The Faithfulness of God to Forgive
God knows our predicament (v.1)
"1 Behold, the Lord's hand is not shortened, that it cannot save, or His ear dull, that it cannot hear;" (Isaiah 59:1, ESV)
“‘Why have we fasted, and You see it not? Why have we humbled ourselves, and You take no knowledge of it?’” (Isaiah 58:3, ESV)
"1 Behold, the Lord's hand is not shortened, that it cannot save, or His ear dull, that it cannot hear;"
Our sin obstructs God’s willingness to act (v.2)
"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 does not hear.” (Isaiah 59:2, ESV)
“17 I cried to him with my mouth, and high praise was on my tongue. 18 If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.” (Psalm 66:17-18, ESV)
Confession is at the heart of forgiveness! (v.9-10)
"9 Therefore justice is far from us, and righteousness does not overtake us; we hope for light, and behold, darkness, and for brightness, but we walk in gloom. 10 We grope for the wall like the blind; we grope like those who have no eyes; we stumble at noon as in the twilight, among those in full vigor we are like dead men”. (Isaiah 59:9-10, ESV)
“People who conceal their sins will not prosper, but if they confess and turn from them, they will receive mercy.” (Proverbs 28:13, NLT)
“Few things accelerate the peace process as much as humbly admitting our own wrongdoing and asking forgiveness." ~ Lee Strobel
God is faithful to intervene (v.20)
20 “And a Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who turn from transgression,” declares the Lord. (Isaiah 59:20, ESV)
“Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call His name Immanuel.” (Isaiah 7:14, ESV)
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon His shoulder, and His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6, ESV)
“All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned—every one—to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.” (Isaiah 53:6, ESV)
“And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12, ESV)
“Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 2:38, ESV)
“Will You not revive us again, that Your people may rejoice in you?” (Psalm 85:6, ESV)
LIFEGROUP SESSION 1
Shepherd & Still Waters
When the Lord is our shepherd, we lack nothing of what we truly need in life, he leads us in to perpetual rest for the restoration of our souls.
BIBLE STUDY NOTES
How does the idea of God as your shepherd ﬁt into your current perspective of God? In what ways should it change the way you think about God? What are some ways that you have sought rest outside of the Lord as a response to your exhaustion, either today or at some point in the past?
Where do you find yourself lacking today? What can you do to pursue Jesus as your provider rather than following another false shepherd? What do you need to surrender to the Lord today? What is keeping you from following his voice to green pastures, still waters, and the restoration of your soul?
LIVE IT OUT
Select at least one activity below to complete before next week.
Over the course of this study, commit to memorizing all of Psalm 23. This week, focus on verse one and two reciting it to yourself over the next few days.
Set aside some time to ask the Lord to reveal to you any of the ways you are following false shepherds. As he does, boldly turn away from them in order to commit yourself fully to following God alone.
Spend at least five minutes in prayer each day this week specifically confessing to the Lord the places where you have found yourself in need of rest as a result of this session.
As you begin this study, resolve to reach the point
in your relationship with the Lord that you are able to say, like David, “I lack nothing.” Whatever needs, longings, or desires that you have bring them to God and find them met in him.
If you are currently in a season of enjoying rest in the Lord, look for someone in your life who is struggling and make an intentional effort to encourage them with the truths you learned from