Apr 11, 2010

Isaiah 55:3 - William Styles

“Hear, and your soul shall live,” Isa. 55:3. Adduced to show that a reception of Christ by Faith will procure spiritual life. This however, overlooks the fact that the whole passage is addressed to spiritually living persons: for if it is conceded that any of the terms describe spiritual acts, we must admit that that they all do. None will deny that those who “labour” must be endowed with life to enable them to do so; and if living, they also have power to “hear” not with the outward ear alone, but with the inward ear of the heart. Awakened sinners in the early consciousness of their lost condition are therefore referred to, and such are assured that there is in the covenant of grace a full supply for all their wants, and that all that “hear” with the reverent attention of Faith, need be under no apprehension of sin’s woeful desert—spiritual and eternal death.

The words “shall live,” therefore refer to the experimental enjoyment of a life at present possessed, and not to future investment with a life not yet granted. For a parallel passage, see Psa. 119:144 and 175, where a spiritually living sinner prays, “Give me understanding, and I shall live.” “Let my soul live and it shall praise Thee.”

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