Summary: Healing LIfe's Hurts looks at Isaiah passage about bruised reeds and smoldering wicks. We look at God's main goal to heal humanity, and to bring justice through the grace and mercy Jesus showed when He willingly went to the cross and died for our sins.
Healing Life’s Hurts
Many today are abandoning the faith because of all the suffering and injustice in the world. And it’s disheartening to see, and so I’d like to address this and talk about the true nature and character of God.
In the passage we’ll be looking at, Isaiah is speaking to the Jews who are in Babylonian exile and are seeking justice for the tremendous wrongs done to them by their captors.
They knew eventually God would deliver them, but what about justice. The idols they’ve been praying to and hoping would intervene are worthless, and God makes sure to let them know that in the preceding chapter. But living amongst the Gentiles, not following God’s law, their memories began to fade as to the nature and character of God.
Now I’ve seen some people, and heard of even more, who have grown up in the church, but have been lured away by sin, or have opted out because they believe God has let them down.
This is the way the Israelites felt in Babylon. Why hasn’t God come to their rescue? Why hasn’t He delivered them? Why has He allowed such injustice? And so they were questioning who God is, and here Isaiah reminds them about the identity and character of God.
Who is this God, the God of the Israelites, and the Creator King of the Universe?
• He is none other than the One who will not break a reed that has been bent to the point of breaking.
• He’s the One who will not snuff out a candle whose wick is now just a nub and can barely hold a flame.
• In other words, He is the God who will faithfully bring forth justice the right way, the true way, the way that will redeem and not annihilate.
Read Isaiah 42:1-9
Our text clearly speaks of the coming Messiah, not as a conquering hero, but as God’s servant doing God’s bidding not His own. He won’t be arrogant or proud, but with great humility He’ll be a Servant to God’s people.
We see this in the life of Jesus who said this passage from Isaiah has been fulfilled.
“Aware of this, Jesus withdrew from that place. Many followed him, and he healed all their sick, warning them not to tell who he was. This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah.” (Matthew 12:15-17 NKJV)
And then Jesus quotes Isaiah 42:1
This was the message of Jesus’ life. He came not to fulfill His own will, but the Father’s, as He prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane, “Not my will but Your will be done.” (Luke 22:42)
But this message was not just for Isaiah’s time, nor for the time Jesus walked this earth, but it’s for our day as well, and it’s a message that is desperately needed for a nation wondering what’s next, and for the church that has been beat down by politics and government.
And it’s because of this that most us have a quarrel with God. Now, when I say a quarrel I don’t mean that we’re continually angry with God. Rather, we’re puzzled and perplexed by what God chooses to do and how God chooses to do it.
Maybe you’re thinking, “If God loves us so much, why does He allow these things to continue? Why should we have to live in a world riddled with crime, poverty, and corruption when God has the power to stop it?”
Recently I attended a memorial service where the question was voiced from the front as to why would God allow a particular disease to even exist.
In other words, if we were God, if we had God’s power then things would be different.
One girl wrote, “Dear God, did you mean for giraffes to look that way; or was that an accident?”
Already a kind of quarrel with God was beginning in her imagination as to His ways. She wouldn’t have made giraffes the way God made them, and if truth were known, neither would we.
But to all these sorts of thoughts God says,
“‘For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,’ says the Lord. ‘For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55: 8-9 NKJV)
Take for instance the Christmas story. Who thought a stable would be the best place? And then laying the Messiah in a feeding trough for animals with regurgitated food and saliva all over the place? And why send a celestial choir to a couple of no name shepherds? No one would believe what they said, because they were the religious and social outcasts of society. So in our mind this is not the way to run the birth of a King.