“They lift it upon the shoulder and carry it; They set it in its place and it stands there. It does not move from its place. Though one may cry to it, it cannot answer; It cannot deliver him from his distress. “Remember this, and be assured; Recall it to mind, you transgressors. “Remember the former things long past, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is no one like Me, ” (Isaiah 46:7–9, NASB95)
Once again, Isaiah addresses the futility of idolatry. Man takes something that he has made with his own hands and worships it. When in distress, he falls down before his idol and cries out to it. The idol cannot answer or bring relief to the man’s distress. How futile to think that man could be rescued from a deity that he fashioned with his mind and hands. Isaiah says, “Remember the former things long past…” He encourages his contemporaries to remember the works of redemption that God Almighty performed on their behalf. Isaiah is telling them to remember and turn to the One true God for the relief they long for.
Who do you turn to when you are in distress? Do you turn to the works of your own hands? Do you pour yourself into your job and the responsibilities of this life, waiting for the storm to pass? Do you turn to politicians and the government to give you the relief you need? Do you turn to alcohol and drugs to help you cope with the pain? All of these things are no different than turning to a block of carved wood and crying out to it for help! God alone is the one who can meet our needs and bring relief to our distress. We need to “remember the former things long past.” We need to remember the God who sent His Son into the world to redeem and to save us. We need to remember the gracious and compassionate works of Jesus. By remembering the wonderful works of God, we can be hopeful and certain that He can and will do the same for us. He will hear our cries of distress and bring us relief.
Today, may we be found turning to the living God for all that we need in this life.