Isaiah 45: 1-12
INTRO: Man has recurring tendency to ANTICIPATE GOD– preconceived idea as to how God should save, deliver, etc. Often those who are longing for God, praying, expecting, miss God altogether when He comes in unexpected ways. We look for a dramatic sign in the sky and He works through the steady course of events; for the fire or earthquake and He speaks in the still small voice We look for a KING ON A THRONE and He comes as a baby in a stable.
WE WANT TO BE DELIVERED OUR WAY… Some had rather say in bondage than accept God’s way of release. The method of deliverance becomes more important than the deliverance itself
WE STRIVE WITH THE LORD–complain, contend, quarrel, find fault, stubborn rebellion.
WE PRAY FOR REVIVAL–then God shows us the way, and we reject it; finances, harmony, marriage saved. If we knew what revival would mean, we’d stop praying for it.
OUR PROBLEM: We’re seeing God from the wrong angle. From where we’re standing we can’t see Him clearly, the vision is blurred. We can’t quite make Him out.
OUR NEED: To stand in the proper place for the right vision of God. WHAT IS THAT PLACE? As Potsherd a piece of clay.
Potsherd: Just one of the millions of fragments of broken earthenware. A vivid expression of human insignificance.
ARE YOU THERE? Then you’re ready to see GOD AS HE IS. WE SEE FROM THIS POSITION THAT HE IS:
I. THE LORD WHO DOES ALL THINGS. vv. 7,8, 12
Here are the list of ordinary things He does. ALL IN A DAY’S WORK! Make the earth, create man upon it; stretch the heavens with His hands; appoint all the hosts their proper place and sphere.. .WHO WOULD EVEN DREAM OF ADVISING ONE WHO IS CAPABLE OF HANDLING ISSUES OF SUCH DIMENSIONS? ANSWER: We Would!
A statement of ABSOLUTE SOVEREIGNTY — the prophet doesn’t shrink from it– even though it is incomprehensible. He didn’t worry about God’s reputation… STAGGERING CONCLUSIONS.
1. He is ALONE in His Sovereignty. With great and repeated emphasis… “I am God.. .no one else.” There is no one else to look to, pray to, blame or criticize. He is the SOURCE, the CAUSE, the ORIGIN, the BEGINNING, the SOLUTION TO EVERY MYSTERY, the ANSWER TO EVERY QUESTION.
2. He is ABSOLUTE in His Sovereignty. vs. 5 Good and evil, light and darkness.. .men want the light but not the darkness.. Even pagan Cyrus is His Anointed–an evil man.
Illustration of Joseph and his brethren. “It was not YOU, BUT GOD…” Isaiah 53: “It pleased the Lord to bruise Him. HE hath put Him to grief…”
II. THE LORD WHO HAS THE RIGHT TO DO ALL THINGS. v. 9
God is not just a big buddy!
1. This DEMANDS Our SILENCE. v. 9, 10, 11 Who are we to argue, to find fault… “You’re all thumbs…” We both advise and criticize.
Hab. 2 “I will stand in my watch and see what He will say to me…”
2. This DEMANDS Our SUBMISSION. v. 1lb “And ye shall commit to Me the work of My hand.” NAS
This is brought out by the image of the Potter and the Clay.
(1) We must submit to the Potter’s PURPOSE. He has one. Eph. 2:10
(2) We must submit to the Potter’s PLAN.. .His way of accomplishing that purpose, the shape of the vessel, how fast the wheel spins. Jer. 18 “…He made it again another vessel AS SEEMED GOOD TO THE POTTER TO MAKE IT.”
(3) We must submit to the Potter’s PRESSURE. No other way to shape the clay, to accomplish His purpose and plan.
III. THE LORD WHO DOES ALL THINGS RIGHT. v. 13
Regardless of the route He takes, He always reaches His destination.. .the promise fulfilled. Abraham and Isaac, Gideon, etc.
1. He Does It for Our Good. v. 13, Heb. 11:6, Ultimate, spiritual good.
2. He Does It for His Glory … and there’s never any conflict of interests between our good and His glory. vs. 3, 4, 5, 6– THE ONE GRAND THEME IS “I Am God.. ..no one else.” Other Gods are NO GODS.
To this present hour that is what God is wanting to demonstrate to mankind… He gets glory by making His enemies His servants. HE WILL ALWAYS TAKE THE ROUTE THAT BRINGS HIM THE GREATEST GLORY.
WHY DO WE STRIVE? We are more interested in good than GLORY and we don’t even know what is GOOD!
©Ron Dunn, LifeStyle Ministries, 2003