Listen to sermons at FreeGraceRadio.com
Sermon #61[i] — Isaiah Series
Title: Ten Wonders of Grace
Text: Isaiah 19:18-25
Subject: The Grace of God
Readings: Mark Medley and Mark Henson
In preaching this message I want to show you Ten Wonders of Grace. That is my subject — Ten Wonders of Grace. — My text is Isaiah 19:18-25.
Isaiah 13-23 is a prophecy of judgment. It was a burden to GodŐs prophet. But it was the burden of the word of the Lord. And it had to be delivered. However, right in the middle of this horrible word of devastation, destruction, and judgment, there is a message of grace. It is found in chapter 19, verses 18-25. — Read it with me.
(Isaiah 19:18-25) In that day shall five cities in the land of Egypt speak the language of Canaan and swear to the LORD of hosts; one shall be called, The city of destruction. (19) In that day shall there be an altar to the LORD in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar at the border thereof to the LORD. (20) And it shall be for a sign and for a witness unto the LORD of hosts in the land of Egypt: for they shall cry unto the LORD because of the oppressors, and he shall send them a saviour, and a great one, and he shall deliver them. (21) And the LORD shall be known to Egypt, and the Egyptians shall know the LORD in that day, and shall do sacrifice and oblation; yea, they shall vow a vow unto the LORD, and perform it. (22) And the LORD shall smite Egypt: he shall smite and heal it: and they shall return even to the LORD, and he shall be intreated of them, and shall heal them. (23) In that day shall there be a highway out of Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrian shall come into Egypt, and the Egyptian into Assyria, and the Egyptians shall serve with the Assyrians. (24) In that day shall Israel be the third with Egypt and with Assyria, even a blessing in the midst of the land: (25) Whom the LORD of hosts shall bless, saying, Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel mine inheritance.
Here Isaiah was inspired by God the Holy Ghost to give a prophecy of the day of grace in which we now live. He speaks not only of an elect remnant among the Jews, but also of an elect remnant among the Egyptians and Assyrians. This text is a prophecy of the gathering of GodŐs elect out of the four corners of the earth into one fold, the church of God, under one Shepherd, the Lord Jesus Christ (John 10:16). It was never GodŐs intention, purpose, or design that his church and kingdom be limited to the nation of Israel. From the beginning, the Lord our God was determined to save a great multitude out of every nation, people, kindred, and tongue for the glory of his great name.
We must understand that this prophecy was given to the children of Israel. And it was given to them as unto children who were taught by the use of types and pictures. It is given, therefore, in the language of that infant age of the church. It speaks of altars, pillars, and oblations, which are all to be understood in a spiritual sense. In this Gospel Age, the church of God has come to maturity. We no longer need a material altar. Christ is our Altar. We no longer need animal sacrifices. Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us. We no longer need an earthly priest. Christ is our great High Priest. And we are priests in him. But that is another sermon. Our Lord Jesus Christ has fulfilled and forever abolished all the carnal ordinances of Old Testament worship. We worship God in the Spirit through faith in the merits of Christ alone. And in our text God tells us that he will show forth the riches of his grace upon the nations of the world.
Proposition: Grace is an attribute of God; but it is more than an attribute. — Grace is the sovereign, effectual operation of God bestowed freely upon hell-deserving sinners by which we are saved (Ephesians 2:1-10).
(Ephesians 2:1) And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; (2) Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: (3) Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. (4) But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, (5) Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) (6) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: (7) That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. (8) For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: (9) Not of works, lest any man should boast. (10) For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
Divisions: I want to set before you the glory of GodŐs grace by displaying the wonders of its operations in the salvation of sinners. — Here are Ten Wonders of Grace.
1. GodŐs election
The first wonder of grace is GodŐs purpose of grace in election. — Election is not a hard doctrine. It is a blessed doctrine. Election does not mean that God has shut some people out of heaven. Election means that God has opened the gates of heaven and arranged that a great multitude of undeserving, hell-deserving sinners shall enter into everlasting life (Ephesians 1:3-7; 2 Thessalonians 2:13-14). In our text the Lord God avows that there is a remnant according to the election of grace, in Egypt, Assyria, Israel, and all the world, who must be saved. — How I thank God for his eternal, free, sovereign electing love in Christ!
(Ephesians 1:3-7) Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: (4) According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: (5) Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, (6) To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved. (7) In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.
(2 Thessalonians 2:13-14) But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: (14) Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Election, if properly understood, is the greatest possible motive for evangelism and missions (Acts 18:9-11).
(Acts 18:9-11) Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace: (10) For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city. (11) And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.
2. The Chosen People
Here is the second wonder of grace. — The grace of God finds its objects among the most unworthy and unlikely people.
á You and Me (1 Corinthians 1:26-31).
(1 Corinthians 1:17-31) Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect. (18) For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. (19) For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. (20) Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? Hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? (21) For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. (22) For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: (23) But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; (24) But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God. (25) Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men. (26) For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: (27) But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; (28) And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: (29) That no flesh should glory in his presence. (30) But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: (31) That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.
Grace finds its objects in ŇThe City of DestructionÓ among the hell-bent, hell-deserving condemned sons of men. — ŇArise, anoint him, this is he!Ó (1 Samuel 16:12)
3. Teaches Prayer
Third, the grace of God teaches sinners to pray. — ŇAnd it shall be for a sign and for a witness unto the LORD of hosts in the land of Egypt: for they shall cry unto the LORD because of the oppressorsÓ (v. 20).
