"Aware of this, Jesus withdrew from that place." NIV
Why didn't Jesus just wipe all His opponents out? He knew they were plotting to kill Him. He knew the evil they were spreading in the name of God and religion. He knew their hearts and their hypocrisy. The same power that He used to heal and call out demons could have been used to wipe out His enemies in one breath. Why? Why did He withhold judgement?
Because of His great mercy. As I go back and read Isaiah 42-44, I see a God who wants to give us another chance. He already wiped out the world once minus Noah and his family because of the evil in men's hearts. But now, He sees a remnant that has some hope. Even in their sin, God sees His chosen people as the hope of the world. And He says, "See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland." (Is 43:19) It's our second chance; our new covenant. He is providing a way out of our sins other than destruction and giving us a hope -- for heaven and for the salvation of the rest of the world through our work.
That's why He endured the torment, persecution and ultimately death. Yes, He could have wiped them out, but for what? So the rest of the "righteous" people could flounder and probably, eventually turn towards their sinful nature. That already happened after the flood. But we now have victory over our sinful nature because the price for sin has been paid through the blood of Jesus Christ. We are no longer slaves to the sinful nature, but have the power to conquer it because Christ conquered sin and death through His resurrection. How much more powerful is a gift when you stop to think of what the alternative could have been.
Thank You, Lord, for a new way, a new covenant. Thank You for your grace and mercy which ultimately led to Your suffering and death. Thank You for second chances.
- Read through Isaiah 42-44 and remember that this was prophesied about 700 years before Christ. If you think your life is out of control, remember, God has a plan and is in complete control.
- We are now the remnant, God's chosen people. Search the Scriptures for references to these names and read them knowing He is speaking to you.