TOPIC: WHO TO FEAR
[DCLM DAILY MANNA 16 MARCH 2020 DAILY DEVOTIONAL BY PASTOR WILLIAM FOLORUNSO KUMUYI]
Text: Isaiah 8:9-22
9 Associate yourselves, O ye people, and ye shall be broken in pieces; and give ear, all ye of far countries: gird yourselves, and ye shall be broken in pieces; gird yourselves, and ye shall be broken in pieces.
10 Take counsel together, and it shall come to nought; speak the word, and it shall not stand: for God is with us.
11 For the LORD spake thus to me with a strong hand, and instructed me that I should not walk in the way of this people, saying,
12 Say ye not, A confederacy, to all them to whom this people shall say, A confederacy; neither fear ye their fear, nor be afraid.
13 Sanctify the LORD of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread.
14 And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
15 And many among them shall stumble, and fall, and be broken, and be snared, and be taken.
16 Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples.
17 And I will wait upon the LORD, that hideth his face from the house of Jacob, and I will look for him.
18 Behold, I and the children whom the LORD hath given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the LORD of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion.
19 And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? for the living to the dead?
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20 To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.
21 And they shall pass through it, hardly bestead and hungry: and it shall come to pass, that when they shall be hungry, they shall fret themselves, and curse their king and their God, and look upward.
22 And they shall look unto the earth; and behold trouble and darkness, dimness of anguish; and they shall be driven to darkness.
KEY VERSE: “Sanctify the LORD of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread.” – (Isaiah 8:13)
A citizen’s fearful and negative outlook in times of a national crisis affecting everyone does not change the unpleasant circumstances. No matter how much he frets, he would not be able to improve the situation. Nothing would change by his needless distractions, worry and anxiety. His moody condition would lead him into more straits because of needless panic and misdirected fear. He would need a greater power outside him and outside those circumstances to assure him and ease his agitated spirit.
When the Lord revealed to Isaiah that there was going to be a tumultuous and critical period in the Palestine region occasioned by an invasion of the Assyrian military forces, He went ahead to exhort the prophet not to panic like the majority of the children of Israel. They would cry ‘treason’ or ‘conspiracy’. But, according to God, the march of the Assyrians through Judah, Israel and Syria was a divine judgment on those nations.
Instead of engaging in a fruitless, helter-skelter dash for help, the prophet was to sanctify the Lord of hosts and let Him be their fear and dread. They were not to fear the enemy or be afraid of them. Having received this comforting charge, Isaiah proclaimed that he and the children the Lord had given him would not only rest on the signs and wonders of God, but also reflect these great attributes of their Maker.
Those who have faith in God must not panic in troublous times. Indeed, the real test of our trust in Christ’s promises comes into play during stormy days in our lives or ministry. We are admonished not to succumb to the fear of men which will lead to compromise of our salvation. But we are to muster courage as did the early apostles.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: Faith deals the death blow to fear.
THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Numbers 29-30