A Promise of God’s Help - Isaiah 41


The following article is an excerpt from "A Book of Bible Study"

by Joseph F. Harwood.

 

To download the entire book in PDF format, visit our home page at https://www.abookofbiblestudy.net/


 

In the book of Isaiah we find one of God’s many promises to help and sustain His people. This passage begins:

 

“But you, Israel, My servant,
Jacob whom I have chosen,
Descendant of Abraham My friend,
You whom I have taken from the ends of the earth,
And called from its remotest parts
And said to you, ‘You are My servant,
I have chosen you and not rejected you.
‘Do not fear, for I am with you;
Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you, surely I will help you,
Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’

 

“For I am the Lord your God, who upholds your right hand,
Who says to you, ‘Do not fear, I will help you.’
“Do not fear, you worm Jacob, you men of Israel;
I will help you,” declares the Lord, “and your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel.

(Isaiah 41:8-10, 13-14)

 

In the Book of Acts, we read that Paul and Barnabas strengthened and encouraged the disciples to remain true to the faith, teaching them that we must go through many troubles to enter the kingdom of God (Acts 14:22). At times, as we face the trials and hardships of this life, and we consider our own strength and resources to cope with them, we may feel as powerless as the “worm” that God used to describe Jacob. God’s promises of help for His people like this one in the book of Isaiah are recorded for our benefit as spiritual Israel, as descendants of faithful Abraham (Romans 9:8), for the times when we face the trials that we will endure according to the sovereign plan and purpose of God for our lives.

 

When faced with these trials, knowing our own weaknesses and inadequacies, our first reaction is likely to be one of fear. In such times let us remember the promise of our God who says to us:

 

“Do not fear, for I am with you;
Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you, surely I will help you,
Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”  

(Isaiah 41:10, emphasis added).

 

Continuing in the following verses God tells us yet again not to fear, and again He promises us His help when He says:

 

“For I am the Lord your God, who upholds your right hand,
Who says to you, ‘Do not fear, I will help you.’
“Do not fear, you worm Jacob, you men of Israel;
I will help you,” declares the Lord, “and your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel.” (Isaiah 41:13-14, emphasis added).

 

Notice that to emphasize the certainty of His promise; God said three times in these three verses from Isaiah 41 that indeed He will help His people.

 

In the book of Revelation, John recounted his vision of the risen Christ with these words: “And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war. His eyes are a flame of fire, and on His head are many diadems; and He has a name written on Him which no one knows except Himself. He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God.” (Revelation 19:11-13, emphasis added).

 

The word of God as recorded in both the Old and the New Testaments of the Holy Bible is God’s revelation of Himself to His people. Every teaching, every admonition, every exhortation, and every promise recorded in the word of God is given to us through Him who is called “Faithful and True”.

 

Therefore, when God gives His promise to help His people, we can be assured that we will receive His help in our time of need. God’s promise to help the “worm Jacob” is ours as believers, as spiritual Israel, and on the authority of the word of God we can be assured that He will indeed help us, strengthen us and uphold us during our times of trouble, just as He said that He would.

 

Continuing further in Isaiah 41 we read:

 

“The afflicted and needy are seeking water, but there is none,
And their tongue is parched with thirst;
I, the Lord, will answer them Myself,
As the God of Israel I will not forsake them.
“I will open rivers on the bare heights
And springs in the midst of the valleys;
I will make the wilderness a pool of water
And the dry land fountains of water.
“I will put the cedar in the wilderness,
The acacia and the myrtle and the olive tree;
I will place the juniper in the desert
Together with the box tree and the cypress,
That they may see and recognize,
And consider and gain insight as well,
That the hand of the Lord has done this,
And the Holy One of Israel has created it.
(Isaiah 41:17-20)

 

Speaking through the prophet in these verses, God said that He will answer His people and help them, and that He will not forsake them. God said four times in this passage, I will, in order to emphasize the certainty of His promise to provide for His people in their time of need.

 

When we are faced with our times of trouble, we are exhorted not to be afraid, because we have God’s promise that He will strengthen us and help us, and He will uphold us with His righteous right hand (Isaiah 41:10, 13-14). Within these passages of Isaiah 41, we have God’s promise of His help and His provision for our lives, and we can therefore be assured that as we walk through the desert “wilderness” of our own trials and difficulties, we will be sustained by the mercy, grace and provision of God.

 

As impossible as it is in the natural world to open rivers on barren heights, and to cause lush trees to grow in a desert wilderness, we know that with our God nothing shall be impossible (Luke 1:37). And we have His faithful and true promise that He will indeed help us in our times of trouble. 

 



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