God Will Comfort His Children
In our reading from the prophet Isaiah, in chapter 51, we find a beautiful message of comfort from God to His people Israel.
Bro. Lucas Genner comes from a family of Jewish background which converted to an evangelical church in which he was raised. As he grew up, he was always conscious of his Jewish heritage but felt unsatisfied in his church and was uncomfortable with the idea of a triune God. He tried to connect with Judaism, but after a year of study with an Orthodox congregation and another year with another branch of Judaism, he still felt a lack of spirituality.
From both his Jewish and Christian studies, he knew of Jesus as Messiah and began searching the Internet for a non-trinitarian church. He came in contact with the Christadelphians in September 2017, at the age of 22. After going through our correspondence courses with Sis. Jean Hunter, Skype classes with Bro. Andrew Yearsley, and personal Internet classes with Bro. Jim Hunter Lucas was baptized in June 2019 in Córdoba, Argentina by Bro. Rubén Barboza.
Bro. Jim and Sis. Jean were in attendance. He continued with Skype classes with Bro. Jim, and through Zoom activities, has gotten to know many of his Latin American brothers and sisters, though still living in isolation in Buenos Aires. Bro. Lucas is a regular contributor of exhortations to the Spanish Christadelphian Isolation League. The following was written for June 26, 2022, and translated by Bro. Dennis Paggi.
In our reading from the prophet Isaiah, in chapter 51, we find a beautiful message of comfort from God to His people Israel. However, I think these words are apt for us as well since throughout the New Testament, Jesus promises us the same consolation.
Paul also teaches us that the followers of Jesus, who are not Israelites, are sons of Abraham through faith (Galatians 3:7) and grafted into the people of Israel (Romans 11). Let’s continue now to see this beautiful message from God to all His children.
These beautiful words remind me of the teachings of Jesus on the Mount:
Both Isaiah and Jesus emphasized righteousness or justice in their discourses. We understand righteousness in the Bible in two ways. One is the practice of the will of God (in other words, to be righteous). The other is the practice of evaluation and subsequent determination of reward/punishment in a given conflict. Even so, the latter must also submit to the will of God.
As children of God we need justice and are required to practice it.
Our Father tells us that if we practice righteousness and search for it, we will be filled and we will be comforted when the Kingdom is revealed in the earth. Certainly today, most of us do not suffer religious or political persecution for our beliefs like those first followers of Jesus or the prophets of Israel, to whom God said I will do justice for you. However, as children of God, we also need justice and are required to practice it.
To love our neighbor as ourselves, to help the needy, and to treat others well and with respect are acts of righteousness we must always undertake. But unfortunately, we often find ourselves with people who are not interested in putting into practice these values and commandments God gives us. So, who has not been mistreated at some point in his life? Who has not been cheated or robbed? Who has not been injured?
All of these situations are common, but we, as children of God, cannot get involved in conflicts nor pay back with the same currency as those who cause us harm. Here is where the justice of God enters; we can use it now, as well as in the future. In that case, the Word tells us that all of us who practice righteousness and seek justice will be filled by God on the last day.
We see we will have the consolation, as part of the promise from God, that all the evil will not touch us, as it does today, and we will fully achieve wellbeing. God will make the wilderness like Eden and give us happiness, joy, and great rewards so that the stress of life will disappear forever. All of us who have the law of God in our hearts are certain this promise will be fulfilled when Jesus returns to the earth. What greater hope can we have than this?
The prophet continues relating the promises of God for those days:
These beautiful words are complementary to what is said in Revelation 21:4,
God has promised us there will be no more sadness, no more regrets, and no more tribulations in our lives. Our tears will be wiped away by God himself. Therefore, let us not fear man and the damage he can do, for God has promised us better things: righteousness and comfort. Let us know that hope will be fulfilled.
Likewise, the prophet Isaiah continues recounting a great event for Jerusalem. Some will think this occurrence has nothing to do with us today when in fact, it does. As I mentioned at the beginning, we were grafted into the olive tree of Israel, and we are sons of Abraham. While Jerusalem is the capital of the Hebrew nation in the first place, it is also the city God chose for himself (2 Chr 6:6, Psa 132:13). And it is the city of the Great King (Psa 48:2, Matt 5:34-35). That makes Jerusalem a part of our inheritance. Here the prophet writes,
God promises to cleanse Jerusalem and make it holy, clean, beautiful, and worthy of the Great King. The name of God will dwell in this city, So we may all climb His mountain and praise him properly. These things allow us to understand how important it is for us to be with Him for eternity. God promised us full consolation and also a dwelling place with Him.
The new resplendent Jerusalem will be adorned for her husband, Jesus the Lamb, but also for us, children of God, whose names are written in the book of life—the book of the Lamb.
What more could we ask? What more could we hope for? Isaiah, Jesus, and John gave us the best message of hope we can have as children of God. Our Father promised us the salvation of our lives as well as great rewards. To be saved does not just mean being alive or resurrected on that day, but also receiving an incorruptible body and never more experiencing suffering. At that time, “the wilderness will be made like Eden.” (Isa 51:3).
Everything will be happiness, peace, joy, and completeness for each one of us. If we decide to be righteous and seek justice, God has promised to restore the earth that man has destroyed. And He has also promised to restore Jerusalem. This is a special present for all his children: we will enter and dwell together with God and Jesus, who wait for us with their arms open.
Thus, if we desire to have a part in these promises and hopes, if we want to receive this comfort from God, let’s answer the call of Jesus in Matthew 4:17, “Repent ye, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.”
May the peace and blessings of God be with all of you.