The Arm of the Lord
Where Power Issues
The arm of the Lord—it’s where real and tremendous power issues. Few believers understand the mechanics of its use. In the last days, the arm of the Lord will be revealed.
God’s arm is where the direct act of deliverance is delegated. The arm is used to grab, wrestle, and hold (a weapon or shield), among other warfare functions. The legs and feet are often for stance, striding, and walking. I’ve never heard God kick in Scripture. He does “sweep,” and probably with his legs. Combat in those times probably seldom involved kicks.
What the Arm Is
The arm is, for sure, very much a part of the whole body. The Lord is the Head of the church, but the arm is also the Lord’s, no less. It’s got the same Jesus DNA. In fact, here in Isaiah, the arm refers to the Lord Jesus and to his true followers.
The arm of the Lord specifically refers to those “who pursue after righteousness and look for the Lord” (51.1). Those who know “what is right and have God’s Word in their hearts.” Qualified here is Jesus and those who have his spiritual DNA. This does not involve church membership or denominational affiliation. If you do not have the DNA, you’re not His. And this makes you the devil’s arm—there’s no neutral ground.
The arm is “cut form the rock” and “hewn from the quarry.” The idea is sourcing. The arm comes directly from God. If you check the arm’s and God’s DNAs, they’re the same. The pieces of bread from the broken Loaf had the very same ingredients as the Loaf had, when the Master said, “This is my body.”
The Arm is GOD
Thus, when the arm does something, God declares it’s Him who does it, not the arm. So we must give the glory to Him, not the arm. When the arm gets the glory God is jealous and angry. Yet, in another sense, God glorifies the arm to glorify Himself. Because the arm, first and foremost, applies to Jesus: “…my arm will bring justice to the nations,” (Isa.51.5). Compare this with, “…and he will proclaim justice to the nations,” (Matt.12.18). In this sense, the arm is not just God’s; IT IS GOD.
Now, God also endows this glory to those with the Jesus DNA. He urged Zion: “Put on your garments of splendor…the uncircumcised and defiled will not enter you again,” (52.1). God wants his arm glorified. Because his arm is God. Now, the church is the true Israel (Jews and gentiles who have the Jesus DNA), so this really applies to the church, because the true church is Jesus’ body; it has his DNA all over.
No wonder Jesus prayed in John 17: “The glory that you gave me, that same glory I have now given them” (v.22). The arm, because it has the Jesus DNA, is endowed with God’s very own glory. Glory endowed is promotion. Glory self-assumed and in man’s effort is covetousness. Like, when churches use His Name to name their church.
The Arm Must be Glorious
The arm of the Lord must be glorious, or else it cannot deliver or be victorious in warfare. You cannot defeat devils with your beautiful choir singing or church programs and activities or skillful playing with musical instruments. David shooed off evil spirits with his skillful harp playing, but the spirit always came back to Saul. And that spirit in Saul threw a spear at David, almost hitting him. It sent him running away.
God’s glory alone ensures success in all things. Devils cannot dare throw spears or darts at you or send you running away because of the blinding effect of the glory on them. Gideon and his 300 carried small torches and trumpets, and that blinded the enemy so that they hacked each other to death. No human effort. Was it because of the torches and trumpets? Nope. It was because Gideon did it according to God’s spoken instructions (spoken Word). This mobilizes God’s arm. For the spoken Word (Jesus) is the glory of God.
Once, a guy asked, “Does this mean we should play trumpets in church instead of drums and guitars and keyboards?” So they practiced hard playing trumpets. ;)
In His glory no human effort fits in. Human effort is a spot or stain or wrinkle God hates. It always leads to pride and arrogance, to self assumed glory. Like how God enlarged Nebuchadnezzar’s and Solomon’s kingdoms, but they assumed self-glory from them. His glorious church is without spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. When God sees human effort, he punishes the flesh to purify his arm.
Purging the Arm
So God puts his people in prison (Isaiah 51.14). It’s a hard one, making their enemies walk on their backs (Isa. 51.22-23). After they’re purged thoroughly to be His glorious arm, they will be set free. His promise is that, in prison “they will not perish in their dungeon nor will they lack bread.” Purging is for purification, not annihilation. Although it can come to that if the people remain unheeding and unrepentant. When they finally come to their senses, the arm of the Lord will be ransomed (Isa. 51.11). “Ransomed” here is not what Jesus does to us in salvation. The context is about God’s people, who had a covenant with him, being cleansed. They were believers who sinned.
