Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Lamb and the Lion Pt.1 – Jesus, the Righteous Judge

Here comes the King

There shall come forth a Rod from the stem of Jesse, And a Branch shall grow out of his roots.
The Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon Him, The Spirit of wisdom and understanding, The Spirit of counsel and might, The Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD.
His delight is in the fear of the LORD, And He shall not judge by the sight of His eyes, Nor decide by the hearing of His ears;
But with righteousness He shall judge the poor, And decide with equity for the meek of the earth; He shall strike the earth with the rod of His mouth, And with the breath of His lips He shall slay the wicked.
Righteousness shall be the belt of His loins, And faithfulness the belt of His waist. Isaiah 11:1-5 (NKJV)

The beauty of Scripture is that it comforted in the past, heals in the present and foresees hope for the future. In Isaiah 11 we have one of the most awesome descriptive passages in the Bible that all believers have found to be so real in Christ. It envelops the reality of that future time of eternal hope that we have come to know so graciously in our present daily life …Christ in you, the hope of glory, Col. 1:27. It begins by identifying who the passage is about. There shall come forth a Rod from the stem of Jesse, And a Branch shall grow out of his roots, Isa. 11:1. The Rod or Branch that comes from the stem or root of Jesse immediately tells us that it is his lineage that will produce the Messiah. Verse 2 tells us it is a work of God. In the passage, the Spirit of God is resting, literally taking His position of residence upon the Branch—fully embodying His characteristics of wisdom, understanding, counsel, might, knowledge and the fear of the Lord. Characteristically, we see how these traits should and do come from the Father but the last in the list, The Spirit of the fear of the Lord, may take us back a step or two. Because vss. 3-5 begin by expounding upon this trait we are given a huge clue as to what that phrase actually means. Let’s look further.

His delight is in the fear of the LORD. It is clear from this passage that His energies are directed toward the Father in reverence. Fear, when used in reference to God, always carries with it the desire of pleasing obedience. It is a natural thing for the child of God to “Fear the Lord.” We are comfortable there—it is where we find our rest; anything else brings disruption in our walk with Him. Because of our reverential love for God we are compelled to hear His counsel and to do all we can to be pleasing in His sight. In the case of the Messiah, Jesus – the Rod and Branch of Jesse, we are told He will judge the nations in righteousness. Righteousness is another big word we use in the Church that most who do not know Christ would not understand. Here the term is the Hebrew word, צֶדֶק‎‏בְּ‎ ṣedeq, which means what is right, just, normal. When taken with the context of verse 3 we can conclude that there is a just and right standard that God, the righteous judge, uses to weigh all things. Our arguments and or self cognizant predicaments will carry no weight when we stand before Him. Rather, what is just and what is right toward God and fellow man is how all things will be judged.
God knows our hearts and He also knows they are desperately wicked in and of themselves. None of us could stand before Him on our own. We then must ask, “Who can stand upright before Him?” The answer is only those who have a relationship with Jesus. That sounds great! But let’s face it, the majority of people will say they believe in God but when confronted about heaven and eternity it is easy to see that it is not the God of the Bible that they trust. If they did they would heed His commands, Luke 6:46-49. What you will see is how they have bottled God up in their own little vision of who He is and how they will get into heaven. But God cannot be boxed in to our little world; neither can His commandments be breeched. Our little world will crumble before the true Creator of all life. The only way into heaven is by accepting the Father's invitation He gives through the blood of Jesus His Son, the Messiah—the Rod and Branch of our text and the Lord of all life.

He is coming soon!

In the future this Branch Who has freely given us an invitation to come to Him, Mt. 11:28-29, will be the one who will weigh in the balance “Our little world” and if He is not the builder of it—if it is not built by Him on His foundation, then it will crumble and it will fall hard. He cannot be put to blame for He will judge fairly and righteously and there will be no favoritism.
During His first advent, in the City of Bethlehem - Micah 5:2, He came to us as Savior. In Jerusalem, a few years later he was crucified as Lord. But that was not the end of the story for He arose from the dead three days later on a Sunday (the Lord’s Day) and then ascended to heaven from the Mt. of Olives, Acts 1:6-8. In the very, very near future He will come gather His church at the Rapture and 7 years later return to that same Mt. of Olives Zech. 14:4-5 as King of Kings and Lord of Lords where He will slay the wicked and in Righteousness stand as Judge.
The future is glorious for all those of the faith but it is horrible for those who refuse Him. As Isaiah 11:4 says, He shall strike the earth with the rod of His mouth, And with the breath of His lips He shall slay the wicked.
If you are reading this and you do not know if you are going to heaven or not, there is still time to fall on your face before the Lord, Rom. 10:9-10. You can know if you are His, John 8:31, 13:35, 1 Jn. 3:14, Rom.8:16 are just a sampling of passages to give you hope.

Read part Two Here -> The Lamb and the Lion Pt.2 –When Christ Will Rule Completely