Sermons

Summary: God promised that He’s provide the way for Ahaz and Judah to put things together properly, and, true to His Word, He did!

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He Found a Way

March 10, 2001

A Communion Service

How many of you have ever purchased something that you had to assemble? I’ve done a fair bit of that over the years. I’ve bought and assembled a couple of children’s bicycles- they look simple, but watch out! We’ve bought and assembled quite a number of items from Ikea- a couple of desks, chairs, baby high chair, bookshelves, and a computer desk. Maybe you have, too. Hey, I think the top, in difficulty, of the buy and assemble kinds of things is a barbecue. Have you bought and had to assemble one of those? I remember one of the two that I’ve done and the first time having parts left over.

Now, when we might be sweating and fuming over assembling something doesn’t something always happen? Isn’t there always somebody who comes around and says something like, “Have you read the instructions?” “Why don’t you read the instruction sheet?” Now, we know that most of us don’t ‘need’ to do that, right? Well, wrong, as we find out and, hopefully, will admit! Often, it’s hard to put ‘ready to assemble’ items together without the instructions. Having, and following, the instructions often make assembly easy as we follow the directions A-B-C, or Step 1-Step 2-Step 3. (Then, again, sometimes the instructions are written in some version of English that makes following them a bit more than difficult, too!) It seems, though, overall, that it’s hard to just ‘know’ how to put things together, and we need a guide, of some sort, to be able to do that well.

It’s not only with made-to-assemble items that we might have difficulty with knowing how to put things together.

Let me tell you about some people, a long time ago, who had the same trouble and on a much bigger scale than dealing with furniture from Ikea. The story focuses on one person, named Isaiah.

Isaiah was born before 750 BC in Jerusalem, and had a very devout father, named Amoz, who gave him his name which meant, “may the Lord save”. Jerusalem was relatively peaceful at the time and probably Isaiah grew up in an affluent home. It would likely have been spacious with exterior walls in rough, stucco-covered bricks, and the interior walls of carefully fitted slabs of smooth, buff-colored limestone.

Custom says that Amoz took charge of Isaiah’s education at about the age of five, and that the most important lessons concerned the covenant the Lord had made with the Israelites. Amoz stressed its rigid code of justice and protection in exchange for righteous conduct, and those lessons influenced Isaiah for the rest of his life as a prophet of the Lord. As he grew older, he was tutored, either privately or with his brothers and other boys, by the priests who kept the Torah, which included the laws, history, poetry and other scriptures of the nation. He would have been taught to form numbers for basic arithmetic. Besides his hours of class, he would have more carefree times, too where he would sing and dance with boys and girls of his age in the streets of his neighborhood, and would wrestle and box with other youths or compete in tugs-of-war. He’d, also, play some intellectual, indoor games resembling chess and cribbage.


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