“How Beautiful Upon The Mountains”

Isaiah 52:7

            The prophet here pictures the church of God’s elect as a city in captivity, which begins to rejoice as it hears the sound of an army coming across the mountains to deliver it from the oppressor’s hands. By nature, God’s elect are in captivity, held under the curse of the law, the bondage of sin, and the dominion of satan. And God’s servants are an army of men, coming over the mountains, proclaiming deliverance by Christ. Those men and women who know their need of Christ highly esteem and value those men who proclaim the gospel of his grace. Speaking as the representative of God’s church, by divine inspiration, Isaiah declares that those who preach the gospel are men whose coming is desirable, delightful, and beautiful in the esteem of God’s elect.

            Obviously, Isaiah’s words do not apply to all who claim to be preachers and pretend to come in the name of the Lord. False prophets, preachers of free-will, works religion, are not desirable, but contemptible. They are not to be treated with respect, but with disdain. The prophet tells us plainly who those men are whose feet are beautiful. THEY ARE MEN WHO BRING GOOD TIDINGS. They bring good news from the heart of God to the hearts of needy sinners, declaring that righteousness is established and redemption is accomplished by Christ. THEY PUBLISH PEACE. God’s servants do not tell men to make peace with God. They proclaim that peace has been made for all who believe (Isa. 40:1-2). THEY BRING GOOD TIDINGS OF GOOD. God’s preachers constantly preach, not the possibility of salvation, but the full accomplishment of salvation by Christ. THEY PUBLISH SALVATION. God’s servants do not tell men how to “get saved”, or how to “save themselves”. We proclaim to helpless, guilty sinners how that God saves sinners by the blood atonement, imputed righteousness, and effectual power of his dear Son. AND GOD’S PREACHERS SAY TO ZION, “THY GOD REIGNETH!” They, everyone, declare in unmistakable terms the glorious, absolute, and universal sovereignty of God in creation, providence, and grace.

            Any man who does not preach these things is not to be received or heard in God’s house (2 John 9-11). Any man who does preach these blessed gospel truths is to be heard and received by the church of God as the angel of God and men.

Don Fortner