June 9, 2018

I AM PERSUADED THAT HE IS ABLE:

TO ABUNDANTLY PARDON

Isaiah 55:6 Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near:7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.

Notice first, the URGENCY
It is very clear what should be our first priority, to “Seek ye the Lord”. If we are honest, we are very busy seeking several things. We seek acceptance, we seek financial security, we seek possessions, we seek enjoyment, we seek happiness, we seek comfort, and we seek purpose. Not all of these are wrong, but if we are not careful, they can consume our priority list. What should be the most important thing to us is seeking the Lord. It is not an easy thing to do. It takes time, sacrifice, commitment, effort, and plain work to seek the Lord. In other words, if it is not top priority, it is not going to happen.

This verse says it is urgent. God uses the phrase, “while he may be found”. Then God says to “call upon him while He is near”. So, He will not always be near, and He will not always be findable. There is urgency here. It is amazing to me how urgent we feel when there is a sale at the mall, or an item for sale online, and we are in such a hurry, so we don’t miss it, or we might miss the sale. But when it comes to the things of God, we think we have all the time in the world. We treat God as if He should wait on us and be ready whenever we finally think it is important. This opening phrase is not a suggestion, it is a command. In English, it is an understood subject. “You” seek the Lord, “you” call upon Him. It is urgent.

Notice second, the UNRIGHTEOUS
By the way, none of us are righteous, “no not one”. God says for the unrighteous man to forsake his way, and to forsake his thoughts. In other words, ‘quit doing what you are doing, and change your thinking’. We deceive our own selves. We “think” we have plenty of time, we “think” it’s ok to put God later down the list of priorities, and we “think” we can straddle the spiritual fence. God says to change your actions, change your attitude, and change your aptitude. This is “repentance”. God says to “return” to the Lord, while He is close and available.

Notice last, the UNDESERVING
God said if we will “repent”, and “return”, He will “reprieve”. God said that He will have mercy; and pardon us “abundantly”. God has more forgiveness, than we have sin. But we must “return” to Him. We must see the urgency. We are very undeserving of God’s mercy and forgiveness, but God has made it available. Remember:

• Proverbs 29:1 He, that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy.