STABILITY FOR OUR TIMES
Isaiah 33:6 “Wisdom and knowledge will be the stability of your times, and the strength of salvation; the fear of the Lord is His treasure.”
Why do we have to go through trials? Why is it that we all must suffer indignations? It was Jesus who told us that: In this world you will have tribulations.
We humans by nature, are creatures of comfort
for the most part; we do not like it if gets too hot, and we certainly do not like when our feet get too cold. We can safely assume that the most prevalent of all human fantasies, and the only one whose realization has eluded humanity throughout all of its history, is the utopian fantasy of a society that is void of trouble.
For millennia those who lived near the ocean dreamed and longed for oceans that were void of hurricanes, tsunamis, and of invading war ships. Those who lived by rivers, lived in fear of its drying up or of its seasonal flooding, also in the fear of armies that used rivers as a highway to facilitate their conquests.
Old cities were usually built around the natural resources that allowed them to grow and to prosper, and the fear that they might lose those resources or that those resources might attract enemies, were the very cause for their anxiety and insecurity, and in many cases the reason for their demise as well; that is just a historical fact of life.
Our opening verse of Scripture seems to imply that our knowledge of the fact that, In this world we will have tribulations, will somehow bring stability into the times in which we are living, whether it be the good times or the bad times.
Proverbs 18:14 “The spirit of a man will sustain him in sickness, but who can bear a broken spirit?”
The wisdom of God will sustain the spirit of the man, and the knowledge that in all things and that at all times God is in total and complete control of whatever situation we are facing, is the hope of the soul and the strength of the salvation that God has for all of us.
Romans 8:28 “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”
If we know that God is always working out the plan and destiny that He has for our lives, and the lives of those who love Him, then we have peace, and that peace is the strength of our salvation.
Our spirit becomes sick or broken when we lose hope, and our lack of understanding is the reason why we lose our hope. We need to know deep within our souls that in order for our salvation to be strengthened, our faith must be tried, for without God’s testing in our lives we will never find the treasures that our Lord has for us all.
The fear of the Lord, which is the reverence due to the promises given to us, the believers, by God in His Word, are His treasure!
Abraham had to face the death of his son, the son of promise, before he could find the life of the Son of God that was promised to him in the covenant that followed his testing.
A parent might ask from the depths of their bereavement, after the death of their innocent child: How does the death of my child that I loved be in any way constructive to me and to the plans that God has for my life?
That is a question that only God is qualified to answer, since it was He who voluntarily gave us His most precious Son, not only to die, but to be vilified and tortured; not just physical torture, but He had to endure horrific demonic oppression to the depths that no other human had ever endured, and unlike us who are worthy of punishment because of all our sins, He endured all that He did for the sake of demonstrating His perfect love for us; that while we were still sinners Christ died for us.
Matthew 19:14 “ But Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven.’”
I’ve officiated over a few funerals in my ministry life, they ranged from complete strangers that I had never met, to very close dear loved ones whose departure broke my heart.
The resurrection Scriptures that I’ve quoted over the strangers that I buried would not have had as much meaning and intensity to me if it were not for the fact that they were the very same resurrection Scriptures that I’ve quoted over the loved ones that I’ve buried. Though about to be buried, I proclaimed those Scriptures over them in the hope that some day I would see them alive again in the flesh.
In a gravesite service for a Christian elderly woman whom I had never met, and in the presence of a few people that included some of the workers that would be burying her after I finish the service, all of the sudden I had tears rundown my face when I spoke about the surety of her resurrection from the dead someday.
The people that were present did not know that as I was speaking with conviction of faith about her future resurrection from the dead, that the Lord spoke to my heart and said to me, You might not have known who she was in this life, but one day soon you will meet her in person when I raise all my children who trust My Words from the dead.
It was there that it became so real to me; for right there it hit me, the reality that we have not followed cunningly devised fables, for we were eye witnesses of Christ’s resurrection, one of the apostles said.
Death may loom large above us now while on this earth, but the reality of His resurrected life dissipates all gloominess and fears, for we know that someday soon He will raise us up.
Isaiah 33:10 “Now I will rise, says the Lord; now I will be exalted, now I will lift Myself up.”
For us Christians, death is a non-issue, or at least it should be. I am not saying that it does not hurt when we lose a loved one, for it does; or that we should not mourn properly, for it is necessary for us to do so. Who among us has not experienced the death of a loved one or will one day experience the sting of death for ourselves?
For it is appointed unto men once to die.
The revelation of the knowledge that I am trying to teach here revolves around the fact that to God all live. And if we are believers of the Word of God, then according to God’s Word the loved ones that we’ve lost are not dead, and must certainly they are not lost; we have been separated from them temporarily, but they are definitely neither lost nor dead to God.
2 Samuel 12:22-23 “...While the child was alive, I fasted and wept; for I said, ‘Who can tell whether the Lord will be gracious to me, that the child may live? But now he is dead; why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me.’”
The foundation of Christianity itself stands on the fact of the reality of the physical resurrection from the dead. We do not believe in a sort of a wishy-washy existence after we’re dead that somehow coexists with the elements of nature.
After we die we do not live as spirits among the trees or the mountains, not even in the clouds; as believers of Jesus Christ, after we die we go to a real place called heaven, in a new body that is given to us after we die, and we are taken before our living Savior, who is sitting in a real throne with a real physical body.
And not only that but the loved ones that preceded us will be there to greet us as well, along with our Savior. And we need to know these facts if we want to enjoy rock solid stability in the face of calamities.
2 Corinthians 5:1 “For we know that if our earthly house, this tent (our physical body) is destroyed (dies), we have a building from God, a house (new body) not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.”
Our new eternal bodies will display the spiritual qualities that our earthly bodies presently hinder, for while here in our present physical appearance we are not capable of displaying our true person.
So that our person will be known in heaven to all who knew us here on the earth, even though the physical appearance of our new body in heaven might differ a lot from what we looked like here on earth. Children and infants will be grown ups for example.
That is because many if not all of us, have bodies here on this earth that have been deformed by the consequences of the iniquity which our bodies have inherited, the iniquities that caused the development of our present bodies to deviate from God’s original blue print for us.
But our redeemed personalities will be showcased through the perfectness of our new bodies in an incredibly amazing choreography of God’s individuality for each one of us, that will be made known to all:
We will know as we are known!
Isaiah 33:24 “And the inhabitant will not say, ‘I am sick’; the people who dwell in it (their new bodies) will be forgiven their iniquities.”
The wisdom of knowing that we are but sojourners on this earth, and that our destiny is one of gain, peace, and perfection, brings into our souls the stability that keeps us strong through whatever adversities we must travel; for in the end, His great and precious promises are the treasure that will reward our faithfulness if we don’t give up!
HEBREWS 10:23 “FOR HE THAT PROMISED IS FAITHFUL!”