I chuckled a bit when I felt the nudge to blog on Isaiah 31 because it, like my last post, is on not trusting in man. I was like, “Yes Lord, I see the theme!”
Here is Isaiah 31:1, 3a (empasis mine)
Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help and rely on horses, who trust in chariots because they are many and in horsemen because they are very strong, but do not look to the Holy One of Israel or consult the LORD!
The Egyptians are man, and not God, and their horses are flesh, and not spirit.
The first thing I want to touch on here is the word “woe” because when you go back to the original meaning in essence it’s like a threatening promise. So what is being said is basically “if you do this, expect consequences!”
Next we see what the “woe” is in reference to. The word goes on to describe how the Egyptians look, and they look strong and powerful, a force to be reckoned with. Then it shows the real problem: our eyes were fixed on man rather than God.
You see we have spent FAR too much of our lives developing our natural senses and not nearly enough time developing our spiritual senses. As a result, we are quick to make decisions based on what our natural senses tell us.
My pastor made an interesting point last night, “we are each made up of both flesh and spirit, yet our flesh passes away and our spirit lives on for eternity. So which are we more of, flesh or spirit?” And of course the obvious conclusion is spirit.
So if our spirit is more important than flesh (which by the way is the implication of verse 3 that we’re looking at), why do tend to judge by the natural, which is something the word consistently warns us about? (e.g. Isaiah 29:14, 1 Corinthians 1:27)
I submit we have simply been taught to develop the natural senses and use them as the primary resource for decision-making. Further, when you DON’T you’re called foolish, illogical, extreme, a zealot, etc. (I’m well familiar with these since I’ve been on the receiving end of these comments on numerous occasion!)
And yet God is VERY clear on this point, we are to keep our eyes fixed on Him and obey His instruction, discern by our spiritual senses. He even gives us very clear promises for when we choose to live with a reverential fear of the Lord.
Basically to successfully accomplish this requires a paradigm shift. As you press in to the Lord, He allows you to begin to see more and more as He sees. But be aware that you can’t spend hours upon hours staring at the things of this world and then expect to make this shift. There’s a cost, but it is well worth it.
Father, I ask for eyes to see and ears to hear. Help us to stay fixed on You and to fear You. You are the One in whom we place our hope. You are the One whose instruction we heed. You are the One who directs and protects our lives. Be glorified through us!