Day 45

Restoration

from the Lent 2017: You Are Mine reading plan


Isaiah 62:1-12, Isaiah 63:1-14, Matthew 26:1-16

BY Missy Fuller

Text: Isaiah 62:1-12, Isaiah 63:1-14, Matthew 26:1-16

Isaiah 62 reveals God’s promise of restoration for His people. I could read this passage of Scripture 1000 times and never get sick of it.

The book of Isaiah as a whole is a tough read. The prophet tells of the coming destruction of Judah (3:8) and their captivity in Babylon (39:6). But think of this: the entire book of Isaiah is written before one Babylonian sword is drawn against Judah and Jerusalem. Before their destruction Isaiah tells the people of Judah of God’s promise to restore them.

Our God always tempers His righteous judgment with loving compassion (Psalm 145:8). He plans deliverance and restoration for His people even before He disciplines them. Even before God inflicts judgment, He plans to restore.

God promised to restore Jerusalem, and He sealed that promise when He gave her a new name. This is significant. Names are a core part of our identity—often the first thing we share about ourselves. Names embody who we are and what we are about.

When God changes a name, He also changes an identity.

Abram became Abraham (Genesis 17:5). From an “Exalted Father” to “The Father of Many Nations.” God changed Abram’s identity as a respected man with no son of his own, to one with many descendants, including the promised Messiah.

Jacob became Israel (Genesis 32:28). From “He Grasps the Heel” (or “Deceiver”) to “He Struggled with God.” Jacob’s identity changed from one marked by deceit and manipulation to the father of God’s chosen people.

Jerusalem was called “Deserted” and “Desolate,” but as God redeems, He promises to give Jerusalem a new name (Isaiah 62:2). She will be called:

My Delight Is in Her
Holy People
The Lord’s Redeemed
Cared For
The City No Longer Deserted
(vv.4,12).

What an identity shift!

This is the character of our God: He redeems. He rebuilds. He renames. While He disciplines, He also restores (Hebrews 12:6; Joel 2:25). We are never too far gone for the reach of His restoration. No wonder Isaiah can’t help but shout and proclaim God’s promises for Judah:

“I will not keep silent because of Zion, and I will not keep still because of Jerusalem, until her righteousness shines like a bright light and her salvation, like a flaming torch” (Isaiah 62:1).

It is good to proclaim God’s faithful restoration within our own circumstances, regardless of what they may look like today. As we cling to the the truth of who He is, we can rest—because His restoration has already begun.

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Post Comments (72)

72 thoughts on "Restoration"

  1. Kylee says:

    I know my new name but don’t walk in it. I still feel like beating myself up for the old name (and ways and beliefs attached to it) most days. But like so many others who have commented, wallowing in self is not the way God wants us to live once we’ve been called and renamed, redeemed and reclaimed by the one who MADE us! Praying the love of God sinks in deep for all of us today, and that we would walk through all our days in the knowledge of the goodness of that love.

    1. Sara says:

      Thank you so much for this. I have been really struggling lately with wallowing in self. I get so disgusted with myself for struggling with the same sins, the same fears and doubts over and over. But what I didn’t realize that wallowing in self and beating myself up is a form of selfishness. God has redeemed me, He has given me a new name, and I don’t have to be a slave to these things I am struggling with anymore. Thank you for putting this into words that resonated so deeply with me today. God bless.

  2. Tay says:

    How awesome that amid the mess that I am making, God is restoring me and redeeming my story. I too often get super comfy wallowing in self pity and nurturing my bitter heart, but the moment that I make the tiniest space and let Jesus back in, I feel renewed. Jesus doesn’t want me there, He wants me to always turn to him, even when it takes all the strength I’ve got to not slip back down into the pit. Jesus is always there, His warm hand outstretched. “I pray will not keep silent because of Zion, and I will not keep still because of Jerusalem, until her righteousness shines like a bright light and her salvation, like a flaming torch” (Isaiah 62:1). Today’s study was so timely, I was asking God if I should speak up about His promised for me. I have been keeping quiet about all the works God has been doing in my life, and wondering if I should talk about them. I pray that God would guide me in my confusion and that If I should indeed speak up The Holy Spirit would give me the words to say. It takes divine courage and faith sometimes to say aloud God’s promises.

    1. Bree says:

      thank you for sharing! i needed a reminder that wallowing in self is not what Jesus wants for me.

  3. Jess says:

    “Before their destruction Isaiah tells the people of Judah of God’s promise to restore them! Even before God inflicts judgment, He plans to restore.” God is one heck of a dude. I am always BLOWN away by the goodness and peace he lavishes on us even when we don’t deserve it. This holy week, God is teaching me what it looks like to rest in Him and that he will restore my soul through the coming of Jesus. I didn’t have to do it on my own. And what love is that? That Jesus hung there on the cross, whispering my name and saying “forgive them for they don’t know what they are doing.” Thank you Jesus for that truth today!

    1. Julie says:

      Amen! How wonderful it is to think of that Jess!

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