I’m just starting a study of Isaiah, and have been enjoying the devotional, Isaiah by the Day. It’s a wonderful daily devotional that walks through the book of Isaiah. I’m reading it along with the author’s commentary Isaiah: An Introduction and Commentary, both by Alec Motyer. I love his writing style, precision, and his passion for the book of Isaiah.
Today, he opened up Isaiah 1:4 for me in a convicting way. The stark contrast between who the people were as redeemed people of God, and how they had shamefully become corrupt evildoers is sad.
“Ah, sinful nation, a people loaded with guilt, a brood of evildoers, children given to corruption! They have forsaken the Lord; they have spurned the Holy One of Israel and turned their backs on him.”
Motyer says these nouns of privilege (underlined) define God’s people: they are a unique nation, redeemed people, brood (or seed) of Abraham, children of God. However, they had lost their identity and shamefully become sinful, guilt-ridden, evildoers, acting corruptly.
As I meditated on this verse and read the corresponding devotional thought for the day, I was challenged to consider my own life in light of this passage. Do I consistently live according to my true identity and new nature in Christ, or according to my sinful nature? Praise God that my sinful nature is not my primary identity anymore. My sinful nature has been crucified (Rom 8:9; Gal 2:20, 5:24; 2 Pet 1:3-5), my spirit is renewed and my new self is created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness (Eph 4:24).
Lord, help me to live according to my true identity in you, so that I may proclaim the excellencies of Him who called me out of darkness into His marvelous light (1 Pet 2:9).