God Loves Us More than Any Mother Could
By Matthew Black, pastor
Text: Isaiah 49:13-16
Date: Sunday, May 10, 2009
Mother’s Day Message
Tabernacle Baptist Church
7020 Barrington Road
Hanover Park, Illinois 60133
It is Mother’s Day, and it is appropriate that we honor the mother God gave to each one of us. Every day should be Mother’s Day (and Father’s Day). The fifth commandment teaches us that we honor God by honoring our mother and father. A good mother is the best friend any one can have on the earth. We should reverence the mothers and grandmothers in our life.
I want to say “thank you” to all the mother’s here today, and encourage all of you to breath out a prayer of thankfulness of your mom. God is good in giving us the mother He has given us. I want to welcome all those who are visiting with us. It is our hope today that you came not to hear a sermon this morning, but that you came to experience the God who created you and died in your place so that you could live forever.
Open your Bibles to Isaiah 49:13-16. This morning we are going to see how great our heavenly Father’s love is for us. Our message this morning is entitled “God Loves us More than Any Mother Could”.
Let’s stand as we read Isaiah 49:13-16, “Sing, O heavens; and be joyful, O earth; and break forth into singing, O mountains: for the LORD hath comforted his people, and will have mercy upon his afflicted. 14 But Zion said, The LORD hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me. 15 Can a woman forget her sucking child [A NEW BORN], that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee. 16 Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands; thy walls [OF PROTECTION] are continually before me.”
[Prayer for Guidance]
Introduction: There is no love like a mother’s love. This morning we are going to look at:
We are going to see that as great as a mother’s love is, God’s love for His children surpasses the best mother’s love for her child. This morning I want to tell you about the incomprehensible, immeasurable, amazing and awesome love of God for undeserving sinners.
God put an amazing love in a mother’s heart to show us His love for us. His love is greater than even a mother’s love.
I. First I want you to think about a mother’s Hope.
A. A mother hopes the best for her child. When they are young she dreams about what they will become. A mother has great optimism for the success of her child. She does everything necessary for that child to succeed. She gets the best baby food. Jill buys fresh fruits and vegetables and purees them. She wants the best for Evan. She wants our children to succeed. A mother tries to get her children the best education and training for life. We want our children to do better than us. We want the very best for them!
Sometimes our children do not meet our hopes. A child often will dash the hopes of his mother. Yet a mother hopes the best for her child. A mother constantly encourages her child and give that child every reason to hope for the best.
Yet God’s hope is greater than any mother’s hope. God’s desire to do us good never ceases. Verse 13, we hear God telling the heavens to rejoice. He says, “Sing, O heavens; and be joyful, O earth; and break forth into singing, O mountains: for the LORD hath comforted his people, and will have mercy upon his afflicted”.
B. God gives us a greater hope than a mother. He gives us hope in Jesus Christ.
God offers “mercy upon his afflicted”. Mercy is not given to innocent people, but only to guilty people. The children of Israel had gotten themselves into this mess. They worshipped idols. They forsook God. They sought their own way.
Yet God sends hope to them. They don’t deserve it. But from the very beginning God gave them hope that the Messiah would come and take away their sins!
Context: This chapter is all about the greatest hope in the universe. The beginning of Isaiah 49 is all about the Messiah coming to rescue not only Israel, but the whole world! Listen, as great a hope that a mother can offer her child, God give you a hope that surpasses any mother’s hope!
Turn over a few chapters to Isaiah 53. We have cause for singing today because as guilty sinners we deserve hell, but God has given us mercy! He’s given mercy to His afflicted!!
Isaiah 53:6, “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all”. Now look at the last part of verse 8, “for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.” Now look at verse 10, “Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief”. Now verse 11, “He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.”
What hope we have in Christ. Turn back to Isaiah 49:6. God the Father is speaking to His Only Son in verse 6, and he says that he will “restore the preserved of Israel” and he says, “I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth.”
That’s why in verse 13, God tells the heavens and earth to be joyful and for the mountains to break forth into singing! What a hope. A mother gives great hope to her children, but God’s hope is greater than any mother’s. He gives us hope in Christ!
God’s love is so great for the undeserving, that we can only weep with joy. If you find yourself today guilty, if you’ve ever felt abandoned because of your own sin, if you’ve ever messed up royally in your life, and feel unloved and unlovable, then today’s message is for you.
