For so the Lord said to me, ‘I will take My rest, and I will look from My dwelling place like clear heat in sunshine, like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest » (Isaiah 18:4).
IN ORDER TO UNDERSTAND today’s text, it’s necessary to read Isaiah 18 and 19 where the prophet announced God’s judgments on Ethiopia and Egypt. It appears that the Ethiopians had sent ambassadors to Judah so that together they could confront the mighty Assyrian army successfully, but God did not approve of this alliance. In fact, it was doomed to failure. Why was Judah seeking human support, no matter how powerful it may have appeared to be, rather than trusting in the God of their fathers?
Judah’s dilemma was the same as what you and I face when we go through a crisis and it seems to us that Gods help is nowhere to be found. We pray about it, we look for help in the Word, we seek advice, but we see no progress. In the meantime, we feel that the world is falling apart, and we cry out, «Where are You, Lord, when I need you most?»
This is where today’s key text fits. What message did God send through Isaiah to His people in the midst of their crisis? «For so the Lord said to me, ‘I will take My rest, and I will look from My dwelling place» (Isaiah 18:4; emphasis added).
How interesting! As the nations nervously formed alliances here and there to confront the Assyrians, through the prophet, the Lord told His people something like this: «Even if it seems to you that I am oblivious to your trials, I am in control of the events from my throne and I remain attentive to all that happens to my people!» In other words, «Don’t confuse silence with inactivity! Now the Assyrians are prevailing, but they will receive their just retribution at the right time.» That day of retribution came for the Assyrians, and in what a way! (see Isaiah 37:21—29).
God’s message through Isaiah is also relevant today It reminds us that although this world seems to be out of control at times, God remains the Sovereign of the universe. Let’s not confuse His silence with indifference, because «like the stars in the vast circuit of their appointed path, Gods purposes know no haste and no delay. «—The Desire of Ages, ch. 3, p. 32.
On the other hand, if you are crumpling right now under the weight of your burdens, remember that He who seemed to delay when Lazarus became seriously ill, will come to your rescue at the right time and in the end, He will give you more than you could ever have imagined. In the meantime, keep trusting in God! As the hymn says, «Be not dismayed whate’er betide, God will take care of you.»
Heavenly Father, how comforting it is to know that Your purposes know no haste nor delay! Please help me believe today and always that in addition to watching over my footsteps, your plans will also be fulfilled in my life at the right time.