When you pass through the waters, I will be with you. Isaiah 43:2
The movie The Free State of Jonestells the US Civil War story of Newton Knight and some Confederate deserters and slaves who aided the Union Army and then resisted slaveholders after the war. Many herald Knight as the hero, but two slaves first saved his life after his desertion. They carried him deep into a secluded swampland and tended a leg wound he suffered while fleeing Confederate forces. If they’d abandoned him, he would have died.
The people of Judah were wounded and desperate, facing enemies and feeling helpless.Israel had been overtaken by Assyria, and Isaiah prophesied that one day they (Judah) would also be overcome by an enemy—Babylonia.Judah needed a God who would help, who would rescue and not forsake them. Imagine, then, the surging hope when the people heard God’s assurance: “Do not be afraid, for I am with you” (Isaiah 43:5). Whatever calamity they faced or trouble they would endure, He would be with them. He would “pass through the waters” with them, leading them to safety (v. 2). He would “walk through the fire” with them, helping them through the scorching flames(v. 2).
Throughout Scripture, God promises to be with His people, to care for us, guide us, and never abandon us—whether in life or death. Even when you find yourself in difficult places, God is with you.He’ll help you pass through the waters.
431But now, this is what the Lord says— he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. 2When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. 3 For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior; I give Egypt for your ransom, Cush[a] and Seba in your stead. 4Since you are precious and honored in my sight, and because I love you, I will give people in exchange for you, nations in exchange for your life. 5Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bring your children from the east and gather you from the west. 6I will say to the north, ‘Give them up!’ and to the south, ‘Do not hold them back.’ Bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the ends of the earth— 7everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.”
What deep waters are you facing?
How does God’s promise to pass through them with you strengthen your heart today?
Against the backdrop of the present Assyrian invasion (Isaiah 10:3–6) and the future Babylonian destruction and exile (39:6–7), God assured the people of Judah saying, “Do not fear!” (43:1). God reminded them that they were His chosen people and had a special personal relationship with Him: “I have summoned you by name; you are mine” (v. 1). God also gave them many assurances of His love and protection: He revealed Himself as theirCreator, Redeemer, Owner, and Protector(vv. 1–4) and declared, “For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior” (v. 3). God’s people didn’t need to fear the Assyrians or the Babylonians because they were greatly loved by God (v. 4). But it’d be foolish for them to depend on anything other than God for deliverance (31:1). Isaiah called them to repent and to “turn to the Lord . . . for he will freely pardon” (55:7).
God, the water is deep, and I don’t see how I’m going to make it through. Thank You for promising to be with me and to carry me through! In Jesus name, I pray. Amen!!