Tuesday, August 09, 2022

Exalted And Stooping

"This passage [in Isaiah 40] begins with God gathering his lambs in his arms (40:11) and ends with his giving strength to the faint who have no might (40:29-31). Between these two pictures of God's stooping to help the helpless are the most exalted glimpses of his majesty: 'the nations are like a drop from a bucket' (40:15); 'the nations are as nothing before him' (40:17); 'earth's inhabitants are like grasshoppers' (40:22); '[he] makes the rulers of the earth as emptiness' (40:23); he created the stars and calls all their billions by name (40:26). This juxtaposition of God's self-exaltation and self-humbling is pervasive in the biblical picture of God's providence and is near the essence of his peculiar and wonderful glory." (John Piper, Providence [Wheaton, Illinois: Crossway, 2020], approximate Kindle location 4684)

The Servant Songs begin shortly after, at the start of chapter 42. "I, the Lord, will answer them myself, as the God of Israel I will not forsake them….'Present your case,' the Lord says. 'Bring forward your strong arguments,' the King of Jacob says. Let them bring forth and declare to us what is going to take place; as for the former events, declare what they were, that we may consider them and know their outcome. Or announce to us what is coming" (Isaiah 41:17, 41:21-22).

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