The State of the NationBy: Pastors Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne
Publish date: 05/20/2018
Isaiah 59:1-21 AMPC
1 Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened at all, that it cannot save, nor His ear dull with deafness, that it cannot hear.
2 But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.
3 For your hands are defiled with blood and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue mutters wickedness.
4 None sues or calls in righteousness [but for the sake of doing injury to others—to take some undue advantage]; no one goes to law honestly and pleads [his case] in truth; they trust in emptiness, worthlessness and futility, and speaking lies! They conceive mischief and bring forth evil!
5 They hatch adders’ eggs and weave the spider’s web; he who eats of their eggs dies, and [from an egg] which is crushed a viper breaks out [for their nature is ruinous, deadly, evil].
6 Their webs will not serve as clothing, nor will they cover themselves with what they make; their works are works of iniquity, and the act of violence is in their hands.
7 Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood. Their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; desolation and destruction are in their paths and highways.
8 The way of peace they know not, and there is no justice or right in their goings. They have made them into crooked paths; whoever goes in them does not know peace.
9 Therefore are justice and right far from us, and righteousness and salvation do not overtake us. We expectantly wait for light, but [only] see darkness; for brightness, but we walk in obscurity and gloom.
10 We grope for the wall like the blind, yes, we grope like those who have no eyes. We stumble at noonday as in the twilight; in dark places and among those who are full of life and vigor, we are as dead men.
11 We all groan and growl like bears and moan plaintively like doves. We look for justice, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far from us.
12 For our transgressions are multiplied before You [O Lord], and our sins testify against us; for our transgressions are with us, and as for our iniquities, we know and recognize them [as]:
13 Rebelling against and denying the Lord, turning away from following our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving in and muttering and moaning from the heart words of falsehood.
14 Justice is turned away backward, and righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God) stands far off; for truth has fallen in the street (the city’s forum), and uprightness cannot enter [the courts of justice].
15 Yes, truth is lacking, and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey. And the Lord saw it, and it displeased Him that there was no justice.
16 And He saw that there was no man and wondered that there was no intercessor [no one to intervene on behalf of truth and right]; therefore His own arm brought Him victory, and His own righteousness [having the Spirit without measure] sustained Him.
17 For [the Lord] put on righteousness as a breastplate or coat of mail, and salvation as a helmet upon His head; He put on garments of vengeance for clothing and was clad with zeal [and furious divine jealousy] as a cloak.
18 According as their deeds deserve, so will He repay wrath to His adversaries, recompense to His enemies; on the foreign islands and coastlands He will make compensation.
19 So [as the result of the Messiah’s intervention] they shall [reverently] fear the name of the Lord from the west, and His glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord will lift up a standard against him and put him to flight [for He will come like a rushing stream which the breath of the Lord drives].
20 He shall come as a Redeemer to Zion and to those in Jacob (Israel) who turn from transgression, says the Lord.
21 As for Me, this is My covenant or league with them, says the Lord: My Spirit, Who is upon you [and Who writes the law of God inwardly on the heart], and My words which I have put in your mouth shall not depart out of your mouth, or out of the mouths of your [true, spiritual] children, or out of the mouths of your children’s children, says the Lord, from henceforth and forever.