12 Therefore, this is what the Holy One of Israel says:
“Because you have rejected this message,
relied on oppression
and depended on deceit,
13 this sin will become for you
like a high wall, cracked and bulging,
that collapses suddenly, in an instant.
14 It will break in pieces like pottery,
shattered so mercilessly
that among its pieces not a fragment will be found
for taking coals from a hearth
or scooping water out of a cistern.”
This is a topic that we have touched upon repeatedly in Isaiah, the idea that the things we trust in over God end up failing us in the end. But the description given in verse 13 takes this idea a little further. The high wall probably was a defensive wall surrounding the city, used to keep out invaders. But it not only fails to defend the city, it ends up coming down unexpectedly upon the city itself – in this way, the wall was not only useless, but dangerous.
I think this dimension is a good reminder for us today. Not only are the things that we try to surround and protect ourselves with powerless to stop tragedy and consequence, they often end up being snares in themselves. We use our jobs as a way to provide financially, and to stimulate ourselves mentally – the often end up dragging us into joylessness and can hurt our families. Our money is supposed to provide for a rainy day, but becomes an idol, and/or our slave driver instead.
With this, we have another reason to seek first God and his plans and righteousness – yes, because all other sources are fallible, but even more: they can end up stabbing us in the back.
1. Where do you try to find your protection in life?
2. In what ways could that source of protection end up hurting you in the end?