READ: Isaiah 33-34
THINK: Why does God's Word-particularly through the prophets-provide so many warnings and examples of judgment and catastrophe? After all, God doesn't take pleasure in situations where people's own deviance and defiance brings destruction on them. That's why He always warns us ahead of time, and that's why He always provides a way of escape. Do your conversations, attitudes and actions flow from a heart devoted to God? Is your aim to show His compassion and promote His justice? Do you refuse to take pleasure in ungodly behavior? Are you doing your best to reach and influence others for Christ? If so, you have no cause to fear God's judgement. If you keep trusting Christ and are faithful to live by God's guidelines, you'll not only avoid ruin, but you'll receive the reward that God has in store for all those who love and obey Him.
RESPOND: What are the immediate and long-term applications of 33:1, or, in other words, who did the "destroyer" refer to in Isaiah's time, and who will this apply to in the future? (See 33:1 note.) Who can pray the prayer of 33:2-9, and why? (See 33:2-9 note.) What do you think it means that the fear of the Lord is the key to the treasures of salvation, wisdom and knowledge (33:6)? Who can endure and escape God's judgment (33:15)? (See 33:14-16 note.) How does 33:14-16 describe a godly person? (See 33:14-16 note.) What are the implications of the three descriptions of the Lord given in 33:22? When will the events described in 34:1-7 happen, and why? (See 34:1-7 note.) Who and what will be affected by these catastrophes? What were the immediate implications of the judgment described in 34:8-17, and what are the future implications? (See 34:8-17 note.)
PRAY: Give Jesus thanks that He has conquered-and will one day destroy-all forces of evil. Pray that you'll gain greater awareness of God's holiness and your accountability to Him so that you'll make wise decisions.
ACT: Make a conscious effort to think and speak in ways that are honest and honoring to God. Make wise choices and decisions that reflect your devotion to Christ. Show kindness to everyone with whom you interact.
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