Digging Deeper posts are intended to help us go farther into God’s word than a simple surface reading
and are designed to help us discover new tools in the process.
Curious as to why we Dig Deeper? Here’s Why!
Isaiah 26:3-4 English Standard Version (ESV)
You keep him in perfect peace
whose mind is stayed on you,
because he trusts in you.
Trust in the Lord forever,
for the Lord God is an everlasting rock.
1) Who was Isaiah talking to and about in this passage: who is the “You” and who is the “him”?
2) What does it mean to have a mind “stayed” on God and how does that lead to peace?
3) What is Isaiah’s definition of trust?
A trip to www.studylight.org is in order here.
We will get super cozy with this site as we study Scripture together!
Just type in the verse you’re looking at and Boom!
It’s right in front of you in English and Hebrew (Old Testament) or Greek (New Testament), which are the original languages the Bible was written in.
Want to know more about a specific word in a verse?
Click on “Strong’s Interlinear Bible” then click the word you’d like to study. Find super awesome stuff like “origin”, “definition”, and even all the different ways that single word has been translated into English! If you want to be geeky, you can even click the word and hear its original pronunciation – That Is Awesome!
Want to get more background on a word or phrasing or passage?
Click “Study Tools”, then pick a few commentaries to read their scholarly approach, keeping in mind that just because a commentary says it, doesn’t mean it’s true. (just like the internet :-))
The Findings for Original Intent
1) In this passage the “You” refers to God and the “him” refers to the nation of Israel. Knowing the audience and keeping all the pronouns straight in Scripture can sometimes be confusing, but it is necessary to understand the context. The book of Isaiah was written to the southern portion of the divided kingdom of Israel. Isaiah wrote of impending judgement by God and to help Israel understand that God’s hope is eternal despite the impending judgement on their nation. God was with them even in the face of exile and He would restore their nation one day! God is the God of restoration and hope.
2) Biblical peace is not the absence of physical war. Isaiah wrote in a time when Israel was going to be conquered and taken captive. Peace comes from the choice to keep our minds on God. It is the absence of a spiritual battle of wills because there is understanding of how the story will end. Isaiah says that God keeps him in perfect peace whose mind is “stayed” on God. With a little investigation of that word “stay” we see that it means to support oneself, brace oneself, lean on, rest upon, revive oneself. Isaiah is letting his audience know that God’s peace, the understanding that this too shall pass and there is hope, will come when they brace themselves and rest upon the “everlasting rock”.
3) When Isaiah uses the word “trust” he is encouraging and instructing Israel to put faith in God’s keen awareness of their circumstances and continue to have faith that God knows best. Judgement and exile are not high on the list of “want-to’s” for anyone especially God’s chosen people, however, they are facing consequences for their own actions. Isaiah simply is leading them to have faith that God will protect them like only He can and rely on the “everlasting rock” of salvation. Reliance on God during flourishing and during exile sets their sight on the restoration that is to come for their nation.
Some Applications for Our Everyday Lives
1) God speaks! He speaks through Scripture, He speaks through prayers, and He speaks through people. God clearly told Isaiah to relay a message of judgement, yes, but also restoration.
2) God’s peace that “surpasses all understanding will protect our hearts and minds in Jesus Christ alone.” (Philippians 4:7) When we “stay” our minds on Him, steady our sight like tunnel vision on Christ, peace prevails. That kind of intentional focus forces us to see differently, to act differently, and to brace ourselves with His peace in the midst of our personal exile!
3) We put our faith and trust in so many different things. For Israel, putting their trust in other things is what led to their exile. They lost sight of God and how easy it is for us to lose sight, to get distracted by this world, the demands, and the desires to be something that God never says we should be. Trusting in the Lord despite what we see around us doesn’t always keep us from circumstances, from chaos, or from pain, but it does allow us to “stay” in the midst of them.
Embracing God’s fullness in our lives is rooted in scripture and memorizing His word is vital to our continued growth and depth with Jesus. Download this week’s verse and make it your phone’s lockscreen!
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