Isaiah 25:1-2 ESV
“O Lord, you are my God;
I will exalt you; I will praise your name,
for you have done wonderful things,
plans formed of old, faithful and sure.
For you have made the city a heap,
the fortified city a ruin;
the foreigners’ palace is a city no more;
it will never be rebuilt.”
Who is our enemy, our greatest foe? Satan! And, how does he come against us? In what ways? His tactics are many!! Sometimes he just attacks our minds. He puts doubts and fears in our minds and hearts. He attacks us with lies against us. Or, the lies are that we are without resource, and that God will not come to our aid, but that we will be left alone with none to help.
Does Satan have power over us who are the Lord’s by God-given faith in Jesus Christ? No! Can he cause us harm? Most certainly! Can he bring havoc into our lives? Yes! Look at the example of Job in the Old Testament. We who are in Christ are not immune to Satan’s attacks against our bodies, our minds, our hearts, our families, our marriages, and/or our reputations.
But, does he have power over us? No! Only as we let him. For, if we entertain his attacks against our minds and hearts, and if we dwell on what is negative, and if we give way to fear, then we allow him to have power over us. But, if we put on the armor of God to fight off his evil attacks against us, then he has lost his power. He can’t wield any power over us if we are yielded to our Lord.
For, he is a defeated foe. In Jesus’ death on the cross to take away the sins of the world, he conquered Satan, sin and death, so that as followers of Jesus, Satan has no more dominion over us. He and his hordes are like this fortified city that is no more. We just have to live like we believe that. We have to daily put on that armor of God and fight off Satan’s attacks against us, and we have to move forward in the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen!
Isaiah 25:3-5 ESV
“Therefore strong peoples will glorify you;
cities of ruthless nations will fear you.
For you have been a stronghold to the poor,
a stronghold to the needy in his distress,
a shelter from the storm and a shade from the heat;
for the breath of the ruthless is like a storm against a wall,
like heat in a dry place.
You subdue the noise of the foreigners;
as heat by the shade of a cloud,
so the song of the ruthless is put down.”
The Lord is our refuge and our strength, a very present help to us in trouble. Even though bad things may happen to us, and we may go through some serious trials and tribulations, which are to test our faith, our Lord is with us.
He is our strength and our help. He will help us to remain steadfast in spirit and in faith. So, we need to be still, and know that He is God, and that he will be exalted among the unbelieving world and in the earth (see Ps. 46).
All that “noise” that is coming against us, because of Satan’s attacks against us, God will silence within us if we will turn to him in faith, and if we will find our rest in him, and if we will reject Satan’s lies and hold fast to the truth.
Isaiah 25:6-8 ESV
“On this mountain the Lord of hosts will make for all peoples
a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wine,
of rich food full of marrow, of aged wine well refined.
And he will swallow up on this mountain
the covering that is cast over all peoples,
the veil that is spread over all nations.
He will swallow up death forever;
and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces,
and the reproach of his people he will take away from all the earth,
for the Lord has spoken.”
I love this part! I will explain why in a minute.
What kind of covering is cast over all peoples? What is the veil that is spread over all the nations? I believe it is deception. For, Satan is the great deceiver, and he goes about the earth growling and seeking whom he may devour. And, one of the biggest ways he devours people is via his lies. He catches them in his trap of deception, and they end up believing his lies and rejecting the truth.
And, there are so many ways in which Satan is presently deceiving the masses, including within the church. And, he can deceive us, too, if we are not aware of his tactics, and if we are not daily putting on that spiritual armor. For, his lies are many and varied. They come in all different sizes and colors, too. They may be outward, coming from other people, or they may be whispered in our ears, in the recesses of our minds and hearts.
Some of those lies are coming from church leaders who are telling people that faith in Jesus Christ is a mere profession of faith but that it does not have to alter their lifestyles one bit. Or they recommend spiritual growth, but they don’t require it. They make it optional. And, so many people are believing they are saved from their sins and bound for heaven while they are still in slavery to sin and bound for hell. So, that lie is deadly!!
