Are You Thirsty? Come and Drink!
“Ho! Every one who thirsts, come to the waters; and you have no money come, buy and eat. Come, buy win and milk without money and without cost” (Isaiah 55:1–13).
The prophet spoke to people living in hard, desperate times; national loss and destruction loomed. They lived without hope. Yet out of the darkness hopelessness rang this word from the Lord God. They had heard words of judgment from Isaiah. Just when it seemed all was lost, the Lord God spoke through the prophet with a message of eternal hope, pardon, comfort, and joy. The same God offended by idolatry and rebellion came in compassion, tenderness, and with the great invitation to come to Him. He has sent His Son, the Suffering Servant (Isa. 53), upon whom He laid our iniquities to atone for our sins and to declare us righteous, accepted, and forgiven. Jesus has accomplished redemption, so now the Lord God says, “Come!”
The warmth of the invitation found in the gospel of Christ radiates through this prophetic word. “Ho! Every one who thirsts, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.” The invitation is far those who sense their need. They’re thirsty, spiritually barren and lifeless, and now the Lord invites, “Come!” Come to God’s provision of refreshment, life, and deepest satisfaction. Come, for what God has provided is free out of His grace, love, and mercy. “Listen carefully to Me,” He counsels, “and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in abundance.” You’ve spent your life on that which can never satisfy (2a), now come to the Lord, “Incline your ear and come to Me. Listen, that you may live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you according to the faithful mercies shown to David.” The promise of the Messiah through David’s lineage now comes to fruition. Jesus Christ has come, died, risen, ascended, and now reigns as your welcoming, forgiving King. So, Come!
“Seek the Lord while He may be found; call upon Him while He is near.” But how can sinners seek Him? The prophet instructs the manner of coming. “Let the wicked forsake his way and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return to the Lord, and He will have compassion on him, and to our God, and He will abundantly pardon.” The same God thought unapproachable due to our sin and rebellion, warmly invites. Forsake your sin; turn from your unrighteous ways. The Lord’s way is a holy way, so turn from your way in repentance, and trust Him to pardon.
Yet such an invitation to a person who has come to grips with his sin and wickedness seems impossible.” ‘Maybe someone else can come,’ he says, ‘but not me. My sins are too big, my godlessness too shameful for me to come and drink and delight in abundance.’ But the Lord says, “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways.” You cannot and will not come if you think the Lord is like you. No! He is full of mercy and pardon! “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.” The Lord has sent forth His good news in Jesus Christ. What was impossible to you, He has performed and secured in Christ. Now His Word of good news, pardon, forgiveness, life, joy, and eternal hope has been declared in the proclamation and invitation of the gospel. This “word which goes forth from My mouth,” the Lord assures, “it will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.” And here is the assurance for all to listen to Him, turn, and come to Him: “For you will go out with joy and be led forth with peace.” Everything changes in Christ! Seek Him! Come!
The above post comes to you by permission from the “Leather Journal” of Pastor Phil Newton of the South Woods Baptist Church located at https://www.southwoodsbc.org/