Israel is judged guilty of two evils: forsaking God and making broken vessels for themselves to worship. ” What wrong did your ancestors find in me that they went far from me, and went after worthless things, and became worthless themselves?”
God’s steadfast love endures forever
A person is not saved by a good heritage nor condemned by a bad one; faith is more important than genealogy. Jesus still loves to bring the lost into his kingdom, no matter what their background or previous way of life. Through faith, the lost can be forgiven and made new.
“I want your will to be done, not mine.” His prayer reveals to us his terrible suffering. His agony was worse than death because he paid for all sin by being separated from God. The sinless Son of God took our sins upon himself to save us from suffering and separation.
With God we will do valiantly. “Awake, my soul! I will awake the dawn. I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples, and I will sing praises to you among the nations. For your steadfast love is higher than the heavens and your faithfulness reaches to the clouds. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens, and let your glory be over all the earth.
Cast down and rejected but not removed from God’s steadfast love and faithfulness – God’s promise to David’s line. “He shall cry to me, ‘You are my Father, my God, and the Rock of my salvation!’ I will make him the firstborn, the highest of the kings of the earth. Forever I will keep my steadfast love for him, and my covenant with him will stand firm. I will establish his line forever, and his throne as long as the heavens endure.”
Recap of Gods history with Jacob and his children and God’s actions against Israel for their complaints and rejection of Him and His Word. “In spite of all this they still sinned; they did not believe in his wonders. So he made their days vanish like a breath, and their years in terror.”
Jesus didn’t ask God to take believers out of the world but instead to use them in the world. Because Jesus sends us into the world, we should not try to escape from the world, nor should we avoid all relationships with non-Christians. We are called to be salt and light (Matthew 5:13-16), and we are to do the work that God sent us to do. A follower of Christ becomes set apart through believing and obeying the Word of God.
God has not rejected prayer or removed His everlasting love from us. “Come and see what God has done: He is awesome in His deeds among mortals.”
True joy transcends the rolling waves of circumstance. Joy comes from a consistent relationship with Jesus Christ. Jesus is the vine, and God is the gardener who cares for the branches to make them fruitful. The branches are all those who claim to be followers of Christ. The fruitful branches are true believers who by their living union with Christ produce much fruit.