II. Let’s consider a mother’s Hearing.
A. A mother’s hearing is amazing. A mother hears everything. Children try to hide things from their mother’s ears, but mom always seems to know everything!
One thing that is special about a mother’s hearing, is she hears the cry of her baby. She knows what that cry means. She can tell if that cry means the baby needs a diaper change or if that cry means the baby is in trouble. That’s is because a mother loves her child. Her compassion is great!
B. God’s compassion is greater for His children. His hearing is tuned in to your every cry if you are His child! Listen to verse 14, “But Zion said, The LORD hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me. 15 Can a woman forget her sucking child [A NEW BORN], that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee.”
C. God hears Zion’s cry! “Zion” accuses God of forsaking her. It looked like God had abandoned Zion. We have to ask, who is “Zion”? This is God’s chosen name for His children. Zion is a special name for true believers in the Lord. He speaks not of all Israel, but of those believing in Him.
GOD KNOWS YOUR NAME!! Do not rejoice most that you know God’s name. Rejoice that He knows your name! He loves you. He hears you. Not because you are worthy but because His Name is worthy. He says to you “I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee” (Jeremiah 31:3). He hears your cry!
D. God does not love you or hear you because you are good. There is none good. God loves you because He wants to magnify His mercy. He does not love you because you are good. He loves you because He is GOOD!
Context: The context is SINFUL ISRAEL afflicted by the consequences of their own sin. Because of Israel’s own sin, God prophesied through Isaiah that the nation would be taken away from their land. And so, in Isaiah’s lifetime th northern ten tribes of the nation of Israel were conquered by Assyria (modern day Iran). Most families were deported there. They were foreigners now in a strange new country. The language was different. The customs were different. They felt as if God had forsaken them!
It was not God that had forsaken them. They had forsaken God. If you read back in Isaiah 48:10, Isaiah says they got themselves into this mess themselves. “O that thou hadst hearkened to my commandments! then had thy peace been as a river, and thy righteousness as the waves of the sea”.
God promised that if Israel obeyed him, they would be blessed, but if they rebelled, they would be taken by other nations. That is exactly what happened. They broke God’s commandments and broke their fellowship with God.
In spite of your disobedience, God loves sinners! You cannot imagine or comprehend how much God loves undeserving sinners. God draws undeserving sinners!
III. Now I want you to think of a mother’s Heart. God tells us something amazing, that if you are His child, you are loved by God more than any human mother could love her infant child. How much do you mothers love your children? Combine the love of all mothers that have ever existed, and God the Father loves His children more than that.
Verse 15, “Can a woman forget her sucking child [A NEW BORN], that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee.” What grace there is with God! There may be a mother that could forget or forsake her nursing infant, but God’s love is infinitely greater! He will never forget you and never forsake you!
There is no love in the world like a mother’s love, yet God’s love is greater than that! However much pain a mother has suffered because of her child, however much trouble it was to bear the child, no matter what trouble he gets into in his life, a mother never stops loving her child.
We see God’s compassion to our cry because God sent His only Son into the world for us. Look at Romans 8. God has heard our cry with tender compassion! God sent His Son! What amazing love. It surpasses a mother’s love.
Romans 8:31-39, “What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? 32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. 34 Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
A. God is compassionate like a mother. What would a mother not do to show love to her precious infant child? Now some mothers are more compassionate at certain times of the day than at others. After a long day, a mother may lose her compassion and be a bit impatient. God is never like that. God is more compassionate than any mother. A mother would give any thing out of love for her children! God gave His only Son for you so that you could have eternal life!
Romans 8:32, “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” What compassion.
B. God is compassionate like a father. I want you to listen to Psalm 103:10-14, “He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities. 11 For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him. 12 As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us. 13 Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him. 14 For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.”
What love God has for His children! He loves you more than a mother loves her infant child. How many tears does a mother wipe away from her child’s face? Yet we read of God in Revelation 21:4, “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”
IV. Now I want you to see that God’s hands are better than a mother’s Hands.
Verse 16 gives the picture of our names being engraved on the palms of God’s hands, “Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands”. In the ancient world, if a man was a slave, he would have his master’s name cut into his hands. But here we see that the master has cut the servant’s name upon His hands.
