Throughout the history of the Old Testament the people of God often found themselves in very difficult situations and quite often the reason was because they forgot who they were. They became so involved in this world that their identity became blurred to them and to everyone else around them. What they came to need over and over was the mercy of the Lord. Isaiah the great prophet of God reminded the Israelites of how they had come to their fallen place and how the Lord would life them up.
They had once again come to the almost hopeless situation in life because of the little value that they had placed upon their spiritual lives. Isaiah wrote; “You have sold yourselves for nothing…” (Isaiah 52:3). They had sold themselves do the false gods of the nations around them and began to serve the stones and pieces of wood and had forgotten their spiritual value in the one true living God. They thought that they had gained so much in this material world as they began to have what the rest of the world had and began to participate in the same immorality, but it was all worthless and because it was worthless that meant that they had essentially sold themselves for nothing. The apostle Paul was not known to be an immoral person, but a keeper of the Law of Moses to the point of being a Pharisee, but when he believed in the gospel of Christ and obeyed it the understood the value of anything in comparison to the salvation that is in Christ Jesus. “Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ” (Philippians 3:8). Members of the Lord’s church can also find themselves selling themselves “for nothing”. That nothing may be pride, arrogance, immorality, wealth, recreation, etc. Anything that comes before God in our lives is that nothing that we have sold ourselves in order to obtain.
The hopeless situation was going to be turned into victory for the people of God not only during the time of Isaiah the prophet, but also in a prophetic way for anyone that will seek salvation through Jesus Christ. Isaiah went on to complete his thought; “You have sold yourselves for nothing, and you shall be redeemed without money” (Isaiah 52:3). Money could not and can not but spiritual security and salvation. The mercy of God was going to be extended to his people and in a prophetic way to everyone in the world. The people of God during Isaiah’s time have sold themselves for nothing when they desired to live by the world’s standard and not by God’s standard, and now they could be saved not with money, or as Peter wrote; “knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold…but with the precious blood of Christ…” (1 Peter 1:18-19). The salvation of God’s people during Isaiah’s time and prophetically all who would be saved would be because of God’s mercy. “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who proclaims peace, who brings glad tiding of good, who proclaims salvation, who says to Zion, your God reigns” (Isaiah 62:7).
God’s people only needed to repent and turn to him with their whole heart and begin to walk in his way once more to receive that mercy. God’s children that have sold themselves for nothing can once again have that salvation that God extends through his mercy by doing the same.
by Wayne Brewer