Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert… (Isaiah 43:18-19)
Our Lord does not bind himself to the expectations of men or to the habits of time. Behold, he is doing a new thing! He is not held by the thickening mud of human tradition, he makes a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert, peace among the wild beasts and sweet water to the people formed for his praise.
The prophet asks, almost incredulously, “Can’t you perceive this thing that he is doing?” Are you so blinded by your set ways that you cannot see the path God lays right before your eyes? Thus it was for the Pharisees, those blind guides who led people into darkness. So hard of heart, they refused to see salvation coming out of Zion, the Holy One of Israel, come to take away the sins of the world. They remained locked in patterns of works and self-righteousness while declaring their own praise. But the God who makes a way in the wilderness, a river in the desert, has brought something new: salvation through the suffering servant.
Do not be like the Pharisee, so consumed with his vision of himself that he was unable to perceive the mighty work of God. Be like the prophet himself, Isaiah, who saw the Lord seated on the throne and could only tremble as the angels cried out, “Holy, holy holy, is the Lord of hosts! The whole earth is full of his glory!” (Isaiah 6:1-6) God has done this great work so that the people would declare his praise (Isaiah 43:21). Christian, give praise to God!
Chris Roberts is the pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church in Panama City, FL and he blogs at Seek the Holy. He is married to Sandra and they have three kids.