And, then there is the news media, and social media, and our government leaders. Many of them also spew out lies. And, many of them are involved in fear mongering, too. Reading the news is a lot like watching TV soap operas. Social media is not much different. There is angst all the time. There always seems to be something to get people’s “feathers ruffled” and fighting against one another. This is of Satan!
And, then you have the world of psychology which is giving some mental illness diagnosis for pretty much every sin or every lie of Satan known to man, or it would appear. And, so the masses are being convinced that they have to take drugs to exist every day, and that they can’t live without these drugs, as though drugs are their savior. They aren’t! Only Christ is!!!
Ok, so why do I love this part? Because through Jesus’ death and resurrection he lifted that veil of deception from the eyes of all who would believe in him, and who would put their trust in him. We now have spiritual eyes to see those lies and to reject them, and to put on the truth of God’s Word, if we will listen to our Lord, and if we will reject the lies, and if we will put on the truth.
But, I also believe a day is coming when God judges “Babylon,” and that when that day comes, all of a sudden the eyes of many will see that they have been deceived, and that they will turn their hearts to the Lord before the day Jesus returns to judge and to receive his own to himself for eternity. I am not anxious for judgment, though, but I am very much wanting to see the veil of deception lifted from the eyes of many before Jesus returns.
Isaiah 25:9-12 ESV
“It will be said on that day,
‘Behold, this is our God; we have waited for him, that he might save us.
This is the Lord; we have waited for him;
let us be glad and rejoice in his salvation.’
For the hand of the Lord will rest on this mountain,
and Moab shall be trampled down in his place,
as straw is trampled down in a dunghill.
And he will spread out his hands in the midst of it
as a swimmer spreads his hands out to swim,
but the Lord will lay low his pompous pride together with the skill of his hands.
And the high fortifications of his walls he will bring down,
lay low, and cast to the ground, to the dust.”
Right now, evil is still reigning on the earth. Right now many are being deceived. Right now Satan and his hordes are attacking the righteous, and they are persecuting the Lord’s servants and witnesses. But, one day Jesus is going to return as judge, and he will rescue his loved ones from this earth. Amen! And, so shall we be forever with our Lord, tears wiped away!
And, God will judge the unrighteous, i.e. those who refused him and who would not submit to his Lordship, and all who would not obey his commands. But, I do not rejoice that many will go to hell. For, that is a sad day, indeed. But, I do rejoice that, at last, Satan and his hordes will be defeated, and that they would no longer be able to cause harm to the beloved of God. Amen!
Master, The Tempest is Raging!
Lyrics by Mary A. Baker, 1874
Music by Horatio R. Palmer, 1874
Master, the tempest is raging!
The billows are tossing high!
The sky is o’ershadowed with blackness,
No shelter or help is nigh;
Carest Thou not that we perish?
How canst Thou lie asleep,
When each moment so madly is threat’ning
A grave in the angry deep?
Master, with anguish of spirit
I bow in my grief today;
The depths of my sad heart are troubled—
Oh, waken and save, I pray!
Torrents of sin and of anguish
Sweep o’er my sinking soul;
And I perish! I perish! dear Master—
Oh, hasten, and take control.
Master, the terror is over,
The elements sweetly rest;
Earth’s sun in the calm lake is mirrored,
And heaven’s within my breast;
Linger, O blessed Redeemer!
Leave me alone no more;
And with joy I shall make the blest harbor,
And rest on the blissful shore.
The winds and the waves shall obey Thy will,
Peace, be still!
Whether the wrath of the storm-tossed sea,
Or demons or men, or whatever it be,
No waters can swallow the ship where lies
The Master of ocean, and earth, and skies;
They all shall sweetly obey Thy will,
Peace, be still! Peace, be still!
They all shall sweetly obey Thy will,
Peace, peace, be still!
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