A supreme claim. He created our spirit ” But now thus saith the LORD that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee,” (v.1)
To every soul, as to Israel of old God says “Thou art mine.” (v.1)
He requires of us that we should consider ourselves as belonging to him. Why?
So that he may employ us in his service, that he may direct our will, that he may command our affection, and to see to the well being of our life.
God does not claim to own us in the sense of being at liberty to act arbitrarily and capriciously toward us, but in the sense of being free to rule our soul and fashion our lives according to the dictates of truth and righteousness.
God did create us and give us life physical and spiritually Even “every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him. (v.7)
If we could make an estimate of how much we are obligated to him, how much should we consider that we owned him that brought us out of nothing into being a living soul, he has endowed us with all the immeasurable capacities that are enfolded in an immortal spirit.
How large a claim has God upon our thoughts, our gratitude, our service, in virtue of the fact that by his creative power we old all that we have and all we are today
He can and will shape our life if we will allow him to do so “And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying, O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.” (Jer.18:4,7
God has formed us. He who formed Israel by all his providential dealings with that nation from the beginning is the God who built up our life and holds us in his hand. (Heb.3:4) “For every house is builded by some man; but he that built all things is God.”
Our human relationship, our bodily health and strength, our circumstances of comfort and joy, our mental strength and acquirement, all this is the product of that shaping hand which “Forms” the destines of men as it give figure to the foliage, arrests the tide, or determines the course of the stars.
He is the Redeemer of our soul “I have redeemed thee.” (v.1) God might well claim to be Israel’s Redeemer, for he had mercifully and mightily interposed on its behalf “And afterward Moses and Aaron went in, and told Pharaoh, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness.” (Ex.5:1)
But with how much greater reason may he claim to be our Redeemer ! How much greater is that “great salvation? By which he “saves his people from their sin” (Mt.1:21) than deliverance by which he rescued a people from political bondage or military disaster!
The surpassing strength of this claim upon us is seem in. First, in that it is a redemption from the worst spiritual evils, to spiritual power and freedom,
Secondly, in that it was wrought at such a priceless cost “Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:” (I.Pt.1:18,19)
His personal interest in every one of us. “I have called thee by thou name”
The distinct and especial interest which the Lord took in Israel has its counterpart in the individual interest to take in each one of his children “And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” (Rev.20:15)
Christ has led us to feel that he follows the course of every human spirit with a parental yearning, with a Saviour’s restorative purpose and hope “For the ways of man are before the eyes of the LORD, and he pondereth all his goings.” (Prov.21:2)
He calls us by our name. To each wandering, backsliding soul, he is saying “Return unto me” To each striving, inquiring spirit he is saying “Be of good cheer, I will help thee”
To each faithful workman he is saying Toil on, I will come was a recompense ” Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompence; he will come and save you.” (Isa.35:4)
The sure stay. “Fear not” There are many voices who approach us and whisper all kinds of words into our ear “There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and none of them is without signification. ” (I.Cor.14:10)
Some of these are delusive, and others are imperfect and ineffectual.
It may be an ill-grounded complacency, or it may be favourable surroundings, or it may be human friendship, but the house of our hope, thus built upon the sand, may fall at any hour.
If we would build our confidence upon the Rock, we must rest on the promised stay of a reconciled heavenly Father, on the assured aid of an Almighty Friend, on the certain succor of a Divine Comforter.
Let each one of us returned unto the living God, resting and abiding in Jesus Christ, we may go forth to any future, however threatening it may be, for One is present with us in whose company we may gladly enter the darkest shadows.
If we listen we may hear a voice whose tones we nay trust in the wildest storm, saying, “Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine.” (v.1)