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The Christian’s Perfect Comfort – Isaiah 66:13

08/11/2014

The Christian’s Great Comfort

Text: Isaiah 66:13

Heidelberg Catechism: Lords’ Day 1. Q2. How many things are necessary for you to know, that in this comfort you may live and die happily?
Three things: First, the greatness of my sin and misery. Second, how I am redeemed from all my sins and misery. Third, how I am to be thankful to God for such redemption.

Comfort is available for those who are coping with life, and those who have reached life’s end, but the only source of comfort is Christ, who has redeemed us, and bought us back from the slavery of sin, and we are no longer our own, but we are his, and we are thus fully surrendered to the sovereign will of God, knowing that his way is always perfect, and nothing in this world can ever separate us from him and his love. The Catechism informs us that only three things are necessary for us to know to have this kind of comfort. We must know:-

  • The depth, the awfulness of our sin and misery. Every aspect of our life has been affected by sin and that sin SEPARATES us from God, who is holy. Furthermore, in our sins we are DEAD and unable to do anything to help ourselves. (Ephesians 2:1). Is there then no hope for us? What comfort can we find in such awareness of our sin and condemnation? It is not found within ourselves, but in Another…
  • How all our sins are forgiven and we are redeemed. How can we ever be redeemed from slavery to sin? According to the Scriptures, there is only one way that this problem of sin can be resolved, and that is in Christ, – who died to save us. In knowing him as saviour, we are redeemed. John 17:3
  • How we must respond in thanksgiving for salvation. Such salvation gives us great comfort and confidence, and we are grateful. This gratitude is worked out in our lives, as we love and serve our neighbour, wherever the Lord has placed us, fulfilling our own separate vocations, living with His help in obedience to him, and in humble repentance all the days of our life.

Our awareness of these three basic principles will bring us enormous comfort. For Isaiah, that comfort that God extends to his people is a very loving comfort indeed:

1. God Comforts His People.
The Lord is the speaker in this passage! He says, “I will comfort you!” (cf 2 Cor. 1:3).

  • It is PERFECT COMFORT. Everything God does is perfect! As for God his way is perfect; the word of the Lord is tried: he is a buckler to all them that trust in him. 2 Samuel 22:31 As for God his way is perfect: the word of the Lord is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust in him. Psalm 18:30.
  • The comfort that God gives to his people is IN EVERY WAY PERFECT! It must be perfect in its purity — in other words, the comfort of God is never mixed.
  • It is UNCHANGING. If God says he will comfort you then He will. The comfort of God never ends, and the reason for that is because God is eternal! Rev 7:17
    It springs from the ATONEMENT! God demonstrated his love for us by sending his own Son to die on the Cross for sinners like us.

2. God’s Comfort is Very Tender. As one whom his mother comforteth.
Now notice carefully here that this is not a proof text for those who want to refer to God as ‘mother!’ At this point, the text is referring to the experience of God’s people in receipt of His love. It is we who are being comforted in the unique way that we derived comfort from our mother. God’s heart is full of love for His children! How patiently he bears with us when we disobey him, how patiently he brings us back into the way…

3. God’s Comfort is Found Among His People! and ye shall be comforted in Jerusalem
Now, look where this comfort is to be found. Jerusalem. The place where God dwells, the place where God is worshipped, the place where God’s people gather, the place where the Word of God is proclaimed and sins are forgiven, through Christ crucified. Jerusalem is typical of the true church! Now, God can comfort you anywhere, but within the church of true Christian believers, true comfort is found!

The true subjects of God’s comfort are the children of God, those who know and love Christ as Saviour and Lord. For the wicked there is NO PEACE – either in this world or in eternity! That comfort comes only from God, it cannot be found in the world. True comfort is found among the Lord’s people, meeting together as the gathered church, where we can have fellowship in the Lord.

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