THE CALMNESS OF GOD

I will be still, and I will behold in my dwelling place

Isaiah 18:4

How can GOD be so calm and seem so unresponsive:

Raging mobs all around and God doesn’t say anything, He just looks on from where He is,

Quiet as the warmth that comes from the sun,

silent as dew during harvest.

And then, just before harvest, after the blossom has turned into a maturing grape,

He’ll step in and prune back the new shoots, ruthlessly hack off all the growing branches.

He’ll leave them piled on the ground for birds and animals to feed on—

Fodder for the birds, feed for the animals.

While our natural inclination is to get lathered up & hustle around in preparation for war,

Isaiah writes of the calmness of God

The Rest of God

Isaiah 18:4

“I will take my rest”

Assyrians or no Assyrians, God will do as He has planned

He wants us to Rest in His plans & ways

O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who continue to kill the prophets & to stone those who are sent to you!

How often I have desired & yearned to gather your children together around Me

as a hen [gathers] her young under her wings, but you would not!

Luke 13:34

Taking a rest was a symbolic way of showing the great calmness of God

even with the surrounding news about the Assyrians’ attack.

The Ruminating of God

Isaiah 18:4

“I will consider”

God is calm, but it does mean He‘s careless about the danger to us.

God observes the Assyrian attack, knows their desires to destroy,

and God will stop them from going any farther than He wants them to go.

The mob of attackers are described

They are pests.

“Shadowing with wings”

Isaiah 18:1

Like a swarm of Winged insects that came in a blinding cloud they were a real problem

They are positioned.

“Scattered”

Isaiah 18:2

This means they would draw out, pull up, and drag.

It is not so much to scatter at random but they were put in their location by God.
God gives every breath to our mob of enemies. He lets them exist and scatter around.

They are “Peeled”

Isaiah 18:2

Describes the smooth and glossy appearance of their skin.

They just appeared to be smooth in accomplishing chaos

They are powerful

“Terrible … meted out [measured out for destruction] and trodden down”

Isaiah 18:2

They are feared warriors who had “meted out and trodden down” many peoples.

They are plunderers.

“Whose land the rivers have spoiled”

Isaiah 18:2

Like Soil erosion caused by a flooding river they pillaged and plundered everything

But this mysterious marvel of God just being still and watching!

His stillness is not acquiescence.
His silence is not consent.

God is only biding His time, and will arise, in the right moment,

When the designs of the wicked seem on the point of success, to overwhelm them with disaster.

As we look out on the evil of the world; as we think of the apparent success of wrong-doing;

as we wince beneath the oppression of those that hate us,

We remember God’s marvelous words of being still and watching.

Jesus watches His disciples toiling at the oars through the stormy night;

Jesus watched though unseen, the successive steps of the anguish of Bethany, when Lazarus slowly passed through the stages of mortal sickness, until he succumbed to death and is put in a tomb.

Jesus was only waiting the moment He could intervene in His way in His time.

Why is He so still to us?

Why is He so unobservant;

He is watching all things;

Is His finger on thy pulse,

Is He keenly sensitive to all the fluctuations, All our ups and downs, all our highs and lows?

When will He come and save?

What is His precise moment of arrival?

We question His reticences, His seeming absences, His silences

We can be absolutely sure that He is unperplexed and undismayed as our Savior.

As the poet quells our reactions

“O troubled soul, under the rod,
Thy Father speaks, be still, be still;

Learn to be silent to our God,
And let Him mould us to His will.

“O praying soul, be still, be still,
He cannot break His plighted Word;

Sink down into His blessed will,
And wait in patience on the Lord.

“O waiting soul, be still, be strong,
And though He tarry, trust and wait;

Doubt not, He will not wait too long,
Fear not, He will not come too late.”

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