First, we are in awe of what we read in ch. 26 of Isaiah: may we be counted by the Almighty as being among “my people.” We sense we are living at a time when this is more important than ever – access through the “narrow gate” may soon cease! We remember Jesus said, “those who find it are few.” [Matt. 7 v.13,14] What a wondrous blessing to find it and feel that the guidance of our Lord is surrounding us.
The last 2 verses of our Isaiah chapter describe an event which we sense – with heart-numbing awe – is soon to happen, maybe very soon. “Come, my people, enter your chambers, and shut your doors behind you; hideyourselves for a little while until the fury has passed by. For behold, the LORD is coming out from his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity …” It is clear Isaiah is being caused to ‘see’ and write of the distant future – a time which concludes when “the dead shall live.” [v.19]
Then, in coming to our reading in Hebrews (ch, 10) we read of God’s anger with those who have “outraged the Spirit of grace?” This causes him to ask, “how much worse punishment, do you think, will be deserved…” [v.29] by those who have done this? We have seen a lot of talk – and written material – in the churches and their bookshops in recent decades about grace – it has been described as ‘the unmerited forgiveness of God.’ This is true – but it has led some (many?) to make no really serious attempt to live genuinely godly lives,
The writer of Hebrews quotes the final words of Moses we read recently in Deut. 32 (v.35,36). The words, as quoted in Hebrews, are “”Vengeance is mine; I will repay” and, “The Lord will judge his people” and then makes this awesome point! “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” [v.31]
But we must take heart from v.36. ” For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised.”
How utterly wonderful are those promises! They give an eternal meaning and purpose to our lives – as long as we have not only gone through “the narrow gate” but are treading positively on the narrow way – refusing to beinfluenced by the masses on the broad way, making sure we have not “outraged the Spirit of grace.”
By Bro D.Caudery
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