Steve Ellison: Who Can Speak This Way?

Wednesday, April 21, 2021 - by Steve Ellison

One of the great tragedies of our modern era is that such a large portion of our society claims to believe in “god”, or some greater being, or some higher power. They are likely to identify themselves as spiritual but not religious. They are likely to have settled on the idea that this “god” is not concerned with their behavior, respect, or lack of respect for him/her/it. Personally, that type of spirituality/religion is not appealing to me and furthermore, I do not have enough faith to believe that.  It seems to me that believing in a specific Creator God, who claims to have revealed Himself directly and positively to His creation seems to have a lot more plausibility especially given the way that the revelation has been given.

The formation of the Bible itself is a miraculous occurrence that gives great reason for trusting the God revealed in the Bible. 

 

Isaiah 44:24-28 includes a series of rhetorical questions, in which it is abundantly clear that there is only one correct answer, and that answer is clear. In reality, they are to be seen as simple declarations of fact. The passage concludes with a prediction/promise of what this God will of a certainty cause to come to pass. Verse 24 states, "This is what the LORD says — your Redeemer, who formed you in the womb: I am the LORD, who has made all things, who alone stretched out the heavens, who spread out the earth by myself. (NIV) Wow! What an interesting lead-in. The speaker identifies Himself as the one who presented Himself to Moses from the burning bush as the Great I Am.  He goes on to point out that He created and redeemed the hearer. We should note that there is a clear anti-abortion sentiment here.  Yahweh is your Creator, your Redeemer, and He formed you before you were born.  This is where humans get appropriate self-esteem.

 

The speaker continues His claims in verse 25, Who foils the signs of false prophets and makes fools of diviners, who overthrows the learning of the wise and turns it into nonsense. (NIV) The speaker has just declared His supremacy over all the gods of the earth. He will lay bare all the deceptions of deceivers, swindlers, false prophets, and charlatans of every stripe. The so-called wisdom of the world will be shown to be false and useless when confronted with His wisdom. It is so. In every place, in every age, where men have turned away from the clear instructions of the God of the Bible, human flourishing has ceased, and misery has become the norm.

 

Driving His point home, the speaker even claims control over the future in verses 26-28, Who carries out the words of his servants and fulfills the predictions of his messengers, who says of Jerusalem, 'It shall be inhabited,' of the towns of Judah, 'They shall be built,' and of their ruins, 'I will restore them,'  who says to the watery deep, 'Be dry, and I will dry up your streams,' who says of Cyrus, 'He is my shepherd and will accomplish all that I please; he will say of Jerusalem, "Let it be rebuilt," and of the temple, "Let its foundations be laid." '(NIV)

 

This speaker claims sovereignty over the future actions of men, nations, and nature.  Make no mistake. The God of the Bible, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, without hesitation declares Himself to be the Sovereign Creator, Sustainer, and Judge of the universe. His words do not return void. He is the uncreated Creator. He is the Eternal One, the Unchanging One, The Great I Am That I Am. He rightly expects your worship.


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