Haste Makes Waste

“Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste.” (Isaiah 28:16)

This is one of the great Messianic prophecies of the Old Testament, promising a Savior who would be the sure foundation of the eternal temple of God; yet it was 700 years before the promise was fulfilled. God did not “make haste,” but His promise, nevertheless, was sure. No doubt many believing Jews wondered why it was taking so long, but in the “fulness of the time” (Galatians 4:4), Christ came.

It is so easy to rush ahead of God instead of waiting for His leading. With good intentions and admirable zeal, Christians plan great programs, establish new organizations, promote legislation, and become involved in a thousand-and-one good activities, all in the name of Christ and His kingdom. Such activism is urgent, they believe, because the time is short. Nuclear war is coming; maybe even Christ is coming; and we must hurry.

But the Scripture says: “Therefore will the LORD wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will he be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the LORD is a God of judgment: blessed are all they that wait for him” (Isaiah 30:18).

We must not fail to follow when He really leads through His Word, but all too often undue haste results in confusion and collapse. When our text is quoted by Peter (1 Peter 2:6), the phrase “make haste” is rendered by “be confounded,” or “be ashamed.” It is not honoring to God for Christian projects and activities to “be confounded,” so Christian believers must be careful not to “make haste.” “Wait, I say, on the LORD” (Psalm 27:14). HMM

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