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Isaiah 45:18-25 - Homilies By E. Johnson

God, Israel, and the world.

Again, with solemn iteration, Jehovah declares that he is Creator and God alone. The earth was framed and fitted to be the habitation of man, and the theatre of providential manifestations.

I. THE REALITY OF THE ETERNAL . The truth is open, and may be published to all; it is no thing of mystery, secrecy, like heathen esoteric rites or knowledge. "Jehovah's Law is not to be obtained by any occult arts from the under-world." He has not been a wilderness unto Israel or a land of darkness ( Jeremiah 2:31 ; cf. Jeremiah 2:6 ). The seeking of his people after him is not to end in chaos. Here, again, may be an allusion to the dark sayings of the heathen oracles—ambiguous, oblique, or fallacious. His speech is direct, upright, and true. Let those who have escaped from the judgment upon the nations bear witness. How foolish they who carry the wooden image in processions, and pray to it (cf. Isaiah 46:1 ; Jeremiah 10:5 ; Amos 5:26 )! What argument can be produced for the divinity of idols? Which of them can pretend to the prophetic and predictive power of Jehovah? God is the only Reality, the only Truth, the only faithful Principle in a world of idolatrous unrealities, pretences, and shams.

II. CALL TO SALVATION . In him who is real and true, alone can men find deliverance from temporal and spiritual ills. Not Israel alone, but mankind, is destined to look to him as the Universal Saviour. Jehovah swears by himself—the strongest form of assurance—"when the accompanying revelation is specially grand, or specially hard to believe." "The abolition of the last vestige of nationalism in the true religion is announced." The word is gone forth, and shall not miss its aim; the truth has sped like an arrow to the mark. Every knee shall bow in homage, every tongue shall swear allegiance. Submission shall be without reserve and absolute. "Only in Jehovah are righteousness and strength." While confusion shall be the portion of his enemies, his servants shall be accepted, and be placed by him on the footing of the justified and righteous. "He, then, that trembles at the name of an offended Creator, let him comfort himself in the title of a reconciled Father. Though we have cause to dread the tribunal of his justice, let us come confidently to the throne of his mercy. Let us come freely, and spread all our wants before him, lay open all our complaints, tell him all the distresses and secret anguishes of our burdened consciences. Believe it, we cannot be more ready to tell them than he is to hear them; nor he to hear them than to relieve them. Let us anchor our hopes, our trust, our confidence, on his goodness; for although as our Creator he will not save us, yet as our Redeemer he will."—J.

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