Isaiah 48: 12—50:11
We are switching gears again in these chapters. God has finished up telling us about the woes and how He would use Assyria and Babylon to exact judgement but then those nations would not escape judgement either. This is what Bible Knowledge Commentary said about the coming chapters:
Chapters 49–57 may be divided into four parts: (1) The Servant, being rejected by His people, will take salvation to the Gentiles (chaps. 49–50). (2) The believing remnant will be exalted (51:1–52:12). (3) The Servant, however, will be abased and then exalted (52:13–53:12). (4) Salvation through the Servant will come to Jews and Gentiles in the Millennium (chaps. 54–57).
So, in chapters 49-50, that we read today, we are actually reading about the mystery Paul was talking about earlier in the week in Ephesians 3. The fact that Israel rejected their Messiah and so then Jesus offered Salvation to us gentiles was a left turn they did not see coming. But here it is in black and white predicted by God through Isaiah all those years ago.
In chapter 50 we get to hear from the Beautiful Suffering Servant Himself. His invitation is “If you are walking in darkness, without a ray of light, trust in the Lord and rely on your God.”
Ephesians 4: 17-32
Paul is continuing today in his instruction on how the church should walk out their new placement in the body of Christ. In the previous chapters he exhorted us to live in unity with other church members. This unity will allow us to grow in our giftings and help mature us. Today he calls us to live holy lives. “Holy” simply means set apart.
To be Holy for the Lord you have to model your life after him, not the people who are denying Him. Let’s call the people who are denying God, “the world.” The further the world gets away from God the more sin nature rules life. The world is only capable of producing fruit of the flesh.
BUT, if you set yourself apart from the world and let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitude then the Holy life is possible. Verses 25-31 tell us what we have to start saying no to so we can take off the old self and put on the new nature. You only have the power to say no to your old nature (or the world) when you are letting the Spirit change your mind. This is not something you can just white knuckle like the Pharisee’s tried to do by following the Law. They were so busy trying to save themselves by living by the Law, they missed the Savior sent to save them. This putting on of the new nature (holy life) is what comes with living closely with you Savior.