Let us contend together; State your case, that you may be acquitted. 27 Your first father sinned, And your mediators have transgressed against Me. 28 Therefore I will profane the princes of the sanctuary; I will give Jacob to the curse, And Israel to reproaches
• Here we find ourselves with the imperative to remember God. This is a command that is to start now and keep going coupled with the design of never stopping.
• This command leaps from the pages at the Bible. Yet, it is not the situation that we are in. Not we find out grim situation in the rest of this text.
• We are told that we need to be acquitted. That our sins need to be canceled out. We need exoneration from our sins. The reason that we need this pardon is that we have a long line of sin in our lives. It started with Adam has never stopped. For our personal sins we are inform that we are cursed and will be castigated. Reproach stands waiting for us. Rebuke is ahead.
• What we really need as we Remember Our Situation is that we are in need of God’s everlasting grace. We are in need of His beautiful mercy. We are not in need being embraced by Him, but crashing head first into His Love. We desperately must barrel into His benevolence, into his fellowship and in to his compassion. As we Remember Our Situation as sinners we must also know that we need Christ from on high to save us as lowly sinner. We need His goodness to drench us are entrust ourselves to Him and handover our determination to be our own. For years we have walked apart from Him. We have chosen to do things by our own feeble power. We have disgraced and shamed ourselves. In the process We Have Forgotten God and we have forgotten our first love. We walked way from God, but God Has Not Forgotten Us. As much as we may try to forget our sins, time will come when we have to Remember Our Situation. For you and me, today, right here, now in fact, we can instead commit ourselves to Christ and walk not only in freedom from our sin, but in full fellowship with God.
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1 comment:

Bezner said...

Chris, good thoughts. Thanks.