Our Zealous Father

2021 Christmas Advent Day 9: The Zeal of The LORD

  • Main Passage: Isaiah 9:7
    • Of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of The LORD of Hosts will perform this.
  • On day one we learned that the prophesied Child would be the answer to Israel’s problems; the Child would be the very fountain of living waters Himself, the Messiah, from whom all can freely come and be satisfied, receiving eternal life, that life which was in The Father and revealed through Jesus, which for many millennia was hidden behind the thick veil as it were.
  • On day two we saw the great gift Jesus is. The high price and value of The Beloved Son of The Father. We saw The Father’s great love for His Son and as a result we should be moved to worship Him.
  • On day three, we saw Jesus as King and governor, as the ruler of all the earth. This role, yet unfulfilled, will occur when Jesus returns to earth the second time.
  • Day four showed us the greatness of Jesus’ coming into our world; that this is a wonderful and marvellous work from God. That such power and glory is to strike fear and wonder and awe.
  • Day five revealed to us Jesus as the treasure chest of all wisdom, knowledge, and understanding.
  • On day six, Jesus was revealed to us as The Mighty God: creator, sustainer; the one who upholds all things by His power, and who alone holds all strength.
  • On day seven, we saw that the very essence, the very nature, of Jesus is The Father. That The Father was and is in Jesus and Jesus in The Father. All the characteristics of The Father are found in Jesus: and He as Son, is the origin of all that is good, and who is from everlasting to everlasting.
  • Yesterday, we saw Jesus as the Prince of peace: the one of whom nothing can disturb. He is eternally at peace, and offers the same to us.
  • Today, we see the driving force behind all of this: the zeal of The LORD of Hosts. The word zeal means “intense enthusiasm” or “ardor,” which means “passion” or “intense heat.” To be zealous is to be almost fanatic, on the edge of insanity some would say, for that is what they called Jesus, who because “the zeal of [His Father’s] house” ate Him up, cast out those in the temple. [John 2:12-17, Psalms 69:8-9] The intense passion, emotion, and fire of Jesus alienated Him from his brethren. The Psalms says, “I am become a stranger unto my brethren, and an alien unto my mother’s brethren. For the zeal of Thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me.” [Psalms 69:8-9] Our God is zealous above all: His passion for Jesus, His passion for His own glory (for He has saved us for His own Name’s and Glory’s sake), burns within Him an unquenchable and all-consuming fire. This passion, Jesus shows us, purges sin from the temple; we might even say, purges sin from our hearts, the centermost of the temple of our bodies. His intense burning, intense enthusiasm also works for the birth of Jesus, as we see here in Isaiah.
  • The Lord is zealous about salvation; He is zealous to save men. It is His business here on earth, even as Jesus says, “For the Son of Man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” [Luke 19:10] And again, “For the Son of Man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them.” [Luke 9:56]
    • Later in the book of Isaiah, we see the zeal of The LORD in salvation, who looks down from heaven and sees us in our sorry state of damnation, and instead of condemning us all to hell, clads Himself with righteousness, salvation, and zeal to save us.
      • And He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore His arm brought salvation unto Him; and His righteousness it sustained Him. For He put on righteousness as a breastplate, and an helmet of salvation upon His head; and He put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloke.” [Isaiah 59:16-17]
    • No one is as passionate about salvation than God. And we can be certain that if God is so zealous of our salvation, and so willing, then He will indeed save us: He will not forsake us, and He will continue to passionately work in our lives until the day of Jesus Christ. “Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” [Philippians 1:6] “Faithful is He that calleth you, who also will do it.” [1 Thessalonians 5:24] Jesus was so passionate about salvation, about us, about God’s glory: that He willingly became a man, born to us a Child, a Son, so that one day He might die the death we deserved. We are the work of His nail pierced hands; we are the work of His hands. “The LORD will perfect that which concerneth me: Thy mercy, O LORD, endureth for ever: forsake not the works of Thine own hands.” [Psalms 138:8]

Questions for Day 9

  1. The LORD Himself is zealous over us! He is passionate about saving us, and passionate about continuing that work of salvation in our lives. How might this zeal of God give us hope, confidence, strength, or joy in our daily lives? What else does it do for us/cause in us/etc.?
    • Reflect: If Jesus was so passionate about God’s glory, then we ought to be too. And God’s glory is most perfectly found in the salvation offered through Jesus. God has chosen to use men filled with The Holy Spirit to spread this/live out this message.
    • The LORD Thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; He will save, He will rejoice over thee with joy; He will rest in His love, He will joy over thee with singing.” [Zephaniah 3:17]

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