The Ultimate Reality
In 1932, Albert Einstein observed, “Our situation on this earth seems strange. Every one of us appears here involuntarily and uninvited for a short stay, without knowing the whys and the wherefore.” Indeed, you won’t have to listen too long before you hear people say that we live in a world of chance, where history merely repeats itself and there is no overarching purpose in the universe. If this is true, it is hard to find significance in life. There is nothing to do but live, and then die.
God speaks into the absence of purpose resulting from this view of reality. He proclaims the ultimate reality that changes everything: Himself. God introduces Himself, revealing His identity: “I am the LORD.” God’s name (here, “the LORD”) is not simply what we call Him; it expresses His being. God’s many names in the Bible give significant information about who He is: eternal, self-sustaining, sovereign… and much more!
As God speaks, He also reveals His power. The heavens are His design, and He is the one who spread out the earth and gives form and life to all that comes from it. Creation’s stability and productivity are grounded in the Creator. We are not the product of some self-existing evolutionary surge but of the direct act of a Designer. We cannot make sense of our existence apart from God. We were never meant to.
And what is God’s purpose now for everything that He has made? To bring about righteousness on the earth through salvation. “I am the LORD; I have called you in righteousness; I will take you by the hand and keep you; I will give you as a covenant for the people, a light for the nations.” He is speaking here not to us but to His Son, the Servant whom Isaiah introduces. When we are in need of counsel, in need of friendship, in need of forgiveness, in need of salvation, God has said, “Here is my servant, whom I uphold” (Isaiah 42:1, NIV).
We will never be as satisfied in life as when we discover our ultimate reality in Christ. Flowing from that reality we find our purpose: “to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.” If you wish to know purpose and fulfillment in life, you have only to embrace and rejoice in the Lord’s Servant, glorifying God just as Simeon did: “My eyes have seen your salvation that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to your people Israel” (Luke 2:30-32).
The Lord's Chosen Servant
1Behold my servant, whom I uphold,
my chosen, in whom my soul delights;
I have put my Spirit upon him;
he will bring forth justice to the nations.
2He will not cry aloud or lift up his voice,
or make it heard in the street;
3a bruised reed he will not break,
and a faintly burning wick he will not quench;
he will faithfully bring forth justice.
4He will not grow faint or be discouraged1
till he has established justice in the earth;
and the coastlands wait for his law.
5Thus says God, the Lord,
who created the heavens and stretched them out,
who spread out the earth and what comes from it,
who gives breath to the people on it
and spirit to those who walk in it:
6“I am the Lord; I have called you2 in righteousness;
I will take you by the hand and keep you;
I will give you as a covenant for the people,
a light for the nations,
7to open the eyes that are blind,
to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon,
from the prison those who sit in darkness.
8I am the Lord; that is my name;
my glory I give to no other,
nor my praise to carved idols.
9Behold, the former things have come to pass,
and new things I now declare;
before they spring forth
I tell you of them.”
Sing to the Lord a New Song
10Sing to the Lord a new song,
his praise from the end of the earth,
you who go down to the sea, and all that fills it,
the coastlands and their inhabitants.
11Let the desert and its cities lift up their voice,
the villages that Kedar inhabits;
let the habitants of Sela sing for joy,
let them shout from the top of the mountains.
12Let them give glory to the Lord,
and declare his praise in the coastlands.
13The Lord goes out like a mighty man,
like a man of war he stirs up his zeal;
he cries out, he shouts aloud,
he shows himself mighty against his foes.
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