Preaching, Teaching, and Notes

Seek ye the Lord

Isaiah 55:6-7 “Seek ye the Lord while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near:

       Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.”

“Seek” here means to diligently search for…to ask after, for worship.

But what does it mean…seek Him….”While He may be found”..”While He is near”?

       Isn’t He always available to us?  

(As the old story goes….an older couple in their vehicle saw this younger couple sitting next to each other.   And the wife of the older man said,  Honey, why don’t we sit like that anymore?

And the older man, who was driving,  said,  Well, I haven’t moved.

      It is never the Lord that leaves us….but we, who have moved away from Him, in some way.

It may not be far away….but it is not the love relationship that it once was.)

Here the Lord, through Isaiah, is speaking to His own people… those who have turned their backs upon Him….when He has called to them. (Proverbs 1:24)

      ( What has our hearts gone after….instead of Him?)

Therefore “seek”….diligently search…to ask after, for worship…is used here.   

       And this kind of searching is always….a matter of our hearts.

Jeremiah 29:13 “And ye shall seek Me, and find Me when ye shall search for me with all your heart.”

When our hearts are awakened to His call….and HIs claims on our lives, as His people,…then He may be found….for then He is very near,  to hear our answer to HIs call.

And how do we do this?

“Let the wicked forsake his way…”   the wicked here are “morally wrong”….

…..their lives are not giving glory to God,  but to their own lusts….wherever those lusts lead.

     ( We, as Christians, can become entangled in the world….and the world is full of corruption, as Peter says, we are to use the promises God gives us and:

       2 Peter 1:4  “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped  the corruption that is in the world through lust.”)

“Let…the unrighteous man (forsake) his thoughts…”   unrighteous means “to exert oneself in vain…to come to nothing”.

      How many are putting a lot of effort into things which are not God’s Will for them?  Seeking instead to be like someone else…or have something that is not for them?

God calls us to forsake all of these and diligently search for Him….that we may have  real satisfaction…the real blessings of His Presence and grace.

As Paul says to Timothy about the life the Lord has called him to:

2 Timothy 2:3-4 “Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.

       No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please Him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”

So the Lord will have mercy (compassion).

This is where the Lord turns His eyes toward us for good.  Mercy is God’s benevolence or kindness to sinners.   

….and God’s  pardon (forgiveness).   This is where we are returned to the Way of blessing.

Psalm 103:2-3, 10-12 “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits;

      Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; Who healeth all thy diseases;

      He hath not dealt with us after our sins;  nor rewarded us according to our iniquities.

      For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward them that fear Him.

      As far as the east is from the west, so far hath He removed our transgressions from us.”

And where do we search for Him?    

You search for Him, where you last walked with Him…where you last heard HIs Voice.

Wherever you left the path of duty….there He is.   He is waiting to be gracious….but we must search diligently….for the place we lost Him.

And how do we search?   First, by prayer and confession.  Then by getting up out of what we have gotten ourselves into in the world….and leaving all for Christ.

His call is always:  “Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away.”  (Song of Solomon 2:10)

Isaiah 1:18 “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord:  though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow;  though they be as crimson, they shall be as wool.”

(Scarlet and crimson are the bright red colors from  a certain worm.  This worm was crushed to get the color of these…and these are the colors associated with Christ in HIs sacrifice for us.

  Our   Lord looked like this scarlet worm as He hung on the cross….when His body was covered with blood which was shed to make our crimson and scarlet sins as white as snow.)

The Lord calls us to “reason” with Him….to get right, to correct ourselves under His direction and care…..for it is….”to reason together”.

Lord, what am I,  that, with unceasing care, 

Thou didst see after me,—That Thou didst wait,

Wet with unhealthy dews, before my gate,

And pass the gloomy nights of winter there?

How oft my guardian angel gently cried, 

Soul, from thy casement…look, and thou shalt see,

   How He persists to knock and wait for thee!

The call is…”Seek ye the Lord while He may be found….call ye upon Him while He is near:

     Let the wicked forsake his way and the unrighteous man his thoughts…and let him return unto the Lord…for He will have mercy….and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.”

HIs pardon,  as we probably already know….is abundant.  Pressed down and running over with forgiveness….and peace.   

    And in the place of crimson sins….we have the white snow of HIs righteousness and the purpose of His life running through us.

“Seek”….”Call”….”forsake”….”return”….for our Lord Jesus will forgive by His merits….and our God will set us free from guilt and bondage…and give us life…abundantly.

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