Take Comfort In God’s Strength    April 23, 2006    Isa.40:1-8, 10-11, 27-31

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Introduction

<>    Sharing the comfort of the Lord increases our ability to enjoy the comfort of the Lord. He possesses the strength to comfort us in all situations. He enables us to have comfort to share. Do you want more comfort from the Lord? Share what you have, and become a minister of comfort as our text advocates and as Paul speaks about in II Corinthians 1:3-4.

 

1.       Take Comfort In God’s Strength . . Encourage One Another. Isa. 40:1-5

            A.        Take Comfort Through Encouraging . . Expressions. 40:1-2

1 “Comfort, comfort My people,” says your God. 2 Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and announce

            to her that her time of servitude is over, her iniquity has been pardoned, and she has received from the

            Lord’s hand double for all her sins.

 

            B.        Take Comfort Through Encouraging . . Education. 40:3-5

3 A voice of one crying out: Prepare the way of the Lord in the wilderness; make a straight

            highway for our God in the desert. 4 Every valley will be lifted up, and every mountain and hill will be

            leveled; the uneven ground will become smooth, and the rough places a plain. 5 And the glory of the

            Lord will appear, and all humanity will see [it] together, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.


            Comfort from the Lord may come through expression from His people. In the text God sends the message to comfort His people. This refers to the people who would come out of bondage and enjoy a new relationship with the Lord. They had been punished greatly for their sins, and God’s grace is twice as much as they needed to be pardoned. Comfort will also come through our education in the promises of God. These words are fulfilled in John the Baptist, and will further be fulfilled in the second coming of Christ.

          

 

2.       Take Comfort In God’s Strength . . Exalting The Word of God. Isa. 40:6-8

            A.        Take Comfort Exalting the Word of God with the . . Temporalness of Mankind. 40:6-7

6 A voice was saying, “Cry out!” Another said, “What should I cry out?” “All humanity is grass,

            and all its goodness is like the flower of the field. 7 The grass withers, the flowers fade when the breath

            of the Lord blows on them; indeed, the people are grass.

 

            B.        Take Comfort Exalting the Word with the . . Timelessness of God’s Word. 40:8

8 The grass withers, the flowers fade, but the word of our God remains forever.”


                        We are temporary. The life of the most significant human being will be brief. The Book of

            James calls life a “vapor.” Our text says humanity is like the grass that withers. That is not necessarily

            comforting but is so true when contrasted with the Word of God. We must exalt the timelessness of the

            Word as compared to man being temporary. It is comforting to rely on the eternal qualities of God’s

            Word.


 

3.       Take Comfort In God’s Strength . . Enjoying God’s Protection. Isa. 40:10-11 

            A.        Take Comfort Enjoying God’s Protection and . . Established Control. 40:10

                    10 See, the Lord God comes with strength, and His power establishes His rule. His reward is

            with Him, and His gifts accompany Him.

 

            B.        Take Comfort Enjoying God’s Protection and . . Embracing Care. 40:11

11 He protects His flock like a shepherd; He gathers the lambs in His arms and carries [them] in

            the fold of His [garment] . He gently leads those that are nursing.


                        Comfort comes in the Lord’s protection. He establishes His control, and we can embrace it as

            He, like a Shepherd, embraces us. In these two verses, as He comes in strength He promises eight things

            He will do. Most of the commentators I respect say these verses will not be completely fulfilled until the

            second coming of Christ. Most of us can say we bask in the comfort of the Lord’s protection every

            day, and it seems as if He embraces us on many occasions..

 

4.       Take Comfort In God’s Strength . . Eternal Attributes. Isa 40:27-31

            A.        Take Comfort In Eternal . . Reasoning. 40:27-28 

27 Jacob, why do you say, and Israel, why do you assert: “My way is hidden from the Lord, and

            my claim is ignored by my God”? 28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? Yahweh is the

            everlasting God, the Creator of the whole earth. He never grows faint or weary; there is no limit to His

            understanding.

 

            B.        Take Comfort In Eternal . . Revitalization. 40:29-31 

29 He gives strength to the weary and strengthens the powerless. 30 Youths may faint and grow

            weary, and young men stumble and fall, 31 but those who trust in the Lord will renew their strength;

            they will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not faint.


                        It helps when we reason correctly about God and His Word. Have you ever felt as though God ignored you? In the text the people reasoned this way because they reasoned incorrectly. I am glad they verbalized their thoughts. The answer to their thoughts came in a question; “Do you not know? Have you not heard . . . there is no limit to His understanding?” When we reason more correctly we may better understand the workings of God. He may be using what seems sad or tragic to revitalize His people. What beautiful promises come to those who trust in the Lord as they receive renewed strength for they will soar on wings like eagles; will run and not grow weary; and walk and not faint. Don’t you want to Take Comfort In God’s Strength? Amen? Amen!