They drank from the cup of God’s wrath and drained it to the last drop, making themselves utterly useless sons, (51.17-18), useless in warfare (v.19). That’s the result of being filled with God’s wrath and rebuke (v.20). You see, God hates the sinner, not just the sin.
Empowerment after the Purge
Repentance and total surrender make for a powerful arm of God. They’re what make us true sons and daughters with God’s very DNA in us. When God looks at us He sees Himself—He sees only Jesus. We no longer live but Christ. Thus, God’s arm is God. What’s the mechanics involved?
God, “puts his words in our mouths and covers us with the shadow of his hand,” (51.16). Being God’s powerful arm always involves His rhema Word (words from God’s own mouth into our mouths) and his hand. When he covers us with the shadow of his hand (and his hand is always attached to his arm) we become His arm. When Peter’s shadow fell on the sick, the sick were healed. That was God’s arm. It was no longer Peter’s shadow but Christ’s.
What can the arm do? According to Isaiah, it has the power to cut spiritual monsters like Rahab in pieces. It can dry up any sea, even waters of the great deep, and make roads underwater so that the redeemed may cross over. In short, there’s nothing the arm cannot do. (51.9-10). It’s God’s arm. It is God. Impossible is NOTHING! Thus, the passage urges the arm to wake up! Because as it is, this arm of God is sleeping. It takes comfort in saying “nobody is perfect” and “there’s no perfect church” and “I’m just human.” God urges us to “WAKE UP!”
The Lord’s ransomed arm will enter Zion with singing (51.11), full of the LIFE and never perishing (Jn.10). It doesn’t taste death. And their ministry will remind people of God’s awesome powers in the Old and New Testaments, “like in days gone by, as in generations of old” (51.9). In the last days God will send the spirits of Moses and Elijah, the two powerful witnesses, so that people will see God’s arm in action. And that time begins NOW! Jesus says Elijah must come, though he had already come in John the baptizer. Malachi 4 says the spirits of Moses and Elijah will be sent to the church in the last days for terrible power.
Church! Are you ready for awesome, genuine God-power? Then wake up and get out if the bed of powerlessness that tells you you cannot be perfect and no church is perfect and “I’m just human.” God’s power alone conquers the coming persecution.
When God’s arm is empowered, it will be persecuted. Thus, “Don’t fear the reproach of men or terrified by their insults,” (51.7).
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Empowerment Means Zero Human Effort
A restored arm is imbibed with tremendous God-power as long as it has zero human effort. Once God himself takes away his cup of wrath from us, he puts it in the hands of our tormentors (51.22-23). See? No—human—effort. It’s God in us doing God’s work, working out God’s success and glory. And he promises he will never make us drink from the wrath cup again. Our deserts will be like Eden (God will bring us back to his Original Plan in Genesis before the Fall—to be in God’s very own image—so that when He looks at us He sees Himself), and our wastelands like the Lord’s garden (51.3). Read Song of Songs to see how God’s garden stimulates passionate love between the bride and the Bridegroom.
We must deeply learn the Kingdom technology of having God in us do God’s will perfectly. This involves passionate love, for love is of God, and God is love. Only God can truly love God. Absolutely no human effort involved. That’s why Jesus has to live in us, and we no longer live.
Esther had the glory that King Xerxes looked for, because Esther really loved him. And she easily got the favor that demolished the enemy. She didn’t kill Haman; the King’s wrath did. Haman was made to drink the cup of wrath. No human effort.
Then the Arm Conquers for God
The law (the Word) will go out from God (and God is the arm), and then his justice will become the light of the nations (51.4). This was fulfilled first in Christ—he proclaimed justice to the nations, and his LIFE was (and is) the light of men. But because Jesus is 100 percent in us, this Word applies to us as well. For the arm is God. “My arm will bring justice to the nations” (51.5). When will this happen? When “the heavens banish like smoke and the earth wear out like a garment.” God’s arm was Jesus in his day, and is Jesus in our time, the last days.
Evangelism that comes from God is done through his arm—without human effort. The islands will just decide to “look to God and wait in hope for His arm.” The arm, God’s people, proclaims the truth with life and conviction; the arm, God himself, does the saving of souls. It’s all God.
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