By James Smith (1802-1862)
“Hearken unto Me! I have cared for you since you were born. Yes, I carried you before you were born. I will be your God throughout your lifetime–until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for you. I will carry you along and save you!” Isaiah 46:3-4
This passage of Scripture is the aged believer’s cordial. Let us look at the beautiful images employed.
God is our parent–a kind and tender-hearted parent. He is peculiarly attached to His people–they are dear to Him, and precious in His sight. They are His portion. He prizes them above all creation. He is strong to sustain, to defend and support them. His strong arm, tender heart, and watchful eye–are all employed for them–and especially so in old age.
The aged believer is as a child. He is weak. He feels exposed and defenseless. He is timid and fearful. But the Lord, as a tender parent, engages to take him up in the arms of His power–and carry him in the bosom of His love! Like a tender lamb in the shepherd’s bosom on a cold and frosty night, borne across a bleak and snow-covered wasteland–so the believer, in the winter of old age, shall be carried in the bosom of his God, across the bleak and cheerless desert of time.
God will carry him tenderly–hushing the weak one’s fears.
He will bear him carefully–so that nothing shall harm or hurt him.
He will soothe him with gentle words, and encourage him with kind acts–until He safely brings him Home!
Dear aged Christian, you have nothing to fear! Your God says, “I will be your God throughout your lifetime–until your hair is white with age! I am your Father–your Friend–your solace–and your confidence! Look unto Me, even to old age–I will carry you. I will bear you up under all that you feel and fear. I will carry you through all that discourages or distresses you. I will deliver you from foes, fears, dangers and death itself! Nothing shall by any means hurt you! My arm is strong enough–trust in it. My bosom is your resting-place–lean on it, lean hard! Do not be afraid . . .
love dwells there,
pity rules there,
your name is engraved there!
Trust me, I will never leave you nor forsake you!
“Hearken!” Believer, your God bids you to “hearken.” His words are true and faithful.
He speaks to banish your fears.
He speaks to strengthen your faith.
He speaks to comfort your poor drooping heart.
He speaks to clothe your care-worn brow, with the light of hope, with the cheerfulness which confidence imparts.
Hearken to Him–not to unbelief or carnal reason.
It is the Guide of your youth who addresses you.
It is your tender Parent who seeks to cheer your heart.
Hearken, it is your Savior who speaks!
“As one whom his mother comforts”–so does your God comfort you.
He is near you–near you every moment;
He will carry you–carry you every step;
He will deliver you–deliver you from every danger, trouble and foe!