Assurance of Redemption (Isaiah 43:1–3) - Radical

Assurance of Redemption (Isaiah 43:1–3)

But now thus says the Lord, He who created you, O Jacob, He who formed you, O Israel, “Fear not for I have redeemed you. I have called you by name, and you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you, and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you. When you walk through fire, you shall not be burned and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, the holy one of Israel, your savior.”
– Isaiah 43:1–3

Are those not amazing words from God to his people? Is this not all over Isaiah? These chapters in Isaiah are so incredible, as God just gives us a glimpse into his heart for his people. As he’s saying to them, “Don’t be afraid.” We’ve heard this at different points.

Isaiah 43:1–3 is calling to trust the Lord, our Redeemer.

He says it again and again and again. Why? Because we are so prone to be afraid. We’re so prone to fear, to worry, to anxiety. Just think about how that plays out in your life and hear God saying over and over and over again every day, “Fear not.” Why? “Because I have redeemed you. Because I’m writing a story of redemption in your life that you may not understand right now, and you may not see all the fruit of right now, but trust me, I’m your Redeemer. I’m the one who takes that which is wrong, and I make it right. I’m the one who takes ashes and turns them into beauty, and I have called you by name. You are mine.” What a picture, and yes, this is God speaking to Israel in the Old Testament of this specific place and time in history.

At the same time, we see this all over the New Testament. Everything that’s here applies to those who trust in God through Jesus. He has called you by name. Before the foundation of the world, he’s called you by name. He doesn’t just know your name. He calls your name to himself. Just think about that. This is you. He calls your name. For all who trust in Jesus, you are his. You belong to God, which means he takes responsibility for you, for your care, such that verse 2, “When you pass through the waters, you will never pass through hard, deep, challenging waters alone.” He will always be with you. When you go through rivers, that’s pictured like a river threatening to overtake you. No, they shall not overwhelm you.

Isaiah 43:1–3 challenges us to trust the Lord, our Sustainer.

When you walk through fire, some of you’re walking through fire right now. You’ve walked through fire in the past. You’ll walk through fire in the future. You shall not be burned. God says, “The flame shall not consume you.” Why? “Because I am the Lord your God, the holy one of Israel, your savior. I’m the one who will save you. I’m the one who will sustain you. I’ll strengthen you. I will bring you through.” This is God speaking to us and not just us together, but you and me personally. This is God saying, “I love you so much. I love my people. I love you by name so much.”

So we pray in light of Isaiah 43:1–3. God, we praise you as the Lord our God. We exalt you as the one who takes away all reason to be afraid. You’re the one who takes away all reason to worry. You take away all reason to be anxious because you are with us and for us. We praise you, oh God, for calling our names. We praise you for making us yours. Jesus. We praise you for purchasing us with your blood so that we might belong to you, oh God, so that we might be protected by you. So we might be preserved by you, helped by you, strengthened by you.

This verse challenges us to trust and call others to trust the Lord, our Savior.

So that when we pass the waters… God, I pray for those who are passing through waters, through rivers, and through fire right now that they would hear you saying to them in a fresh way right now that you are with them. That they’re not alone, and they will not be overwhelmed. That you will help them through. They will not be burned because you are the Lord, their God, their Savior, the Satisfier and Sustainer of their souls now, tomorrow, next week, and forever.

God, we praise you for Isaiah 43. We pray that you would help us to live with the confidence and freedom from fear, worry, and anxiety, and joy and strength that are possible because of your love for us. God, we pray you would help us to spread your love for others today by the power of your Spirit on us. Help us to lead others to redemption in you, to hear you calling their names.

Prayer for the Mandyak People

God, we pray for the Mandyak people of Guinea-Bissau. 510,000 of them there in Guinea-Bissau, Senegal, and Gambia, worshiping all kinds of different religions. We pray for the few believers among the Mandyak people that they would be strengthened in light of Isaiah 43 and that You would bless them and others who you call to the Mandyak people to reach this people group with the good news of Your redemption and freedom from sin and death through salvation in Jesus. Oh God, we pray all this according to your Word in Isaiah 43:1-3, which we love. We love Your Word. In Jesus’ name, we pray all these things. Amen.

David Platt

David Platt serves as a pastor in metro Washington, D.C. He is the founder of Radical.

David received his Ph.D. from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and is the author of Don’t Hold Back, Radical, Follow MeCounter CultureSomething Needs to ChangeBefore You Vote, as well as the multiple volumes of the Christ-Centered Exposition Commentary series.

Along with his wife and children, he lives in the Washington, D.C. metro area.

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