“Listen to me, O coastlands, and give attention, you peoples from afar. The Lord called me from the womb, from the body of my mother he named my name. He made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of his hand he hid me; he made me a polished arrow; in his quiver he hid me away. And he said to me, “You are my servant, Israel, in whom I will be glorified…I will make you as a light for the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth.””
Isaiah 49:1-3, 6
Full text: Isaiah 49:1-6.
This letter shouldn’t be read as a historical document for the people of Israel. It begins as a letter sent out to all nations so even though it immediately addresses the people of Israel, the writer is essentially talking to all of us…you and me included.
Like the Jews, many people have been exiled from God. Exiled by their irritation with the church, exiled by their busy-ness with life …exiled because at one point it was fashionable to not be in a relationship with God. And the question is where will their salvation come from?
Isaiah makes the wondrous claim that “the servant” who has been prepared for this very situation, will be the one who brings the people back, but the manner would not be through force, but through the power of his mouth.
Each of us Christians is that “servant.”
It is what we says and do that will bring real salvation to others…not physical deliverance. In other words we cannot beat people into repentance…neither will sprinkling water do the trick. It is our word and our deed that will direct them to Christ.
God saw His own wayward people and brought them back into relationship with Him through Jesus…by the example of His life and by His sacrifice.
Today Jesus is not here in person, but He is here through each of us who have accepted Him as Lord and Saviour.
This is the true meaning of Isaiah prediction in v. 6, which says “that my salvation may reach the ends of the earth.”
When each of us in our corner of the earth emulate our Lord Jesus Christ, then through us, others may come to know Christ and receive their salvation.
Lord Jesus, You have brought us back into relationship with You by being our salvation. Give us hearts of flesh, warmed by the truths of your goodness, that through the display of these truths in our lives others may be drawn to You and also be saved. In your Name we pray, Amen.