God Brings Life

Adam Navis

READ : Isaiah 54

Sing, O barren one, who did not bear. (v. 1)

There are many good metaphors to understand God's action in human history. Here are a few: Jesus as the sacrificial lamb. God calling people out of darkness and into light. Being freed from the bondage of sin by Christ's selfless love. Here's one more picture to add to our understanding: God's blessing to us is like a barren woman who suddenly finds herself pregnant.

To be infertile today is sad, but it does not have the financial implications it had for women during the time of Isaiah. A woman without children, especially sons, lacked honor, but also had little hope of a comfortable future. She would some day be dependent of the charity of strangers rather than the provision of her children.

Without Christ, we too lack a hope for the future. But God comes to us and says, “Fear not, for you will not be ashamed; be not confounded, for you will not be disgraced; for you will forget the shame of your youth and the reproach of your widowhood. . . . For your Maker is your husband” (vv. 4-5).

The metaphor of God as our husband may not be comfortable for everyone. But one purpose of these devotionals is to highlight the fact that fertility and infertility are major biblical pictures of God's saving action and that they have often been overlooked in favor of judicial or battle metaphors. It is time to claim all the biblical images of God's work in our lives.

PRAYER

Open our hearts to understand your work in the world.