This is one of my favorite chapters in the Bible. I think I love it so much because, in many ways, it tells my story (*and yours too). It is very psalm-like in nature, confessing deep truths about God and truths about us. So what does it teach us? Here are some thoughts:
1) We have nothing to bring to the table. The first verse tells us that we have no money. In other words, what we really need can’t be bought on our own. Later on, verse 7 reminds us that we are the “wicked & unrighteous” that need changed. This is in the same vein of Paul’s writings in Romans 3:10-12 & 23: as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one”… for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
2) There is grace offered to us. We are told that we can “buy without money”. In other words, someone else has paid for it. Zoom forward a few hundred years and we realize who did it — Jesus Christ. One of the best summaries in scripture on this awesome truth is found in Colossians: For He has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of his dear Son, who purchased our freedom and forgave our sins. (Colossians 1:13)
3) The offer of grace won’t always be available. Some people live as if they are certain that, one day in the future, they will have a chance to turn to God. While God’s pursuit of us is imperceptible, it will be ended one day (whether by death or the return of Jesus). Verse 6 makes this abundantly clear: Seek the Lord while you can find Him. Call on him now while He is near.
4) Those who know Him must learn to trust Him in all things. There are many things in life that cause us to question God’s sovereignty, or even His existence. I understand that this is natural, and I go through it often as well. But the Lord is reminding us through Isaiah that we need to lean into Him for our confidence and hope. Let Him speak these words over you today:
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
and do not return there but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.
(Isaiah 55:8-11 ESV)
Something I want to leave you with is this song by Brett Younker & Kristian Stanfill from Isaiah 55. Blessings on your week, CPC!