Date: Thursday, September 19
Scripture: Isaiah 40:1-11
Verse: Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that she has served her term, that her penalty is paid, that she has received from the Lord’s hand double for all her sins. (Isaiah 40:2)
I do not like car shopping, or any other kind of purchase that involves haggling. My guess is I have paid more than was necessary for several things throughout my life.
In yesterday’s devotion we talked about the difficulty we sometimes have in forgiving ourselves. We refuse to let go of the sin. We try to do everything we can to make up for the pain we’ve caused, but nothing seems to work. Because erasing the past is impossible, we sometimes wallow in our own shortcomings.
Today’s passage is written from the end of the Babylonian exile. God is announcing through Isaiah that the time is coming when the people will return home. They have paid double for their sins, and now it is time to hit the reset button and start fresh. The image later in the passage, is of God coming to the people, in forgiveness and power.
There may be a sin in your life for which you have paid double – because of your constant focus on it. A hurt consumes you. It comes to mind at the worst times. It is there when you are feeling good as a reminder you’re not that good, or there to kick you when you are down.
If this describes you, hear these words, “Your penalty is paid.” No haggling necessary. Just accept your forgiveness.
Prayer: Gracious God, give me the wisdom to accept you have paid the penalty for all my sin. Amen.
Action: Sit in a quiet spot and repeat to yourself the words Jesus wants to say to you today, “You are forgiven.”
Respond: Are you good at haggling, or have you overpaid for things? Answer by clicking “Leave a Comment” below.
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