Isaiah 42:1-4, 8 Look at my servant, whom I strengthen. He is my chosen one, who pleases me. I have put my Spirit upon him. He will bring justice to the nations. He will not shout or raise his voice in public. He will not crush the weakest reed or put out a flickering candle. He will bring justice to all who have been wronged. He will not falter or lose heart until justice prevails throughout the earth . . . “I am the LORD; that is my name! I will not give my glory to anyone else.”
I’ve just been looking at Isaiah 42 for another reason, preparing for a talk I’m to give in Brazil in October. I noticed how many times the word justice appears in these first four verses, and how strongly the Servant’s commitment to justice is affirmed. We are called to look at him, the one who receives the Spirit; the one who pleases God (cf Luke 3:22; Matthew 17:5). As Christ-followers, we are called to look like him (I the Lord have called you to demonstrate my righteousness; verse 6; Romans 8:29): whatever we do in pursuit of justice must reflect Jesus, in tone and purpose and heart and integrity.
For we don’t live for ourselves or die for ourselves. If we live, it’s to honor the Lord. And if we die, it’s to honor the Lord . . . For the Kingdom of God is living a life of goodness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (Romans 14:7-8, 17).
I’m challenged and encouraged. You?