"Make Known His Deeds Among the Peoples" - Part 2

(Point 2 of a sermon on Isaiah 12:1-6)

His Great Commission (vv.3-5)

Now this song of praise is not only intended to be sung by an individual believer. Here the believer who received and experienced the saving grace of God calls the rest of the people of God to declare His praises.

Beginning in v. 3, a shift from individual salvation to salvation in community is revealed by the use of the plural pronoun “you.” The single male voice in vv.1-2 is now calling others to draw water of salvation from the same source. Once, the water supply was cut off from Judah because of her sin. Now in v.3, there is an endless water supply. Their gloom is now replaced with joy.

Clearly the water here is another picture of salvation. Life of sin and rebellion against God is portrayed in Isaiah as a desert and dry land (Isa.35:1ff). There is no life without water. Life in sin and unbelief is like a desert. No plant can grow and bear fruit there.

It’s the same in our spiritual life. Sin turns your life into a waterless desert, a place that cannot sustain spiritual life. Sin makes your life fruitless and brings you sure eternal death.
But Isaiah is talking about drawing water with joy from the "wells" of salvation (v.3). “Wells” or “springs” here refer to Christ. Congregation, salvation in Christ is like springs of water where flowers and trees blossom and those who are thirsty are satisfied. A well-watered place is an appropriate metaphor for the person who lives his life in living fellowship with God. That person is like a tree planted by a river of water that brings forth its fruit in its season and whose leaf does not wither.

Now take note how this song of salvation is multiplied. After Isaiah has portrayed salvation experience as a joyful drawing of water from the wells of salvation, he then issues a series of commands to the congregation to participate in singing God’s salvation as a community.

So we read a great company joining Isaiah in worshiping God, calling upon His Name. They proclaim, sing, and broadcast to the far reaches of the earth. Their testimony is affected by their experience, but the testimony was centered in what God has done (v.4, 5). They are singing praises to the LORD for He has done gloriously (v.5a). And they say to one another let this glorious work of God be made known among the peoples (v.4b) in all the earth (v.5b).

These people who did not know God in the beginning of this prophecy (1:3) now make Him known to all the earth. They can’t help singing God’s great commission. They are singing the glorious work of God’s saving grace in our Lord Jesus Christ.

The word of God calls you today to fulfill His great commission not only by singing it but also by bringing the message of salvation to the ends of the earth, to all the peoples, nations and languages of the world, and to make disciples of Jesus Christ who will worship God in spirit and in truth.

We bring this salvation message to conquer the whole world not with human power, for the gospel message itself “is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes.” It is mightier than the sword or any man-made weapon.

So you and I should not limit ourselves to singing and declaring God's work of salvation to one another. We should also declare God's deeds to all the nations of the world. Evangelism and mission involve our praising God through telling all people everywhere about the wonderful work of salvation which God has accomplished in Christ and which we have experienced.

We need to exhort the people of this world to look to the One living and true God for their only hope of salvation. There is no other way of salvation but our Lord Jesus Christ, God’s only Son. This is our only message to the whole world.

If we really are filled with gratitude for what God has done for us, we can't help but tell others about it. We can't hold it in. When something is especially meaningful and precious to us, we can do no other but to talk to others about it. That is what evangelism is. It is sharing the good news which is too good to keep to ourselves.

Isaiah exhorts God's people to proclaim God's salvation to the world. This is consistent with what we learn in the New Testament. The gospel is the power of God unto to salvation for everyone who believes, to the Jew first and then to the Greek. God's people are from every nation, tribe and tongue. Therefore our proclamation is universal. We need to carry the light of the gospel of Christ to the jungles of Asia, South America and Africa as well as to the big secular cities of Europe and North America. God’s glorious name must be proclaimed to peoples of the Middle East and the islands of the Pacific and Caribbean.

So Isaiah in our passage looks at salvation. What he looks at immediately is the then coming restoration of the nation Israel. The nation Israel hadn't even been exiled yet, but Isaiah as a prophet looks forward to Israel's future salvation from the future time of exile. Isaiah does not see all the details of the way his prophecy of salvation would be fulfilled in coming redemptive history. There were mysteries about the new covenant which were not revealed until the time of the new covenant.

I believe this prophecy about God's gathering His people continues to be fulfilled in our day and age as the gospel is proclaimed to all the nations, and people from all direction come to sit down at the banquet of salvation with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. This prophetic word also looks forward to that glorious day when God's people will be gathered in that great final harvest and will be privileged to live forever on a glorified new earth.

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