Chapter 49 is amazing. God is telling Isaiah to speak to the people in the words of Jesus. (who wasn't even born for another 700 years) I know that sounds a bit confusing. So, let's just think of it as Jesus telling us what will happen. He said that before He was even born, God already had a plan in place for Him. In Psalm 139:13, God says the same thing about us. He says, "I knit you together in your mother's womb." God knew us even before we were in our mother's womb! He created us.... and get this.... He created us with a purpose! God has a plan for you, just as He had a plan for Jesus. God's ways are so unimaginable. He can have a plan for each individual person and, as he states in verse 3, He also has a plan for nations! Wow! I can't even wrap my brain around that! I'm glad that I cannot completely understand the ways of God. It tells me that His thoughts are way above mine. Since He is good, I must trust that His plan is not only good, but the best plan ever! We all have dreams and try to think about what our lives will be like. Do you know what you want to be when you grow up? God knows, and He has created you with special gifts and special desires to do that special something.
The rest of chapter 49 tell of God's amazing promises to Israel and to us. One of the coolest promises is in verse 15b-16. I will not forget you!
How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!” In other words, God loves when we share the good news of Jesus with others. Have you ever thought if God cares about whether or not I tell others about how Jesus changed my life? Well He does. He ends chapter 52 telling about how Jesus will suffer, but He will have the ultimate victory. Isn't it amazing how much Jesus is talked about in this book and it was written 700 years before He was even born. And many of the prophesies are so detailed that it would be a one in a gadzillion chance that it could ever happen by accident!
Chapter 53 continues with Jesus' suffering and how His death atoned (paid a debt) for our sins. We are all sinners. The text says the we are like sheep and have all gone astray. But Jesus took our sins upon Himself and God accepted that payment for all our sins, past, present and future. It is truly an amazing gift that God has offered to us. But we must accept it. In Romans 9:10 It says that accepted Jesus as your Lord and savior? God is offering this wonderful gift to you. If you want to spend eternity with God and allow Jesus to be Lord of your life, God makes it available to everyone, from the rich to poor, the healthy to sick, the tall to short. Just do the ABCs. Admit that you are a sinner and you need Jesus. Believe in your heart that He died for your sins and rose from the dead. And Confess with your mouth that from now on, Jesus is in control of your life. If you did that just now, the angels are throwing a huge party in heaven!
Chapter 54 discusses how God will restore Israel, and His promise to them of peace, prosperity and protection. Then in Chapter 55 God call to all who can hear His voice, that they to can be restored just as Israel will be. God's invitation includes blessing, leadership and forgiveness. But we need to accept His invitation. He is all powerful and keeps His promises. Chapter 56 continues in asserting that His promises are for all the world, and restoration is possible for all nations and all people as individuals.