For Those Who Are Discouraged

KEY VERSE: “Lift up your eyes to the heavens, look at the earth beneath; the heavens will vanish like smoke, the earth will wear out like a garment and its inhabitants die like flies. But my salvation will last forever, my righteousness will never fail.” —Isaiah 51:6, New International Version


OUR LESSON BEGINS with the Israelites living in Babylonian exile. God understands their desire for deliverance, and speaks to them through the Prophet Isaiah with words of comfort and encouragement. Those who loved the Lord were promised a future freedom from their oppressors, and they were encouraged to look to him for salvation. “Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness and who seek the Lord: Look to the rock from which you were cut and to the quarry from which you were hewn.” (Isa. 51:1, NIV) The nation of Israel had received abundantly of the grace of God in the past, and they were admonished to consider the many blessings that had previously been given to them.

They were then reminded of their father, Abraham, and of his wife, Sarah. Special promises had been given to Abraham because of his faithfulness to God, who said to him, “I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.”—Gen. 22:17,18, NIV

This grand covenant will go into effect when the complete number of the promised seed has been found faithful. The Apostle Paul explains the important features of this when he says, “Now the promises were made to Abraham and to his offspring. It does not say, “And to offsprings,” referring to many; but referring to one, “And to your offspring,” which is Christ.”—Gal. 3:16, RSV

Paul then shows that those who have responded to God’s call during the present Gospel Age share in that seed of promise. He continues, “If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”—vs. 29, NIV

Isaiah describes that future time of earth’s rejoicing: “He will make her deserts like Eden, her wastelands like the garden of the Lord. Joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and the sound of singing.” (Isa. 51:3, NIV) Not only will Israelites be blessed by that kingdom, but so will the entire human family—including those who now sleep in death. God’s justice will prevail over all, and he will rule with equity. In this verse, “My salvation is on the way, and my arm will bring justice to the nations” (vs. 5), our Lord Jesus is represented as the powerful Arm of God, who will exercise that power in bringing all unrighteousness and opposition under control during his kingdom reign.

The prophet again says: “See, the Sovereign Lord comes with power, and his arm rules for him.” (Isa. 40:10, NIV) He also says that “the Lord will lay bare his holy arm in the sight of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth will see the salvation of our God.”—Isa. 52:10, NIV

The Key Verse in our lesson assures us that God’s salvation will last forever, although the present heavens and earth will pass away. These earthly institutions will vanish like smoke, and will be cast aside like an old worn-out garment when God’s ‘arm’ takes control.

Dawn Bible Students Association
|  Home Page  |  Table of Contents  |