Isaiah 54: Steadfast Love and Covenantal Peace

(17 verses, 2:56 to read)
What I am about to READ
  • The steadfast love of the Lord will endure forever for the people whom He has made a covenant with
  • 1-4:  Children for the barren
  • 5-10:  A husband for the widow
  • 11-17:  A city for the homeless
  • 1-4:  Barrenness turns to fullness
    • To be barren brought great shame upon a woman.  This was the plight of Israel in during her 70 years of captivity.  Great shame was brought upon her.
      • And yet the promise of the Lord is that her shame will be taken away from her.  There will come a time in which she will not be empty but will be full of the offspring of joy that she will have difficulty finding a place for all of her children.  What a blessed thing to hear for one who was once barren.
      • See Galatians 4:27-28 to hear Paul’s use of this text
  • 5-10:  Marriage and unity
    • Israel had been separated from her Husband for 70 years.  But now He has returned to her.
      • Before she was cast off for her idolatrous and adulterous ways.  But her Husband, her Maker, her Redeemer is her Savior.  She is one with Him once again; never to be cast off again.
      • The fact that the Lord mentions Noah speaks to the remnant that He always keeps.  He will not cast off forever.  He will most certainly call His bride back.  No matter how unfaithful she has been, He will always remain faithful.
  • 11-17:   YHWH’s wife as a beautiful city
    • Isaiah beautifully transitions, “from addressing a woman who stands for a city to addressing a city pictured as a woman” (Goldingay, The Message of Isaiah 40-55, 535).
    • As beautiful as she will adorned, her true beauty comes from her children.  For her children will not be idolatrous pagans, but will be taught by the Lord.  And it is this teaching of the Lord, the Gospel of salvation through the mercy and steadfast love of God, that will produce the peace of the everlasting covenant that will never depart from them.
    • All Israel’s enemies will be put to shame.  They will never be able to overcome her.  She need not fear ever again.
  • It is good to note that chapter 54 follows perhaps one of the most well-known and Gospel-rich passages in all of Scripture.  52:13–53:12 is the Old Testament passage often heard on Good Friday.  Chapter 54 therefore should be heard in the light of this wonderful Gospel.  What is promised in Chapter 54 is true and sure because of 52:13-53:12.
  • Most holy and gracious God, You have given to Your Israel the Good News of everlasting peace and continual steadfast love.  Turn our sorrow into joy of a new mother.  Unite yourself to us as a husband to his bride.  Establish us as an everlasting city on a hill robed in the glorious adornments of the righteousness of Your Son, through the same Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.
 Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Post below, or join the conversation in our Facebook group: or if reading on facebook, check out the blog:
Rev. Elisha Lietzau, pastor of Faith in Christ Lutheran Church, ABQ, NM.

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