Anyone can teach a man what to pray and teach a man to say his prayers. But only God can teach a man to pray. — Prayer is the cry of the heart to God because of the oppressors.
á The Law
4. A Savior
Fourth, as soon as a sinner cries to God, grace sends a Savior. — ŇAnd it shall be for a sign and for a witness unto the LORD of hosts in the land of Egypt: for they shall cry unto the LORD because of the oppressors, and he shall send them a saviour, and a great one, and he shall deliver themÓ (v. 20).
(Zechariah 12:10) And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.
(Zechariah 13:1) In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness.
á Grace appointed Christ to be a Savior (Psalm 89:19).
á Grace sent Christ to accomplish salvation (Matthew 1:21).
á Grace sends Christ to all who seek him (Jeremiah 29:12-14).
(Jeremiah 29:10-14) For thus saith the LORD, That after seventy years be accomplished at Babylon I will visit you, and perform my good word toward you, in causing you to return to this place. (11) For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. (12) Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. (13) And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. (14) And I will be found of you, saith the LORD: and I will turn away your captivity, and I will gather you from all the nations, and from all the places whither I have driven you, saith the LORD; and I will bring you again into the place whence I caused you to be carried away captive.
The Lord Jesus Christ, our dear Savior, is a great Savior.
á In His Person!
á In His Work!
á In His Efficacy! — ŇHe shall deliver them!Ó
á In His Intercession!
á In His Dominion!
á In His Second Coming!
5. One Language
HereŐs the fifth wonder of grace. — Grace causes people to speak the same language. — ŇThe Language of CanaanÓ (v. 18). — Those who are chosen, redeemed, called, and saved by grace all speak the same language. Wherever you find them, their language is the same.
á Saved men do not speak the language of human merit. — We speak the language of ChristŐs merits.
á Saved people do not talk of manŐs free-will, but of GodŐs free grace.
á GodŐs people do not know the language of human praise, but the language of divine praise.
á GodŐs Holiness — ManŐs Depravity
á Ruin, Redemption, Regeneration
á Sovereignty, Predestination, Election
á Effectual Atonement
á Irresistible Grace
á Sure Salvation
Here the sixth wonder of grace — Grace causes men and women to consecrate themselves to God (v. 19).
(Isaiah 19:19) In that day shall there be an altar to the LORD in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar at the border thereof to the LORD.
7. Knowledge of God
The seventh wonder of grace is this. — Grace instructs sinners in the knowledge of God (v. 21).
(Isaiah 19:21) And the LORD shall be known to Egypt, and the Egyptians shall know the LORD in that day, and shall do sacrifice and oblation; yea, they shall vow a vow unto the LORD, and perform it.
(John 17:3) And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
(John 6:37-40) All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. (38) For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. (39) And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. (40) And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.
(Titus 2:11-14) For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, (12) Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; (13) Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; (14) Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
8. Blessed Affliction
Eighth, the grace of God makes even trouble and affliction a blessing to his chosen (v. 22).
(Isaiah 19:22) And the LORD shall smite Egypt: he shall smite and heal it: and they shall return even to the LORD, and he shall be intreated of them, and shall heal them.
(Psalm 119:65-72) Thou hast dealt well with thy servant, O LORD, according unto thy word. (66) Teach me good judgment and knowledge: for I have believed thy commandments. (67) Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept thy word. (68) Thou art good, and doest good; teach me thy statutes. (69) The proud have forged a lie against me: but I will keep thy precepts with my whole heart. (70) Their heart is as fat as grease; but I delight in thy law. (71) It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes. (72) The law of thy mouth is better unto me than thousands of gold and silver.
(2 Corinthians 4:17-18) For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; (18) While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
(1 Peter 1:2-9) Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. (3) Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, (4) To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, (5) Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. (6) Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: (7) That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: (8) Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: (9) Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.
9. Changed Relations
Here is the ninth wonder of grace. — The grace of God changes menŐs relationships with one another (v. 23).
(Isaiah 19:23) In that day shall there be a highway out of Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrian shall come into Egypt, and the Egyptian into Assyria, and the Egyptians shall serve with the Assyrians.
In Christ enemies are reconciled and barriers are removed! GodŐs peopleÉ
á Love Each Other.
á Forgive Each Other.
á Excuse Each Other.
á Defend Each Other.
10. Blessed and Blessing
Alright, hereŐs the tenth wonder of grace set before us in Isaiah 19. — The grace of God makes men and women to be blessed and makes them a blessing (vv. 24-25).
(Isaiah 19:24-25) In that day shall Israel be the third with Egypt and with Assyria, even a blessing in the midst of the land: (25) Whom the LORD of hosts shall bless, saying, Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel mine inheritance.
(Genesis 12:1-2) Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee: (2) And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing.
GodŐs people are a blessed people (Ephesians 1:3-6; Matthew 5:1-12).
(Ephesians 1:3-6) Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: (4) According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: (5) Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, (6) To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.
(Matthew 5:1-12) And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him: (2) And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying, (3) Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (4) Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. (5) Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. (6) Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. (7) Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. (8) Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. (9) Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. (10) Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (11) Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. (12) Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
GodŐs people are a blessing.
á In GodŐs Providence.
á By Their Deeds.
á In Their Service.
Illustrations: Saul of Tarsus
Myself — Ephesians 3:8
The Worm in the Circle of Fire
[i] Danville — Sunday Evening — September 23, 2018
Grace Baptist Church, Dingess, WV — (09/22/18)