Aqueducts of Anxiety vs. Springs of Salvation

Isaiah 12:3 is a beautiful description of the limitless blessings of eternal life that Jesus provides: "Therefore with joy you will draw water from the springs of salvation." I pointed out all the water connections with the original Exodus, but there is also an important water connection within the book of Isaiah that helps explain the comfort and glory of this promise.

When the Lord sent Isaiah to speak with King Ahaz in ch. 7:3, Ahaz and all of Jerusalem were trembling with fear like trees in the wind at the threat of Syria and Ephraim. Ahaz was near the end of the aqueduct that brought water into Jerusalem, because he was preparing for a siege. Before Hezekiah built a tunnel to carry water into the city, Jerusalem's water supply was its primary weakness in withstanding a prolonged siege.

Isaiah's message was one of comfort and salvation: "Take heed and be calm; do not fear or be fainthearted.... It shall not stand, nor shall it come to pass." The Lord offered Ahaz a reassuring sign of His presence and protection, but Ahaz refused in false humility. Because of his arrogant unwillingness to trust the Lord for deliverance, Ahaz received the warning of an even greater threat that would later overtake Jerusalem: "Inasmuch as these people refused the waters of Shiloah that flow softly, and rejoice in Rezin and in Remeliah's son; Now therefore, behold, the Lord brings up over them the waters of the River [Euphrates], the strong and mighty--the king of Assyria and all his glory..."

Instead of seeking the Lord's help, Ahaz was inspecting his aqueducts. Instead of crying out to the Lord for help, Ahaz was trying to manage the crisis on his own. And because Ahaz was trying to maintain his self-sufficiency and preserve his kingdom in his own strength, the Lord condemned him to suffer a flood more destructive than he could have imagined. Ahaz was busy trying to secure his own water supply as a means of self-salvation and self-preservation, but, in doing so, he forfeited the Lord's salvation and blessing.

Are you, like Ahaz, fearfully trying to guard the aqueducts of anxiety, or are you drawing water with joy from Christ's all-sufficient springs of salvation? Isaiah's prophecy in 12:3 promises that those who trust in Christ and rest in His salvation from wrath need not fear a lack of any good thing. But in order to enjoy the blessings that flow from the Lord's gushing springs of Jesus' salvation, we must renounce all attempts at fleshly self-preservation and self-sufficiency. This basically requires us to live in selfless, obedient faith--completely trusting the outcomes to the Lord--instead of operating out of fear and worry and anxiety. Two people can do the exact same thing, but they can do it with completely opposite attitudes—and that can make all the difference in whether something is pleasing to God and a blessing to others, or whether it is an offense against God and destructive toward others.

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