Back in the day (let’s not talk about how far back it was!), I loved watching the game show, “Who Wants to be a Millionaire?” As contestants answered questions, they could use lifelines such as phoning a friend or polling the audience. Depending on the question and the friends they had waiting for a call, the contestant would make a decision about who could help the most.
Over the next several weeks, we’re walking through the hymn “How Firm a Foundation” together. The verses that follow the first verse are all written as God talking to us, and they paraphrase promises from the Bible. The second verse closely mirrors Isaiah 41:10. Here are the lyrics:
“Fear not, I am with you, O be not dismayed;
for I am your God, and will still give you aid;
I’ll strengthen you, help you, and cause you to stand,
upheld by my righteous, omnipotent hand.”
Isaiah 41:10 gives us a wonderful promise: that God is with us, and He will strengthen, help, and uphold us. But this promise brings zero comfort if we can’t rely on God to stay with us through our darkest hours. And this promise means nothing if God isn’t able to give us the help we truly need.
When we look at this verse in context, the promise becomes even more powerful. God’s people are being threatened by larger military powers around them in the ancient world. They have every reason to be afraid. But God tells them that He is the One who rules over world powers and events. (Isaiah 41:4)
Other nations trust in their preparation and might. (Isaiah 41:5-7) But Israel has the privilege of being chosen and called by God. He has brought them to Himself and called them His friend. He has promised to always be with them. (Isaiah 41:8-9) God is their Redeemer and the only Holy One. (Isaiah 41:14)
Because of who God is and what He has done for His people, the Israelites could be confident in His help and have no fear. And as those who have the gift of knowing the cross of Jesus and His empty tomb, we can have even greater confidence in the God who promises to be with us, help us, strengthen us, and sustain us.
No matter what you face this week, God promises to give you His sustaining strength.Share