The prophet Isaiah stated, “Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; Neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, And your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.” 59:1, 2. We live in a changing world. We recognize that each generation witnesses changes that would overwhelm their ancestors. Lifestyles have changed because of scientific and technological breakthroughs. Our weather patterns and common locations of natural disasters have changed. According to Isaiah, three constants remain the same.
First, God’s power to save remains the same. Isaiah said, “Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save…” This statement has remained true through the ages and will remain true forever. God opened the Red Sea to save Israel from Pharaoh’s army. “And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided.” Exodus 14:21. God delivered Daniel from death in the lion’s den. Daniel 6:16-27. God can save the soul from spiritual death. On the day of Pentecost, the Jews were told, “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.” Acts 2:36. How did they respond? “Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?” Acts 2:37. What were they told to do? “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” Acts 2:38. The Holy Spirit said, “For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.” Romans 8:6-8.
Second, God’s ability to hear and answer prayer remains the same. Isaiah said, “Neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear…” God heard the prayers of His people while they were slaves in Egypt. Exodus 3:7-8. God called Moses to deliver them and tell them He had heard their prayers. God promised that He would bring them into a good land flowing with milk and honey. God has given great promises of answered prayer throughout in His Word. In Jeremiah, we are told, “Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.” 33:3. Listen to Jesus! “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.” Matthew 7:7-8. The early church prayed, and a “multitude of them” obeyed the Gospel of Christ. Acts 4:31-32. The Holy Spirit said, “Pray without ceasing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:17.
Third, the destructiveness of sin remains the same. Isaiah said, “…your iniquities have separated between you and your God…” We need to understand that when sin is in our lives keeps our prayers from being answered. The Psalmist said, “If I regard iniquity in my heart, The Lord will not hear me…” 66:18. James wrote, “Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.” 5:17-18. Elijah prayed with great power because of the way he lived. James also wrote about the progression of sin. “But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.” 1:14-15. No one can escape the consequences of sin. “ But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the Lord: and be sure your sin will find you out.” Numbers 32:23.
Our need for salvation remains the same. “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God…” Romans 3:23. The love of God for sinners remains the same. “For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:6-8. And the way of salvation remains for the same. The sinner must hear the Gospel, Romans 10:17, repent of their sins, Acts 2:38, confess Jesus Christ as the Son of God, Matthew 10:32, 33, and be immersed. Acts 22:16; 1 Peter 3:21. Bobby D. Gayton