God says in effect “no way would a woman reject her own baby,” before acknowledging that, then as now, sadly there are a few women who do indeed forget the child they bore. But God can NEVER forget! Why? Because of what happened on the cross when he “engraved our names on his hands.”
Christ in Heaven is “as a Lamb slain”. Forever our Saviour and Mediator has the marks of the Cross on His hands, those nail-prints always before Him. He says “I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands”! (verse 16). Spurgeon said, “Jesus can give nothing, he can take nothing, he can do nothing, he can hold nothing, without remembering you!”
My brothers and sisters, Jesus Christ is the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. He has always had you in His mind. He has always loved you. His hands prove it.
Charles Wesley wrote a hymn about this verse:
Arise, My Soul, Arise
Arise, my soul, arise. Shake off thy guilty fears.
The bleeding sacrifice In my behalf appears.
Before the throne my Surety stands,
Before the throne my Surety stands;
My name is written on His hands.
And yet, it is not just our names that are graven on His hands. He says, “I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands”! (verse 16). He knows you entirely—not just your name, but you as a person. He knows everything about you and He still loves you. your personality, your circumstances, your trials, your sins, your temptations, your wants, your works, your weaknesses, everything about you is known to Him--He has graven YOU upon His own palms.
A. The Divine Dilemma. Isaiah 48:18 has an indictment not just against Israel, but against all of us. “O that thou hadst hearkened to my commandments! then had thy peace been as a river, and thy righteousness as the waves of the sea”. Isaiah says they got themselves into this mess.
1. If God simply pardons the wicked, He is no longer just. Proverbs 17:15 declares: “He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the LORD.”
2. If God does not pardon the wicked, all will perish. The Scriptures tell us: that “all have sinned” (Romans 3:23); and “The wages of sin is death...” (Romans 6:23); and still, “The soul that sinneth, it shall die” (Ezekiel 18:4).
B. The Divine Answer. We could not pay for our sins and still go to heaven. God requires an infinite payment. That would take us forever to pay. We are unable and without strength to pay for our sins. But may God be praised that “when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly” (Romans 5:6).
The only hope is that God, who is infinite, would pay the price for us. 2 Corinthians 5:21, “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” Christ became sin for us! He took your shame and your sin upon Himself. He took the blame and the wrath of God for your sin. Look at the Cross of Calvary. Look at the man hanging there. The man there is your Creator. The Infinite God cannot be contained and yet He became “flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). Jesus was forsaken by the Father. He cried out from the Cross and said that He was abandoned and forsaken. He said, ‘My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46).
C. The Divine Reason. God chose you before the foundation of the world, but it had nothing to do with your beauty or worth to God. Your salvation is not about you. In yourself, you are only a worm and a wretch, deserving of hell. Your salvation is not about you. It’s about Him!
Jesus Christ saves us for Himself. You might be here this morning and say, “God should save me because I am a good person”. God will never save you if you think you are good. He says that He “came not to call the righteous but SINNERS to repentance”. If you think you are good you are self-deceived. Wise Solomon said in Ecclesiastes 7:20, “For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.”
V. Finally, let’s consider a mother’s Help. No matter what trouble a child gets themselves into, a mother wants to get them out of it. Yet the Lord’s help is greater than any mother’s. God is protectiveness for His children is greater than a mother who protects her nursing infant. Verse 16 says, “Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands; thy walls [OF PROTECTION] are continually before me.”
Children can grow up and have times of selfishness and even cause great sorrow to a mother’s heart. Yet a mother is always there for her child to come to the rescue.
You remember when you fell off your bike or skinned your knee, your mother was always there watching out for you. She was there with that band aid. When you were sick, she was there to wipe your nose!
Context. The Jews in Assyria were ripped from their fenced cities in Israel. They seemed completely vulnerable and unprotected.
Illustration: You mothers, you remember when you held that little baby in your arms for the first time? What joy you had. No one could rip that baby from you. And as strong as that emotion courses through your veins, God feels infinitely stronger and more jealous for every one of His children.
Jesus said in John 10:28-29, “I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. 29 My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.”
God is always looking out for you. If you are His child, then His love for you is more than you can ever comprehend or imagine.
Conclusion: God’s love is greater than a mother’s love. Yes we saw
Yet God’s love is even greater than that of a mother. He came to same those who scorned Him. He loves those who hate Him. What a God of love we serve. Do you know Him? Is He your Father? Do you know His love?