Last year I made it a goal for myself to read through the entire Bible.
Growing up in the church, I have been memorizing verses and listening to stories
about Noah’s Arc since I stepped out of the womb.
I finally came to a point in my life, however, where I realized the importance of knowing exactly what I believe. And if I claim to believe in the Bible, I want to know it cover to cover.
This has brought so much revelation to my life about who God is and who I am through Christ. I started with the New Testament, and now I am making my way through the Old.
So I’m in Isaiah right now…
Which can be a little overwhelming.
The beginning is filled with description after description of God’s anger for the rebellious people who turned against Him despite everything He did for them.
I think for a lot of people living on earth today, this is the picture of God that they carry…..
But as I actually read these passages, what is sticking out to me is God’s forgiveness. His love. Not only did he eventually send his son to die on the cross to save a people who wanted nothing to do with him, but he also offers so many promises in the book of Isaiah, urging his people to return to him… and offering open arms.
Isaiah 30:15 "Only in returning to me and resting in me will you be saved.
In quietness and confidence is your strength."
Isaiah 30:18 "So the Lord must wait for you to come to him so he can show you his love and compassion. For the Lord is a faithful God. Blessed are those who wait for his help."
These verses make it so evident. God is always willing to accept with open arms anyone who has turned against him. It doesn’t matter what bad things you have done. “You don’t have to clean off in the sink before you get into the shower”
–It doesn’t make sense.
God made the church for sinners. We are all sinners.
What makes the difference is realizing that
and letting God cleanse us!
Like the father in the parable of the prodigal son (which you can find here), he wants so badly for his children to return to him!!!
But you have to come to him. He will not force anyone to receive his love. He will love us, regardless. But whether we enter his open arms is up to us!
Often times, even as a Christian, its easy to believe the lie that sins that we commit separate us from the love of God.
THIS IS NOT TRUE!!!
Romans 8:38 says "And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God's love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow--not even the powers of hell can separate us from God's love."
Here is another promise from Isaiah that I really liked:
Isaiah 26:3 You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you,
all those whose thoughts are fixed on you!
I want to keep my thoughts fixed on Him and his peace!