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Isaiah 55:7

Isaiah 55:7
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Isaiah 55:7, “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to YHWH, that he may have compassion on him, and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.”

Notice that it does not say, “let the wicked make amends for what he’s done,” or, “let the unrighteous earn back a good standing,” or “show that they are really sorry…” Not even a sacrifice is commanded! Instead, the command is simply that the wicked should forsake their way and turn to YHWH….return to Him….return to Him….come to, fall upon, cling to YHWH. That is what is called for here….

And what will the response be? Judgment? Punishment? The cold shoulder? No—compassion and abundant pardon. This really is, it would seem, the miniature, Old Testament version of the Prodigal Son….Or, more accurately, this is a glimpse of the same character of the same God of whom that parable is told. He is—and has always been—the God who stands ready to forgive, ready to heal, ready to abundantly and mercifully pardon any and all who will turn to Him.

So, YHWH is surpassingly, surprisingly, transcendently, incalculably compassionate and forgiving….that is the implication here. His compassion is to ours what the stars are to the dust, and it is by this transcendently compassionate heart and mind—and by the sovereign word of command spoken from such a heart and mind—that YHWH will achieve His final purposes for His people and for all reality (v.12-13).

It seems that verses 12-13 allude to the return from exile…not the one that happens in 539-ish BC, but the true return from exile, the return achieved at the resurrection of Christ and which will be fully consummated when His whole Body is raised up with and in Him. THIS is the end and purpose for which God speaks His word into creation…..

Indeed, the incarnation, death, and resurrection of Christ is not only the supreme expression of the transcendent compassion of YHWH, it is also the embodiment and enactment of the fruitful descent of His word from heaven into the earth (v.10-11).