Summary: A sermon on God's foreknowledge (Adapted from Dr. Jack Cottrell's book, God Most High, Pages 95 to 101)
Just recently observed Groundhog Day. In the movie, Groundhog Day, Bill Murray plays Phil Connors, an arrogant and egocentric Pittsburgh TV weatherman who, during a hated assignment covering the annual Groundhog Day event in Punxsutawney, finds himself in a time loop, repeating the same day again and again. Hollywood has a lot of movies that cause us to think about time. Some are about time travel, traveling back in time, traveling to the future. Some cause us to think about time in a different way like Groundhog Day. If you like to think about time, then this message is for you.
Look at Isaiah 42:8-9:
Vs. 8- I am the LORD; that is my name! Literally I am Yahweh. This is the name that the Lord gave in Exodus 3:14: “God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”” This word Yahweh can be connected with another Hebrew word meaning, “to be, to exist, to become.” This name of God is meant to emphasize His eternity or self existence. Who was, and is, and is to come.
Vs. 8- I will not give my glory to another or my praise to idols. In the previous verses, God had addressed the Messiah. Here he turns to the people, and assures them that He is the only true God. This statement is meant to counteract the tendency to make God into man’s image. “They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served created things rather than the Creator--who is for ever praised. Amen.” Romans 1:25, NIV.
Vs. 9- See, the former things have taken place. Many of the promises given to Abraham came to pass. During the time of Isaiah, the defeat, captivity, and exile of the 10 northern tribes came to pass. This happened during the time of King Hezekiah in Judah. Prophesied about in Hosea and Amos and other places.
Vs. 9- new things I declare. The defeat, captivity and exile of Judah by Babylon, and their restoration by Cyrus the Persian. From Isaiah 42 we see the mission of Christ. Vs. 1-4 fulfilled in Matthew 12:15-21. Vs. 6 a light for the Gentiles fulfilled in Matthew 4:16 and Luke 2:32. Vs. 7, similar to Isaiah 61, mentioned by Jesus as being fulfilled in Luke 4.
Vs. 9- before they spring into being I announce them to you.
a beautiful image. The metaphor is taken from plants and flowers, referring to the springing up of plants, or to their sending out shoots, buds, or flowers. The phrase literally means, 'before they begin to germinate.’ God knows which seeds will germinate and produce. The sense is, that God predicted the future events before there was anything by which it might be known that such occurrences would take place. God told of this when there were no possible indications of such things. God knows about this by omniscience, because He is all knowing.
One can hardly conceive of a clearer description or definition of foreknowledge. The true God has foreknowledge.
Thesis: Let’s talk about foreknowledge and God tonight.