People will flee to caves in the rocks
and to holes in the ground
from the fearful presence of the Lord
and the splendor of his majesty,
when he rises to shake the earth. (Isa 2:19)
This passage talks about a SUPER earthquake, something cataclysmic that happens when the Almighty and Holy Lord comes to earth and the whole planet is shaken.
Let’s look at some other places in the Bible that mention this:
- The earth is utterly broken apart, the earth is split open, the earth is shaken violently. Isa 24:19
- But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar, the elements will be dissolved in the fire, and the earth and its works will not be found. II Peter 3:10
- At that time His voice shook the earth, but now He has promised, “Once more I will shake not only the earth, but heaven as well.” Heb 12:26 (Quoting Haggai 2:6)
This has got to be the Day of Judgment, when this world will pass away and a new heaven and earth will come.
- “But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.” II Peter 3:13 (Note that this follows the II Peter verse above.)
- Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. Rev. 21:1
There’s actually a pretty cool contrast here. On one hand, there will be terrible destruction, but on the other hand, something is created that is indestructible.
It is as Daniel prophesied: “In the days of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, and this kingdom will not be left to another people. It will shatter all these kingdoms and bring them to an end, but will itself stand forever. ” Daniel 2:44
Wow. Just wow. Think about all that for a bit.
And there’s more. I believe that this eternal kingdom that will never be destroyed isn’t just the new heaven at Judgment Day. I believe we are experiencing it now with the salvation of our souls. Look at this passage:
“But you have come to Mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly, to the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God, the Judge of all, to the spirits of the righteous made perfect . . . Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe.” (Heb. 12:22, 23, 29) ”
In being saved, we are in such an amazing place. Our names are written in heaven. Our spirits have been made perfect.
And it makes perfect sense that God goes on to say at the end of the chapter:
Stop trusting in mere humans,
who have but a breath in their nostrils.
Why hold them in esteem? (Is 2:22)
Exactly!! Why trust in men, or, for that matter, anything else on the earth, which isn’t secure, but will be destroyed?
We can only trust in God. He’s the only thing that is truly solid and reliable.
And when we realize that, we worship with gratitude, reverence and awe.
Having a fear of God, rather than a fear of man.
Lately, I’ve been plagued by the wrong kinds of fears, fears that crawl around my insides like ugly creepy insects and resist extermination. I saw that these fears began to control me, instead of vice versa. They dragged me down the path of negativity. Something would go wrong, and I would start to believe that more and more would go wrong. I felt like I wouldn’t be able to make it right. People would get upset, and I felt like I wouldn’t be able to mend the relationship or help them feel better.
I knew I was going down this path of cynicism and defeatism. I felt the ickiness and the wrongness of it, but I didn’t know how to change directions.
Until I realized that I have to start believing in good again. That’s what resonates in my deepest self. I have to believe there is good in people, kind of like there was in Darth Vader. And I have to believe in the good in God, that he will do what is best at the right time. I have to have that magical, Pollyanna, makes-no-sense kind of faith, knowing there is hope!
I have to remember, and listen to the voice that will get me back on track, not the voice that has me quaking.
I love the chorus in Francesca Battistelli’s latest hit:
Fear, you don’t own me
There ain’t no room in this story
And I ain’t got time for you
Telling me what I’m not
Tell fear, “You don’t own me!” Walk away from it, and walk towards the knowledge that you stand with God in a place of goodness that nothing can shake. There’s always hope.
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea. Ps 42:1-2