e mërkurë, 9 prill 2008

Isaiah 37:26-32

Passage: Isaiah 37:26-32
Sennacherib’s Fall.
26 "'Have you not heard
that I determined it long ago?
I planned from days of old
what now I bring to pass,
that you should make fortified cities
crash into heaps of ruins,

27 while their inhabitants, shorn of strength,
are dismayed and confounded,
and have become like plants of the field
and like tender grass,

like grass on the housetops,
blighted before it is grown.
28 "'I know your sitting down
and your going out and coming in,
and your raging against me.

29 Because you have raged against me
and your complacency has come to my ears,
I will put my hook in your nose
and my bit in your mouth,
and I will turn you back on the way
by which you came.'
30 "And this shall be the sign for you: this year you shall eat what grows of itself, and in the second year what springs from that. Then in the third year sow and reap, and plant vineyards, and eat their fruit.

31 And the surviving remnant of the house of Judah shall again take root downward and bear fruit upward.

32 For out of Jerusalem shall go a remnant, and out of Mount Zion a band of survivors. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this.

Journal: In verses 26-30, God is addressing King Sennacherib and Assyria. In verses 30-32, God is addressing King Hezekiah and Judah. God is sovereign, and no good or bad thing happens outside His purview. God is sovereign, and no good or bad man takes a step without His nod. Verse 28 is indicative of His great reach. ["I know your sitting down and your going out and coming in, and your raging against me."] His pronouncement to this man of evil [King Sennacherib] is basically identical to His pronouncement centuries earlier to the man after His own heart [King David]. [Psalm 139:1-3 -- "O LORD, you have searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways."]

God does not put the "good" in motion, and then flinch and wince when the "bad" rears its ugly head. All things, both good and bad, are set in place by God to further His great glory. He knows us intimately, and He knows our "raging against [Him]." It is a great mystery indeed, an antinomy, to ponder that His righteousness and our sinfulness both travel down the path toward His glory. Yet, it is His great glory that He furthers, and the righteousness of God and the sinfulness of man are indeed part of His glorious revelation. His plan includes both His sovereign will ["Have you not heard that I determined it long ago? I planned from days of old what now I bring to pass . . ."] and our human accountability ["Because you have raged against me and your complacency has come to my ears . . ."] This is a mystery indeed. Yet, it is His glory that provides the solution. ["The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this."]

Note: Below is the latest update from Alan and Michelle Smith on the progress of their daughter Tiffany Grace, who was born premature and is still in the hospital after many weeks. Please continue to pray for this family --

UPDATE 4/08/08

Tiffany is doing quite well and is now 6 lbs 2 oz (a 2 lb gain from her low mark). She is alert, active when awake and now taking full feeds from the bottle and/or breast. A miraculous recovery of which we give the Lord great praise! By now we thought we would have her home as her due date was this past Friday. Unfortunately, she continues to have “brady’s” (where she pauses her breathing or stops breathing) and her heart rate drops and her O2 saturations drop. She comes out of these on her own most of the time, but still makes the doctor nervous with regard to going home. The main culprit to this is most likely reflux which most premies have to some degree. Tiffany’s is moderate to severe depending on the day. They are treating it, but don’t have it under control yet. They have also ran 4-5 more tests on her and all is normal which is all good. We have also seen the Ear, Nose and Throat doctor this past week and he is concerned about her hearing based on the diagnostic test – nerve related hearing loss. We will test again in a couple of months to see how she has progressed. Our hope is that we will get her home in the next 2-4 weeks.

So, time is what it will take along with your prayers to keep her moving in the right direction. Please pray specifically for her hearing to be fully restored and that her reflux/breathing disorder would be resolved. It is through faith and belief that the power of prayer is accomplished. We see in Matt 9:35 (35Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness.) that Jesus is the great healer and that our faith is what is required as evidenced by Matt 9:22 (22Jesus turned and saw her. "Take heart, daughter," he said, "your faith has healed you." And the woman was healed from that moment.) We really appreciate all of your prayers and encouragement during this time. We are blessed to have such great family, friends and colleagues. Love, Michelle and Alan

Alan L. Smith