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'For since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen, 0 God, beside Thee, what He hath prepared for him that waiteth for Him.'—Is A. liiv. 4.
THE B.V. has: 'Neither hath the eye seen a God beside Thee, which worketh for him that waiteth for Him.' In the A.V. the thought is, that no eye hath seen the thing which God hath prepared In the R.V. no eye hath seen a God, beside oui God, who worketh for him that waiteth for Him. To both the two thoughts are common: that our place is to wait upon God, and that there will be revealed to us what the human heart cannot conceive—the difference is: in the E.V. it is the God who works, in the A.V. the thing He is to work. In 1 Cor. ii 9 the citation is in regard to the things which the Holy Spirit is to reveal, as in the A.V., and in this meditation we keep to that.
The previous verses, specially from chap. Ixiii. 15, refers to the low state of God's people. The prayer has been poured out, 'Look down from heaven' (ver. 15). 'Why hast Thou hardened our heart from Thy fear 1 Eeturn for Thy servants' sake' (ver. 19.) And lxiv. 1, still more urgent, ■ Oh that Thou wouldest rend the heavens, that thou wouldest come down, ... as when the melting fire burneth, to make Thy name known to Thy adversaries!' Then follows the plea from the past, 'When Thou didst terrible things we looked not for, Thou earnest down, the mountains flowed down at Thy presence.' 'For' —this is now the faith that has been awakened by the thought of things we looked not for, He is still the same God—' eye hath not seen beside Thee, O God, what He hath prepared for him that waiteth for Him.' God alone knows what He can do for His waiting people. Ab Paul expounds and applies it: 'The things of God knoweth no man, save the Spirit of God.' 'But God hath revealed them to us by His Spirit.'
The need of God's people, and the call for God's interposition, is as urgent in our days as it was in the time of Isaiah. There Is now, as
there was then, as there has been at all times, a remnant that seek after God with their whole heart . But if we look at Christendom as a whole, at the state of the Church of Christ, there is infinite cause for beseeching God to rend the heavens and come down. Nothing but a special interposition of Almighty Power will avail. I fear we have no right conception of what the so-called Christian world is in the sight of God. Unless God comes down 'as the melting fire burneth, to make known His name to His adversaries,' our labours are comparatively fruitless. Look at the ministry—how much it is in the wisdom of man and of literary culture —how little in demonstration of the Spirit and of power. Think of the unity of the body— how little there is of the manifestation of the power of a heavenly love binding God's children into one. Think of holiness—the holiness of Christ-like humility and crucifixion to the world —how little the world sees that they have men among them who live in Christ in heaven, in whom Christ and heaven live.
What is to be done 1 There is but one thing. We must wait upon God. And what fort We must cry, with a cry that never rests,'Oh that Thou wouldest rend the heavens and come down, that the mountains might flow down at Thy presence.' We most desire and believe, we must asjk and expect, that God will do unlooked-for things. We must set our faith on a God of whom men do not know what He hath prepared for them that wait for Him. The wonder-doing God, who can surpass all our expectations, must be the God of our confidence.
Tes, let God's people enlarge their hearts to wait on a God able to do exceeding abundantly above what we can ask or think. Let us band ourselves together as His elect who cry day and night to Him for things men have not seen. He is able to arise and to make His people a name, and a praise in the earth. 'He will wait, that He may be gracious unto you; blessed are all they that wait for Him.'
'My soul, wait thou only upon God /'